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Old 03-22-2013, 10:55 AM   #1
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


So I'm about to make the jump on replacing the boiler and put in central air. I have had 5 contractors out to take a look, and narrowed it down to 3 quotes.

I've pretty much settled on #3, but his Boiler and a/c sizing is lower than everyone else's. But he's the only one who flat out claims to have done a Manual J on our house, and he did the measurements to give me confidence that he's correct. He spent well over an hour and a half discussing everything, throwing in good suggestions, and including electrical.

I'm fairly confident with the insulation improvements we will be doing in the near future we're fine with "under sizing" compared to the other quotes, but Just want some reassurance that trusting the guy who we wanted to do the job is the right way to go. He sized the a/c at 3.22 Tons, and is reccomending a 3 ton system.



Original System:

225k BTU (net 165K BTU) boiler from the 1950s
no a/c

#1 cheapest, mediocre calculations and trust
152k net BTU 83% Weil McLain CGA-7 Boiler

a/c
4 ton 13 Seer Bryant single stage compressor, single stage blower

#2 Good calculations, and high trust Middle to high cost
162k net BTU Peerless MI-08 Boiler 83% boiler with smart temp (monitors recovery rate and adjusts temp)

4 ton 13 Seer Trane single stage A/C single stage blower.
16 Seer option would take another week.

#3 Excellent knoweldge/calculations, Excellent trust Middle priced.
100k BTU Lennox 83% boiler
3 ton 16 Seer Lennox single stage compressor, multi stage blower + control


Thanks!

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Old 03-22-2013, 11:24 AM   #2
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


I would go with #3. An oversized AC will short cycle and never dehumidify your house properly. Lots of contractors still use the bigger is better ideas like the old days and don't know how or care to size them properly so #3 is the way to go.

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Last edited by yuri; 03-22-2013 at 03:00 PM.
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Old 03-22-2013, 11:32 AM   #3
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


Thanks, that's what I've read time and time again, and this company was highly recommended by my next door neighbor, so he's giving me the final number this afternoon, and that should do it. His boiler quote was almost a third less than the other companies quotes. He's reusing the pump and expansion tank because they are in good shape and recently replaced. Plus for the a/c he proposed an extra return duct in a room that is exposed on 3 sides for improved cooling, and threw that in for good measure. So I'm fairly comfortable with the company, but it's like buying a car, a bit unnerving spending that much money.
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:03 PM   #4
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


well, you are lucky this contractor exists and does his job properly. a minority these days. not sure if Lennox has an extended warranty for those products but depending on what it costs it may be worth checking into. divide the warranty cost by the number of extra yrs and sometimes it is worthwhile.

Good Luck
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:28 PM   #5
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


I pulled the trigger on #3 with the 100kbtu boiler, 3 ton 16seer single stage compressor, multistage blower. Hopefully we won't have to put this much into it for another 15+ years...

For the Boiler, warranty is: Labor 2 years, parts 1 year, boiler casing 20 years.
For a/c, warranty is: labor 2 years, parts 10 years, compressor 10 years.

Kinda scary dropping this kind of money all at once, especially not going the cheaper route... we did that before in the last house and regretted it. Not that this is a fancy sytem, but we didn't go with the low bid either.
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Old 03-22-2013, 05:33 PM   #6
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


A 16 SEER unit is a NICE piece of machinery. Lots of us have 10 SEER, some 13 and anything above that is very good. I am sure you will be happy with it.
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Old 03-22-2013, 09:59 PM   #7
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


Parts are very very expensive these days and they seem to fail moreso tghan the old non electronic parts so, I heartily agree you should seriously consider purchasing the extended warranties. BTW LENNOX parts are proprietary and way more expensive than other manufacturers..but, they do make a good product. We just bought a new, plain jane, Maytag washer and dryer and for the first time ever I purchased the extended warranties..$99 each but, covers all parts and labor for 5 years...Even the plain ones have electronics they charge hundreds for if they burn out. It's worth the peace of mind not to have to worry about repairs.....can't repair them myself any more.
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Old 03-22-2013, 10:34 PM   #8
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Final Decision on new Boiler/Central Air


Yeah, for the first time I too purchased extended warranty on the new gas range, because exactly that, the electronics, if they go, that's the expensive part. I'll have to see what other warranty is possible, the company has been around for a long time, I'm not necessarily worried about labor, but parts would be a good idea.

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