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Thread: This O'l House

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    72

    Arrow This O'l House

    Let me start from the beginning since I am "new". First, hello all! I had read the Site Rule so hope I didn't break any rule.

    Just moved into a 1971 house with a 1971 furnace. I think A/C is 12 years. so this is one of the item on the to-do list since I am in midwest = long winter. I called around and got 4 quotes, than I realize the price range and the "size" of system suggested to heat/cool my house varies wide range.

    The basic quote we got are for the +90% furnaces, with varies speed (??) furance, humidifier, air filter and thermostat.

    so I google around try to research, understand and found this place by accident

    the total package seems to be out of our reach, since we just brought this O'l house. But the vendors seem to want to install the entire package (probably due to the age of our current system).

    Question 1) If I were to "break" up each parts, what is the logical order to have it installed (i.e. coil with air conditioner and humidifier...than ....)

    Question 2) why does all 4 vendor want me to buy their thermostat? I wanted one that has remote which they don't seem to carry but tell me that we need to have their special thermostat to take advantage of variable speed fan.


    I think this is getting too long, I'll post more question ...slowly... there are sooo much information on the "Residential HVAC forums"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    68,334
    What part isn't working at the moment.

    They don't make remote control thermostats like they do remotes for TV's.

    Honeywell does make a wireless, that you could use as a remote.

    If you list brands, models and the options the salesman gave you. We can tell you if you are comparing apples to apples.
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Rochester, MN
    Posts
    5,305
    I see no need for remote controled t-stat...

    As long the furnace and A/C is sized right (Manual-J/Load Calc) for your home, and a two stage variable speed will no longer have the "Hot or Cold" spots in your home.

    A good t-stat like Honeywell VisionPro, or IAQ stat will do great.

    As beenthere said what models are they quoting you on, and how big is your home?

    Doing the packaged deal is cheaper to do since it will save on labor than this this year, that next and other down the road.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    72

    Lightbulb

    Hi Beenthere and mayguy,

    thanks for the reply. I would do the full package deal but it's $$$$$ (5 digits) and we just moved in cash flow is an issue. That was why I ask if I were to break up the installation what is the logical way? Only the "big box" vendor does offer 1 year interest free with their credit card... but I have heard some bad story about them.

    I agree I probably don't need remote control t-stat. it just looks cool

    some background: the house build 1971 brick-frame, split level about 1500 not include the basement. basement is 727 sqft most of the windows are East/West facing.

    only one vendor did manual-J, of course at the time I didn't know anything about it. Now I am a little better educated.

    here is the list, we got it price with air cleaner, humidifier and t-stat.

    Rheem: (manual-J)
    RGFD7 (75000btu) variable drive blower motor. A/C is "30 A/C system" Model RAND 13 SHEER. I think the sales person say it's 2 1/2 ton..

    Trane1:
    XU95 (100,000 btu) -XL19 (36000 BTU) 19.5 SEER
    XU95 (100,000 btu) - XL 16 (36000 btu) 17.1 SEER

    Trane2 :
    XU 95 2 stage veriable. XL15i 3ton

    4th Vendor sells kenmore

    Like what many posting say... pick the installer is the most important thing. And it ain't easy!



    Quote Originally Posted by mayguy View Post
    I see no need for remote controled t-stat...

    As long the furnace and A/C is sized right (Manual-J/Load Calc) for your home, and a two stage variable speed will no longer have the "Hot or Cold" spots in your home.

    A good t-stat like Honeywell VisionPro, or IAQ stat will do great.

    As beenthere said what models are they quoting you on, and how big is your home?

    Doing the packaged deal is cheaper to do since it will save on labor than this this year, that next and other down the road.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
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    68,334
    Well, the Rheem guy seems to have pulled away from the rest, he did a load calc without being asked.

    For that alone he deserves extra points towards being the right contractor.
    I vote Rheem.

    100,000 BTU Tranes for that sq ft, sounds way big. Sounds like they are matching what is already in.

    BTU to BTU, Newer furnaces need to move more air then old ones of the same size. Your ductwork is most likely not big enough to handle teh air those 100,000s need. So you'd end up with noisey ductwork when it went to second stage heat.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    MN
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    2,677
    If you are using propane for a heating fuel, I would go for a total system upgrade with a heat pump instead of straight A/C. Not a bad idea on Natural gas either, but with LP you will definitely notice the heating bill difference. But if you can only go with one at a time, upgrade the furnace to a variable speed unit, and save up for the rest later.
    You can't fix stupid

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Alberta Canada
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    2,246

    Sounds like option 1

    I would go with the first guy, due to heat loss and the size of equipment. for comfort sakes and longevity of the unit do not over size A/C, as for furnace energy savings over sizing furnaces is like throwing money out the window. When you are spending this much money, if it takes a couple hundred dollars more do it for comfort and peace of mind, it will be money well spent and won't regret decision in years to come. Good luck and enjoy the comfort you deserve.
    Do it right the first time.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    manitowoc wisconsin
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    4,943
    Call the guy that did the load calc & tell him you just don't have the cash for the whole system right now.
    Keep in mind the avg life of an ac is 15 years it is old.It will cost a bit more breaking it up plus metal/material costs seem to go up every day lately.
    There is no reason you can't wait until you can afford it.
    Take your time & do it right!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    999
    The Rheem RGFD is the top of the line modulating furnace.

    If you go with it, you must get the matching modulating thermostat in order to enjoy its 13 stages of heat.

    Don't cripple it.

    AM

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    72

    Lightbulb I have learned so much!

    My wife think I am over "shopping" for HVAC.

    At least now I can ask the right question when interviewing the HVAC salesperson and maybe get a correct estimation? I feel kinda bad, but I will probably have to ask the 1st guy back to get more "detail".

    Seems like Rheem is a good product I am in the midwest it's very important to have good heating, now I have to found the right installer.

    thanks for all of your help. I'll post more later.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    TEXAS
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    1,701
    its the most expensive system in your home. how can you over shop? with gas prices going up every day, we will all be staying home more. why not be comfortable?
    "When the people find they can vote themselves money,that will herald the end of the republic" - Benjamin Franklin

    "Government is not reason, it is not eloquence, it is force;like fire, a troublesome servant and a fearful master. Never for a moment should it be left to irresponsible action"- George Washington

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    Northern Wisconsin
    Posts
    2,032
    I always suggest to people that are on a strict budget to replace what is oldest and going to run the most first. In your case that'd be the furnace.
    Call back the person you feel most comfortable with and fully explain your sitation again and have them give you their recommendations as they've the ones that have seen what you have.
    Never hurts to see if they can't get inventive with financing etc. doing the whole project at once. Some manufacturers offer some pretty good financing options.
    Use the biggest hammer you like, pounding a square peg into a round hole does not equal a proper fit.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    72

    Thumbs up Like a good neighbor!

    thank you smittyii and firecontrol. I am having a neighbors get together next week so maybe I'll get some reference from there. yep I finally got my wife to understand this is for long (winter) term ... not like her shoes

    So far only the big box vendor was able to give 1 year 0%. but I think reading from post here... the right installer is probably more important. and I would like to call them back every year for checkup!



    Quote Originally Posted by firecontrol View Post
    I always suggest to people that are on a strict budget to replace what is oldest and going to run the most first. In your case that'd be the furnace.
    Call back the person you feel most comfortable with and fully explain your sitation again and have them give you their recommendations as they've the ones that have seen what you have.
    Never hurts to see if they can't get inventive with financing etc. doing the whole project at once. Some manufacturers offer some pretty good financing options.

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