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Old 01-09-2011, 12:39 PM   #1
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New High Efficiency Trane matched system with 4TEE3F39A1000AA air handler, and XR15 4TWR5030E1000AB heat pump just installed December 29. Initial install was messed up. Air handler set to 3.5 ton setting and blowing like hurricane was fixed. System not keeping up with 20f outdoor temp due to loose wire on heating coil unit was fixed. Noticeable leaks in front panels of air handler were fixed by replacing factory gaskets with new factory gaskets and removing external applied clear silicone use to deal with leaks. HERE IS MY INQUIRY 1. A layman test using matches shows there are still a few leaks on air handler. One small leak on the corner of a panel, one larger leak at the air filter receptacle, and what must be a larger leak on the side which is pulling smoke horizontal very rapidly around the side of the air handler where I cannot see where it is pulled in. Is this acceptable? Should an air handler have any noticeable leaks? 2. The new handler is wedged into the closet and touching the wall on the left side and possibly the back wall. The right wall is where the duct work is and this is almost touching with less than an inch of clearance. The air handler is vibrating the wall which creates a low frequency rumble in a few spots in the house. This is not loud but enough to be distracting and make us think someone has pulled into the driveway. I do not know how this would be fixed and do not care. If this handler could not be installed into the closet I should have been informed for options. BTW - I am on a slab
I am contacting the dealer this week and would like to feel more informed on what is acceptable and reasonable in anticipation of a lack of cooperation to resolve these remaining issues. Im very pleased with how this keeps up with the 10f weather the past few days; however I suspect any new system would have performed better than the old 20 yr old system replaced. Thanks


Last edited by CoverZero; 01-09-2011 at 12:41 PM. Reason: add info
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Old 01-09-2011, 01:02 PM   #2
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air leaks when minimal will not cause huge issues. Foil tape will solve most issues or use of silicone. the air handler is rated for closet installations

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Old 01-09-2011, 10:00 PM   #3
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Let's see, sloppy goop and duct tape to make whole a brand new piece of equipment that costs 5% of the value of my home and is vital to the comfort of my family. I guess we can put the HVAC industry in with Used Car Sales and that Sham Wow guy.
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Old 01-09-2011, 10:15 PM   #4
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Let's see, sloppy goop and duct tape to make whole a brand new piece of equipment that costs 5% of the value of my home and is vital to the comfort of my family. I guess we can put the HVAC industry in with Used Car Sales and that Sham Wow guy.
I don't think you understand what I was saying. Silicone and FOIL TAPE when done properly can look well. Don't come here and ask for solutions and not be appreciative of the answer you received. Honestly, it sounds like you've made up your mind and there is no changing that because you have a sour taste in your moth. Don't put the HVAC industry as a whole into the same category because You chose the contractor you did without getting references and check the BBB and asking for photos of other installs. Do your homework. Don't come here to just vent and don't come here and ask questions when the answers you receive are not what you expected to hear. I don't know, maybe the system should be reinstalled. I haven't seen photos. I'm not in your area. I have provided you with the best solutions for the information you gave. When done properly using items such as silicone and foil tape will bring the unit up to standard and look professional.
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Old 01-10-2011, 04:42 AM   #5
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The leaks you describe are install related.
The large leak sounds like a bad seal between the air handler and the return duct/box. What is causing the bad seal, determines the type of repair needed.

The small leak around the panel may still be a gasket problem. And could be caused by the size of your closet not allowing the guys enough space to work properly. To get the air handler to sit square.

The air filter access leak, is possibly stemming from the same work space/room problem.

Tight closet/alcove installs as you make yours sound like. Are always difficult to do, and do right. Not having actually seen the closet/alcove, I can only guess at the causes, and the solutions.

Probably should have had/gotten the the F31 air handler. Its 2" narrower, and 15" shorter, and makes working with it in tight spaces easier. but may not have qualified the system for the Tax credit.
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Old 01-10-2011, 02:18 PM   #6
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hvactech, I did not understand what you were saying because your initial post was so short and could be interpreted as "live with it". Also it did not even approach answering my question which is "what is acceptable", which could also be stated as "what should one expect" in regards to the two issues. The dealer was refered by a friend, is a member of two HVAC contractor organizations, BBB, Angie's List, was used by me for a house I sold previously, and is an authorized Trane Dealer, and has 50+ employees after 30 years in business. I expect them to make me whole. I'm just trying to make sure what "whole" is, so that I am NOT unreasonable. A visit to three neighbors with recent installs reveals, three air handlers without any visible leaks, and super clean installs. Tape on a new unit does not sound right. I doubt if you buy a new vehicle and the trim inside rattles, you would be satisfied with them taping it up. I replaced two controller boards and one capacitor on my old unit, and was about to replace the blower when I got sucked into this rebate scam. In that regard you are correct - I am an idiot.
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Old 01-10-2011, 02:18 PM   #7
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air leaks when minimal will not cause huge issues. Foil tape will solve most issues or use of silicone. the air handler is rated for closet installations
Agree. But most customers don't want to hear that so as a matter of course
I silicone the all leaks. I want to make my customers happy but sometimes like hvac126 said "A little air leakage ain't gonna hurt".
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Old 01-10-2011, 02:31 PM   #8
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I don't think you understand what I was saying. Silicone and FOIL TAPE when done properly can look well. Don't come here and ask for solutions and not be appreciative of the answer you received. Honestly, it sounds like you've made up your mind and there is no changing that because you have a sour taste in your moth. Don't put the HVAC industry as a whole into the same category because You chose the contractor you did without getting references and check the BBB and asking for photos of other installs. Do your homework. Don't come here to just vent and don't come here and ask questions when the answers you receive are not what you expected to hear. I don't know, maybe the system should be reinstalled. I haven't seen photos. I'm not in your area. I have provided you with the best solutions for the information you gave. When done properly using items such as silicone and foil tape will bring the unit up to standard and look professional.
LOL...now tell us how you really feel Hvac126
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Old 01-10-2011, 02:35 PM   #9
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beenthere - you are right on target, the smaller unit did not qualify. I was not stuck on installing a Trane, so if there were issues, I expected the dealer to approach me with alternate equipment at the time of the sales call or even once they rolled the new unit in and saw the issue. The also sell Bryant and Carrier. So how important are the leaks to the life of the equipment, the effeciency of the equipment, and the operation - for instance, will it defeat the use of filters and cause more dust in the house? Also, the vibration issue may not be just a comfort concern if the friction will at some point either affect the framing in the house, or even loosen drywall nails, not to mention stress on the already unsealed panels and connections of the air handler itself.
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Old 01-10-2011, 05:56 PM   #10
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Depends how much dust can get into that closet, as far as if it will make more dust in the house.

And how much outside air can get into that closet, will determine if it lowers your efficient.

There probably are no short air handlers that will meet the tax credit.

The vibration generally would have to be pretty bad, to cause the kind of damage you asked about. Its one of those things that aren't really predictable. if your not there, to know how bad it really is or isn't.
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Old 01-10-2011, 06:20 PM   #11
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Wow, Zero, sound like you AND the installer got stuck between the proverbial rock and a hard place.

Working in that tight an area with the equipment being a bit too large i can see the mistakes being made. I am sure the installers were just as frustrated as you at the outcome. Better that a guy s coming in fresh to do those needed air leak sealings. cooler heads prevail.

I am sorry to hear that the premium equipment you paid for to get the rebate on didn't go in as cleanly as you would have liked, but that is the hardship we in the industry have to endure with the higher efficiency units. They are so much larger than the old equipment.

To tell you the truth I think had it been me I would have passed on your job after taking measurements and comparing them to my equipment.

I would not want to have to make explanations to help you get over the Buyer's Remorse you have.

I once had an inspector tell me (after a particularly tough laundry list of corrections he handed me) that "......not all homes are made to accommodate high efficiency equipment". After reading your post I finally believe he was right.

I hope you get all your concerns resolved to your satisfaction .
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Old 01-10-2011, 06:46 PM   #12
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To tell you the truth I think had it been me I would have passed on your job after taking measurements and comparing them to my equipment.
.


I have passed on jobs like this. Equipment too large to place where original unit came out & cust didn't want to pay for relocating. told me they will find someone that will replace in original location
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Old 01-10-2011, 06:53 PM   #13
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I have passed on jobs like this. Equipment too large to place where original unit came out & cust didn't want to pay for relocating. told me they will find someone that will replace in original location
I know exactly what you mean. It only makes for an unsatisfied customer and the Contractor ends up being the bad guy.
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Old 01-10-2011, 09:06 PM   #14
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Pay for relocating? My bad for not pointing out that I live in one of those boring cookie cutter neighborhoods where the houses are like car models, and three of the now five neighbors I have compared installs to, have identical homes and identical furnance closets. I made no demands of the 4 dealers as they quoted, and did not specify the brand. I even posed the high effeciency idea as a question "will this work for me?". Had they said no, I would have waited for my old system to die. It seems reasonable that any issues are presented BEFORE the make and model of equipment is chosen and certainly before they proceed with the install when it looks daygon tight. Everyone dealer measured the closet and didn't have an issue, so this doesn't seem like the type of job to pass on, especially when you consider the 3 successful "non-tight" installs in identical homes. The closet is 34.5 inch wide, less 9.5 inches for the return duct on the right side.
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Old 01-10-2011, 09:47 PM   #15
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Pay for relocating? My bad for not pointing out that I live in one of those boring cookie cutter neighborhoods where the houses are like car models, and three of the now five neighbors I have compared installs to, have identical homes and identical furnance closets. I made no demands of the 4 dealers as they quoted, and did not specify the brand. I even posed the high effeciency idea as a question "will this work for me?". Had they said no, I would have waited for my old system to die. It seems reasonable that any issues are presented BEFORE the make and model of equipment is chosen and certainly before they proceed with the install when it looks daygon tight. Everyone dealer measured the closet and didn't have an issue, so this doesn't seem like the type of job to pass on, especially when you consider the 3 successful "non-tight" installs in identical homes. The closet is 34.5 inch wide, less 9.5 inches for the return duct on the right side.
And that is what Kenmac and I pointed out. Were it us we would have passed.

What type of equipment was installed in your neighbors home.

Pleas take no offense to what i am about to say because I think it is important: The contractor bares responsibility for installing the the equipment you signed up on. The Homeowner is responsible to look after his own interests. My customers watch us. Did you check on the job as it progressed?

You make it sound like you had no input in the selection or cared the fact that you got a tax rebate on this equipment.

Doesn't sound right. That kind of money you spent makes people ask questions and if you didn't you did not exercise DUE DILIGENCE.

Did you ask how the equip would benefit you or did you just ask for a price with out listening to a benefits and features presentation (something cynics call a sales pitch)?

You have some of the best equipment available and it is amongst the quietest made. That makes it more expensive for the contractor to buy and it usually keeps hack HVACers out of the Trane market. Also you said that your contractor had Carrier and others. It seems to me that if they had a smaller unit at the same efficiency they would have steered you that way.
I can't imagine that a contractor would give a certain efficiency in a package that would not fit well unless it was what the customer wanted.
It does not make sense.

The fact you got fast response on your lack of heat tells me your hvac co want to make it right.

You did not get jammed on your install...I think there is more to this story than meets the eye.

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