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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    13

    should I upgrade my Trane units?

    I live in south Texas (San Antonio) area and have some recent quotes to upgrade/replace my current 5 and 4 ton Trane units. Both units were installed in 1999 when the 3600 sq ft house was built.

    So far the units have been operating well with regular service (twice a year as part of a service plan). Each time the service guy comes out he gives me a list of things that should be done such as cleanups, water switches, contacts replacements, etc.

    I've only had a few situations when things really needed some work (electrical and compressor freeze up) but I am seriously considering doing the full replacement of both units (furnace, AC and coil). My current service company is giving me 2 quotes for 16 seer units: 1 for a replacement with Lennox systems (approx $k) and another with Trane systems ($K). I'm leaning toward the Lennox systems since I was told they have good luck with Lennox.

    My first question is should I be proactive and do a full system replacement for these 2 systems that are about 13+ years old or wait until something fails hard?

    If proactive replacement makes sense then should I pay more for the Trane (XR15 VS) or will the Lennox (14ACX + ML180E) units be ok?

    appreciate any info - thanks in adance!
    Last edited by beenthere; 12-30-2012 at 03:17 AM. Reason: prices

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    The South
    Posts
    2,216
    Your systems are not that old. I certainly would not do a replacement upgrade if this was my home.

    And while you will get varying opinions, I would not go with the ACX Lennox series condenser. Too low end.

    IMO

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    13
    Thanks for the quick reply on this and your insight on the Lennox system.

    Any idea in how long my current trane system might last? Should
    I do the suggested work on the units or wait until something major fails the then do an upgrade?

    Is also appreciate any suggestions on units and systems.

    Thanks very much!!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    West Monroe, LA
    Posts
    1,537
    What model Trane units do you have in the home now? If it is base models from that time which would be 10 seer it might make sense to change them out to higher eff. Systems.

    On the other hand if they are 12 or 13 seer units the pay back will be longer. While I agree the units are not that old as long as they have been properly maintained they might last for years to come?

    Did the company perform a load cal. On the home to determine the proper size equipment or go by what was there? 9 tons of air is a lot for 3600 square foot home.

    Price are not allowed so you well see them removed once a moderator sees them but I would ask why there is a such a difference between the Trane vs Lennox units. Are they apples to apples comparaion between the systems? While my company sales Trane and I like there products, we will be picking up Lennox as a 2nd line in January for many reasons but the main is solar powered unit that only Lennox has.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    13
    Guess I should have provided that detail up front -

    from my past service reports I see: TTR060D100A0 and TTR048D199A1 on some reports and TUE100A960K2 and TUE080A948K2 on some other records so I'm not completely sure of which models I have.

    I don't believe there has been any load calculations done and expect that the sizing was based on what was already installed when the home was first built (5 ton downstairs, 4 ton for the upstairs). It gets real warm down here in the summer time frame if that helps at all.

    Understand on the price info and I should not have provided that level of detail. Suffice to say the diff is about ~$ but to be honest I'm not completely sure I'm comparing apples to apples.

    thanks again for everyone's help
    Last edited by beenthere; 12-30-2012 at 03:18 AM. Reason: price difference

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Central Texas
    Posts
    87
    This will depend on how much wear and tear are on the older systems know. Chances are if these are the original units installed at time of home build they are probably 10seer builders grade equipment. Also from what I've run across in this area that is usually the right time frame to start seeing leaky evap coils.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    68,601
    TTR060D100A0 condenser, hopefully matched to TUE100A960K2 gas furnace with 5 ton blower.

    TTR048D199A1 condenser, hopefully matched to TUE080A948K2 gas furnace with 4 ton blower.

    Neither prices nor price differences are permitted.
    Contractor locator map

    How-to-apply-for-Professional

    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    SW FL
    Posts
    6,390
    FIRST THINGS _ FIRST:
    Start with an independent Energy Audit which
    _____ includes blower door test
    ____ and ACCA Manual J Load Calc.

    9 tons for 3,600 Sq Foot is generally seen as TOOO MUCH .:. Work on the Building Envelope.

    One would probably have nearly 800 square feet glass area
    (~ 40 windows or 3 large sliding door units + 26 windows) to
    increase the total Heat Gain to > 96,543 BTU/Hour.
    Designer Dan
    It's Not Rocket Science, But It is SCIENCE with "Some Art". ___ ___ K EEP I T S IMPLE & S INCERE

    Define the Building Envelope and Perform a Detailed Load Calc: It's ALL About Windows and Make-up Air Requirements. Know Your Equipment Capabilities

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    SW FL
    Posts
    6,390
    Piece of the Puzzle # 1

    HDD 1,644
    CDD 2,966
    San Antonio Heating and Cooling
    _________________ Jan _Feb .. Mar / Apr May Jun / Jul Aug Sep _ Oct Nov Dec Annual
    Heating Degree Days 494 _332 .. 167 / _32 0.0 0.0 / 0.0 0.0 0.0 _ 30 180 409 1,644
    Cooling Degree Days __8 __10 .. _64 /161 326 516 / 620 617 429 _191 _42 _12 2,996

    http://www.climate-zone.com/climate/...s/san-antonio/

    # 2
    Utility rates and
    monthly usage bills for last 2 years

    Given service every 6 months and CDD 3,000,
    one might expect the units to last 15 to 18 years.
    So, you are on your last 16% of 'A/C system Life Expectancy'.

    I would look into heat pump
    given < $0.09 / kwHr and HDD 1,600
    http://www.texaselectricityproviders...S/San-Antonio/
    Designer Dan
    It's Not Rocket Science, But It is SCIENCE with "Some Art". ___ ___ K EEP I T S IMPLE & S INCERE

    Define the Building Envelope and Perform a Detailed Load Calc: It's ALL About Windows and Make-up Air Requirements. Know Your Equipment Capabilities

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Cummins, GA
    Posts
    1,552
    When this questions comes up, I always tell my customer this:

    Replacing your current system now will greatly increase your chances of not having a major failure on a 100+ degree day. But this is not a guarantee, only an increase in the odds.

    To replace or not to replace is your decision. We can't make that choice for you from our keyboards.

    Lennox and Trane are both very good manufacturers. The main focus should be on picking the correct company to install. As stated above - A manual J load calculation should've been performed at the minimum. If they didn't do that, find a different contractor because any other way of determining system size is a wild ass guess. Period.

    A cheap botched base model install will cost you more in repair and electric bills then an expensive correct install with premium equipment.

    If you need help finding another local contractor, check our contractor locator map on this site.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    West Monroe, LA
    Posts
    1,537
    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Ridley View Post
    When this questions comes up, I always tell my customer this:

    Replacing your current system now will greatly increase your chances of not having a major failure on a 100+ degree day. But this is not a guarantee, only an increase in the odds.

    To replace or not to replace is your decision. We can't make that choice for you from our keyboards.

    Lennox and Trane are both very good manufacturers. The main focus should be on picking the correct company to install. As stated above - A manual J load calculation should've been performed at the minimum. If they didn't do that, find a different contractor because any other way of determining system size is a wild ass guess. Period.

    A cheap botched base model install will cost you more in repair and electric bills then an expensive correct install with premium equipment.

    If you need help finding another local contractor, check our contractor locator map on this site.
    Well put Brent! So many customers get hung up on the systems name that they overlook the qualify of the install.

    Shoot it doesn't matter to me if I install a Trane or Lennox unit. The install and installers will follow the guidelines for a proper install per company guidelines. I am still interested in why the Trane units are more to install.

    That is why I suggested to the original poster to check into These further. While I am not that filmar with Lennox models yet. I do no that the Trane XR15 is a great system but don't no if it is a fair comparison for the Lennox they suggested?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    13
    all,

    thanks for all the great advice. I had just assumed that the original HVAC system was properly sized for the house and that it was as simple as doing a 1 for 1 replacement for each unit.

    I do understand that it's not so much about the brand but all about the installation of the units. I did check the AOP site and found just 3 listings in my area about 20 miles away. Is there any other way to know if a company does good installs? I've checked a couple in my local area on BBB.

    I will be talking to the company that proposed the Lennox 14ACX since it's represented on the quote as a SEER 16 but the Lernnox web pages says no more than SEER 14.

    Any suggestions on the least SEER rating I should consider?

    thanks

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    West Monroe, LA
    Posts
    1,537
    Quote Originally Posted by loafy View Post
    all,

    thanks for all the great advice. I had just assumed that the original HVAC system was properly sized for the house and that it was as simple as doing a 1 for 1 replacement for each unit.

    I do understand that it's not so much about the brand but all about the installation of the units. I did check the AOP site and found just 3 listings in my area about 20 miles away. Is there any other way to know if a company does good installs? I've checked a couple in my local area on BBB.

    I will be talking to the company that proposed the Lennox 14ACX since it's represented on the quote as a SEER 16 but the Lernnox web pages says no more than SEER 14.

    Any suggestions on the least SEER rating I should consider?

    thanks
    As far as good installs go ask for pics of before and after installs by any company! Also ask for references from customers that have used the installing contractor.


    I would suggest 14 base model and 15-16 for mid line equipment for your home. It All boils down to your budget and how much ROI each system can offer. All things equal a proper sized and installed system regardless of seer rating is your best bet.

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