I need to replace my old unit, Carrier 2.5 ton 12 Seer. I got an estimate on a Trane, XL14c -14 Seer, variable blower, and it looks good. I also talked with my Carrier guy who I've known for years and he threw me a curve. He said I should go to a 3 ton unit. He gave me prices for a 14 Seer and a 15 Seer in their Infinity line. There is a good promo rebate on the 15 Seer which would make it only $ more than his 14 Seer. The 15 Seer also has a 2 stage blower which I'm interested in. The Carrier 15 Seer, 2 stage, is $ more than the Trane 14 Seer.
I feel like i've been given apples & oranges to compare after my Carrier guy told me I should get a 3 ton unit. I have a small wood frame cottage style home (one level) with approximately 1000 sq ft interior, and marginally decent insulation (duct work is in crawl space beneath house). I live in East Tennessee (close to the Great Smoky Mountains) and temps usually range from 25 to 92 with some fluctuations and it's fairly humid (we'll be in the 100 range for the next few days
Is a 3 ton unit a proper recommendation? Will it cost more than a 2.5 ton to operate? I'm concerned that bigger may not be better. Also, my big problem with my old Carrier is a coil leak and I'm told the Trane solid alum coil feature is better. Then there is the 2 stage system on the Carrier that sounds good for operating efficiency & helping with humidity.
Can anyone offer me some insight please?