new HVAC quote

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  #1  
Old 01-28-03, 04:17 PM
KdFMan
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new HVAC quote

Hello all.

I am currently shopping for a new HVAC system for my home.

I live in St. Louis, so we have both extreme winters and summers.
House is a single story, brick and masonry structure. Built circa 1950. Approx 800sq ft. Attic is insulated with about 16" of that blown-in cellulose stuff. Walls are well... whatever they did in brick homes 53 years ago. Living room, kitchen, bath, 2 bedrooms. Basically the house is diveded into 4ths. Cold air returns located in living room and master bed. Hardwood floors. Have leaky, crappy aluminium casement windows - 2 to a room. (I'm replacing the windows too, BTW). Unfinished basement.

My current HVAC is 35 years old! The AC NEVER fully cools the house in the summer, and the heat does OK but as you can imagine, my utility bills are astronomical even for this relatively small house. (90/mo gas, 120/mo elec on "budget billing" - that's $2,520/yr!!!)

I've gotten a few quotes for new systems this past week. All for TRANE (seems popular around here?) 12 SEER, 80%, 4 ton I beleive, w/programable thermostat.

Prices have been in the $3,500 - $4,000 range for the full job w/warranty. More "economic HVAC systems were only about $200-$300 cheaper.

Just wondering if this sounds about right to y'all.

Thanks!

Brian
 
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Old 01-28-03, 04:36 PM
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Trane...

The Trane products are great.. My parents has a Trane, and had not stuck a penny into the system for the 5 years they owned the system. Even my aunt and uncle has them and are very happy with it, and they got the upper model with the variable speed blower. The Variable speed blower is the way to go! It's very quiet, and saves on your power bill and most of all, C O M F O R T!

The main thing to look for for your dealer is make sure they do a "Heat Load/lost" program to say exectly what size of a system to put into your home. ALso, Find out how, and what they will stand behind other than the factory warrenity.

To me, the 5 ton system sounds very over sized for a 800 sqft home! Also, what size are the returns? 2 too small of a return is not oging to cause system problem down the road...
 
  #3  
Old 01-28-03, 04:55 PM
Isabel
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Hi there!

I went through this myself very, very recently. If you do a search for 'furnace quotes' or just posts by my name using the search button, you'll find the thread.

I got a lot of good advice from the folks here there that might be of use to you, and there's a few other posts on the same topic as well.

Good luck!
Isabel
 
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Old 01-28-03, 05:20 PM
KdFMan
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Re: Trane...

Originally posted by Jay11J

To me, the 5 ton system sounds very over sized for a 800 sqft home! Also, what size are the returns? 2 too small of a return is not oging to cause system problem down the road...
Actually, now that I'm home from work and have the bid(s) in-hand, it looks like they're for TWO ton, not 4 (or five as you mis-quoted).

And as for the returns, they are along the walls, approx 4"x24" and in all rooms EXCEPT kitchen and bath, not just in living room and master bedroom as I previously stated.

And no, none of them did any sort of heat gain/loss tests, which is why I was kinda suspicious!

Thanks!
Brian
 
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Old 01-28-03, 05:47 PM
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important factors

a heat load is mandatory if you are spending this kind of money. rule of thumb is not enough. ask your friends who they use, and check the BBB. trane is good equipment, but installation quality is more important.
 
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Old 01-28-03, 06:00 PM
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The duct system often reveals tha maximum airflow because of its size and airflow equates to btu output. So maybe that is a good place to start. If your duct system can only accomodate 800 cfm, it would not be wise to install a cooling system over 2 tons. If the duct system is not adequate, those modifications should be considered at the same time a new system is installed. That way you will have one company to call if you are not comfortable after the job.

Good luck.
 
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