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  1. #1
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    Reliability data on different brands

    I need to upgrade the HVAC system in the house, as the AC is dead. Where can I find reliable and objective data on the reliability and customer satisfaction with different brands? I see plenty of posts on this board that says "I like brand X", but I would like to find a source that covers most brands.

  2. #2
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    There is no such thing as a reliable sourse for HVAC brand reliabilities.
    They are all opinions. Surveys that will list Brand X as teh most reliable, and then have brand X's sister name unit that comes out the same factory with the same identical parts list 2 or 3 spaces less reliable.
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  3. #3
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    Its not quite like going to Consumer Reports or

    Motor Trend and compare a Toyota to Nissan to Honda.

    That little thing called installation is a biggy.

    I'm searching, reading, learning all I can. When its time for this house of Spy's to pull the trigger-it will be from a pro that I trust w/the best warranty and what I deem the best bang for the buck.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by RomulanSpy View Post
    Motor Trend and compare a Toyota to Nissan to Honda.

    That little thing called installation is a biggy.

    I'm searching, reading, learning all I can. When its time for this house of Spy's to pull the trigger-it will be from a pro that I trust w/the best warranty and what I deem the best bang for the buck.
    Outstanding advice from the Romulan.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    There is no such thing as a reliable sourse for HVAC brand reliabilities.
    They are all opinions. Surveys that will list Brand X as teh most reliable, and then have brand X's sister name unit that comes out the same factory with the same identical parts list 2 or 3 spaces less reliable.

    Well, those surveys may be flawed but they do provide information. It will help to identify "stay away from brands". I am getting conflictng advice from different pros with good reputations. It seems as if each contractor says "The brand I sell is the best or I wouldn't sell it."

    And yes, I understand the importance of installation quality. The existing system installation was really shoddy with huge and obvious air leaks from the air handler, so I plan to be careful this time.

    So, where can I find such surveys, even if they are flawed? Does Consumer Reports have a list?
    Last edited by jza29970; 06-25-2008 at 12:21 PM. Reason: add material

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by jza29970 View Post
    Well, those surveys may be flawed but they do provide information. Where can I find them? Does Consumer Reports have a list?
    "Information" can be wrong or misleading. You want information from a flawed survey? What kind of information do you think comes from a flawed survey? Flawed information.

    Yes, Consumer Reports has a list.

    I would do a lot of research on this site for good information, if that's what you want.

    Good luck.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by gary_g View Post
    "Information" can be wrong or misleading. You want information from a flawed survey? What kind of information do you think comes from a flawed survey? Flawed information.

    Yes, Consumer Reports has a list.

    I would do a lot of research on this site for good information, if that's what you want.

    Good luck.
    Noisy information can be useful. I've taken courses in statistics so I think I understand the problems with surveys. There can be a lot of sampling noise (like with opinion polls) and there can be survey bias in the way the sample is constructed. I realize that a difference of a couple of notches is just sampling noise. What I want to find out is whether there are any brands that are *really bad*.

  8. #8
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    Compare consumer reports to j d powers reports.
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  9. #9
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    The multiples of bad dealers will cancel the the usefulness of any reliability data.



    It's the dealer and the installation that will determine reliability and your overall satisfaction. Square pegs do not fit into round holes without some persuasion. There was a time you could count on a particular brand being sold by a quality contractor. I'm sorry to say that this has gone the way of the Hola-Hoop.
    Last edited by adrianf; 06-25-2008 at 01:30 PM. Reason: pricing link removed

  10. #10
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    Well, they're screwed up.
    I saw what they say the price difference is between a 13 and 16 in the same line. They aren't even close.
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by jza29970 View Post
    Noisy information can be useful. I've taken courses in statistics so I think I understand the problems with surveys. There can be a lot of sampling noise (like with opinion polls) and there can be survey bias in the way the sample is constructed. I realize that a difference of a couple of notches is just sampling noise. What I want to find out is whether there are any brands that are *really bad*.
    Trane and American Standard are the same.
    Carrier and Bryant are the same.
    Rheem and RUUD are the same.

    All manufacturers make different levels of equipment within their own brand. Stay away from contractor grade 13 SEER units in any brand. 13 SEER is the minimum allowed by law. 14 and 15 SEER systems offer the best combination of purchase price and true operating costs, in my opinion.

    Find a good installer. A properly installed Goodman should out-perform and outlast a poorly installed Trane.

    Get a 10 year parts and labor warranty for your peace of mind.

    Take care.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
    Well, they're screwed up.
    I saw what they say the price difference is between a 13 and 16 in the same line. They aren't even close.
    From the link posted by AdrianF:

    "Experts estimate that within a product line of otherwise identical central air conditioners, the price difference between a 13 SEER model and a 16 SEER model is about $500."

    NFW.

  13. #13
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    Any brand is only as reliable and good as the contractor installing it. If you pick a reputable contractor, he will not steer you wrong and chances are the equipment he sells you will satisfy your needs and concerns.
    Sound installation practices is the key to success. Equipment is only as good as the person installing it.

    If I can't fix it, it ain't broke.

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