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Old 08-24-2010, 12:45 PM   #1
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Best heatpump on market?


Does anyone have any thoughts on which are the best heatpumps on the market? Trane, Rudd, Carrier? Are they virtually all the same with the main difference is the installation of the unit?

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Old 08-24-2010, 02:15 PM   #2
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Best heatpump on market?


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Originally Posted by brokennow View Post
Are they virtually all the same with the main difference is the installation of the unit?

Thanks
Yes, the difference in quality of the installation is much more significant then the difference among brands.

Most units use industry standard components like Emerson compressors, GE motors, Ranco electronics, etc, etc so the differences just aren't that great.

A builders grade unit properly sized and installed can be far superior to a high end unit installed by a "hack".

Choose the best contractor you can find and then go with the brand they recommend for your home. I wouldn't deviate from the brand they recommend because you want the contractor to be familiar with what they install and more important is the clout the contractor will have with the manufacturer/distributer if there are issues that arise.


Last edited by hennyh; 08-24-2010 at 02:21 PM.
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Old 08-24-2010, 03:07 PM   #3
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Best heatpump on market?


There are fewer differences between heat pump brands then there are between furnace brands.

There are some differences in defrost modes and diagnostics though.

The quality of the installation is critical.
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Old 08-24-2010, 03:36 PM   #4
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Best heatpump on market?


What criteria should you use for the best installer...Years in business, references, etc???
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Old 08-24-2010, 03:54 PM   #5
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Best heatpump on market?


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Originally Posted by brokennow View Post
What criteria should you use for the best installer...Years in business, references, etc???
I'm grappling with that question now. Personally I favor the smaller "owner/operator" companies - like the family operations that have been in business for years. You, know the guys that eat, sleep and breathe this stuff. I don't like the big companies that have sales guys to convince you that their brand is the best, and then send their installers to do the job. I like the guy who's reputation is at stake on each job he does, and is proud of his workmanship.

For me, I have a specific system in mind that I think is best for my home. I'll be looking for someone who is very familiar with the hardware. However, it was a A LOT of work to spec this system for me (a non-pro), so I don't recommend going that route unless you are somewhat of a control freak like me.

I do recommend that you get familiar with HVAC basics, so when they start making proposals you can evauluate them with some confidence. The more you know, the better.
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Old 08-24-2010, 08:42 PM   #6
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Best heatpump on market?


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What criteria should you use for the best installer...Years in business, references, etc???
Word of mouth from multiple sources is best. Building inspectors, HVAC supply houses, friends, neighbors, other trades professional, etc.

Make sure the contractor does a Manual J load calc. If they're too lazy to calculate system sizing then send them packing because they're not looking out for your best interests.

A long term reputation in the community is also good. You can also check BBB for % resolved complaints. Also check the state contractors board.
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Old 08-24-2010, 10:01 PM   #7
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Best heatpump on market?


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Originally Posted by hennyh View Post
Word of mouth from multiple sources is best. Building inspectors, HVAC supply houses, friends, neighbors, other trades professional, etc.

Make sure the contractor does a Manual J load calc. If they're too lazy to calculate system sizing then send them packing because they're not looking out for your best interests.

A long term reputation in the community is also good. You can also check BBB for % resolved complaints. Also check the state contractors board.
I found word of mouth from friends and neighbors to be the least reliable method. Most of them don't know if their systems are really any good or not (except maybe they know when they have a botched-up install).

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