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  • Replacement HVAC system

    Well..we had serious hail damage and our main house condenser coil is damaged beyond repair....no argument from me....
    Simply replacing the coil is not really an option due to availability,
    cost, and the future of R-22 freon.

    Our system is a Tempstar 1990 vintage rated at 10 seer using the R-22 freon. It has worked fine! I think it is a bit under rated for our 2500sq ft home. I think the Tempstar is a 3 1/2 ton.

    According to the generic calculators and our home is 1966 vintage meaning walls are not insulated and we are in Phoenix AZ metro,
    we should be looking at a 4 ton or even a 5 ton max unit. The HVAC fellow suggests a 4 ton unit as that will not effect the existing duct work.

    My questions.....

    1. Going from R-22 to the newer R-410A do the BTU calculations
    change? I am using 500sq ft to calculate the amount of cooling
    needed.

    2. I see we now have SEER values from 13 to 18 ....
    Of course price goes up precipitously as the SEER rating
    increases. I am considering a SEER of 15 or 16 ..is this reasonable?

    3. American Standard brand or Rheem brand...These are the two
    brands offered. I'd be interested in pros and cons of both.

    This is half of our system as the HVAC fellow indicated the matching gas furnace will need to be replaced too...

    I realize our system is 10+ years old and although it has provided excellent service with minimal repairs it's time to replace the system
    and this may be a good time with the 30% tax credit and local power company rebate etc.

    Buying a system has become a bit overwhelming as it's not like buying a coffee maker! Do I go with a variable speed blower or a multi-speed typical 2 speed motor, dual stage gas valve, 4 speed induction motor or a DC motor with variable speed?

    The new units also have fuzzy logic [diggy wiggy electronics] as my older unit is more analog..how dependable are the new digital systems? Are they effected by radio frequency interference? or do they cause radio frequency interference? known as RFI???
    I am an amateur Radio Operator [ka7gkn], the last thing I want is radio noise from the HVAC system or for me to effect the HVAC system when I run 1500watts of RF.

    Any other comments as to what to ask or look for are appreciated.
    I suspect this adventure will run $5000.00 or more?

    Finally are the after market extended warranties worthwhile or shall I stay with the manufacturer warranty and then simply do time and materials for service as required?

    Thanks for any input

    Cactus Man
    Last edited by cactusman; 11-18-2010, 08:54 PM. Reason: oops I meant condenser coil not evaporator

  • #2
    Re: Replacement HVAC system

    Must have been quite a hail storm to damage an evaporator coil.

    If you upsize you going to have more air noise if you don't redo your duct. The existing duct is sized or should be for 3.5 tons of cooling. If you go to a 5 ton 2K cfm it's going to whistle Dixie.

    If I lived in Glendale AZ. I wouldn't be too concerned about a replacing the furnace.

    James

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Replacement HVAC system

      Originally posted by James P View Post
      Must have been quite a hail storm to damage an evaporator coil.
      Too funny, was thinking the same thing. LMAO

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Replacement HVAC system

        Well during the times you experience below zero temperatures we can cool down to the 40's [above zero] in the early mornings.
        Mornings can be chilly for a few months even when it warms up
        during the day to the 70-80's

        I even have a wood burning stove! how about that!

        Cactus Man

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Replacement HVAC system

          Originally posted by James P View Post
          Must have been quite a hail storm to damage an evaporator coil.

          James
          Originally posted by rjm78 View Post
          Too funny, was thinking the same thing. LMAO
          i live in PA and we had a very bad hail storm one time and we had to replace the coils on about 25 or more roof top units
          Charlie

          My seek the peek fundraiser page
          http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


          http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

          new work pictures 12/09
          http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Replacement HVAC system

            HA HA HA OK I fixed my error
            I meant CONDENSER COIL

            Please comment on the other questions such as Rheem or American Standard etc.

            Thanks

            Cactus Man

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Replacement HVAC system

              Trane or Amana would be my choice ,i have Amana
              Charlie

              My seek the peek fundraiser page
              http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


              http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

              new work pictures 12/09
              http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Replacement HVAC system

                Originally posted by cactusman View Post
                HA HA HA OK I fixed my error
                I meant CONDENSER COIL

                Please comment on the other questions such as Rheem or American Standard etc.

                Thanks

                Cactus Man
                Either one would work.

                Add Carrier/Bryant, Lennox/ Armstrong, York, Goodman/Amana, Nordyne, ICP, etc. to your list of brands.

                I'd be more concerned with the installer than a specific brand.


                I really don't have a preference in brands.

                James

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Replacement HVAC system

                  Originally posted by HVAC HAWK View Post
                  i live in PA and we had a very bad hail storm one time and we had to replace the coils on about 25 or more roof top units
                  Must have been a Hell of a Hail storm to damage evaporator coils on rooftop units.

                  About all the larger tonnage rooftops I've serviced and installed the condenser coils were well protected from hail damage.

                  James

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Replacement HVAC system

                    Originally posted by HVAC HAWK View Post
                    Trane or Amana would be my choice ,i have Amana
                    Trane and AS are both owned by Ingersoll Rand now aren't they?
                    ---------------
                    Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                    ---------------
                    “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                    ---------
                    "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                    ---------
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                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Replacement HVAC system

                      The hail storm hit October 5, 2010 it last roughly 15-20 minutes!
                      It was sort of isolated to the west valley mostly within the Glendale
                      N.W. area.

                      The hail was flying the size of soft balls [honest] when hitting the water in swimming pools the water would spout 6 feet high..that's how hard the hail was falling. The hail was flying almost horizontally and at really high speed. this was due to the accompanying winds.

                      I had three windows damaged, the glass was shattered, my ten foot satellite dish was ripped to shreds, our TV antenna looks like modern art, The condenser coil is damaged on its south and east side. It looks like it was hit with a large ball peen hammer! The fins are so damaged and bent they can not be combed out..thus replacement!

                      We also had lots of rood damage and it's a metal roof....

                      The second floor system condenser coil looks OK as it faces North and may only need to be combed.

                      Our gutters were pelted, we have fascia damage too
                      all in all close to $32,000.00 worth...not bad for 15 minutes!

                      My neighbor's home with vinyl siding looks like someone with a 50 cal. machine gun drove by and let them have it!
                      She had the dentless repair guy out to fix a minor dent in her new vehicle. The storm hit and they ran for cover....After the storm ended they went outside and the guy looked at her new vehicle and said "sorry I can't fix this" She had her rear rear windshield shattered and
                      the dents and bent metal was so bad her insurance company ended up totaling the thing!

                      As I drive my neighborhood I'm seeing many heat pumps and
                      gas packs getting replaced..One of the main reasons so many are being replaced is age! many fall within the 10-15 year old range and use R-22....replacement parts are minimal or not available etc.
                      The tax credit for replacement is until December 31, 2010
                      and most folks carry replacement value on their homeowner's policy.

                      Usually it's blue skies and 115 here

                      Cactus Man
                      Last edited by cactusman; 11-19-2010, 11:47 AM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Replacement HVAC system

                        Originally posted by James P View Post
                        Must have been a Hell of a Hail storm to damage evaporator coils on rooftop units.
                        James
                        I'm rolling here, too fn funny.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Replacement HVAC system

                          Originally posted by Bob D. View Post
                          Trane and AS are both owned by Ingersoll Rand now aren't they?
                          im not sure Bob
                          Charlie

                          My seek the peek fundraiser page
                          http://observatory.mountwashington.o...nal&fr_id=1040


                          http://www.mountwashington.org/weather/conditions.php

                          new work pictures 12/09
                          http://public.fotki.com/hvachawk/

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Replacement HVAC system

                            Just to finalize this post I want to let you know the new HVAC system is installed.

                            I went with an American Standard system.
                            A lot of the decision was based upon the federal tax credit and the local power company rebate.

                            The power company rebate is not going to happen! To get their $450.00, I'd have to spend in excess of $2200.00 more!
                            In my mind the math simply did not work!
                            The federal tax credit will work as I just fall within their SEER range.

                            The installation from start to finish [removal of the old system, installation, testing, and clean up] took just under 7 hours!
                            There were two fellows/technicians doing the work.
                            They were professional and tolerated me watching and asking questions.

                            I even got to help with some parts as I have an old Zinsco electrical panel box and the old HVAC breaker needed to be replaced..I did that.

                            They even replaced the very old junction//fuse box with a new one and we ran a ground wire. The old unit relied upon the conduit but I was not comfortable with just that.

                            One fellow did all the copper brazing and he did a beautiful job!
                            He took photos of the installation for his scrapbook/resume.

                            They worked well together, they were very neat and focused on a good looking installation meaning everything is plumb and level.
                            Even the exposed [insulated] copper is straight, level, and equally spaced.

                            The air conditioner is a 4 ton unit I had a 3 1/2 ton system before and they said it was undersized.
                            The new condenser [yeah, I got it right this time!] is taller but the condenser coils are now protected by an exterior vented frame...I'll
                            no longer worry about weather damaging the fins anymore!

                            I am very surprised as to how quiet the new system is!
                            On the furnace there is a small LED that always blinks...

                            That first threw me a curve as I thought Uh-Oh..there is a problem...
                            Anytime I see a red blinking light I look for trouble.

                            Well, when the LED flashes slowly it's indicating "I'm waiting for the command to heat". When it flashes quickly it indicates " I have received the call for heat and I'm working".

                            There are a number of other flashing sequences but those do indicate
                            a specific fault.

                            For those of you in the Phoenix Metro area I used "ISLEY'S".
                            I have used this company in the past to service the old system and I never doubted their ability or skill level. I recommend them 100%

                            Cactus Man

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