View Full Version : Need opinions on equipment - prices removed
09-07-2006, 01:58 PM
Sorry everyone. In my haste I neglected to notice that prices are not allowed. I was actually looking for opinions more on the brand and model numbers, as well as the necessity of some of the options. Again, my apologies.
I have a rental house in Riverside,CA. Recently the air conditioner decided to stop working. Not a surprise since it's about 20 years old. The house is approx 1700sq ft and the climate is desert. Very hot there during the summer. We are interested in getting the whole system up to current efficiency standards. Please tell me what you think of the following equipment contained in a quote we received. I am open to other brands - I am not very informed in this area, though I am researching. Thanks for your time.
15 SEER AMANA VARIABLE SPEED FURNACE
4 TON EVAPORATIVE COIL
A/C MODEL # RCE48C2C
FAU MODEL # AMV80905CXA
Are these generally a good idea?
FREON LINESET 7/8x3/8 W/COVER
MICRO POWERGUARD ELECTRONIC AIR FILTER
WHOLE HOUSE HUMIDIFICATION SYSTEM
UV LIGHT STERILIZATION SYSTEM
Most everyone here has their favorite Brand,some the Top ofthe line ,others the economy model.
Proper design and installation are a must,regardless of the brand or model.Man,J,S,and D,to size it,select equipment,and design ducts,all are from http://www.acca.org
I'd look at a different filter,like Trane Clean Effects ,Carrier Air Purifier,or Lennox product,maybe an Aprilaire.Do some research I think you'll find any of thes superior to the model you listed.
UVC lights should be mounted over the cooling coil,and of a brand that works well at those colder temps,Carrier,and Sterilaire are two that will,sure there's more.
Lineset may or may not need to be replaced,did they say why?Not a big deal either way if it's easily accessable.
I'd look at a Carrier Infinity, Two Stage Heating and Cooling,could be gas or heat pump.Trane that is similar,down to any that are two stage,heat and cool,along with variable speed indoor fan motor and good humidity controls.
09-07-2006, 02:17 PM
Sounds like a very nice system. How did they determine the size needed?
Personally I prefer to change the lineset if possible although the price of copper has gone through the roof. If the old system didn't fry and contaminate the system, you may be able to get by with the old piping if the right size.
Never heard of that air cleaner, makes me skeptical
Humidifiers are nice if you have problems with static electricity and need one. Many homes don't need them.
I'm not sold on UV systems, how well they work and certainally the reliability of them.
My 2 cents worth!
09-07-2006, 02:22 PM
Very good equipment for a rental home. What do you do about heating?
I would install a good media filter cabinet over an EAC but who will pay for the filter as well as monitor that it is being changed out-that may be the downside.
WHOLE HOUSE HUMIDIFICATION SYSTEM
UV LIGHT STERILIZATION SYSTEM-these items may be overkill on a rental.
I suggest you get your ductwork thoroughly inspected as to size, leakages, supply/return balance, insulation, etc.
Has a load calc been performed? 4 ton on a 1700 sq ft home may be too large.
09-07-2006, 04:46 PM
hey guys, they said rental house. unless you have some really good renters, no way i would spend the extra money on all that extra stuff. just install a plain filter grill and a standard 14 seer heat pump only so you can get the new r-410a refrigerant. but if you do have good renters and don't mind spending a little extra money for installation and maintenance costs, by all means, get the bells and whistles because the do help with the overall comfort of the system. only my opinion.
09-07-2006, 05:56 PM
I'm not familiar with that air cleaner either so I would be sceptical about that. I also agree that the options (higher seer, humification, air cleaner, UV) are rarely found on rental properties. If you pay the bills and not the renter than certainly higher seer is better. If you are using the options to set your property apart from other properties than that is more a marketing decision. I personally don't care much for the UV lights and our company won't install one until we are convinced of the reliability and performance. We're simply not willing to risk a good customer relationship trying to sell equipment we don't believe in.
As far as the UV lights and filtration go, consider this.
Most UV lights are a maintenance nightmare and the balasts fail often, and cost is no indication of quality. Usually, if they fail, they go un-noticed until a tech comes for service or maintenance, so they haven't done any good at all. I have found one brand (there may be more) that is extremly reliable and has a lifetime warranty, and uses an automatic balast good from 90vac to 277vac with no switches or wiring changes. The system is UL rated for outdoor use. It is the "Triatomic- Fresh Aire". I have been selling them for 5 years and never had one fail (over 1,500). The bulbs do not burn out, but have to be replaced, as with all UV systems every 1 or 2 years depending on the model. The two-year bulb costs twice as much as the one-year bulb so it realy does not matter.
They honestly keep the Evaperator coil, and in our case down here, the blower mold free when properly applied and installed. They do not filter the air. They do not cure all. They do help odors some and help sanitize the air some. Thier biggest benefit in my opinion, is the coil, and possibly the blower, stays mold free, and help prevent clogged drains as algae does not grow in the drain pans nearly as much. I have noticed most units with properly working UV systems look newer longer on the inside.
We include one with every 14 SEER system and above along a 4" pleated filter (merve 10)designed for low pressure drop.
This keeps your new system clean and new and efficient without going overboard. We sevice our customers 2x a year, so we replace the filter once or twice (usually once)a year depending on the conditions, and the UV bulb annually while we are performing thier maintenance.
You may not get the same benefits from your UV system because the a/c does not run as much in your area. I don't know the benefits a UV system may have on a furnace.
Be Careful. The UV light can actually deteriorate wiring insulation, flexible duct liners, some plastic drain pans, and air filters so proper aplication is important.
The best UV System is almost usless without proper filtration. Remember the filtration system must be selected properly so it does not cause too much static pressure drop.
In the case of rentals, I can tell you the cost to replace the filter is cheaper than having to clean the coil, and the higher electricity/fuel costs associated with a dirty coil.
For higher end air purification, of the three mentioned systems, Carrier Infinity Air Purifier, Trane Clean Effects, and Lennox Pure Air, the Carrier system should have the lower maintenance cost if manufacturers guidlines are followed as there is no grids to clean, no bulbs to replace, no catalyst to replace, no filter to wash. There is only a filter to replace usually annually, possibly moreif severe conditions, about 30 seconds work. This of course, depends on individual service company's maintenance policies. They all work well, must be propely applied and installed.
The Carrier Infinity furnace can be used with single speed condensing units and will test the filter daily, along with reminders that pop-up on the thermostat if a filter becomes dirty. If the filter does not get replaced and cloggs, the system will display an error message and eventually shut down the equipment for protection. Many of our property owners like this feature.
Properly sized ducts are a must for this system as with all systems. As I tell my customers, "If you go with another system and don't repair the ducts to save money, the problem didn't go away,this other system just won't tell you about it until it fails like the infinity will."
09-07-2006, 09:11 PM
Thanks everyone for the great info! As it turns out, my wife's sister and brother-in-law are renting the house from us. Her dad is there now as well so we do wish to put in a good system, we just don't want to be raked over the financial coals. The real pisser is that we have put off installing air at our current house and now I'm going to be putting out the money for someone elses comfort (lol) We may just borrow enough to do both houses so I don't feel so bad....
09-07-2006, 09:36 PM
This is Turtle.
I could not arguee with this set up or brand as long as it was installed by a good installer and followed instalation instructions.
Now the tubing size here. I would go to the instalation instructions and get the spec.s as to what size tubing was required on the system. yes , you know the instalation instruction will tell you EXACTLY how everything is to be sized and installed. A good installer knows the instalation instruction by heart !
Brand of the equipment is 10% of a good running system. Good installer is 90% of of a good running system.
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