New HVAC questions - lots of questions

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  #1  
Old 07-01-03, 11:13 PM
landscape guy
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Question New HVAC questions - lots of questions

Hi

I have to get a new air and horizontal gas furnace system in chicago. My house is 1600 sq ft. How can something so simple be so complicated?

I have seen guys representing Trane, American Standard, Gibson-Fridgidere, Heil, and Lenox. Which brands are best? American Standard and Trane guys are fighting it out here. Does anyone know if there is a difference other than the markup. The last Trane guy here said he would give me the trane for the American Standard price. Makes me think its a markup thing. Or should I not trust this last guy.


Most shops are saying that I need a 2.5 ton air and 3 ton coil. Is this OK. Its very humid here like atlanta, so dehumidification is key.

Also SEER 10 or 12. Is a 12 worth the $350 extra. You do get a 10 year instead of 5 year warranty too.

Funace BTUs most people sizing a 100,000 but last guy said 80,000 2 stage would be fine. Are the two stage ones worth the money.

80 or 90 efficency. Some are saying the 90's are more trouble- break down more? Any comment?

Whats best for vaulted ceilings? Will a variable speed make a difference?

Ductwork will have to be done. Is this pretty simple stuff that everyone should be good at, or is there a skill factor I should pay a premium for?

Outside Chiminey Flu liner. What should a 5 in liner cot to put in. I got a $300 - 500 - $700 range. Are the low priced guys cutting corners or is there a big markup on this too? Water heater shares it. So a T will have to be put in. One guy said he would use the best liner. Is there such a thing?


Is there an advantage going with a big shop vs. a small shop?

I guess thats just about it.
 
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  #2  
Old 07-02-03, 05:25 AM
lynn comstock
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Questions...and answers.

[QUOTE]Originally posted by landscape guy
Hi

I have to get a new air and horizontal gas furnace system in chicago. My house is 1600 sq ft. How can something so simple be so complicated? IT ISN'T SIMPLE.

I have seen guys representing Trane, American Standard, Gibson-Fridgidere, Heil, and Lenox. Which brands are best? IT MAKES VERY LITTLE DIFFERENCE. American Standard and Trane guys are fighting it out here. Does anyone know if there is a difference other than the markup. The last Trane guy here said he would give me the trane for the American Standard price. Makes me think its a markup thing. Or should I not trust this last guy.


Most shops are saying that I need a 2.5 ton air and 3 ton coil. Is this OK. WE HAVE NO WAY OF KNOWING WHAT THE HOUSE NEEDS. BUY ONLY FROM SOMEONE WHO DOES A HEAT CALCULATION AS A PART OF THE AGREEMENT. THE SMALLEST UNIT THAT DOES THE JOB IS THE BEST CHOICE. Its very humid here like atlanta, so dehumidification is key.

Also SEER 10 or 12. Is a 12 worth the $350 extra. YES. You do get a 10 year instead of 5 year warranty too.

Funace BTUs most people sizing a 100,000 but last guy said 80,000 2 stage would be fine. Are the two stage ones worth the money. YES. ALSO SMALLER IS BETTER.

80 or 90 efficency. Some are saying the 90's are more trouble- break down more? Any comment? YES. THE 2 STAGE IS BETTER FOR COMFORT. THE 90% FURNACE MAY TAKE A LONG TIME TO PAY BACK AND THE TECHS TO SERVICE IT NEED MORE SKILL. IN THE REAL WORLD SIMPLER IS BETTER THAN A 10 TO 15% ENERGY SAVINGS ON FUEL.

Whats best for vaulted ceilings? IRRELEVANT. Will a variable speed make a difference? YES.

Ductwork will have to be done. Is this pretty simple stuff that everyone should be good at, or is there a skill factor I should pay a premium for? YES. WHAT MAKES DUCTWORK DIFFICULT IS UNDERSTANDING THE WAY AIR MOVES THROUGH IT.

Outside Chiminey Flu liner. What should a 5 in liner cot to put in. I got a $300 - 500 - $700 range. I DON'T KNOW. Are the low priced guys cutting corners or is there a big markup on this too? YES. YES. Water heater shares it. So a T will have to be put in. BAD IDEA. SEPARATE LINERS IS A MUCH BETTER IDEA. One guy said he would use the best liner. Is there such a thing? YES. BUT WORKMANSHIP MATTERS MORE.


Is there an advantage going with a big shop vs. a small shop? LOOK FOR COMPETANCE AND KNOWLEDGE FIRST. A CORRECTLY INSTALLED FURNACE AND FLUE IS WHAT YOU WANT TO BUY. ALL OTHER ISSUES ARE SECONDARY. SAFETY IS FIRST.

I guess thats just about it.
 
  #3  
Old 07-02-03, 01:00 PM
landscape guy
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2.5 ton with 3 ton coil

Hi

Thanks for your response. Could you clarify these points please I need to make decision soon.(its almost 90 today)

Most shops are saying that I need a 2.5 ton air and 3 ton coil. Is this OK. Is it better to match a 2.5 tone with a 2.5 ton coil?
One Dealer said its only a $5 difference in price and does not recomend mixing 2.5 with 3.0.

How much better is a 80,000 BTUs 90 efficent single stage Furnace verses a 80,000 2 stage?

80 or 90 efficency. Some are saying the 90's are more trouble- break down more? Any comment? YES. THE 2 STAGE IS BETTER FOR COMFORT. THE 90% FURNACE MAY TAKE A LONG TIME TO PAY BACK AND THE TECHS TO SERVICE IT NEED MORE SKILL. IN THE REAL WORLD SIMPLER IS BETTER THAN A 10 TO 15% ENERGY SAVINGS ON FUEL. The dealer pushing the 90 said that the two stage units break down more, have more parts, and is more costly to repair. He also said two stage is an old idea that is being phased out. Is this true?

Whats best for vaulted ceilings? IRRELEVANT. Will a variable speed make a difference? YES. My question is will a variable speed make a difference on a vaulted ceiling like one dealer was saying?

I guess thats just about it - again.

Thanks
 
  #4  
Old 07-02-03, 06:20 PM
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my opinion

i would.......

go 2.5 ton coil and a/c....more dehumidification than 2.5/3.

80% 2 stage furnace variable speed

vaulted cielings are irrelevant, VS wil no compensate for them, just give better comfort.

of the brands mentioned, i have personally installed gibson/frigidaire and would steer away from them. dealt trane for many years, that is a good product, but you will pay for it and it MUST be installed correctly.

just my dos centavos!!
 
  #5  
Old 07-02-03, 07:29 PM
landscape guy
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I am glad someone knows Gibson.

HVAC:"of the brands mentioned, i have personally installed gibson/frigidaire and would steer away from them. dealt trane for many years, that is a good product, but you will pay for it and it MUST be installed correctly. "

Since you know both Trane and Gibson. Can you tell me
of the what you would do if you had a choice between a trane 80 2 speed and a Gibson 92 single. They will cost the same. The Gibson/Fidgidair guy said he could put in a Trane for the same price as the other guys but doesnt like the compressor they use and says Gibson has a 8 year warrenty and Trane is only 5. (PS: I am going with the 12 Seer, and they both upgrade to 10 year.)

Is the 12 Seer Gibson a good if not better and more quiet than Trane 12?


How can I be sure the Trane is installed correctly and then service correctly for that matter. Is it more complicated or poorly designed?

What else can you tell me?

Why would you shy away from Gibson?
Is it the same machine as Frigidare?
Is the Fridgidare 760 humidifier the same as the Aprilair 700?

Thanks again
 
  #6  
Old 07-03-03, 09:55 AM
lynn comstock
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how can you be sure anything is installed correctly?

Look for a contractor who guarantees your complete satisfaction with his work for at least one year. Only competent contractors of integrity will do that.
 
  #7  
Old 07-03-03, 06:21 PM
landscape guy
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Wow

Complete satisfaction is something no one has talked about. The best I got is 2 years parts and labor. Do you mean that they will or should swap out the equipment if not happy at their cost? Or give me an upgraded unit for no cost? Please tell me what exactly should I ask for and expect to get?
 
  #8  
Old 07-04-03, 01:36 PM
lynn comstock
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Re: Wow

[QUOTE]Originally posted by landscape guy
Complete satisfaction is something no one has talked about. The best I got is 2 years parts and labor. Do you mean that they will or should swap out the equipment if not happy at their cost
Yes
Or give me an upgraded unit for no cost?
Yes
Please tell me what exactly should I ask for and expect to get?
Ask for real assurances that protect your investment. The contractural, written moneyback guarantee is offered by many quality companies. Don't expect them to also be the lowest bidders.

Check http://www.mcconnellheating.com/mcco...p?p=guarantees
for an example of a company that stands out. They are out there and they earn their respect and their reputation.
 
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