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  1. #1

    New to central air install, aspen/luxaire?

    We are looking to convert to central air from steam heating and had a few concerns in mind since we've never lived with central air setup and have read some cons about forced air

    Few contractors suggested we combine hot water heating (Williamson GWA105) to the central air setup since we brought up dryness in the air for heating and said this was the best option. the condensing unit will be a combination of aspen & luxaire TCJF SEER 16 3ton. I couldnt find any info on this type of unit, can you please advise if this setup is the most efficient and comfortable in the long run and any experience with the equipment mentioned? Should we request to have competitive brand replace one of the units to be installed?

    any advice or suggestions on the central air setup is appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Indianapolis, IN, USA
    What are you doing for heat? Using a boiler and a water coil in the blower? That won't gain anything except costs. Most comfy method is stay steam heat and add A/C.

    Using a 3rd party coil (Aspen) may affect the warranty of the Luxaire. Might ask the dealer if he can use all Luxaire equipment.

  3. #3
    The steam heat was via oil therefore we wanted to get rid of that as well as baseboards/radiators. He mentioned that its from the same "production line" but it's still a luxaire. He showed me a paper of the product line that shows aspen coil and luxaire tcjf unit so yes we are going with the water coil vs furnace heat.

    In the end we want the look of central but the same heat comfort of steam heating. Will this setup suffice?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Keokuk, IA
    I'm confused... the "Comfrot" os steam, or any radiant heating comes from the radiant heat source... ie the radiators and bseboards. Once you switch to forced air, in terms of comfort, there no difference between steam or a gas furnace. It won't produce radiant heat and you'll be subject to less desireable dynamics like stratification, airflow, air mixing, duct balancing in each room.

    Personally, I'd leave the radiators and install a basis air handler with a heat pump. In mild weather you leave the boiler off, when it gets colder the system will switch on the boiler for back-up heat. OR you could switch to hot water (2 pipe steam system can be converted fairly easily), then you can install a high effceincy oil boiler with outdoor reset. As with any oil or propane system, I'd still isntall a heat pump sicne it will be cheaper to operate down to fairly low temperatures. You might put in a small coil just for defrost.

  5. #5
    The house is currently undergoing renovations with the walls exposed and which is why we are considering other heating/cooling options. Based on friends/family experience with central air they did mention gas furnace tends to produce dryer air and a slight burn smell. The contractor advised if we wanted to eliminate that and not install a humidifier then we can go with the water coil install (we'll have 2 zones). Which is why Im looking to get a 2nd opinion here to see if what we are told is correct and efficient since we have an option to build a heating/cooling system any way we want.

    Thanks for all the replies

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Indianapolis, IN, USA
    If you're just gonna use an 80% boiler for forced air, you can save a bundle by just having an 80% furnace installed. Or if you want to save and have some comfort, get a Luxaire 98% modulating furnace.

    The heating equipment doesn't dry the air. Your humidity would be the same with steam, water coil or furnace. The amount of infiltration you have leaking in cold air to be heated by any source is the factor in dry air. Tighten the house, less dry air.

    Any heating source can produce a slight burn smell the first use of the season. After that, no smells.

    Aspen and Luxaire are 2 different companies. Some A/C makers won't give you the 10 year registered warranty if you don't use their coil.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Northeast Ohio
    Myth: My forced air furnace "dries" out the air in my house, boiler heat is moist heat. No. Air infiltration dries out the air. Where do you suppose the moisture in the air goes to when the furnace heats it? Moist air leaving your house and being replaced with cold less humid air from the outdoors is what "dries" out the air.
    A good HVAC tech knows how, an educated HVAC tech knows why!


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