Results 1 to 5 of 5
  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Posts
    11,967
    Previously posted by hallis1

    Hello everyone,

    We bought a house in mid-June 2005. Our inspector noted problems with the A/C, which the sellers agreed to fix during our negotiations. At closing, the seller's agent accidentally gave us papers from the technician showing that he only added freon and recommended they hire someone else to check out the problems with the A/C. Needless to say, we are planning to investigate legal options.

    Long story short: we were in the house for 2 weeks when we realized the A/C wasn't working. It was running all day and night, but never getting under 80F (seems to be a common problem on these boards!). Since we have a home warranty, we called them first and they sent out an A/C guy.

    Of course the A/C guy found it was preexisting and not covered under the warranty. He wrote: "Found evap coil 60% restricted - fins are smashed - not allowing proper air flo - has no filter on liquid line - causing internal restriction in coil - condenser needs cleaned."

    He recommended two ways of dealing with this problem:
    1. fix the 4-ton Rheem unit we currently have: "install new Carrier 4-ton 12 seec evap coil with txv valve, install 3/8" liquid line drier, clean outside unit"

    or

    2. he said our home (2050 sq.ft. with 12-foot ceilings and a huge skylight) is too many sq.ft. for a 4-ton unit. so his second option is replacing the unit with a new 5-ton unit: "install 5-ton 12 seec complete system, condensor, coil, furnace, NO duct work" and then quoted us full parts and labor prices (not including duct work) for three units (low, mid, and top range).

    so! I thought he seemed very knowledgeable and trustworthy. he spent about 30 minutes going back and forth between our attic and the outside unit.

    but what I want to know is this:
    1. the price to fix up our 4-ton unit is about 1/3 of the price to just replace the whole thing with a 5-ton unit. if the 4-ton unit is never going to cool our house very well, it seems like we'd be better off just laying out the money for a new unit...right?

    2. as I read through some of the other posts, I noticed a couple of people mention that a bigger, newer system may not fix the problem if it's actually in the ducts. From this A/C tech's description of the problem, it doesn't sound like a duct problem...but I'm concerned that since duct work isn't covered in his prices, it could suddenly turn out that "oh look, the problem actually WAS the ducts." legitimate worry?

    3. I do not understand what features are improved on a more expensive unit over a cheaper one. we are talking more than $1000 difference between the low and top quote they gave us. Generally speaking, what does the extra $1000 get you?

    4. Is it a good idea to get quotes from a couple other A/C places? or am I just wasting time?


    Last night we started having warm air come in through the vents, so we are now living in Houston's bay area in the middle of July without air conditioning. I know I'm asking a lot of questions that may have detailed answers...so thank you in advance for any help and perspective you give me. And if these questions are already answered somewhere that I've missed, please just let me know where to look.

    Thanks,
    Hillary

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    the Great Pacific Northwest
    Posts
    607
    Quote:
    Of course the A/C guy found it was preexisting and not covered under the warranty. He wrote: "Found evap coil 60% restricted - fins are smashed - not allowing proper air flo - has no filter on liquid line - causing internal restriction in coil - condenser needs cleaned."

    Smashed fins on an evaporator ? I've never seen a evap damaged that bad.
    Your best course of action would be to:
    1. Get references for a good company.
    2. Call another company and get their diagnosis.
    3. If replacement is recomended it's sizing must be based on a load calculation, if larger equiptment is called for the air distribution system must be checked for adequqte capacity (this would be a good idea for the current system)

    Quote:
    but I'm concerned that since duct work isn't covered in his prices, it could suddenly turn out that "oh look, the problem actually WAS the ducts." legitimate worry?

    Absolutely, make any company you deal with give you a performance guarantee in writing for any major work and they must spell out any exclusions.

    I do not understand what features are improved on a more expensive unit over a cheaper one. we are talking more than $1000 difference between the low and top quote they gave us. Generally speaking, what does the extra $1000 get you?

    Typically higher effiency and better warranty, also many high end units will operate with less noise.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Suppy NC
    Posts
    4,513
    sounds like the guy you had there just wants to sell a unit
    first off you still dont have ac so call a differant company and have it checked out. maybe you need a new unit and maybe you dont. there may be something that can be done temporarly till you can hve it replaced. as far as the person you purchased the house from if you wait till you hear from or about what will be done you are only going to get hotter in more ways then temp. have a load calculation done so you know what size you truely need and dont let anyone guess by square footage. as for as warrenti if it turns out to be some thing other then what the first guy said you may be able to submit the reciet for reinburstment from the warrenti company. from what you said in your post the owner had the unit charged and now it does not cool could be a leak and this should be covered i would think. there are good companies in your state so make some calls

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Fort Worth TX
    Posts
    100
    There are several other indicators that restricted air flow is a problem.

    1. Is the indoor coil icing over?
    2. excessive drainage / excessive water
    3. What was the technicians presures / SH and SC ?
    I could troubleshoot your unit from Texas and tell you the same thing. Remember there are always secoundary indications that you will need a new unit. On the bright side the tech was probley right about he outside unit being dirty. Get that cleaned and verify your preasures and air flow. Then make a decision about a new unit.

    The other thing to consider - the age of the current unit. my opinion is if it's gona cost a 1/3 and it's less than 5 fix it over 5 think about fixing it. 10 replace it

    just an opinion
    Never Say Die
    Kemp

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    2
    dash, classical, condenseddave...thank you for your help and advice. everyone who gave thoughtful answers, we really appreciate that you took the time to make such detailed responses.

    thank you, thank you, thank you! we will definitely take your advice.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Comfortech Show Promo Image

Related Forums

Plumbing Talks | Contractor Magazine
Forums | Electrical Construction & Maintenance (EC&M) Magazine
Comfortech365 Virtual Event