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Old 08-13-2009, 01:14 AM   #1
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lennox vs trane vs carrier


Help! We need a new furnace and aren't sure which one to buy.I'm looking for input from "real people" instead of salesman. So can anyone tell me about the pros and cons of each or refer me to something like a consumers report comparing furnaces. We are currently looking at lennox, carrier and trane. Please and thanks... I did hear that Lennox gets an unusual number of call backs for repair.

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Old 08-13-2009, 08:10 AM   #2
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Unfortunately there is no objective reliability comparison data on manufacturers, but rather anecdotal stories. Focus on the install and be sure that is done right, since even superior brands can be turned into junk. Be sure to ask for a load calc (aka Manual J) before they quote you a new furnace. I'm not a fan of VS blowers because of their costly replacement cost.

If you have specific quotes, go ahead and quote post them, and we can offer our opinions

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Old 08-13-2009, 09:09 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by oldfartswife View Post
Help! We need a new furnace and aren't sure which one to buy.I'm looking for input from "real people" instead of salesman. So can anyone tell me about the pros and cons of each or refer me to something like a consumers report comparing furnaces. We are currently looking at lennox, carrier and trane. Please and thanks... I did hear that Lennox gets an unusual number of call backs for repair.
I assume your replacement project is not DIY??

In that case ignore the brand of equipment and hire the best contractor you can possible find and go with the brand they they're most experienced with. The contractor is way more important then the nameplate on the equipment. Beside that, most equipment uses industry std. components. (ex: Emerson compressors, Ranco control boards, GE motors, etc, etc, etc). A builder's grade HVAC system that's properly sized and installed will be far superior to an elite grade system that's been improperly sized or improperly installed.

Also make sure the contractor calculates the size based on a detailed analysis of your home. (manual J/D, etc) If they guess at the size then send them packing!!! Check BBB, your state contractors board and most importantly word of mouth when choosing a contractor because it's so vitally important and unfortunately the industry has plenty of hacks and con men.

Your choice of contractor is everything!!!

P.S. Callback data is meanigless when comparing brands because most callbacks are induced by installation errors.

Last edited by hennyh; 08-13-2009 at 09:37 AM.
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Old 08-13-2009, 09:47 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hennyh View Post
I assume your replacement project is not DIY??

In that case ignore the brand of equipment and hire the best contractor you can possible find and go with the brand they they're most experienced with. The contractor is way more important then the nameplate on the equipment. Beside that, most equipment uses industry std. components. (ex: Emerson compressors, Ranco control boards, GE motors, etc, etc, etc). A builder's grade HVAC system that's properly sized and installed will be far superior to an elite grade system that's been improperly sized or improperly installed.

Also make sure the contractor calculates the size based on a detailed analysis of your home. (manual J/D, etc) If they guess at the size then send them packing!!! Check BBB, your state contractors board and most importantly word of mouth when choosing a contractor because it's so vitally important and unfortunately the industry has plenty of hacks and con men.

Your choice of contractor is everything!!!

P.S. Callback data is meanigless when comparing brands because most callbacks are induced by installation errors.
Very well said.

Choosing your contractor is everything. All of the above manufactures are fine but if not installed properly they can be alot of trouble.

We sell Lennox and do not have problems with them. The other brands mentioned would be good also if installed right.

Variable speed blowers are going to be required for any high efficiency system and cause very few problems also.
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Old 08-13-2009, 10:04 AM   #5
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lennox vs trane vs carrier


I don't have a preference between the three brands you mentioned. What I can tell you is regardless of which you choose make sure you get a maintenance plan with a reputable company. Many of the problems and repairs associated with HVAC units can be avoided by having the units properly installed and properly maintained.
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Old 08-13-2009, 12:44 PM   #6
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I would think a necessarily bad [for building structural reasons] or accidentally bad, install can be fixed by the use of one or more variable speed duct booster fans and one or more dampers, all of which need to be properly balanced, and the balance is different for heating and for cooling.

I guess you could ask for design-center values for CFM and FPM at each register before the work is done, and measured values after.

Call HVAC places beforehand for the price of a new control board for each brand; I've heard they are costly and fragile.

Find all the dipswitches
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIP_switch
in the unit and confirm that all the settings are correct. One guy was supposed to get a 50% reduction in his cooling elec. bill and there was no change, possibly due to this.
Seems like some techs just leave each switch in the default position.


If you get enough bids and plot them you can probably tell what you really need and what it may cost.
.........a...bcd...e.........f
$0....1.....2.....3.....4.....5
........^relative price^
Bids a and f are probably outliers, and bcd seems to be the true price of doing your job in your zip code, today.
Incompetence and greed may cancel out to some extent with this method.

Last edited by Yoyizit; 08-13-2009 at 01:19 PM.
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
I would think a necessarily bad [for building structural reasons] or accidentally bad, install can be fixed by the use of one or more variable speed duct booster fans and one or more dampers, all of which need to be properly balanced, and the balance is different for heating and for cooling.

I guess you could ask for design-center values for CFM and FPM at each register before the work is done, and measured values after.

Call HVAC places beforehand for the price of a new control board for each brand; I've heard they are costly and fragile.

Find all the dipswitches
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIP_switch
in the unit and confirm that all the settings are correct. One guy was supposed to get a 50% reduction in his cooling elec. bill and there was no change, possibly due to this.
Seems like some techs just leave each switch in the default position.


If you get enough bids and plot them you can probably tell what you really need and what it may cost.
.........a...bcd...e.........f
$0....1.....2.....3.....4.....5
........^relative price^
Bids a and f are probably outliers, and bcd seems to be the true price of doing your job in your zip code, today.
Incompetence and greed may cancel out to some extent with this method.


ZZZZZZZZZ chk chk ZZZZZZZZZZ..snork.....ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ jusy kidding guy.
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
I would think a necessarily bad [for building structural reasons] or accidentally bad, install can be fixed by the use of one or more variable speed duct booster fans and one or more dampers, all of which need to be properly balanced, and the balance is different for heating and for cooling.

I guess you could ask for design-center values for CFM and FPM at each register before the work is done, and measured values after.

Call HVAC places beforehand for the price of a new control board for each brand; I've heard they are costly and fragile.

Find all the dipswitches
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIP_switch
in the unit and confirm that all the settings are correct. One guy was supposed to get a 50% reduction in his cooling elec. bill and there was no change, possibly due to this.
Seems like some techs just leave each switch in the default position.


If you get enough bids and plot them you can probably tell what you really need and what it may cost.
.........a...bcd...e.........f
$0....1.....2.....3.....4.....5
........^relative price^
Bids a and f are probably outliers, and bcd seems to be the true price of doing your job in your zip code, today.
Incompetence and greed may cancel out to some extent with this method.


ZZZZZZZZZ chk chk ZZZZZZZZZZ..snork.....ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ just kidding guy.
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Old 08-13-2009, 01:56 PM   #9
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Yoyzie had a data processor interfaced with his frontal lobe.

Sometimes he's comes off soudin' like HAL the computer in a SPACE ODESSAY.

But we're lucky to have him/
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Old 08-13-2009, 02:28 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoyizit View Post
I would think a necessarily bad [for building structural reasons] or accidentally bad, install can be fixed by the use of one or more variable speed duct booster fans and one or more dampers, all of which need to be properly balanced, and the balance is different for heating and for cooling.
Duct boosters and dampers cure a bad install??

Quote:
Call HVAC places beforehand for the price of a new control board for each brand; I've heard they are costly and fragile.
So are coils, compressors, reversing valves, motors etc. Might as well download the entire parts list and price it out.

Quote:
Find all the dipswitches
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DIP_switch
in the unit and confirm that all the settings are correct. One guy was supposed to get a 50% reduction in his cooling elec. bill and there was no change, possibly due to this.
Seems like some techs just leave each switch in the default position.
I'd like to find that magical dip switch setting to reduce my bill by 50%. Unfortunately my system doesn't have a dip switch.


Quote:
If you get enough bids and plot them you can probably tell what you really need and what it may cost.
.........a...bcd...e.........f
$0....1.....2.....3.....4.....5
........^relative price^
Bids a and f are probably outliers, and bcd seems to be the true price of doing your job in your zip code, today.
Incompetence and greed may cancel out to some extent with this method.
Good point.
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Old 08-13-2009, 03:53 PM   #11
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I figure if I write enough stuff some of it is bound to be useful.

Plus, the microchip that the CIA implanted in my left temporal lobe influences my thoughts.
It's the light spot in the upper left.
http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publicatio...images/mri.gif
BTW, if you think you see an angry face in this brain scan, get help!

With the duct fans/dampers, here's my reasoning:
In an electrical circuit, no matter what the resistances (friction through several duct lengths) if you put enough voltage sources (fans) and dampers (resistors) in enough places you can make current (CFM) flow any way you want to.
That's the theory, but there may be practical reasons why this isn't popular.

For the parts prices, control boards seem more prone to damage from lightning strikes and HO DIYers than the other stuff, and they are costly. Compressors are costly, but they are also hardy (?)

Last edited by Yoyizit; 08-13-2009 at 03:57 PM.
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Old 08-13-2009, 04:01 PM   #12
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Plus, the microchip that the CIA implanted in my left temporal lobe influences my thoughts.
It's the light spot in the upper left.
http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publicatio...images/mri.gif
BTW, if you think you see an angry face in this brain scan, get help!
OK, but next time you provide HVAC advice you might want to make sure you're at least 3' or more from any microwave ovens in use.
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Old 08-13-2009, 04:08 PM   #13
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OK, but next time you provide HVAC advice you might want to make sure you're at least 3' or more from any microwave ovens in use.
I was wondering why my tinfoil hat wasn't working!
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thought_insertion
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Old 08-13-2009, 04:49 PM   #14
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Hell, they picked up that picture on ordinary X-rays when I joined the service.

That's why they put me in that special unit
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Old 08-13-2009, 04:52 PM   #15
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Hell, they picked up that picture on ordinary X-rays when I joined the service.

That's why they put me in that special unit
With fangs like that I'd even put you in a special unit.

Bad A$$ Troglodyte Soldiers, BATS for short. . .


Last edited by Yoyizit; 08-13-2009 at 04:59 PM.
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