Just found and joined the site, so I apologize up front if I screw up. I am trainable, even if I did go to Auburn and work for a huge utility
. Just coach me and like a puppy I will behave. Seems like a great place for advice! Just had a new 4 ton Carrier VNA25048A003 and FE4ANB006 system installed Wednesday 12/14/11. New larger lineset also. No special zone dampers. T-stat is SYSTXCCUID01-V, above main return in hallway. Smaller return (15 x 20) handles finished basement area. Home is 1962 vintage tri-level brick veneer with 15 year old asphalt shingle roof. About 3000 sq ft heated/cooled. All electric - no gas piped to house but is in the neighborhood. 5 year old water heater is well insulated in crawlspace - considering going to a hybrid WH with HP, but pretty expensive! Will be putting on new roof this spring - may go metal, but at least will go a lighter shingle color with ridge vent if not metal. Having wood trim wrapped with vinly and continuous soffit vent around perimeter. New double pane windows 2 years ago. Just finished 2 layers of attic insulation - R-30 diagonal over R-19 against ceiling drywall. R-30 in crawlspace. Walls are hopeless - too many holes to drill so I will live with what is (or isn't) in there. I will be sealing the old sheet metal ducts with mastic and hi-grade tape over the next few weekends. One bidder recommended wrapping bubble wrap around outside of duct, then insulating with regular fiberglas house insulation. Installer increased return duct from 650 sq in to 800 sq in and new filter is 25 x 30. I am out of town 5 days a week for work, home on weekends only. Wife is retired and home 85% of the time. FE4 is in crawl space under main living area. Condensate pump routed along same path as new lineset. Before warm weather I will put in a new drainage pipe to carry this away from the VNA25 pad. (Old system had drain hose exiting to a front flower bed.) Okay - I hope this describes the scenario well enough. With old York HP and simple T-stat, we just kept house very cool (as we like it) year round. Avg utility bill has been $260-300/month. (Huntsville is pretty hot and very humid 8-9 months/year.) I will familiarize myself with T-stat this weekend. Questions are these: 1) What advice on new system? I don't think there are many of these installed yet in H'ville. Installer has solid rep with BBB and on Angie's List. 2) Cursory search at Lowes and Home Depot did not turn up the larger filter - is this a standard size? 3) Many forum topics seem to have a lot of "code errors" showing on the T-stat panel, but most seem to be owners with several zones set up. With wife home most of the time, will we be best served just "setting and forgetting"? 4) Will bubble wrap under fiberglas offer improved insulating properties? I know the trapped air is what you are after, but this was first time I have heard this suggestion. Thanks in advance for wading thru this epistle, but for the huge cash outlay for this system I want to treat it right. Obviously I will have the installer do a service check in spring and fall, and I will change filters at both returns monthly. Any other good advice? THANKS!!!