Last season I had a new furnace installed, an American Stanadard AUY080 gas furnace, Two-Stage, 92 AFUE, variable speed fan, 80,000 input BTU. A new American Standard 3 ton indoor a/c coil was also installed at that since the ductwork was being opened up anyway.
After the furnace was up and running, I noticed that the 2nd stage wasn't necessary at all. Even when we have very low temps (-12F in Eastern Mass) first stage could handle it without even a little 2nd stage needed to maintain room temperature. I've been wondering what the point of the 2nd stage is. Also furnace on times were kind of short and the airflow was noisy, not what I expected after all of the hype in the sales information.
I was also concerned with the small return air inlet cut in the side of the furnace; it is smaller than the filter and smaller than the instructions call for. The return air was on the left hand side and the condensate drained out the left side too, so a tube and nipple was setup that had to be removed in order to wiggle out the filter, which had a bracket that couldn't be screwed in. For pictures see http://southmountain2.tripod.com/furnace/
At that time I included a page of comments with my customer survey. Many months later (and several calls to the distributor company because the dealer co. never returned calls after repeated promises to do so) I was able to convince them to fix the condensate drain setup so I could clean the air filter without the drain hose being in the way, and so the filter could actually slide out without moving the bracket. They also fixed (board replacement) a big radio interference problem that occured whenever the draft inducer fan was working. This fix resulted in some improvement, but there is still a lot of interference. They seemed to ignore my comments about the fairly short cycles and that second stage wasn't needed in very cold weather. It's impossible to miss second stage since it is very loud and a thermostat light comes on.
Unfortunately when I bought the furnace I didn't know much about ACCA Manual J and I trusted the American Standard certified dealer (Customer Care dealer too) to be able to size and install everything properly.
After I wrote a letter to the dealer and Am Standard about the sizing problems I was encountering, the dealer has just informed me that they will replace my now 1 year old furnace with an AUY060 model (60,000 input BTU). Another contracter also felt that 60,000 BTU is the right size for a high efficency furnace for me, so I think I will take my installer up on this offer. They will do this at no charge, although I will lose the 5 year extended warranty that I have on my existing furnace.
I'm actually very surprised that they are willing to fix the sizing issues. Is there any reason why I shouldn't have this done? I don't want to be a jerk by any means, but what should I request to ensure that they do this job right?
I think I want to make sure they install a new furnace and not a possible returned lemmon. I also would like to make sure that everything is installed according to manufacturer's directions. Previously I noticed they skipped a lot of areas, such as the mandatory safety checkout.
Any suggestions to make sure I get this done right?
I will certainly write another letter explaining that the Dealer did the right thing to resolve the problems.