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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    6

    Opinions on new system

    I just bought this home in Los Angeles that is 2044 sq-ft.
    It is consider to be a tri-level with the family room at bottom and the top floor has the 3 bedrooms. Windows exists facing all directions except the south. it has a an old force air furnace located in the hallway which I want to replace and move to the attic.
    I had 5 bids but I took out the lowest and the highest. I'm working for one contractor to submit his bid.

    Contractor 1:
    He took the time to measure each room and answered my questions. He mentionned federal tax credit for the higher SEER units.
    American Standard Allegiance 3.5 ton A/C 13 SEER
    80,000 BTU 80 AFUE furnace
    He gave several upgrade options but emphasized that upgrading to 2 stage variable speed furnance would be recommended. He also said that 2 intake/return vents would best serve my house.

    Contractor 2:
    He surveyed each room but did not take any measurements.
    Trane A/C 5 ton 4TTR4060A 1000A (14 SEER)
    Trane Coil HD206600245B260300
    Furnace T4D1D1204760 (80% AFUE)
    He said that one return air filter grille 20x25 would be good enough because it will set in the hallway near the stairs which does not have any obstructions.
    I mentionned the variable speed and he said it was not necessary unless you do zoning because the vs is trigger by static air pressure?
    He emphasized that he would recommend just what is needed and does not like to recommend unnecessary options.

    Contractor 3:
    I don't have his estimate yet but he deals with York and recommends the Affinty line with furnance 80% AFUE with VS and 5 ton A/C 2 2 stage hybrid?
    He also mentionned York rebates.

    So far contractor 2 is cheaper but doesn't include the VS for the furnace but includes the Accuclean.
    So what do you guys think? A total 3 of them recommend 5 ton, would that sound right?
    How about the intake/return?
    What the Electronic air cleaner system?

    thanks!
    Last edited by pcjc; 05-09-2007 at 06:18 PM. Reason: change title

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    9,548
    Quote Originally Posted by pcjc View Post
    I just bought this home in Los Angeles that is 2044 sq-ft.
    It is consider to be a tri-level with the family room at bottom and the top floor has the 3 bedrooms. Windows exists facing all directions except the south. it has a an old force air furnace located in the hallway which I want to replace and move to the attic.
    I had 5 bids but I took out the lowest and the highest. I'm working for one contractor to submit his bid.

    Contractor 1:
    He took the time to measure each room and answered my questions. He mentionned federal tax credit for the higher SEER units.
    American Standard Allegiance 3.5 ton A/C 13 SEER
    80,000 BTU 80 AFUE furnace
    He gave several upgrade options but emphasized that upgrading to 2 stage variable speed furnance would be recommended. He also said that 2 intake/return vents would best serve my house.

    Contractor 2:
    He surveyed each room but did not take any measurements.
    Trane A/C 5 ton 4TTR4060A 1000A (14 SEER)
    Trane Coil HD206600245B260300
    Furnace T4D1D1204760 (80% AFUE)
    He said that one return air filter grille 20x25 would be good enough because it will set in the hallway near the stairs which does not have any obstructions.
    I mentionned the variable speed and he said it was not necessary unless you do zoning because the vs is trigger by static air pressure?
    He emphasized that he would recommend just what is needed and does not like to recommend unnecessary options.

    Contractor 3:
    I don't have his estimate yet but he deals with York and recommends the Affinty line with furnance 80% AFUE with VS and 5 ton A/C 2 2 stage hybrid?
    He also mentionned York rebates.

    So far contractor 2 is cheaper but doesn't include the VS for the furnace but includes the Accuclean.
    So what do you guys think? A total 3 of them recommend 5 ton, would that sound right?
    How about the intake/return?
    What the Electronic air cleaner system?

    thanks!

    Contractor 1 has my vote so far, unless contractor 3 comes up with a load calc and more detailed bid. Good luck.
    If everything was always done "by the book"....the book would never change.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    MN
    Posts
    173
    Ditto on #1

    The upgrade to 2 stage VS 90% plus furnace should be worth the extra price difference. However I dont know your heating requirements in the LA area.

    Your contractor can better answer the additional questions you ask and #1 sounds like a straight shooter who does his homework.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Indianapolis, IN, USA
    Posts
    33,902
    #1 does sound good. He can upgrade to variable speed without going 90% which probably isn't justified in your area. That then boosts the SEER to 14.

    5 tons is a lot for 2000 sq ft. #2 is obviously guessing and guessing big. He's quoting an ADP brand coil, not a Trane coil. You butchered the model # of the furnace but I can make out 120,000 BTU which we don't even put in a 2000 sq ft house and we get 10 below each winter

    York Affinity is good stuff but as you mentioned, be nice if he'd come up with some accurate sizing.

    As for returns, the more the better. At least 1 on the highest level for cooling and 1 low down on the lowest level for heating.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    6
    Thanks for the replies.

    Yeah Contractor 1 did put more work into it but he is about 10%-15% more expensive compared to contractor 2.
    What about variable speed for the furnace, I thought having VS is always better?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,597
    #1.

    You get what you pay for.(assuming he actually did the Manual J)

    #2 is out.

    Why did you rule out the least and most costly companies?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Rochester, MN
    Posts
    5,304
    I am with #1 as well, he took his time on it.. as other has said, you are paying for his service.

    Variable speed can be used in any homes.. I have it in my own split level home and the comfort is great in the cold winter, and the quiet ramp up in the summer w/ A/C. Sounds like #2 don't know much variable speed, and/or is scared of them.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    California/Nevada
    Posts
    3,607
    you're going to need the 5 ton for LA

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Posts
    6
    Quote Originally Posted by wolfstrike View Post
    you're going to need the 5 ton for LA
    Is this something you kow that is common practice?
    So far out of 5 contractors
    3 said 5 ton
    1 said 4 ton
    1 said 3.5 ton

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    florida
    Posts
    3
    #1 all the way go with variable speed -york commercial is goood, residential is just ok. trane/ amc std is better in my opinion load calcs are very important not an upsell

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