Coleman LX or Echelon, size, and lock-out?
I'd appreciate some help in deciding which Coleman heat pump to select. I asked for bids from three contractors, received two, and have decided against the contractor who bid Trane equipment. That leaves me with one contractor I like, and he has proposed three options.
We have a 1650 sq ft house located in the Puget Sound area of Washington state. We use the heat pump for heating (cooling is rarely needed - a day or so every few years) and have electric service. We're replacing an approximately 19-yr old Coleman system that needs expensive repairs.
The contractor we like has proposed two alternatives: 1) Coleman "LX Series" THJF030 (15 SEER) with MV12B blower and Honeweill Vision Pro Touch Screen Thermostat. 2) Coleman "Echelon Series" HC6B030 (16 SEER) with same blower and Echelon Touch Screen thermostat. Both are 2.5 ton units.
3) I asked for and also have a proposal for a 3 ton Echelon HC6B036 (17.3 SEER) and blower MV16C. (Capacity of our existing system is not known--model number is illegible.)
How much difference in operating cost does a 1 SEER difference make?
Should I have the lock-out control enabled? How will that affect operating cost? (We have lock-out on our existing system.)
What other factors should I consider in evaluating which heat pump to select?
Estimator said he thought 2.5 ton was right size for the house, but 3 ton would not be too big. The first contractor didn't bother to tell me the capacity of the proposed Trane unit--I'm trying to find out what size he proposed. Can I compare tons of capacity between Trane and Coleman, or are those apples and oranges?
Thanks for your help!
Seems to me at a WAG, 2.5 ton should be plenty for your sized house in a mild climate. The best way is to size the HP to cooling needs and backup to heating needs. Bigger isn't better. Also bigger makes little difference in heating costs. Speaking of which, in your climate forget SEER, look for the best HSPF figure. Sometimes one model will have higher SEER but lower HSPF so heating costs are higher with the higher SEER rating. As for lockout, I tell people around here if they don't like the constant cool blow, lock out when the temp drops to the single digits but modern heat pumps are still efficient below zero so most would say never lock out. Of course constant defrosts with a timed defrost system most units use, chews up that savings.
Both of the Colemans he posted about are demand defrost. Don't recall the THJF reaching 15 SEER, but they do get a 9 HSPF.
I wouldn't lock it out until it was below 0 outside, may be as low as -10.
Thank you both.
I'm confused by the term "lock-out" and am not sure I am understanding it correctly. In the context of a dual fuel system, I think this means the heat pump is locked out/turned off and the alternative fuel furnace runs. True?
But in an all electric system, am I correct in understanding that this function disables auxiliary electric heat unless the outside air temperature is below some value? Does it actually lock out the heat pump or just supplement it with when the temperature drops below the threshold?
The Coleman on demand defrost boards can be set to lock out the aux above X temp, and then to lock out the heat pump below Y temp. Its listed as Balance point and lock out temp by Coleman.
EG: Balance point set to 30, the aux heat won't come on above that temp except during defrost. Lock out temp set to 0, the heat pump won't run below that temp, only the aux heat will be used. And between 30 and 0 both may run.
The echelon has the demand defrost control board that will perform the functions been there said but i dont think the LX series does unless its field installed with a York guard they come with time temp defrost boards but the honeywell stat with outdoor sensor will lock out the strips above X*F.
From Coleman's website.
Originally Posted by jtrammel
Efficiency ratings of 14.5 SEER/Up to 9.0 HSPF
Quiet operation thanks to a high-tech compressor, compressor blanket and a swept-wing fang blade
Reduced energy costs with demand defrost system
Environmentally-friendly R-410A refrigerant
Enhanced cabinet with attractive finish resists rust and corrosion
There is an "A" style that has time defrost.
I really appreciate the advice I've received here. It's increased my understanding and confidence in making a decision (I've never had a need to buy a heating system before).
I've ordered the Coleman Echelon and now it's just a matter of waiting for the equipment to arrive and the contractor to install.
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