Tappan vs. Lennox Heat Pump
The upstairs HVAC went on the fritz. I have a home warranty (we just bought the house a few months ago) but I hate those things and didn't want to deal with it unless I had to so I called my trusted A/C guy (we'll call him AC1).
AC1 comes and pulls the inside unit open and does the sniff check thing. The evaporator coils are all rusted and his sniffer thing finds leaks. He goes outside (I didn't follow him) and comes back in and says there are leaks out there, too. AC1 recommends that we upgrade to a 2.0 ton unit (its currently 1.5 ton) because the 500 sf upstairs is basically inside the attic (the walls of the rooms are exposed to the attic, not just the ceiling) and because we have no shade and live in GA. AC1 quotes me $ for a 2.0 ton, 13 seer, 10 year warranty on parts, 1 year warranty on labor Lennox unit (no, didn't tell me model number). This also includes labor to move the new unit back a few feet so I have better access to the attic space.
Since I figure the unit is toast, I call the home warranty folks and they send AC2. AC2 finds the same leaks everywhere and also reccommends replacement. But AC2 recommends a 1.5 ton Tappan unit, 13 seer, 10 year warranty on parts (not sure about labor). Once again, I don't know the model number. He quoted me $ for the 1.5 ton Tappan, this include parts and labor. We did not discuss moving the unit back at all (whoops, forgot).
I've dealt with a warranty company before, about five years ago and got royally screwed. They put a cheap piece of junk in, didn't install it correctly, I finally made them send a second company out and they didn't fix all the problems either. Rather than continue to shell out $50 every time my "new" air conditioner stopped working I finally called AC1 guy based on a rec from someone at work and he fixed it just fine (the original two guys had left out the expansion valve and put in the wrong size capacitor which he thinks was from Europe or something because he said he's never seen that size before).
I trust AC1 to do a decent install just based on my past experience. AC2 guy seems knowledgeable, but there are no review on him on Angie's List or any other review sites that I can find. And my bullsh!t detector is not very good, I am a trusty person.
I am, in general, cheap. But it gets really hot in the summer here and I would rather shell out more for quality work than be stuck in the middle of June with no air upstairs. On a side note, I have no idea yet how much the warranty will pay out or if they'll give me cash or make me use AC2 guy.
Can anyone provide input as to the realistic-ness of the quotes and the quality of Lennox vs. Tappan heat pumps?
Last edited by beenthere; 03-24-2011 at 06:36 PM.
No prices please, thank you.
You can get a cash buy out from your warranty company.
Since I can't post prices, let's just say that AC1 is 1.6 times more expensive than AC2. Based on the fine print of my warranty, I don't think I can get much cash out but they will give me a small amount, probably about 20% of what AC2 quoted me.
Don't look at the money. look at who you want to install the new system you don't want trouble with, and decide by that.
In my opinion, although I dont like the lack of availability of lennox parts in most states I would want the Lennox rather than the Tappan. Also, I know I've been saying it alot in the short time I've been participating on this site - Get a load calculation. Both units regardless of brand for the most part will perform the same. Angies list is fine but the BBB and ROC are better.
Model #s? I spent too much time fixing a family member's builder Lennox. They moved, I sure miss them but don't miss that heat pump. Though with that new home dealer, they get some of the blame. Installation counts!
I'm rather partial to my Tappan personally.
Now, #1 wants to go up 33% in size. Is he increasing your ductwork 33% in size? If not, that's likely a problem as often the ducts aren't big enough for what you have let alone going bigger. So when dealers constantly say go bigger without discussing ducts, I get leery.
Does the 1.5 ton not do the job? Maybe cuz of the ducts?
#1 absolutely did discuss the bigger ducts we'd need and that is quoted in his price.
Did you find the problems with the Lennox were install problems or Lennox quality problems or was it hard to tell?
What's ROC? I know BBB...
Lennox is no different than any other brand as far as reliability.
installation is key in all cases as is the company's ability to service the equipment.
The Food Stamp Program, administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is proud to be distributing the greatest amount of free meals and stamps EVER.
Meanwhile, the National Park Service, administered by the U.S. Department of the Interior, asks us to "Please Do Not Feed the Animals". Their stated reason for this policy "... the animals become dependent on handouts and will not learn to take care of themselves."
from an excerpt by Paul Jacob in Sun City, AZ
The builder grade Lennox line only has a 5 year warranty so if AC1 quoted a 10 year parts warranty he didn't bid the cheap stuff.
The neighborhood this builder Lennox was in was a "vinyl village" done by the same installer. Most lost compressors including my family members. Hmmmm. The other problems were equipment related but components Lennox didn't build. Really, the manufacturer doesn't build much of their units. I just don't like anybody's builder unit, especially the Merit units. So if the premium Lennox is being quoted, that's going to be so much better.
ROC = Registror of contractors they will have any list of complaints if they are licensed and if theyre not dont deal with them.
I find most compressor failures are a result of poor air flow. Also I agree, the 'elite' is of course better than the merrit.