Questions about Lennox Heat Pump compressor replacement under warranty


  #1  
Old 12-30-05, 03:18 PM
MacDaddy
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Questions about Lennox Heat Pump compressor replacement under warranty

Hi,
I have a Lennox HP29 installed by the previous owner in March 2003. We noticed the recent electric bill was double last year's. Noticed that the inside circuit breaker was tripped, and would not reset.

Called two different technicans out to look at unit.
#1 (Not Lennox dealer) eyeballed the unit and said "compressor shorted to ground" $1400 to replace compressor.
#2 (Lennox dealer) performed several diagnostic procedures and pronounced "compressor shorted to ground". checked refrigerant, refrigerant level great. "good news, the compressor is covered under warranty"

Unfortunately, my warranted compressor is going to cost $978 to install.

Is this a valid cost to install a compressor? The cost is broken down:
1. Warranty replace scroll $739.
2. pumpdown system drier $238

item 1 is allegedly labor only, but I wonder why pumping the system down is a seperate charge.

Are driers that expensive ($238)?

Any comments or advise will be greatly appreciated

Mac
 
  #2  
Old 12-30-05, 08:20 PM
T
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They are refering to pumping down the system and a drier i believe. When a compressor burns out, it can contaminate the freon with acids and other chemicals. The freon, if contaminated must be recycled at a significant cost to the company. The system then must be recharged with new freon. Even if it is not contaminated, they have to cover the cost of their testing kit. So, I would say that charge is justified.
 
  #3  
Old 12-31-05, 07:30 PM
MacDaddy
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Originally Posted by thermofridge
They are refering to pumping down the system and a drier i believe. When a compressor burns out, it can contaminate the freon with acids and other chemicals. The freon, if contaminated must be recycled at a significant cost to the company. The system then must be recharged with new freon. Even if it is not contaminated, they have to cover the cost of their testing kit. So, I would say that charge is justified.
Hey I'm sure the pumpdown is justified, I just don't understand why it's listed seperately from the labor to install the compressor. Seems like it is part of the process of changing a compressor, so why list it seperately?

How many hours should it take to replace the compressor?

On a seperate note, are you saying that they will test my old freon and maybe reuse it, maybe not?
thanks,
Mac
 
  #4  
Old 01-01-06, 05:10 PM
T
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Labor is always listed seperately. Yes they should test the freon and reuse it if they can. It should take approximately 4 hours to change. Now I know the labor charge seems high but that includes the original service call, all the correspondence with their supplier and trips ,calls and lots of paperwork after the job is done. Also, most of the time, your contractor will foot the bill for your new compressor until they are reimbursed some 3 to 6 weeks later. So think of part of the fee as interest.
 
  #5  
Old 01-01-06, 08:09 PM
MacDaddy
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Originally Posted by thermofridge
Labor is always listed seperately.
I'm thinking this guy's got it twice:
1. compressor installation
2. system pumpdown.

I don't mind paying fair labor - once.

Originally Posted by thermofridge
........but that includes the original service call,........
LOL the original service call was $78 COD. All the local dealers charge $70 to $100 for the first service call regardless of outcome.

But thanks for the comments, they do help me understand it better. The more viewpoints I get, the more sense it makes.

It sounds like I'm in for:
4 hours labor, probably a 2 man job? = 8 man hours
New freon
any damaged parts that show up after the compressor is changed.

thanks,
Mac
 
  #6  
Old 01-01-06, 08:43 PM
T
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Any way you look at it or they list it, thats what it costs. It may be a bit high but after all it is a Lennox. Next time buy Trane, Amana or Goodman.
 
  #7  
Old 01-02-06, 06:41 AM
J
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A system pumpdown is usually performed when the refrigerant system is opened up. This is necessary for a multitude of repairs and not just for compressor replacement. Therefore, some companies itemize this seperately on their invoice. If your are making a comparison, consider the total price.

$978 for compressor replacement is not unreasonable, it requires a lot of time and skilled work.

Good luck with this.
 
  #8  
Old 01-02-06, 07:38 AM
MacDaddy
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Originally Posted by thermofridge
Any way you look at it or they list it, thats what it costs. It may be a bit high but after all it is a Lennox. Next time buy Trane, Amana or Goodman.

O.k., I'm close to accepting this. But can you clarify the "after all it is a Lennox" statement? I don't know Lennox from Adam-is it great, good or POS?
thanks,
Mac
 
  #9  
Old 01-02-06, 03:06 PM
T
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Lennox makes a great product. Just fewer dealers and more brand specific parts than others.
 
  #10  
Old 01-14-06, 09:49 AM
MacDaddy
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The manager of the company who quoted $978 called back and lowered the quote to $800 on the basis "you can't pumpdown a failed compressor".

I called a local independent guy who quoted $450 for the job, including doing the warranty on the compressor.

guess who is my choice?

Unfortunantly, they left a message (I haven't confirmed it) that the compressor is on backorder and won't be available until Feb 14 (more than one month).
 
  #11  
Old 01-19-06, 03:08 AM
J
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While a "pumpdown" and "refrigerant recovery" are two totally different procedures, the terms are often (wrongly) interchanged. When a tech says "we have to pumpdown the system", they often mean pumpdown and/or recover.

A pumpdown refers to pumping the freon into the condenser coil while the high side valve is shut. This greatly reduces the amount of freon in the rest of the system which allows for fast recovery of that small amount. This procedure can only be used if repair work is limited to the lineset or evap coil. And yes, it requires a working compressor.
 
  #12  
Old 01-23-06, 07:03 PM
C
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I have several comments.First thing that caught my eye was that the refrigerant levels are ok.That cant be checked with the compressor inoperable.

Second thing is that people like to dog lennox and talk up Trane.Lennox and Trane are both owned by American Standard.

Third thing is the labor cost.739.00 divided by four hours of work.That comes to 184.50 per hour.Thats more than industrial service companies charge.Also the original service call should be deducted from the final bill.

Sounds suspect to me.
 
  #13  
Old 02-18-06, 08:18 PM
MacDaddy
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FINAL OUTCOME!

Just for the record:
1st estimate $1400 (no warranty work)
2nd estimate $978 (compressor $ covered by warranty)
2nd estimate $800 (revised by estimator)
3rd & final estimate $450 (compressor $ covered by warranty)

Only downside was it took 3 weeks+ to get the compressor.

Might have taken about 2 maybe 3 hours to do, included compressor, new freon, and suction side filter.

I'm happy now

thanks,
Mac
 
 

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