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  1. #1

    hoping for help buying new furnace

    We need a new furnace, and we have already been without heat since Nov. 5. (I posted a separate explanation as to the mix-up causing the delay.) We are starting to feel a bit desperate about getting a new furnace ordered, and I am hoping for some advice so I can speed up my self-education.

    Is there a consumer-friendly online calculator I can use to verify how large a furnace to buy?

    Which brands of furnaces are best at this time? I am especially interested in reliablity and durability.

    We have a two-story house in SW Michigan. Unfinished basement is 1428 sf, crawl space 144 sf. Total sf of house first and second floors is 2660. Portions of the first floor do not have second floor above them, for example the dinette or "breakfast room" is over the crawl space, without a second floor above it, and it gets too warm during a/c season and stays a bit chilly during heating season. Back in the 1970's it got as cold as -25 here, but more recently it seems -15 might be the lowest temperature.

    I have done a bit of reading already, and have learned the most important factors are correct size, proper installation and maintenance, service-oriented hvac contractor, but would appreciate additional help anyone might be able to give me.

    Thank you very much. My husband has Alzheimer's, and furnace shopping is one of the things i so wish he could do. . .

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,876
    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan woman View Post
    I have done a bit of reading already, and have learned the most important factors are correct size, proper installation and maintenance, service-oriented hvac contractor, but would appreciate additional help anyone might be able to give me.

    You are ahead of the game with this!! Good job....

    You will get alot of great information here....keep us all posted on how things go....

    Brand doesn't matter....pic someone you trust and like that will do a good job for you....
    I need a new signature.....

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by I_bend_metal View Post
    You are ahead of the game with this!! Good job....

    You will get alot of great information here....keep us all posted on how things go....

    Brand doesn't matter....pic someone you trust and like that will do a good job for you....
    I agree, also checking a couple references is a must! Speaking to one or two of there recent installs will tell you everything you need to know about them and imo is one of the best and safest ways to choose an installer.

    I also agree to find a good installer and allow them to pick the brand or work with them to pick the brand. The installer is much more important than the brand of furance.

    Jamie

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    SE Michigan
    Posts
    17,951
    Can you be more specific on where you live in SW MI.?
    Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people.

    Theodore Roosevelt

  5. #5
    It's the Kalamazoo area.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Cedar Grove, Wi-Sheboygan
    Posts
    1,582
    Do what I did when I got estimates for a furnace, When I pick the guy who I liked I asked him for a couple of references and then called a few of these people and asked if I could come to see his work prior to signing on the dotted line. Although what happened later with the compnay I picked happen to have internal politics going on and now lead me to pick another service company after my first years is up. But get several estimates, ask for reference, and ask those reference's if they wouldn't mind if you came to thier home to inspect his or her's work. But once you get several estimates come back here and post your choices and the guys here will direct you on which equipment is a better option aside form the compnay you pick. Don't forget to have them do a load calc, manual D, to size the furnace, and if they just go off of what you already have in your home I would move on to the next company.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    SE Michigan
    Posts
    17,951
    Quote Originally Posted by Michigan woman View Post
    It's the Kalamazoo area.
    Im on the East side....get on the phone and call 3 licensed and insured mechanical contractors.

    Have them come to your home and give you a furnace replacement proposal based on a Manual J Load Calculation.

    Tell them that you would like to have the necessary permits pulled and would like the job inspected after the install. This will help elimanate the hacks and be beneficial to you incase something should go wrong.

    Good luck and be warm!
    Behind the ostensible government sits enthroned an invisible government owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people.

    Theodore Roosevelt

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