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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11

    Need help deciding between Trane and Amana

    I have read through several posts in the last several days to get educated on our purchase. Thank you to all for sharing information. I have narrowed my choice down to two units whose dealers both performed J tests for me to properly size the unit and both sized it at 3 TON. One of them gave me the numbers to verify. I believe both will do a fine job with the installation, which I understand is the most important part.

    The specifics are as follows:

    Trane unit -- Trane XL20i (18.5 SEER, 9.0 HSPF, I am not sure what the EER is on this unit) with CleanEffects (to reduce dust due to allergies). Unit would be the 4TEE3C04 Air Handler with the 4TWZ0036 heat pump and the Honeywell 900 controller.

    Amana unit -- ASZ18-036 heat pump (18 SEER, 13 EER, 9.5 HSPF) and AEPF3137 Air Handler. I am inquiring about the control system for this as the quote just says digital display heating and cooling thermostat. Prefer the Honeywell 900 based upon what I have read.

    I read seveal articles about the CleanEffects unit and it appears there were issues up front and a recall, but that most appreciate the reduction in dust. My wife and me are both allergic to dust and our house gets dusty quickly with our current unit even though I use the higher end 3M filters and replace them monthly.

    I will get the extended warranty for labor on both units. The Amana unit will end up being about $700 cheaper overall.

    My pros and cons are as follows:

    Trane -

    Pros - Excellent unit. Many satisfied customers. Good warranty (12 years on compressor). Two compressors. $1,000 discount. $1,500 tax credit. CleanEffects.

    Cons - More costly than the Amana. Concerns about CleanEffects historical issues.

    Amana -

    Pros - Excellent unit. Many satisfied customers, Excellent warranty. Cheaper than the Trane.

    Cons - Dealer about 20 miles away, so concerned about service if necessary. I read that even though the outside unit is under warranty that you would have to replace the inside unit to make sure they match, so there would still be cost.

    I would appreciate any comments or recommendations that would help move me in one direction or another.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    6,826
    Sounds like you've done your homework and are continuing. I'm not a fan of the Clean Effects. It's just another electronic air cleaner but they have changed the physical arrangement to cylinders instead of flat plates. That's netted them much greater surface area and the plate replacment time has been improved (for basic eac) from 3 months to 6-9 months. I'd recommend a Dynamic Air Cleaner instead. The cell is replacable for short money, easily customer servicable. Does just as good a job at the outset as any other and the method of service gives you a 'new' eac every time the media is changed.

    Amana and Trane are both excellent machines. All else being equal (clearly the Clean Effects is the price difference in the two quotes) I think you should decide based on service. Service support is the ultimate test. Call each company at 9pm tonight and ask for a call back for a service related problem. Score their response times accordingly. It might help answer your question.
    If YOU want change, YOU have to first change.

    If you are waiting for the 'other guy' to change first, just remember, you're the 'other guy's' other guy. To continue to expect real change when you keep acting the same way as always, is folly. Won't happen. Real change will only happen when a majority of the people change the way they vote!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11
    Thank you skippedover. Some good advice. I will try the service call this evening.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    north texas, southern oklahoma
    Posts
    4
    I agree with Skippedover. All consumers should research such a large purchase that is such a huge part of their being happy and comfortable in their home. Ultimately the most important part is your Service Contractor.

    I personally would lean towards Trane but only if the contractor is a reputable company. You can buy a Lexus but if the dealer is bad you'll have a bad overall experience. On the flip side if buy a Kia and have a great dealer you will be satisfied.

    I would add that whichever way you go when buying an electronic air cleaner it is best to purchase a service agreement and let them maintain it properly. I know of many homeowners that had bad experiences with EAC's that were really caused by lack of maintenance.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Washington
    Posts
    7,405
    Disregard that ridiculous comment about Trane being a Lexus and Amana being a Kia..oh brother.



    Either system will serve you well and what it boils down to is the contractor. Which contractor is better.

    Equipment-wise, whether you pick Trane or Amana have you looked into the communicating stuff?? If you are stepping up to high efficiency it is well worth it step up on system control and diagnostics as well.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    1,127
    If you can get either for the same price, deleting the EAC, I would go for the Trane. My reasoning is that you should have greater comfort with the two compressors, both less cycling and better humidity control. Possibly quieter as well.

    But I'll bet you are not eligible for that $1,000 rebate unless you take the Clean Effects? See if you can negotiate a similar total price without the EAC.

    You might get an idea I don't like the idea of the EAC. While they may theoretically clean better when new, very few people maintain them well enough to achieve that in real life. Add that reality to the higher cost, and lower reliability and there is little reason to step up, even with a great rebate ("the more you spend, the more you save" principle is deeply flawed).

    Also, I don't have a good idea on the total installed costs of the unit, but you will only get the full tax credit of $1,500 if you spend at least $5,000. No credit at all if your total income taxes paid do not add up to $1,500, and the credit is reduced if you took any of it for qualifying work in 2009 or 10.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    DFW -> Texas
    Posts
    446
    Trane is the way to go.

    Every Cleaneffects that I have installed has worked great and customers love them.

    Amana is a Goodman with a better warranty. On the Amana they have to add a TXV to get that rating.

    Amana/Goodman is not a bad unit its just not up to the level of a Trane, a "true" Lennox or even a "true" Carrier.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by seatonheating View Post
    Disregard that ridiculous comment about Trane being a Lexus and Amana being a Kia..oh brother.



    Either system will serve you well and what it boils down to is the contractor. Which contractor is better.

    Equipment-wise, whether you pick Trane or Amana have you looked into the communicating stuff?? If you are stepping up to high efficiency it is well worth it step up on system control and diagnostics as well.
    Yes, the Trane does include the communication system. The Amana dealer agreed to updgrade to it at no cost.

    Thanks for the suggestions.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by ok2eme View Post
    I agree with Skippedover. All consumers should research such a large purchase that is such a huge part of their being happy and comfortable in their home. Ultimately the most important part is your Service Contractor.

    I personally would lean towards Trane but only if the contractor is a reputable company. You can buy a Lexus but if the dealer is bad you'll have a bad overall experience. On the flip side if buy a Kia and have a great dealer you will be satisfied.

    I would add that whichever way you go when buying an electronic air cleaner it is best to purchase a service agreement and let them maintain it properly. I know of many homeowners that had bad experiences with EAC's that were really caused by lack of maintenance.
    Thank you for the comment. Both units will include a 10 year labor warranty.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by commerce48 View Post
    If you can get either for the same price, deleting the EAC, I would go for the Trane. My reasoning is that you should have greater comfort with the two compressors, both less cycling and better humidity control. Possibly quieter as well.

    But I'll bet you are not eligible for that $1,000 rebate unless you take the Clean Effects? See if you can negotiate a similar total price without the EAC.

    You might get an idea I don't like the idea of the EAC. While they may theoretically clean better when new, very few people maintain them well enough to achieve that in real life. Add that reality to the higher cost, and lower reliability and there is little reason to step up, even with a great rebate ("the more you spend, the more you save" principle is deeply flawed).

    Also, I don't have a good idea on the total installed costs of the unit, but you will only get the full tax credit of $1,500 if you spend at least $5,000. No credit at all if your total income taxes paid do not add up to $1,500, and the credit is reduced if you took any of it for qualifying work in 2009 or 10.
    Thanks for the comments. I especially appreciate the comment about the EAC. I am struggling with weather we will pay the extra for that or not. I don't have any issues with the maintenace on it as I am pretty good about that, but I see it as something else that could break down. The biggest benefit would be the reduction in dust (my wife hates dusting only to have it come back with a fury the next day ). We can get the $1K with or without the EAC. We will be eligable for full tax credit and the state I am in is giving an additional $400 rebate as well. That is the only reason I am considering the higher end units.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by Joker View Post
    Trane is the way to go.

    Every Cleaneffects that I have installed has worked great and customers love them.

    Amana is a Goodman with a better warranty. On the Amana they have to add a TXV to get that rating.

    Amana/Goodman is not a bad unit its just not up to the level of a Trane, a "true" Lennox or even a "true" Carrier.
    Joker,

    This is an intersting reply. Have you installed Amana and had problems with them breaking down? I have gone through several threads on here and have seen many discussions on this, but I don't think I have seen more than anecdotal evidence on these types of statements. The flip side is that I have seen many statements that all the units are very similar and should do a good job (especially at this price point). It would make my decision much easier if there are folks that have gotten away from installing Amana due to the poor quality of their higher end systems.

    Thank you for the response. I have to admit I am leaning towards the Trane, but my last unit (an XE1000) only lasted 9 years. Also, that lifetime warranty on the Amana is very appealing. A brand new outside unit if the compressor fails for the life of the unit, pretty good stuff. I am reminded of the movie Tommy Boy when I hear that though.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    SF Bay Area, CA
    Posts
    390
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowfax View Post
    Thanks for the comments. I especially appreciate the comment about the EAC. I am struggling with weather we will pay the extra for that or not. I don't have any issues with the maintenace on it as I am pretty good about that, but I see it as something else that could break down. The biggest benefit would be the reduction in dust (my wife hates dusting only to have it come back with a fury the next day . We can get the $1K with or without the EAC. We will be eligable for full tax credit and the state I am in is giving an additional $400 rebate as well. That is the only reason I am considering the higher end units.
    i say save some $ and go with a high quality media filter like the Aprilaire 2410 instead of the Clean Effects

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Washington
    Posts
    7,405
    Quote Originally Posted by Shadowfax View Post
    Joker,

    This is an intersting reply. Have you installed Amana and had problems with them breaking down? I have gone through several threads on here and have seen many discussions on this, but I don't think I have seen more than anecdotal evidence on these types of statements. The flip side is that I have seen many statements that all the units are very similar and should do a good job (especially at this price point). It would make my decision much easier if there are folks that have gotten away from installing Amana due to the poor quality of their higher end systems.

    Thank you for the response. I have to admit I am leaning towards the Trane, but my last unit (an XE1000) only lasted 9 years. Also, that lifetime warranty on the Amana is very appealing. A brand new outside unit if the compressor fails for the life of the unit, pretty good stuff. I am reminded of the movie Tommy Boy when I hear that though.
    Because that is the only evidence that is out there. Disregard comments from anyone that ever states Brand X is better than Brand Y.

    It is all about features. With any manufacturer's high-end stuff you get improved features that come along with the premium price. If we were comparing a Trane XL20i to an Amana ASZ13 then you would have a noticable difference. But we are not.

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