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-   -   My unit is a dinosaur (http://www.diychatroom.com/f17/my-unit-dinosaur-166449/)

Rita2 12-14-2012 01:02 PM

My unit is a dinosaur
 
But I need it to take me through at least this winter:yes: Please help me guys.

I have an Artic Circle packaged unit with heat strip, all electric. I cannot find any markings on it, no seer or anything else that I am reading about for units. I cannot find anything about this company online, cannot find a manual, nothing.

The previous owners said it is more than 20 years old. It looks really really old to me. I bought this house as a fixer upper and have done a bit of work around here but never even looked at the unit before. It has never worked satisfactorily and I've just tolerated it. I have spent the last 2 days just reading and reading just trying to understand this thing. I am looking to replace it but all estimates so far have sent me back to the $ drawing board.

The problem....the unit runs but never kicks out enough heat or cold. Right now it is cold and the unit will give me about 5 hours of mediocre heat and then only cool air comes through. It cycles on and off as is should but once the 5-6 hours are over and it starts running cool I just shut it off.

So, I am starting at the thermostat. I already found out that the Hunter 42999B that is on there is not for heat pumps. I read it on the manual here:
http://www.hunterair.com/ssi/pdf/hun...ers-Manual.pdf. I am also reading that a heat pump stat should be wired with a 7 conductor cable. The cable from the wall is 5 wires, red, yellow, green, white and blue. The markings on the stat are in the following order: G W Y Rh Rc.
The blue wire from the wall is not connected to anything and of course there is an off color wire that just goes between Rh and Rc. My thinking is that the heat strip is not accounted for.

My first question is, would it help to have this old cable removed and replaced with a 7 wire one? I am asking because the newer stats I am looking at have so many markings on them and I am thinking that having the new cable would give me sort of a plug and play situation. Have no idea how I would accomplish the new cabling yet, but I am a total novice and even my thinking is like taking baby steps.

I know this is a long post but would really appreciate any help...thanks alot.

sammy37 12-14-2012 01:40 PM

I bet that thing is a lot more than over 20 years old. Only thing I've ever seen with the name Arctic circle, is old swamp coolers and that name hasnt been around in years on those either.

You would be far better off just replacing the unit with a new heat pump and you would definately have much lower power bills as opposed to using straight electric heat.

jagans 12-14-2012 01:40 PM

Pictures
 
Pictures, Pictures and more Pictures.

You are sure of the term package unit?

Filters and coils all clean as a whistle?

Had a heat pump twice, hated them both times, but keeping the coils and filters clean is of utmost importance with these.

If everything is really clean you need a Pro. :thumbsup:

jagans 12-14-2012 01:42 PM

Swamp Cooler?
 
Sammy, WTH is a swamp cooler? :laughing:

sammy37 12-14-2012 01:45 PM

If thats all the wires it has, than it wouldnt be a heat pump. You can use any thermostat and set it for electric heat, wire it up just like the old one. The extra blue wire could be used for a common but you dont need it with a basic thermostat.

If your not getting enough heat out of it, it may not have a big enough strip, or it may have a problem with the strips themselves.
Like I said before, change out the unit with an efficient heat pump.

sammy37 12-14-2012 01:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jagans (Post 1073018)
Sammy, WTH is a swamp cooler? :laughing:

A swamp cooler is an evaporative cooler, they cool with water and add moisture to the air. It's a southwest thing!
I have a couple on my house and if I knew how to post pics, I would show you one.

Rita2 12-14-2012 02:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sammy37 (Post 1073016)
I bet that thing is a lot more than over 20 years old. Only thing I've ever seen with the name Arctic circle, is old swamp coolers and that name hasnt been around in years on those either.

You would be far better off just replacing the unit with a new heat pump and you would definately have much lower power bills as opposed to using straight electric heat.

You are totally on point here, and I mean on every point. For right now though money for a new one is a big factor. Been 3 years I've been solo renovating. I've stayed away from electrical and make sure I pay for those. But with so much more to do I am hoping I can have some heat on the cheap until I can spring for the soooo needed new one. Thanks a lot for your input.

Rita2 12-14-2012 02:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by jagans (Post 1073017)
Pictures, Pictures and more Pictures.

You are sure of the term package unit?

Filters and coils all clean as a whistle?

Had a heat pump twice, hated them both times, but keeping the coils and filters clean is of utmost importance with these.

If everything is really clean you need a Pro. :thumbsup:

Pictures are definitely coming but it was wet and nasty outside earlier.
Both Home Depot and Sears have been here to give estimates on a new one and they say my existing one is a packaged unit. My neighbor cleaned it out for me, as best as possible I guess. He even used a little red tester on the heat strip and said it was ok but seems the stat does not signal for it to come on. What do you think about the idea of changing the thermostat?

Rita2 12-14-2012 02:43 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by sammy37 (Post 1073020)
If thats all the wires it has, than it wouldnt be a heat pump. You can use any thermostat and set it for electric heat, wire it up just like the old one. The extra blue wire could be used for a common but you dont need it with a basic thermostat.

:no: I'm thinking that wiring like the old one would not help. The thermostat looks fairly new, it is not the original I am sure. I should be posting pics shortly so please come back. Thanks.


If your not getting enough heat out of it, it may not have a big enough strip, or it may have a problem with the strips themselves.

My neighbor had it out and it was a tiny thing compared to the unit itself.

Like I said before, change out the unit with an efficient heat pump.

I'm really just delaying the inevitable in trying to get it to work...wait until you see the pictures :whistling2:

sammy37 12-14-2012 02:49 PM

You should at least have someone come out and make sure the strips are working properly.
Also my two cents, if you can, try to avoid the big box stores and Sears for installation. It will usually cost you more because you are paying the middle man. Better to find a nice, local reputable company to do the replacement for you.

beenthere 12-14-2012 03:15 PM

Call someone besides Sears and Home depot. they are very expensive companies to have change out your system. only real advantage they have over many is using their charge/financing.

Check the evap coil to see if its dirty, along with the blower wheel. Good chance that dirt is the culprit.

sammy37 12-14-2012 03:23 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by beenthere (Post 1073074)
Call someone besides Sears and Home depot. they are very expensive companies to have change out your system. only real advantage they have over many is using their charge/financing.

Check the evap coil to see if its dirty, along with the blower wheel. Good chance that dirt is the culprit.

I see lately that Lowes is on the bandwagon now for installation, Trane equipment.
Dont know why people use big box and sears but I think you said it right. Charge/financing.

Rita2 12-14-2012 04:08 PM

I did have a small company come out also. Their price was the lowest but of course I got cold feet wondering if they would be around when and if problems start developing. I am hearing everyone, and since damaging this old unit is not a concern I just want to try everything possible just to buy me some more time. I hope I got the pic thing right.

http://i128.photobucket.com/albums/p...ps271d03c9.jpg
http://i128.photobucket.com/albums/p...ps5ce94fd2.jpg
http://i128.photobucket.com/albums/p...pse37e9f77.jpg
http://i128.photobucket.com/albums/p...ps271d03c9.jpg
http://i128.photobucket.com/albums/p...ps78abf96e.jpg

awful looking heat pump, yeah?

beenthere 12-14-2012 04:34 PM

old oer under.

Home Depot may not be using the same contractor next year( one or the other may not renew contract) as the one that installs your this year.

Sears subs out a lot of the installs they sell. So no telling who will install it, or if they will be around later.

SuperJETT 12-14-2012 06:14 PM

What about just getting by with spot heaters this winter?


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