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  1. #1

    New a/c needed in FL- have questions

    Our 16 year old a/c unit has pooped out, apparently due to a refrigerant leak. We had a similar problem a year ago when it was identified that a fuse needed to be replaced. We had the fuse replaced and kept the unit running for another year. Now, we're resigned to the fact that the unit needs to be replaced.

    We have a 1-story, 2,750 sf home. We currently have a 5-ton system. We had thought about going to a two system setup, but this seems to be more expensive and probably more trouble than its worth. That said, we have 3 estimates so far:

    1. $$$$$ for Carrier Day & Night 16-seer system *
    2. $$$$$ for Amana ASX 16 seer system + Comfortnet system
    3. $$$$$ for Trane 16-seer system

    *note the Carrier estimate does not include a UV light, which I would need to get a price quote for as well. The other two estimates I have include the UV light.

    I've heard different things from different people about which manufacturers are good & which to avoid. Apparently Trane isn't what it used to be and Carrier is middle of the road. I really like the Amana warranty, so that's the way I'm probably leaning right now.

    Do you have any recommendations or suggestions on which deal looks best
    Last edited by Sunshine42; 02-02-2012 at 09:59 AM. Reason: Removed Pricing

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
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  3. #3

    sorry

    Sorry about that.
    I'm basically just looking for info on which 5-ton, 16 seer systems are best & which ones to avoid.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    25,400
    installation is key.

    The least expensive system, installed properly, will last longer and perform better than the most expensive system installed improperly.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by jpsmith1cm View Post
    installation is key.

    The least expensive system, installed properly, will last longer and perform better than the most expensive system installed improperly.
    So, I take it that I should get someone with alot of experience when it comes to installing new units??

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    25,400
    No, you should get someone who will install the unit properly.


    There are companies that install a LOT of units incorrectly.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    fort walton beach fl.
    Posts
    790
    Where are you located at?
    http://acfwb.com/

    "The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today"

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by smurphy View Post
    Where are you located at?
    I'm in Palm City, FL.

    From the homeowner's perspective, how do we know if we're hiring someone who is going to install the unit properly?? Any tips can you can provide are greatly appreciated.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    fort walton beach fl.
    Posts
    790
    Couple of things to look for:

    Did they perform a heat load calculation? a 5 ton system for a 2700 sf home sounds oversized to me, but I may be wrong until a heat load is performed.

    Did they inspect your duct work? You can lose alot of efficiency from improperly sized duct work and duct leaks.
    http://acfwb.com/

    "The best preparation for good work tomorrow is to do good work today"

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by smurphy View Post
    Couple of things to look for:

    Did they perform a heat load calculation? a 5 ton system for a 2700 sf home sounds oversized to me, but I may be wrong until a heat load is performed.

    Did they inspect your duct work? You can lose alot of efficiency from improperly sized duct work and duct leaks.
    No & no.
    Of the companies that I had out, they all inspected both the outside condensing unit and the air handler. I did not see them go up in the attic to inspect the ductwork nor did I see them do any calculations. It's possible they did them back at their office though, after the site inspection.

    To clarify, the home is 2,750 sf under air with primarily 10' ceilings. The existing unit is a Carrier 5-ton.

    I've occasionally noticed a moldy smell coming from the registers when the a/c is running. I know there is some mold inside of the air handler, as it's a dark, damp, sealed environment, but I'm concerned there could be some mold in the ductwork too. I know i would be expensive to replace all of the flexible ductwork, but should it be cleaned before the new unit is installed??

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    SW Wisconsin
    Posts
    4,889
    SMURPHY "a 5 ton system for a 2700 sf home sounds oversized to me"
    I'd have a Home Energy Efficiency Rater/Audit performed so you could do what it would take so a 4-Ton would handle that 2700-sf home's cooling load.

    Most residential 5-Ton systems barely have enough airflow, if lucky, for 4-Ton of cooling. With 5-Ton, the indoor coil is usually way under heat-loaded.

    Everything concerning the duct system & air flow needs to be checked including proper sizing of Return Air filtering areas, etc.

    If you're in a high humidity problem area, the 4-Ton with a low 1400-CFM (350-cfm per ton) should provide the runtime needed; especially if you install a Swing or cycles per hour thermostat setting; -that can be very important to effective humidity control, along with a TXV metering device on indoor coil.
    Last edited by udarrell; 02-02-2012 at 01:28 PM. Reason: ...along with a TXV metering device on indoor coil

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