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  1. #27
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
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    Lancaster PA
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    If the system was under sized to begin with. Then your contractor failed to do a proper load calc.

    If the lines and sweating that much, it sounds like the contractor failed to insulate them properly.

    If the leaking coils was an on going problem, then there would be many more post like yours on this forum.
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    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  2. #28
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    Quote Originally Posted by NCremodler View Post
    I know the other parts like tankless is not Unico. But the chillers are. They have both leaked all refrigerant. 5 ton was replaced because coils leaked and now 2 years later same problem. That seems to be a Unico problem. I do believe if the product is as bad as what I have experienced in my home in NC, Unico would be out of business. 8 tons is too small for my home. We got to 8 after a visit from the president of Unico, an engineer from Unico and the factory rep came out for a day and the had the contractor up the size. My home probably needs 10 to 12 tons (my guess). This is a water system. The piping even though insullated causes so much condensation that it is as if it rains in my basement. NOT drip ... rain I am afraid for my home. I am just stumped, frustrated and trying to get answers to a serious and $$$$$ costly problem.
    Contact this guy.
    http://hvac-talk.com/vbb/member.php?u=66024
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    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  3. #29

    Thanks

    Thanks. I have been communicating with Steve Intagliata, assume they are related. Unico wants to replace both of my units. How many times do we have to fix it? (like your quote) We have done this before and it lasted less than 2 years. I am surprised Unico can not or will not provide a name of a contractor who knows Unico, understands Unico and has confidence in Unico. The installing contractor is coming up before the NC contractor review board to explain what he knows and did. I really have no confidence in this product.

  4. #30
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    67,760
    Might want to email Scott anyways. And remind him that you located him through this board.
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  5. #31

    you dont have to tell me 3 times

    I have contacted Scott as you instructed me. You had offered helpful info 2 times and will not have to tell me 3 times. I appreciate your help. We have been out of our house since Dec, 15th living in one of our rentals, this is old. Neither Unico unit is working. Hoping to hear soon from contractors review board of NC on the installation problems.

  6. #32
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Raleigh area, NC
    Posts
    9

    more headaches with Unichiller and with Bryant

    I am a green builder. We installed a Unichiller system (with Bryant in NC) on our personal residence and got a 5 Ton Unichiller in 2007, for our new HealthyBuilt energy efficient home. We have YET to go thru a heating or cooling season without a service call. Bryant finally got Unico to replace our original 5 Ton unit after about a year of messing with it. we hoped that would end the service calls, but it did not. we finally got the help of our local HVAC guy, who is a very sharp cookie, and are not dealing with Bryant anymore. But Unico parts continue to fail for no good reason.
    My advice from this experience would be to stay away from using a Unico product. Part after expensive part is needing to be replaced on the unit and on the air handlers. This should NOT be, on a 3 year old system! We have YET to go thru a heating or cooling cycle without service calls! Let the buyer beware.
    I wish I could give a glowing report of how happy we are with this system, but we have lost confidence and feel stuck with an albatross.

  7. #33
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Rochester NY
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    4,702
    "Green builder?" How the heck can you build a residential structure requiring 5 tons and call yourself a green builder? A green home requiring 5 tons would be 10,000 sf, how can a home that big be considered green!? Is this simply some marketing label for you? A badge purchased so you and you clients can pretend you are environmentalists?

    Sorry, I'm sure there are circumstances I am not aware of, but please consider the question and take it to your architects and engineers - put them on the spot.

    I've got a unico in my 1600 sf attic suite (load includes 6 skylights. some 40 sf of glass plus some large windows). 15 supplies on 1.5 ton. Don't hold me to it, but 5 ton means what, 40-50 supply outlets? Do you have that?

    It would be fascinating to see the engineering/installation specs on these homes. Anybody else think undersized piping on the chillers and not enough outlets on the AHU?
    Which makes more sense to you?
    CONSERVATION - turning your thermostat back and being uncomfortable. Maybe saving 5-10%
    ENERGY EFFICIENCY - leaving your thermostat where everyone is comfortable. Saving 30-70%

    DO THE NUMBERS! Step on a HOMESCALE.
    What is comfort? Well, it AIN'T just TEMPERATURE!

    Energy Obese? An audit is the next step - go to BPI.org, or RESNET, and find an auditor near you.

  8. #34
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    There are probably several install issues no one is aware of.
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  9. #35
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Raleigh area, NC
    Posts
    9

    Why attack a green builder who had a bad experience?

    Someone has an odd approach to ask some questions about the size of my project...
    House is a bit over 3,000 (1st floor 1818 sq ft, 2nd floor 1256, Total 3074) not including the basement made of Superior Walls. House is all SIPS, 6 inch walls and 8 inch roof. Passive and active solar. The unichiller just barely keeps up with the cooling needs in NC. We wanted to do the garage/office space using the chiller as well but decided on a separate unit, fearing it could not handle another 500 square feet.
    I'm a GC and the HVAC needs of the project were the biggest fear, and sure enough, seems something really was messed up if the 5 ton unit can't do the job on a 3000 square foot house.

    Quote Originally Posted by tedkidd View Post
    "Green builder?" How the heck can you build a residential structure requiring 5 tons and call yourself a green builder? A green home requiring 5 tons would be 10,000 sf, how can a home that big be considered green!? Is this simply some marketing label for you? A badge purchased so you and you clients can pretend you are environmentalists?

    Sorry, I'm sure there are circumstances I am not aware of, but please consider the question and take it to your architects and engineers - put them on the spot.

    I've got a unico in my 1600 sf attic suite (load includes 6 skylights. some 40 sf of glass plus some large windows). 15 supplies on 1.5 ton. Don't hold me to it, but 5 ton means what, 40-50 supply outlets? Do you have that?

    It would be fascinating to see the engineering/installation specs on these homes. Anybody else think undersized piping on the chillers and not enough outlets on the AHU?

  10. #36
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    67,760
    So who did the load calc on the house?
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  11. #37
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Rochester NY
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    4,702
    Sips, designed solar exposure, reasonably sized home...

    Sounds like time and thought went into everything but load calc and hvac design. Didn't you bother getting it energy star rated? Where was the HERS rater?! Not engaged until it was too late?

    An example of how missing one small design slice can cause the whole thing to fail.
    Which makes more sense to you?
    CONSERVATION - turning your thermostat back and being uncomfortable. Maybe saving 5-10%
    ENERGY EFFICIENCY - leaving your thermostat where everyone is comfortable. Saving 30-70%

    DO THE NUMBERS! Step on a HOMESCALE.
    What is comfort? Well, it AIN'T just TEMPERATURE!

    Energy Obese? An audit is the next step - go to BPI.org, or RESNET, and find an auditor near you.

  12. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Raleigh area, NC
    Posts
    9
    Bob Kingery was my energy rater, and our house did qualify for Energy Star and the second highest rating with the HealthyBuilt Homes Program (like the LEED program, in NC). Bob was in on the process before there was a completed set of plans. Southern Energy Management was hired to oversee the HVAC process. (They dropped the ball on that one, they admitted.) They installed my active solar system consisting of 6 panels that heat the water for domestic and radiant heat in the basement and first floor slabs. That works fine, heat is no issue.
    I would have to check my records to see if Southern Energy or Bryant did the load calculations. Southern Energy, Bryant, and I had meetings to discuss this house before there was much more than a hole in the ground.
    Our problem has been that the Unico products have had issues every season. Failed parts included: control board in the air handler, motor in air handler, condenser in the water pump in the chiller, reversing valve leaking in chiller, coolant pipe had a crack, delay relay in the Chiller, etc. These problems are all AFTER getting the replacement Unichiller. The original unit had so many issues Bryant was able to get Unico to replace it after the first 8-10 months and I don't remember how many service calls. Did they replace it with another bad unit or is this typical? How could you blame all this on load calculations?

    I'd appreciate it if tedkidd "professional member" of this list would try to post his questions in a more professional manner.

  13. #39
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    568

    Hmm

    Quote Originally Posted by Ellenran View Post
    Bob Kingery was my energy rater, and our house did qualify for Energy Star and the second highest rating with the HealthyBuilt Homes Program (like the LEED program, in NC). Bob was in on the process before there was a completed set of plans. Southern Energy Management was hired to oversee the HVAC process. (They dropped the ball on that one, they admitted.) They installed my active solar system consisting of 6 panels that heat the water for domestic and radiant heat in the basement and first floor slabs. That works fine, heat is no issue.
    I would have to check my records to see if Southern Energy or Bryant did the load calculations. Southern Energy, Bryant, and I had meetings to discuss this house before there was much more than a hole in the ground.
    Our problem has been that the Unico products have had issues every season. Failed parts included: control board in the air handler, motor in air handler, condenser in the water pump in the chiller, reversing valve leaking in chiller, coolant pipe had a crack, delay relay in the Chiller, etc. These problems are all AFTER getting the replacement Unichiller. The original unit had so many issues Bryant was able to get Unico to replace it after the first 8-10 months and I don't remember how many service calls. Did they replace it with another bad unit or is this typical? How could you blame all this on load calculations?

    I'd appreciate it if tedkidd "professional member" of this list would try to post his questions in a more professional manner.
    just wondering, did you actually call unico, and ask them what they're ideas were. just curious!

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