Trane XR13 vs XL15i Heat Pump
I've had several local dealers quote on replacing my 20 year old 10 SEER 2-1/2 ton A/C with a heat pump. My existing propane furnace is a five year old American Standard Freedom 90 Comfort-R with variable speed. All of the dealers have told me that I should be able to achieve maximum efficiency with the furnace I have.
At this point, I am leaning toward the Trane dealer who has quote two different 2-1/2 ton options each using a matched Trane all-aluminum comfort coil:
XR13 Heat Pump
XL15i Heat Pump
As I understand it, I should see around 14 SEER using the XR13 or 16 SEER using the XL15i. Also, I understand the heating ability of the XL15i is a bit better. But I am really having a hard time deciding if the 15 is worth the additional cost in Southern Ohio. My electric rate is about ten cents per kW hour so at that rate the the pure return on investment based on efficiency doesn't seem to be there. If the rates go up significantly, the number look better. I know the warranty on the XL15i is 12 vs 10 years on the XR13. But are there other reasons that I should spend the extra dollars (build quality, life expectancy, comfort, etc.)?
What is location?
Your furnace is two stg var speed? What size? That is a nice furnace about 92-93% efficient.
I would weigh the cost difference between the XR13 HP and XR15 HP with best matching evap coil.
You will also need a two stg dual fuel thermostat with outdoor sensor.
You will max out at 15 SEER with the 15i heat pump from what I see matched with the current 95 furnace, the newer version of yours. Some matches are 14.50.
With the XR13, you run 13.5 to 14.25 with most around 14. There is a slight decrease in HSPF too but not a lot with most matches.
There likely is quite a premium for the 15i that won't be recovered in utility bill savings. If you like the funky top, spend it. If not, save your money.
I'd want a Vision Pro IAQ or Prestige IAQ for control as it will properly stage the 2 stage gas furnace and can use dehumidify on demand that your furnace has.
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Originally Posted by kenk
If you save $20 on cooling and $80 on heating ( my guesstimate using link & 8.2 versus 8.6 HSPF), the pay pack period is going to be VERY Long (>> ~ 10 years) given $0.10 / KW.
It does not seem likely that A 2.5 ton Heat Pump would handle the maximum winter heating load. I assume Propane is going to be your hybrid system with an appropriate switch-over temperature in the 25- 32'F range.
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Thanks for all of the great replies. Here are a few answers to the questions that have been raised:
Area: Southern Ohio
Furnace Size: Dual Stage, 80,000 BTU.
BaldLoonie, thanks for the info about maxing out the SEER on the 15i. Seems to make more of a case for going with the 13.R egarding the thermostat, I told the dealer that I wanted to upgrade the thermostat (FocusPro 6000) to the Vision Pro IAQ. He said he could do that but the existing thermostat would probably work. But I am not sure that it supports the outside temp sensor. Also, I would like to have the advanced humidity control.
dan sw fl, your payback estimates and time is very close to what I came up with. The premiums for upgrading to the 15i and matching coil is over 30%. So even when my electric rates climb, the payback will be long.
Yes you are correct, I am looking at a hybrid solution to ease the propane usage. The local dealers are saying that this will result in a 30% savings for a typical winter in my are. Seem reasonable, but even if it is only 20% it will be a winner.
The XL15i is much quieter and is a better built unit, in my companies opinion it has been more reliable than the XR13 to. Here in Oregon we get a lot of pine needles falling into the units so an XL15i does help. I also say I like the 15i because I chose it for my personal house the XR13 is a much more basic unit.
XR13 HP up to 12EER, 14.50 SEER, 8.50 HSPF depending on coil selection
XR15 HP up to 12.50 EER, 15 SEER, 9 HSPF depending on coil selection
XL15i HP up to 12.50 EER, 15.25 SEER, 9 HSPF depending on coil selection
As far as noise, I will let you be the judge. According to the Trane site, the differences are very small and would be inconsequential to the average homeowner. Certainly all three would be quieter than what you are replacing.
I personally would weigh the cost difference between all three condensers and also take into consideration any warranty difference. I see nothing wrong with
the XR13 and it might be the best bang for the buck.
You would see significant cost savings running the heat pump over propane furnace. I suspect you could
have used the 60 K furnace over the 80 K furnace and would rarely need if ever use the high stg of your existing furnace. In fact,
I might consider disabling the high stg altogether.
You might consider a new refrigerator line set. Correct size is important. Flushing definitely if existing lineset is correct size and you plan to re-use.
Thanks for the additional info. It really does look like the difference are too small to justify the added cost. Noise really isn't an issue with the old unit so these will only be better.
Most of the time, I think a 60K btu might be enough furnace. The guy that built the house (for himself) was really into efficiency. R19 walls, R30 Attic high performance windows and doors etc. So without doing a proper load calculation, one contractor told me that the 2-1/2 ton A/C was undersized and that I should consider 3 tons. I finally decided that the only way to know for myself would be to get HVAC-calc and go through the process. Here is what I came up with:
Design Conditions for my area:
Heat Loss: 59,038
Heat Gain: 22,895
Worst Case Conditions (record temps):
Heat Loss: 76,993
Heat Gain: 25,195
Only one dealer was really pushing an AC/HP size increase. But based on these number, doesn't it seem like that would be asking for trouble?
If load calc is correct, then no larger than 2 1/2 ton.
How did your old condenser perform?
Again weigh the cost differences and warranty.
Make certain you get the best and highest efficiency on the Trane evap coil. If you give me the mdl, I will look it up for you.
New lineset preferred.
Plus HW VP IAQ with outdoor sensor.
You already have a filter cabinet at furnace?
The old condensor did okay. Although humidity control wasn't great until I had the variable speed furnace installed. Which made a dramatic improvement. There was never an issue with it being able to control the temperature.
They did including a new line set in the proposal.
Yes there is an electronic air cleaner at the furnace. It is old, but I had the power supply updated (new sensor/circuit board) at the time the new furnace was installed. The cells are in good shape I believe.
Thanks again for all of your advice!
Twilly likes the looks of the XL 15.
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