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mark2741 04-12-2013 05:12 PM

AC Replacement Estimates
As I posted the other day, my AC broke. Just 4 months after I had a brand new gas furnace installed : ( The thread on that is here:

Since this has now shifted to the purchase of a replacement AC I figure it's better to start a new thread.

So far, I've gotten estimates from 3 places.

The below estimates are for a house in the Philadelphia, PA suburbs, for a 3 ton unit. The existing furnace is a Bryant 925TA 2 stage that was just installed in January.

Company A
These were the guys I was considering going with instead of Company B below for furnace.
Bryant Model 116 15.5 SEER
Model 126 16 SEER

Company B
These are the guys that installed the new furnace. I won't use them for the AC because I just don't trust them (though the owner insisted that the TX valve was , but asked them for a price anyway just for comparison.
The prices below were quoted over the phone, not in writing, and I didn't ask for model numbers but since this is another Bryant dealer it's safe to assume they're for Bryants:
$4790 high efficiency 16
$3600 13 seer but then when I asked for a cash discount it went down to $3250
Company C
Bryant Model 116BNA036 16 SEER - $3475
Bryant Model 127 16 SEER 2 stage - $4100
He said that he has to go with a larger "super coil" in order to match my furnace and achieve the AHRI (?) SEER 16 (which I need in order to get a $300 utility company rebate). He said that larger coil costs an extra $100, which is included in the prices listed above. In the written estimate he lists an AHRI certification code: #4818517
I asked him for a cash discount and he said he'd knock $100 off.
This company has been in business for 60 years. And they're also including 5 years labor (in addition to the 10 years parts from Bryant). Other guys didn't mention warranties cus they were done over the phone (these guys had measured/estimated before for the furnace).

I have one more estimate scheduled for Tuesday but I am pretty sure I'm going with Company C. Their online reviews are excellent, for what that's worth. Then again, the guys that did the furnace have stellar reviews I don't put much stock in them. It's a roll of the dice to me. I put TONS of research, word of mouth inquiries from friends, etc. into the furnace purchase and it resulted in so far a great furnace but a broken AC : ( So I'm not going to over-analyze this one.

Is it really worth the extra $600 for the 2 stage AC? We have a 2 stage furnace (Bryant 925TA) and do like it.

Doc Holliday 04-12-2013 05:42 PM

count your lucky stars for those pricings. complete systems, evaporator, condenser and furnace with a new supply plenum (and ask for dampers, but expect an additional charge for this work) and transition as needed along with a digital 7 day 2 stage cooling/heat (if applicable) programmable thermostat and emergency float switch to be installed on the brand new secondary drain pain??

mark2741 04-12-2013 05:53 PM

Those prices are just for the complete AC replacement. No furnace.

yuri 04-12-2013 06:04 PM

C company sounds good and yeah they may have to go with a larger coil to get the SEER or the reg coil may end up being 15.5 and not eligible for the rebate. The bigger coil gives you better dehumidification too. Unless you live in a very humid climate like Florida I doubt a 2 stage AC is going to be that much more comfortable. It also has a more complex and expensive compressor and chance of problems. They are better at dehum and that may allow you to keep your temp 1 degF higher and feel that same comfort but IMO unless you are very fussy or sensitive it is not worth it. THe high end Bryant ACs are VERY nice and quiet and well built.

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