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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    DFW area
    Posts
    13

    How many installs are done 100% by the book?

    I was reading through all the install information on the outdoor unit, the furnace, and coil. It details every single step in order from taking it out of the box to leaving the job site!

    I watched most of what the guys did when they put in my complete new system and there were 'shortcuts' or just plain omissions on some of the stuff. Like the way to connect the coil to the furnace and/or plenums. They didn't use a bunch of brackets to mate the furnace to the A-coil. They had to use foamboard, with a lot of aluminum tape then a brushed on goo on top of the tape for a complete seal. (it looks very nicely done) When they brazed the new line set, they were not running a slow flow nitrogen thru the pipes while brazing. They did use some sort of goop...looks sort of like a grey toothpaste around the pipes while they were putting the sweat joints together though. The A coil was filled with something because when they connected the a-coil to the line set, they uncapped the suction line on the coil and a LOT of something came whooshing out of the a-coil.

    Before start-up the did pressurize with nitrogen for about 20 min or so uses gages as some sort of reference. Then they pulled a vacuum, I didn't see any sort of device that registers 'microns'....they just kept suction on the system for about 15 min and occasionally looked at the gages. Upon start up, the gages were used almost exclusively to check the charge levels. After a couple of trips outside, they added some R410a with the tank up-side-down, then later added a little more with the tank upright. How does one know whether to put liquid or gas in the system? They would feel by hand the suction line, and liquid line, but didn't use any sort of temperature gage on either one.

    The only thing they didn't do was to fire up the furnace. Probably because the ambient temp in the house was already well above limit. 92*F inside!! 99*F outside! It was late and I and they just wanted to get the A/C going.

    All these guys (3 of them) were all in company uniforms with names on their shirts, all the proper tools at hand. Wore shoe guards religously when going from inside to outside. Only thing I saw a bit odd, was when they disconnected the gages, they would open a valve and a whoosh of something came out of the gage lines into the atmosphere. I presume that was OK? Seems logical as no other way to relieve pressure on the gage set.

    So, does everyone follow manf install sheets to the absolute letter? And based on my scant non-pro observations did they do a 'good install'? I would like to know as I've not paid them yet for the job and they are coming back out next week to tweak on some of the registerts for balancing airflow.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    66,750
    You got an average install by an average installer.
    Contractor locator map

    How-to-apply-for-Professional

    How many times must one fix something before it is fixed?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Lincoln, Nebraska
    Posts
    1,051
    I agree, average install.

    Pictures are worth a thousand words.

    Is the system cooling good?
    Its a good Life!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Naples, Fl
    Posts
    889

    and the survey says (circa 2004)

    of ARI National Training directors

    Failure to use proper solder or soldering technique................................70%

    Failure to evcacuate refrigerant lines and evap coil using recommended method............................................ .............................................50%

    Failure to leak test before charging or proper use of leak detector...........49%

    Failure to confirm 350 to 450 cfm per ton of supply air..........................72%

    I have to stop now a potential customer is on the phone wanting me to lower my price to be like the majority.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Houston,Tx.
    Posts
    15,504
    Only folks I know of that do them 100% right are NATE Certified. that's what I was told anyway.
    “Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one.” –Albert Einstein
    “Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards.”-Vernon Law

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Naples, Fl
    Posts
    889
    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Bill View Post
    Only folks I know of that do them 100% right are NATE Certified. that's what I was told anyway.
    And you know I beleive it. Nate does not confirm integrity.
    Last edited by adrianf; 07-03-2008 at 01:56 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    25
    This is exactly what tarnishes those in the profession. Seems like its unusually difficult to find a good installer with integrity these days. They get offended and attitudinal when their worksmanship / knowledge is questioned , rather than just doing the job as they were tought to do prior to getting licensed. Exactly what do they gain by taking those shortcuts? Perhaps time saved, which equals more money, at the expense of reputation.

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