Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Conneticut
    Posts
    1

    Brand comparison?

    Hi,

    I'm trying to replace my 20+ year-old heat-pump / Central AC system before it dies (original to my new condo). I've had several contractors come it to quote, but most of them are recommending different brands. I've started my own comparison sheet, but I don't know the brands well and was wondering if I could get some recommendations or if there is a web-site that compares brands.

    I'm looking for warrantee/reliability/quality, quiet, efficient (but the town has private electrical, so this is not the primary consideration), and good value for when I got to sell the condo (maybe in 5 years or so)

    I have a 2.5 ton system. I am also having an air filter installed, but these all seem similar w/ a 5" or more media filter. My understanding is that the electrical ones are not significantly better.

    Rheem 13 SEER vs. Trane 14 SEER
    Bryant 15 SEER
    Lennox 14 SEER
    Carrier Comfort series
    American Standard

    Thank you for any and all recommendations in advance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Cincinnati
    Posts
    7,977
    Those are all quality brands but the most important part is the contractor.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Indianapolis, IN, USA
    Posts
    34,601
    Get the exact numbers of the products in question and get the ratings for them to compare. SEER, EER, cooling capacity, HSPF and heating capacity.

    I just did a comparo of some of our brands. It varied widely on efficiency, espeically heating. And heating capacity. One brand was very lacking along those lines. That can mean more $$ in heating costs.

    Key is best possible install and proper sizing, hard to find sometimes.

    Here's some 2.5 ton R410a options

    American Standard HP, Indoor blower SEER/HSPF Capacity Cooling/Heating
    4A6H3030, 4TEE3F31 14.00/8.00 31,000/28,600
    4A6H4030, 4TEE3F31 14.00/8.25 29,600/27,000

    Rheem
    RPNL-030, RHLL-3617 15.00/9.25 29,800/31,600
    RPPL-030, RHLL-3617 14.50/10.10 29,000,26,600 (heating output a week but incredible HSPF)

    Tappan
    FT4BD-030, C5BA-30/VS blower 14.00/8.50 29,600/29,600
    FT4BD-030, CE36D44/VS blower 15.00/8.40 30,000/29,800
    Last edited by BaldLoonie; 03-04-2008 at 05:10 PM.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    2,635
    Quote Originally Posted by mattm View Post
    Those are all quality brands but the most important part is the contractor.
    Quote Originally Posted by BaldLoonie View Post
    Key is best possible install and proper sizing, hard to find sometimes.
    BL is understating it in my (seemingly pessimistic but fairly accurate) opinion. Getting a truly good installation is extraordinarily hard. Salesmen focus on brand because that's what they're trained to do and because most of them know no other way. Take Matt's and BL's advice. Read the third link in my sig. Scan the forum for how often homeowners are left hanging by bad installers. If you do, you'll care less about which brand to buy and care more about which installer to choose. Start asking the right questions and you’ll find out that few if any of the companies you’ve talked with are going to do things correctly from start to finish.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    The South
    Posts
    2,240
    mysti

    Despite what the pros say on this forum, there are three parts to a successful installation. They include good and properly sized new HVAC, good ductwork system both supply and return, and last but not least a professional install.

    On a new Heat pump system, I would want a var spd air handler with the following minimum metrics:14-15 SEER, 12 EER, 9 HSPF. You want to verify the BTUs in both cooling and heating on the system you are considering. Some system configurations/brands/models will shortchange you on the size you require.

    IMO

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    6,841
    Despite what the amateur regular members say, the pros all advocate separating the better companies from the wannabes by asking the simple question, "How do you determine the size of the system to replace my existing system?" Any answer except the one referring the ACCA Manual 'J' method (such as guessing, using the old equipment size, square footage of the space, etc.) are grounds to not even consider the offending company. The ONE you find that does do the load analysis by calculation is the company you should likely go with. They'll also ask about comfort, even temeratures in each room, look at the duct system (if it's visible) and finally will present you with two or three options on equipment. Multi-stage, variable speed products are far superior for comfort. But brand is pretty much the bottom of the list on what to install. I'd ask the installing company if what they're proposing is a builders model. I doubt it will be but you should know that all manufacturers have a builders model. All manufacturers produce equipment under multiple brand names. So choose your installing company far more carefully than you would the brand, then go with their recommendation. After all, if they take the care to properly size the equipment, don't you think they're going to want to install equipment that will meet your expectations and not have unnecessary breakdowns?
    If YOU want change, YOU have to first change.

    If you are waiting for the 'other guy' to change first, just remember, you're the 'other guy's' other guy. To continue to expect real change when you keep acting the same way as always, is folly. Won't happen. Real change will only happen when a majority of the people change the way they vote!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    2,635
    Quote Originally Posted by skippedover View Post
    the pros all advocate separating the better companies from the wannabes by asking the simple question, "How do you determine the size of the system to replace my existing system?"
    True enough. However, I want mysti to ask way more questions than that.


    Quote Originally Posted by tigerdunes View Post
    there are three parts to a successful installation. They include good and properly sized new HVAC, good ductwork system both supply and return, and last but not least a professional install.
    I'd ask you what you've been toking on tiger , but I'm sure you saw some crackpot "pro" who gave completely bogus advice and thus gave you your opinion of the pros. Even so, with over 600 posts I don't see how you don't know that the majority of the pros here agree with the portion of your statement I’ve quoted.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event