A/C refrigerant leak after only 2 years

njneedshelpMay 22, 2013


I am hoping someone that went through this problem can help or maybe there are some people in here that work in the industry that can help. I am so frustrated and upset right now and I am looking for answers.

I had a lennox rc16 installed in july of 2010 by a company in NJ. I won't say by whom as I am not sure it is their fault and I am not sure if I can even find out if it is their fault.

Anyway, I just found out today that my A/C unit won't stay on for longer than 5-6 seconds because there is a refrigerant leak somewhere in the system. I was told that to fix it I would need the following:

leak check - anywhere from $121 to $349 depending on if it was found in a major component or if it needed a full system leak check.

pump down/test/vacuum/drier service once the leak was found and the refrigerant was put back in for $467

refill of refrigerant 8-10 pounds that will cost about $440

Basically I am looking at 1,000 to 1,200 plus tax on a system that we just finished paying off (we paid 9,000 for heater/ac new installation)

From what I have read online, leaks this early in the life of the system are almost always manufacturer defects or installation error. We have parts warranty for 10 years but no labor warranty. I am wondering should the company that installed it or lennox be covering everything here since we would not even need their labor/service had they given us parts that worked or installed it correctly when we got the system in 2010.

Am I just screwed here or do I have any recourse? We have a PSEG contract but it doesn't cover leak fixing or leak searches so that is of no use.

Thanks for any help/suggestions you can offer.


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Sorry to hear about your problems. I would be equally frustrated. This is the reason I recommend getting a 10 year parts and labor warranty on new installations. The PSEG contract is of no use and you wouldn't want their techs fixing your new equipment.

It got hot in NJ this week so I assume you turned on the system for the first time. You must have a major leak if you need 8-10 pounds of refrigerant. Did something hit the outside condenser? Have you checked for obvious leaks in the lineset?

I recommend calling Lennox customer service and explain the situation. Tell them you have been quoted a $1300 repair and you find this unacceptable for a 24 month old system. Ask them what they can do for you as a good will repair. If you used an authorized Lennox dealer then you may get some assistance. Otherwise Lennox may blame the contractor for improper installation.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 2:46PM
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Hi Mike

Thanks for your well wishes and suggestion on contacting Lennox. I will try to contact them and see what happens.

Indeed, we did just try our AC this week as it was pretty muggy with temps in the 70s at night time. The 8-10 pounds of refrigerant was quoted as I think the tech said he would have to flush the system and then replace all the refrigerant as part of the process of fixing the leak. He did say that for my system to not turn on for longer than 5-6 seconds that I must have lost at least half my refrigerant and my system holds 8 pounds...


    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 3:32PM
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We had a refrigerant leak in our AC system. We got the system people to come out, and they quoted the same process and almost exactly the same price (400 for replacement refrigerant plus 1,300 for the labor/finding the leak, etc). I got ticked off, and got a local guy who'd been around for a million years to come and take a look at it. He charged me a flat 400 for everything (300 for refrigerant and 100 for labor). I asked him why the difference, and he said he'd been around and knew where to look for the leak on this particular system. The system has worked great since he came two summers ago. Good luck.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2013 at 1:27PM
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