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  1. #1

    Do I have to replace copper tubing?

    I am getting ready to replace a very old unit that recently died.

    I have been told by one contractor that I will need to have new copper tubing installed to fit the new R410 unit. The existing copper tubing is 5/8 & 1/4 and I am told I need 5/8 & 3/8. The other contractor said it would work just fine and did not need to be replaced. Any thoughts?

    Thank you!

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    It

    would depend on the size of the equipment. Most here will tell you when going from R-22 to R410A, it's best to replace the line set if possible.
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  3. #3
    Outside unit is 1.5 ton and inside is 2 ton. I am looking to go to 2 ton outside. Is that what you mean?

    The guy that wants to replace the copper says he doesn't think he can get it back in the same hole in the wall. He wants to drill a new hole (and still not sure if that will get him where he needs to be) and run the new tubing down the wall. Air handler is upstairs in the attic. He actually did quite a bit of head scratching, which makes me a bit nervous especially considering he is putting holes in my exterior walls. His quote is significantly less than the other guy. Installing Tempstar (lower quote) vs. American Standard and going from a 10 to 15 seer.

  4. #4
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    Nov 2006
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    Athens, Ohio
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    Most manufacturers recommend that the refrigerant tubing be replace to avoid potential residue from the old lubricant which can contaminate the new lubricant. I prefer to follow their recommendations. If the tubing can be replaced, do it.

    The manufacturer of the equipment will specify in the installation instructions what the size should be. I don't know of ANY current equipment that uses a 1/4" liquid line. (Except for ductless systems.)
    Will the guy who says it will be "just fine" show you the specs so you can be sure?
    Last edited by kdean1; 04-05-2012 at 03:52 PM. Reason: added clarification

  5. #5
    Thank you for replying. I don't know if the guy would show me the specs or not. The guy that wants to replace the tubing is the lower quote too, so that would make me happier. He doesn't think he can get the tubing back in the wall...is it ok to have the tubing on the outside of the wall exposed to the elements?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
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    Quote Originally Posted by mommyrains View Post
    Outside unit is 1.5 ton and inside is 2 ton. I am looking to go to 2 ton outside. Is that what you mean?

    On what basis are you suggesting 2.0-tons outdoors? Has anyone done a Manual 'J' load analysis on the house? The lowest bid is frequently not the cheapest system in the long run. I'd recommend carefully evaluating the companies from whom you're getting proposals. I'd reject any quote that doesn't include a full Manual 'J' calculation.

    The guy that wants to replace the copper says he doesn't think he can get it back in the same hole in the wall. He wants to drill a new hole (and still not sure if that will get him where he needs to be) and run the new tubing down the wall. Air handler is upstairs in the attic. He actually did quite a bit of head scratching, which makes me a bit nervous especially considering he is putting holes in my exterior walls. His quote is significantly less than the other guy. Installing Tempstar (lower quote) vs. American Standard and going from a 10 to 15 seer.
    You're asking someone to 'build' you a system. This is not a window unit that you just unbox and plug in. This system must be installed and a significantly lower price is almost certain to bring you regret after regret. There's a reason the price is significantly less than others and believe me when I tell you the others not getting rich on your job. There are corners being cut somewhere and you should be very aware. If you're not a professional, you may have great difficulty spotting the shortcuts but they are there in all likelihood.
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  7. #7
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    Aside from the load calculation, I would want to see a report that clearly states that an exam of the ductwork shows that it does not need any work.
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  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Quote Originally Posted by mommyrains View Post
    Thank you for replying. I don't know if the guy would show me the specs or not. The guy that wants to replace the tubing is the lower quote too, so that would make me happier. He doesn't think he can get the tubing back in the wall...is it ok to have the tubing on the outside of the wall exposed to the elements?
    If the guy won't show you the specs then you should reject him. He does not know if the old tubing is correct.

    There is nothing wrong with the tubing on either the outside or on the inside of the wall.

    As others are emphasizing, you should not make your decision based on the price. You are buying something you will live with for years. You must find a contractor that will determine the proper size of the system by a reliable method. His guess or experience is not a reliable method. Measuring your house and calculating the load from a Manual J calculation is a reliable method. Only then can the proper size of your equipment be determined. In addition, the contractor must inspect your duct system to be sure it is adequate and well sealed. If you can find more than one contractor who does all these things, then you can compare their prices.

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