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  1. #1

    Replace coil in geothermal or new unit?

    I've got a 13-year-old ClimateMaster Ultra Classic geothermal unit. Recently during the "polar vortex" the blower motor went out. After replacing that, the system still did not work properly so my HVAC guy checked the refrigerant levels and found one compressor very low but the other one low but still able to run. Turns out there was a leak in the coil. We have cost estimates on replacing just the coil and on putting in a whole new system. After tax credit for a new system, it would end up being a bit more than 3 times the cost of just replacing the coil. We plan to stay in this house for at least 10 years. Our HVAC person said these units usually last 10-15 years, so based on that I would definitely replace. On the other hand, things I've seen on-line say the life of a geothermal unit should be 20-25 years. If so, this unit might go another 10 years or so. I'd appreciate your thoughts about this.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Athens, Ohio
    Posts
    1,691
    The new 7 Series WaterFurnace unit is VERY efficient. So much so that I'm tempted to remove my 10 year old high-efficiency furnace and heat pump and replace them with the 7 Series. Therefore I vote for replacement of the unit rather than the coil.
    Have you been given a cost to repair the coil?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    SE Washington
    Posts
    516
    replace, a heart replacement at this point makes no sense
    Total Energy Management, inc

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
    Posts
    6,345
    Id go with a new system, your ductwork may need some retrofitting the ductwork being too small (more common than not) could have contributed to the blower motor failing.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by kdean1 View Post
    The new 7 Series WaterFurnace unit is VERY efficient. So much so that I'm tempted to remove my 10 year old high-efficiency furnace and heat pump and replace them with the 7 Series. Therefore I vote for replacement of the unit rather than the coil.
    Have you been given a cost to repair the coil?
    I was told that due to location of the leak it's not repairable.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Cedar Rapids, Iowa
    Posts
    120
    If you replace the unit make sure there is a 10 year Parts and Labor warranty. Also, find out if your contractor accepts the labor rates offered by the mfgr. Some will charge you extra for labor if the mfgr. doesn't offer what they think is enough.

    Bergy

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Athens, Ohio
    Posts
    1,691
    Quote Originally Posted by Bergy View Post
    If you replace the unit make sure there is a 10 year Parts and Labor warranty. Also, find out if your contractor accepts the labor rates offered by the mfgr. Some will charge you extra for labor if the mfgr. doesn't offer what they think is enough.

    Bergy
    WaterFurnace includes a 10 year parts and labor warranty. We have not had any warranty issues with WF in the 5 years we have been a dealer.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    1,942
    I too vote for replace simply because, lets say the next compressor only lasts three years(until January 2nd of 2017) and the 30% tax credit is gone, now the compressor cost you the lost efficiency for 3 years and the cost of the compressor and the savings of the tax credit so its a very large opportunity costs and replacing just the coil/compressor is gambling since it could last another 13 years or it could make it 3 years.
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  9. #9
    Thanks very much to all who replied. It was unanimous that we should go for the new unit, so that's what we're going to do. It does come with a 10-year warranty. Thanks again for all your help.

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