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Old 05-07-2008, 04:08 PM   #21
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Sounds like you got a great deal. Hope it all goes well for you.

I'm enjoying more of the continuing fiasco with my installer. They sent incomplete paperwork to the state on the duct testing and I'm currently not qualifying for an expected $600 duct sealing rebate/incentive as a result. When I talked to the salesman he said they didnt say on the contract that they'd do anything relating to the rebate, even though its required by law. So neener, neener

Since they've been so accommodating, I'm in the process of having them decertified from the state authorized duct sealing program until they become re-trained on the process and can complete it successfully. They cant get a sign off on a building permit until they solve that little issue, which means they wont be doing any installations for a while.

Guess they showed me... :

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Originally Posted by FinanceDude View Post
I can get furnace AND AC, with a 13 SERR unit, for $5960. And I get $350 back from energy credit rebates or whatever, so $5610 net. Not bad for furnace AND A/C.......
Thats another good deal. Again, the 13 seer units are generally the bottom of the line el cheapo's that let them pitch a low quote. The bump to the 14 seer unit generally gets you R401, a quieter compressor, and a little more efficiency.
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Old 05-07-2008, 05:52 PM   #22
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Well, if you've signed the deal, this won't help, but I can recommend from personal experience that it's a good idea to look into a dual-fuel setup. We remodeled my daughter and son-in-law's house last year, and replaced the 30 year old furnance with a Reem dual-fuel setup. It has a heat pump that handles air conditioning in summer, and heat in winter down to about 34 degrees, then the heat pump quits, and the 94% gas furnace kicks in to handle really cold weather when the heat pump would have switched over to resistance electric heat. It has a very high-tech thermostat that monitors everything, and gives them endless options on day to day settings. They are VERY happy with the setup, and have seen their utility bills drop dramatically. cost to install, using the old ductwork, $8400.00
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Old 05-07-2008, 06:15 PM   #23
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Dual fuel setups make a great deal of sense in areas that enjoy cheap electric rates. If you're near a nuke or a hydro service area, they can be really cheap.

Some people with heatpumps complain about the draftiness. When you're close to the lower limits of their operating range the temp of the air coming out of the registers might only be in the low to mid 70's vs 100+ degrees coming from heatstrip, gas or oil furnaces.

Plus the outdoor unit runs almost all year long, so the lifespan can be significantly reduced.

A high efficiency dual fuel setup can really be handy if you have variable utility rates as many of the higher end units can be selectively programmed to use more or less of the heatpump and more or less of the gas/oil furnace.

Some people in more temperate climates that need minor heat occasionally and lots of air conditioning can get by with a heatpump only system with some backup electric strips. Thats nice because you can throw your money into a super efficient heatpump and save a bunch by using a basic air handler instead of a furnace.
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Old 05-07-2008, 08:04 PM   #24
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New HVAC

Any thoughts on the Lennox G61MPV or G71MPP furnances and the Lennox XC-15 or XC-16 AC?
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Old 05-08-2008, 09:03 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cute fuzzy bunny View Post
I'm enjoying more of the continuing fiasco with my installer. They sent incomplete paperwork to the state on the duct testing and I'm currently not qualifying for an expected $600 duct sealing rebate/incentive as a result. When I talked to the salesman he said they didnt say on the contract that they'd do anything relating to the rebate, even though its required by law. So neener, neener

Since they've been so accommodating, I'm in the process of having them decertified from the state authorized duct sealing program until they become re-trained on the process and can complete it successfully. They cant get a sign off on a building permit until they solve that little issue, which means they wont be doing any installations for a while.

Guess they showed me... :
Way to slap them around, good for you............



Quote:
Thats another good deal. Again, the 13 seer units are generally the bottom of the line el cheapo's that let them pitch a low quote. The bump to the 14 seer unit generally gets you R401, a quieter compressor, and a little more efficiency.
Well DW and I are only going to be in this house another 3 years or so, so I'm ok with it. Living in Wisconsin, I need a GOOD furnace and an "ok" AC unit, with our 8 months of winter each year.
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Old 05-08-2008, 10:15 AM   #26
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Way to slap them around, good for you............
Its pretty bad. These chuckleheads have done well selling and installing systems for people who dont know much about them, and except for things like CO and gas leaks their installations are somewhat functional. They make commitments and then try to weasel out of them. Then theres this continuous stream of weak attempts to screw me, all of which have turned out to be disastrous for them.

Some people seem to never learn.

Quote:
Well DW and I are only going to be in this house another 3 years or so, so I'm ok with it. Living in Wisconsin, I need a GOOD furnace and an "ok" AC unit, with our 8 months of winter each year.
Why did I think you lived on the east coast? I was thinking you had a warmer humid summer. You dont need air conditioning in wisconsin. You need a fan and a cold drink for about 6 days out of the year
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Old 05-08-2008, 12:39 PM   #27
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Just thought I'd throw my 2 cents in AGAINST Goodman. My boss had one put in 3-4 years ago. 90+-whatever efficiency. He's had to replace the exhaust fan, and pressure switches galore. Sure the parts are covered but the labor and service call kill you. All for the $100 part or less.

My boss is an intelligent engineer, and I haven't pried into the details enough. Maybe it's a cheap model furnace. Maybe he's getting screwed by the installer. Maybe he got a bad/didn't get a warranty. No idea, could be lots of things. Just thought I'd throw that out there.

-CC
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Old 05-08-2008, 02:02 PM   #28
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They did have some problems with equipment quality, but that was in the 90's/early 2000's. The only thing I've heard bad about their current crop of gear is that the paint on their outdoor units tends to fade a little faster than other brands.

They're also supposed to be a bitch for the contractor to work with when getting warranty parts, but thats the contractors problem.

Anyone buying a furnace/ac unit that doesnt get at least a 10 year full parts and labor warranty is asking for a lot of expense and trouble.

My dad has a goodman 92 that was installed in 1996. Nobody has touched it since.

The big issue with goodman is that they sell to and through anyone, everywhere including mail order and internet sales outfits, and they sell similar equipment a lot cheaper and with lower margins due to the saturation. That really seems to tick off the contractors who would rather you buy a big name piece of equipment for a lot more money, more margin and less competition.

It can be a little difficult to have a customer who has seen a full goodman setup on ebay selling for $2500 complete and a trane quote for $7500 with a day of labor to install and trying to get them to make that leap...
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ac and heating
Old 05-08-2008, 06:50 PM   #29
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ac and heating

CFB, we are looking at buying a condo we are now renting.Unit has two ac units and two gas heat units.The humidifier is only on the lower unit and didn't work all winter.I just had that fixed and wanted to know how much of a differance that would make in as far as lower the thermo and still feel comfortable. We sold a house that had oil baseboard heat so this set up is different.The unit is 5 years old. What would be an average life expectancy for builders furnances and ac units.I think I need the upper unit ac to be checked out as it doesn't feel as it is getting cooler upstairs.Also what kind of maintanance is needed on the furnances? Thanks
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:12 PM   #30
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Humidity during the winter of about 50-55% can make it feel a little warmer and help you keep the temps down a bit. But anything over 50% starts fostering growth of mold and mildew. Dehumidification in the summer can help the other way...keeping the temps up a little without feeling warmer. Some of the newer furnace/ac combinations can do a decent job of humidity reduction. In particular, a two stage a/c unit coupled with a variable speed fan and a humidistat can drastically reduce summer humidity in moister regions.

Builder quality units can usually be counted on to give you around 15-20 years of service although you'll probably be doing a few repairs from time to time and the efficiency on the builder quality units generally isnt as good as something better quality. Older gas furnaces/ac units can benefit from service every couple of years to clean the coils, the blower fan, remove combustion leftovers and check the refrigerant levels.

A lot of controversy over frequency of maintenance on the newer units. Some guys I think are pretty sharp say that the usual superficial poke and prod you get for $69 isnt at all beneficial and may in fact cause problems. I had one old timer thats been doing this since the 60's tell me to change the filters and leave it the heck alone other than that. I'm a little uncomfortable recommending less than 2 year service cycles for oil furnaces just because there are a few adjustments that can save you money and some cleaning/testing thats a little more important for oil than it is for gas.

The tough part is finding a company that will do a good job of maintenance and not just whiff on it to get a few quick bucks.

The only thing I'm concerned about on a/c units on a regular basis is the refrigerant level, but my new unit can detect that, shut down the compressor and put a warning up on the touchscreen thermo.

System mounted humidifiers do need some maintenance though. There are pads and other components that need regular replacement and cleaning.

How big is the condo, how old is it and how well is it insulated? Two heating/ac units in a condo seems unusual to me.
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:23 PM   #31
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ac

Thanks for the quick reply. The unit is 5 years old and 2100 sq feet.on two levels plus a full basement. It is well insulated in the spots I can see.Windows are probably cheap as I feel a draft sometimes.I also feel air around a switch plate on the front wall that has a stone exterior.It also has an attic fan which I thought was a good thing until I read your posting on that.I can't complain on the heating and electric cost as I sold a house that was 1200 sq feet bigger and had a built in pool.I think my electric bill will be half what it was.Thanks again for your insight, Jerry
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:36 PM   #32
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No trouble. I was just done with making a big pot of chili (sorry Rewahoo, I put two kinds of beans AND lentils in it. My bad. We live in California and a guy comes to certify that our chili contains a minimum amount of beanlike material and we suffer enormous fines for not complying) and thought I'd check in.

Building envelope and insulation are pretty important, but sort of boring. But like the pro's always tell me, you only have to pay for insulation once and then it pays off for 30-40 years. You can get little foam 'plates' that go behind your outlet covers and close off the gaps and good thick glass dual pane windows can really knock a lot off your heating and cooling expenses, along with cutting noise substantially. You can do a lot of good stuff in an afternoon with a stack of those foam outlet plates and a tube of caulking.

A reasonably well insulated home at 2100 square feet should be reasonably well serviced by a single heating and air conditioning unit. Does one look like an add-on? Dual systems can allow you to set one area at one temp and the other at something different. I had that in my old mcmansion and it was nice to have the upstairs/bedroom unit flip off during the day and go to a high heat/cool level at night, while the downstairs unit did the opposite.

Trouble is, you have two units to maintain and replace.

Attic fans are okay if you keep an eye on your bills and they're doing right by you. I had a powered attic fan in my old mcmansion and a two panel solar one in the last smaller house I had. They both delayed the onset of full bore air conditioning by an hour or so in the mornings. In my mcmansion, the electric bill didnt go down at all, so it was a wash powering the attic fan vs the air conditioner. In my last house, the electric bill didnt change much either and the $300 I spent on the solar powered attic fan (self installed) didnt taste that good either.
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:47 PM   #33
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I was just done with making a big pot of chili (sorry Rewahoo, I put two kinds of beans AND lentils in it. My bad. We live in California and a guy comes to certify that our chili contains a minimum amount of beanlike material and we suffer enormous fines for not complying) and thought I'd check in.
Yeah I understand those guys from the California Bean Soup Police are hell to deal with.
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Old 05-08-2008, 07:50 PM   #34
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I wouldnt know. Just the thought of them scares the whizdoodle out of me, so i just comply.

You cant really complain about lentils though. Jeez louise, 14 grams of dietary fiber and 10 grams of protein, plus 20% of your daily iron intake? I mean...you add 3-4 cans of cheap diced chilis and you can barely detect them!

Okay, I know...I'm rationalizing...
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Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful. Just another form of "buy low, sell high" for those who have trouble with things. This rule is not universal. Do not buy a 1973 Pinto because everyone else is afraid of it.
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Old 05-09-2008, 03:44 AM   #35
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No trouble. I was just done with making a big pot of chili (sorry Rewahoo, I put two kinds of beans AND lentils in it. My bad. We live in California and a guy comes to certify that our chili contains a minimum amount of beanlike material and we suffer enormous fines for not complying) and thought I'd check in.

Building envelope and insulation are pretty important, but sort of boring. But like the pro's always tell me, you only have to pay for insulation once and then it pays off for 30-40 years. You can get little foam 'plates' that go behind your outlet covers and close off the gaps and good thick glass dual pane windows can really knock a lot off your heating and cooling expenses, along with cutting noise substantially. You can do a lot of good stuff in an afternoon with a stack of those foam outlet plates and a tube of caulking.

A reasonably well insulated home at 2100 square feet should be reasonably well serviced by a single heating and air conditioning unit. Does one look like an add-on? Dual systems can allow you to set one area at one temp and the other at something different. I had that in my old mcmansion and it was nice to have the upstairs/bedroom unit flip off during the day and go to a high heat/cool level at night, while the downstairs unit did the opposite.

Trouble is, you have two units to maintain and replace.

Attic fans are okay if you keep an eye on your bills and they're doing right by you. I had a powered attic fan in my old mcmansion and a two panel solar one in the last smaller house I had. They both delayed the onset of full bore air conditioning by an hour or so in the mornings. In my mcmansion, the electric bill didnt go down at all, so it was a wash powering the attic fan vs the air conditioner. In my last house, the electric bill didnt change much either and the $300 I spent on the solar powered attic fan (self installed) didnt taste that good either.
Cfb No I don't think they are add on units. I think they wanted to make sure that you can cool and heat the condo, because I have 9 foot ceilings and a 24 foot foyer.Either way, I saved 15000. in real estate taxes and all the other expenses that went with the old house. Thanks again for your input.Feel bad for you tonight after the beans and lentils
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Old 05-09-2008, 08:22 AM   #36
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Yeah, my wife said some kind of music woke her up around 2:30am. She thinks it was one of the 3 year olds toys that just went off by itself.

Beats blaming the dog.
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