A quick update on my sad tale of woe:
Dude comes out and attempts to solve problems by replacing metal with a flex return, putting flex on duct in entryway so guests are not deafened by the roar, putting a disconnect on the outside unit (but not inside), putting in a new condensate pump (but with no trap and still plugged inside the unit). I'll have to take a picture. Still quite a frankenstein.
Then less than a week later we get a wet cardboard smell of sorts coming up the return and moist air out the vents. Still droning noise from blower unit and noise from all vents. He says give it time to settle in and condition. I give it a week or so. No change.
I called in a company from 60 miles away (the closest as I could find) that is ACCA, NATE, BBB certified, etc. They took a look at the system and groaned. LOTS of problems. There are also duct issues that the first contractor apparently decided to overlook. They said, "Call a lawyer and have him tell the contractor to come get his unit."
So, I call the contractor and say that I feel the same as I did the morning after he installed the unit. It is not right for the house, isn't working right (did I mention our first electricity bills were 210 bucks when they had only run 140 or so with our ancient unit?). He says how was he supposed to know that the ducts weren't going to be sufficient (huh?), and the unit is good so it must be functioning well (way overcharged though it may be, with crimped lines and imminent compressor failure), and he's never had trouble with a unit before, and he needs us to let him fix it, and he thought the problem was fixed (huh?), and he won't eat the money, etc, etc, etc. Teachable moment: if you have trouble the moment a unit gets put in, put a hold on your check!!!! I learned that the hard way!
So, I am waiting to hear back from him (probaby that he isn't going to take it out noway, nohow). So, we will have to either eat the money and go into debt to have the whole mess fixed, or call my lawyer friend and ask him to apply pressure.
In a moment of whiney weakness I'll tell ya: It has ruined my summer, I don't sleep and my stomach hurts. Ugh. Anyway, you guys were so great to give me a crash course in basic HVAC a few weeks ago (so very kind to me), that I thought you deserved an update. More later....hopefully happier days ahead.