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Thread: Sound Advice

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Springtown, TX
    Posts
    3

    Confused Sound Advice

    Brand new home- 4100 Sf in Springtown, TX-west of Ft. Worth.
    Had an energy audit and was told system was "contractor grade" and would cost a fortune for heat/AC. Last month's electric bill was $500.
    Have had 5 AC contractors give me estimates on a new system. 3 were not good, in my opinon- Suggested to upgrade outside unit only to a heat pump system, even though I said give me all my options.
    2 others did load calcs, etc and both came to the same recommendations-3 and 5 ton units 16 SEER.
    Only one(RUUD dealer) asked to look at the energy audit and based upon it and his inspection suggested additional insulation and solar fans.
    TRANE and RUUD dealers stayed for at least 90 minutes and went every where in the house taking notes and measurements.
    Quotes for systems are about the same. Systems are:
    Trane XL 16i 4TWX- Air handler is 2TEE
    RUUD Ultra Series 16 UPRL-JEZ- Air handler is UHPL.

    RUUD dealer is in their top category-Trane dealer is not listed at Trane site.

    Currently leaning towards RUUD. Any thing else I should look at?
    Last edited by yorkiebreeder; 08-06-2008 at 08:02 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    The Twilight Zone
    Posts
    2,964
    The home is brand new and you are thinking of replacing the HVAC systems?

    Are the current systems properly charged with refrigerant? Subcooling and superheat numbers of the current systems?

    The heat gain calc calls for 3 and 5 ton systems - what do you have now?

    How about adding a radiant heat barrier in the attic, as well as additional insulation?

    Anything you can do to reduce the cooling load on the house pays for itself in the long term.

    Good luck.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    DC Metro Area (MD)
    Posts
    3,367
    Who looked at the ductwork to ensure it was in good condition? No system will perform well on a poor ductwork system. If you're going up in size per load calculation, you will most likely need changes to your ductwork. What thermostats are the contractors proposing? This does make a difference as some of them can control humidity. The VisionPRO IAQ can slow the blower down to dehumidify on demand, though this is not easy to set up with the XL16i. Ruud is a good product--service friendly and reliable from what I've heard. Other things to look at is your actual capacities/efficiencies and warranties. Also need full model numbers of the indoor units to determine capacities/efficiencies. I believe the most the XL16i can get to in the 5-ton size is 14.65 SEER... I'm just going by memory here though. The 3-ton XL16i has good performance with the 4TEE3F40B1000A air handler.

    3-ton UPRL with matching UHPL air handler yields 16.50 SEER, 8.70 HSPF, 12.75 EER, 35,400 BTU's of cooling, and 33,400 BTU's of heating. 3 tons is equal to 36,000 BTU's.

    5-ton UPRL with matching UHPL air handler yields 15.50 SEER, 9.00 HSPF, 12.15 EER, 58,000 BTU's of cooling, and 58,000 BTU's of heating. 5 tons is equal to 60,000 BTU's.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Springtown, TX
    Posts
    3

    More on old system.

    Old units are not heat pumps- 13 SEER base GOODMAN units. 3 and a 4 ton. Insulation is only 6 inches (home inspector rated attic insulation as less than ideal -approximately R20.)
    Energy audit calcs estimated the cost of heating the house with existing equipment would be $1500 dollars per month.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Springtown, TX
    Posts
    3

    More Info

    Both TRANE and RUUD dealers stated the ductwok was poor. Both are recommending an almost complete re-do- adding new returns in rooms, etc. Both offer a full ten year warranty on the units and their work. T-stats are both the high end touch screen units recommended by the manufacturers for these units.

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