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Old 08-05-2015, 01:16 PM   #1
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Heat Pumps Best and Worst


Good day gentlemen.
I am in the process of getting quotes to replace my York heat pump.
Its a 2.5 ton slit unit with air handler in hot attic.

My first quote is for Lennox (Costco Promo)
My second quote is for Amana Local company that was recommended to me.
My third quote will be York (from the original installer 18 years ago if he calls me back).

What about Trane and others like Carrier? Bryant? Goodman?

I have no idea and I am asking for advice. TIA. John
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:18 PM   #2
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Brand is not the most important consideration - they all work the way. It's not like buying a tv or fridge that you take come a plug in; quality of installation, proper sizing, warranty are very important.
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:27 PM   #3
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All those brands are good if installed properly. Amana and Goodman are the same company and got bought buy a huge company called Daikin. Carrier owns Bryant and is the same.

The problem with quotes is like buying cars there are many different options and quality levels so it is not easy to compare.

Basically you have entry level/builders grade, then average and then deluxe.

If you get the quotes bring them here and maybe somone can compare them 4 U. Lennox has 3 tiers. The Costco promo or HDepot or Sears you should be careful of. I have heard all 3 jack up the price 10% more than a independant guy charges. People like them if they have to use credit and you get some goofy air miles/seers points or whatever. Not worth much in real cash but people believe in them.

Not made your job easier but at least you know how the biz works.
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:40 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yuri View Post
All those brands are good if installed properly. Amana and Goodman are the same company and got bought buy a huge company called Daikin. Carrier owns Bryant and is the same.

The problem with quotes is like buying cars there are many different options and quality levels so it is not easy to compare.

Basically you have entry level/builders grade, then average and then deluxe.

If you get the quotes bring them here and maybe somone can compare them 4 U. Lennox has 3 tiers. The Costco promo or HDepot or Sears you should be careful of. I have heard all 3 jack up the price 10% more than a independant guy charges. People like them if they have to use credit and you get some goofy air miles/seers points or whatever. Not worth much in real cash but people believe in them.

Not made your job easier but at least you know how the biz works.
Thank you. Yes, craftsmanship is something I will keep a very close eye on.
Yep, I thought the Lennox price for the equipment seemed high. More than they sell for online. When I get all the quotes, I will post only the equipment price, not the labor.

Any other brands I should consider?
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Old 08-05-2015, 01:48 PM   #5
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You should decide what kind of system you need first - ignore brands.

Do research so you know what you're being quoted.

For lennox, you can get the cheapest, a 13 seer made in mexico or something nicer with a good quality cabinet, better components. The brand doesn't matter much.
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Old 08-05-2015, 02:14 PM   #6
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Your best bet is to go to a good home hvac website and compare the machine specs. Most of the cheaper units have timed defrost while some of the more expensive ones have on-demand defrost which is a bit more efficient.

Are you replacing the air handler too?
If you are not replacing the air handler also then there really isn't much sense in worrying too much about the SEER rating. Not that it is unimportant but the SEER rating is dependent on proper air flow with (mostly) matched handlers. Manufactures won't guaranty the rated Seer if it does not have a matched handler.

I just purchased a heat pump package from Alpine home air (great place) but their selection is restricted to mostly Goodman and Amana.

There is another site with a wider variety and the spec sheets to boot:
AC4Life (acdirect)

http://www.acdirect.com/
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Old 08-05-2015, 02:20 PM   #7
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The brand does matter in terms of sound and how heavy it is built. Just like cars you can get a heavy quiet Mercedes or a cheap no name Kia or Yugo ( you get the idea, they both roll and get you there but are not the same).

Nothing wrong with the Nordyne family BUT they are not as heavy built as a Trane or Carrier or Lennox or York. If you want to compare quality look at the sound db rating of the same SEER unit. Some Lennox units being built in Mexico has nothing to do with anything. Honeywell has been building gas valves there since the early 80's. As long as the factory has quality control and ISO 9000 standards you can make them in China. All depends on the quality the Brand specs out.

IMO the top brands are Trane, Lennox, Carrier, York in terms of heavy built and easy to get parts and tech support for. Rheem/RUUD and Goodman/Amana is good and a bit less $$ and can be a bit noisier in the basic models.

It all depends on your budget and what quality you want.
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Old 08-05-2015, 03:18 PM   #8
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As Bob Sanders mentioned, I would at least shop for a unit with Demand Defrost. In brand terms, that means:

Trane, Rheem: Pretty much all units are Demand Defrost
Lennox, York, Nordyne: Mid and High end units are typically Demand Defrost
Goodman, Amana, Carrier, Bryant: No Demand Defrost. Carrier/Bryant does have units with an algorithm to "learn up" their Timed Defrost to the longest interval available.

All the other solid advice already given here certainly applies. Just my opinion that Demand Defrost is worth seeking out as a feature.
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Old 08-05-2015, 04:04 PM   #9
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If the Amana they quoted you, is an Amana Distinction, then your getting a price on a Goodman. Distinction is just a rebadged Goodman.
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Old 08-05-2015, 08:32 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yuri View Post
IMO the top brands are Trane, Lennox, Carrier, York in terms of heavy built and easy to get parts and tech support for. Rheem/RUUD and Goodman/Amana is good and a bit less $$ and can be a bit noisier in the basic models.

It all depends on your budget and what quality you want.
Actually my complaint with the Goodman I just bought is that the steel mesh casing is a bit weak. Not a deal breaker by any stretch, but the 4 ton machine I bought is pretty heavy and although the mesh casing is not carrying any real weight, you have to be careful installing because it has enough flex in it to actually touch the coils (and bend them) when pushing force is applied to it.

The noise however is non existent. I was stunned at how quiet this thing was. I was also concerned about vibration since I was dropping it onto a wood deck which would amplify any vibration, but again I was stunned at little it vibrated

Sooo... the casing could be stronger, but the noise... nah.... I'm more than happy with my investment.

The timed defrost I am not in love with either, but that will get converted over next year.
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Old 08-06-2015, 10:35 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by user_12345a View Post
You should decide what kind of system you need first - ignore brands.
I'm replacing an existing unit.

Quote:
Originally Posted by beenthere View Post
If the Amana they quoted you, is an Amana Distinction, then your getting a price on a Goodman. Distinction is just a rebadged Goodman.
The guy thats quoting Amana showed Goodman on his web site and his employee mentioned Goodman when we talked outside of this context. So it seems he's selling re-branded Goodman?
Once i get the model numbers and quotes, I'm going to put them up here for all to see.

Thanks everyone for the advice. I will keep the forum posted with updates and I am certain, more questions.
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Old 08-06-2015, 04:04 PM   #12
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A true Amana will have a model number starting with an A. Goodman starts with a G.

Amana doesn't have air handlers, so the air handler will be Goodman either way.
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Old 08-12-2015, 01:25 PM   #13
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Okay Guys. I'm still waiting on one quote, so I do not have all the prices yet. I do have a pretty good idea as to what each contractor is selling.
I got thrown a curve ball yesterday from a guy that was about $2000 less than the others. I will list him last.

Heat Pump Quotes
2.5 Ton Heat Pump Split Unit.

#1
Lennox 14HPX-030 / Air handler CBX25UH, 14 seer - $5680
Lennox 14HPX-030/ Air handler CBX25UHV, 16 seer - $6180 (variable speed)
10 year parts. 1 year labor.

New metal drip pan with float switch and new digital T-Stat.

Less Costco cash card $486 and Costco cash back $97. So $583 less than listed above plus a $200 utility rebate on 16 seer. Not sure how the rebate works.

I did not ask for quote on new line set here. Yet.

#2
Amana ASZ140301A 14 seer $5000
ARUF30B14A
Amana ASZ160301L 15 seer $5900
ARPT37B14A
New pan, switch, and digital t-stat. New line set add $200
Both 10 year parts. 1 year labor.

#3
York (no model number yet) 15 seer $5600
Airease (no model number yet) 13 seer $5100
Both 10 year parts and 1 year labor.

New line set included. No talk about pan or t-stat yet.

#4
Grandaire 14 seer (no model number provided) $3600
New line set add $200
10 year parts and 2 year labor.

New pan, but no mention of switch or digital T-Stat.

This guy seemed to know very little, but seemed the most honest. Great price too? Local. Gives 2 years on labor.
He only took a few minutes to verbally quote me on the spot.
He was recommended by a tavern owner here in town that uses him. Bar I go too.
Old guy been around 40 plus years.
Are pleated air filters actually bad? He’s the second one that mentioned this to me.


Thanks in Advance John

Last edited by J. V.; 08-12-2015 at 01:28 PM.
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Old 08-12-2015, 01:37 PM   #14
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This Grandaire brand is specially made for a distributor company owned by another HVAC supplier company according to their site. I suspect it is a cheap Chineez import unlike the other Brands which are made in the US. I would stay away from it.

Pleated filters are BETTER as they have more surface area to catch dirt and less resistance to airflow. The difference is in the MERV rating which is the size of dust particle it can catch. With a ECM variable speed fan it is stronger and you can use a higher MERV filter like a 10. With the basic PSC fan a Merv 7-8 is the best route. Google MERV air filter rating and do some research. These people know nothing.

I would get a quote from a Independant Lennox dealer on the same models to see if Costco is in the same range or a good deal. They do a lot of Lennox biz where I am so it may be a good deal you just need to make sure it not marked up.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Minimu...eporting_Value
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Old 08-12-2015, 01:39 PM   #15
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One more question guys. How important is a license in this business?
Seems I cannot locate a license for #4. The older gentleman.
I know the York and the Lennox guys are licensed. But I'm not sure about #4 or #2.

I also have forgotten about asking about "Demand Defrost". What exactly is demand defrost?

I am a licensed master electrician and contractor and this seems like a big deal to me.

ps.......it just cost me another $230 for a charge two days ago. So I need to get this done.
Also, we will be moving within a year or two. I should have mentioned this right out of the gate.
We don't need a Cadillac. We need something that works good until we move. It could be a couple three years, but we are moving.

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