Goodman Air Conditioner...

jajus100June 14, 2005

Our house has been 88 degrees and humidity is terrible. We need an air conditioner really quickly! This is our first year in our house and in central New York. Anyway, we thought we wanted a Trane. We have one contractor, however, who is telling us to go with the Goodman. He said the 13 seer has a Lifetime warranty on the Compressor and 10 years on parts, vs. the 10/5 warranty on other brands. I got the impression on one post that there were problems with the Goodman, but can't find any posts on them...they must have been archived. With this kind of warranty can we go wrong? Including the finished basement, we have 5500 square feet. They are looking at a 5 ton unit, because they said that is all our furnace would be able to handle. Any advice.

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In the past, Goodman had problems with quality control. Goodman is the 2nd largest manufacturer of residential HVAC.
Go onto the Goodman manufacturing web site and verify the warrantee claims. Something sounds wrong.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2005 at 11:26AM
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Amen to that. I would ask the contractor to define lifetime warranty. Also in a lot of cases the compressor may be in warranty but none of the service or parts needed to properly replace it are. Sometimes it is less expensive to replace the entire unit than go through warranty claims.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2005 at 11:48AM
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i did a survey on downed systems that needed a healthy repair so much so the customer was also getting replacement quotes
i wanted to see if one brand lasts longer than the next

now this is not an exclusive and precise test but is a decent guide

the way i laid it out was systems with the least chance of failure within the first 10 years

Goodman was 68% chance of failure
Trane 7%
Lennox 3%

my oldest system replaced was a Lennox 1956 did it last year

newest Goodman 2001

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 12:36AM
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Consumer Reports has reliability results for different brands of HVAC equipment. Off the top of my head, I seem to remember 12% of Goodman owners experiencing problems, as opposed to the best (I forget which brand) which was around 6 or 7%. Most brands were in the 8-10% range.

So yes, you have a slightly higher risk of failure with Goodman. I weighed that increased risk against the cost of the equipment, which is often half the price, and went with Goodman. A fair trade off to me.

    Bookmark   June 15, 2005 at 7:44AM
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Results are biased by who advertizes most with CR. If all major brands use the same components, then failure is luck of the draw. To put it a different way. If you buy an apple from 2 different companies that use the same supplier and both purchased the same apple on the same day, which is better? Answer, they are both the same quality.

Once again, the installation determines the quality of operation, not the basic brand, because all use the same basic components. The top end units, that cheat by using a dual condensor coil, are prone to more problems. Always, not sometimes, but always, always, always. This means TRANE, Carrier, and LENNOX use a dual coil on many units.

Any system that uses more electronics, will have more problems. Lennox uses a lot of electronics. Carrier uses a lot of electronics. Varible speed units use a GE controller. This adds to the repair problems.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2005 at 2:55AM
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""Results are biased by who advertizes most with CR...""


Have you ever read Consumer Reports? They do not accept advertizing to remain unbiased. However, I do cringe at their car test results.

    Bookmark   June 17, 2005 at 7:54AM
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consumer reports RELIABILITY DATA comes from a survey of customers- its the only game in town
best was rheem/ruud amer std and trane

    Bookmark   June 17, 2005 at 1:14PM
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I live in a 30 year old 2100 sq ft, bi-level home in Northern IL. The furnace is the original. I am looking to install Central Air. It has been recommended that I have installed a Goodman furnace and AC. I am not familiar with Goodman and don't know what questions to ask. Would this be a reliable investment?

    Bookmark   June 17, 2005 at 2:35PM
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This subject has been debated so many different times in this forum it should have its own section. There are a number of us, myself included, who strongly feel it does not make any difference at all what brand of system is installed. This conclusion has been drawn by experienced "service" people with many years in the trade. We are the only people who ever see the equipment "after" the job is done and the system is actually operating. We are in almost total agreement that that majority of costly failures are due from something the manufacturer has no control over. Those being the installation and the proper start up of the equipment from the beginning. I would take a less expensive but better designed system over a high end hacked out job any day. Its all in knowing your contractor and the importance in following up on references.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2005 at 10:43AM
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Well, I do agree that the installation is a major key to having a good system. I still feel some brands are better than others. I have a friend who is an independent who feels Goodman gets a bad name cause in most cases its installed in poorer neighborhoods where the owners do not take care of the equipment as far maintenance. This of coarse shortens its life.

However I see more freon leaks on coils made by Carrier brands and even more on Rheem and Ruud.

I also see older units made by Trane and Lennox. This has to account for something!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2005 at 11:01AM
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I have a Goodman A/C and live in a very affluent neighborhood. In fact, many homes in my neighborhood have either Goodman or Lennox. I have had a Goodman for years and have not had one problem.

That's a bunch of BS that Goodman's are in poor neighborhoods! That type of crap is what the Trane crowd likes to say and try to convince everyone that Trane is only in rich neighborhoods. Some people think shelling out $3,000 on a Trane system installed is getting their moneys worth..HA! not so!

It's a known fact that Tranes were once the top of the line and now they have some of the cheapest parts installed. Trane has very powerful name, but it is clearly beginning to fade away! Especially since you can buy them at Home Depots and very soon at Wal-Mart.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 9:41PM
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I replaced an old Ruud in my first house with the cheapest system I could find since I was single and broke at the time. It was a Goodman (I was told it was the same thing as Janitrol?). The compressor failed in the first few months, but it was replaced free under warranty. I don't know how well it worked after that, because I sold the house that fall. Can't say I would ever buy another.

    Bookmark   June 30, 2005 at 11:41PM
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A friend bought a brand new 3-ton Goodman unit. It worked fine for only 24 hours. Now it only blows hot air. Has anyone had a similar experience. Any suggestions?

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 11:53AM
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WE constantly see this same discussion over and over again in this forum. While it is true that consumer reports says Goodman has a higher failure rate than its Trane or Carrier counterpart, you must consider "The rest of the story" as Paul Harvey would say.

Fundamentally there are only two major manufacturers of compressors and in all likelihood the expensive High End unit will have exactly the same compressor as its cheap low end counterpart. In turn, the fan motors are also made by independant third party manufacturers such was Dayton, Marathon Electric, General Electric etc and again, you are likely to find the same motor in both units. The same is true of the contactors, capacitors and other control components.

In HVAC equipment, the true test of quality is determined by how it is installed and maintained. To that end, Trane and Carrier only market and distribute their products through authorized dealers and factory certified installers, therefore they can maintain a total quality control on the installation. By contast we often see the Goodman sitting on the floor at Home Depot or Lowes and it is anybodies guess who does the install.

Everyday we see posts in this forum from people who say they are installing a unit and they are asking how to connect a service manifold, how much vacuum they need to pull, or what the operating pressures should be. Those points are as common to a certified HVAC tech as digging a ditch is to a plumber, therefore the fact that they even ask indicates they have a rudimentary understanding of HVAC technology at best.

Think about it in terms of an automobile. Even a Cadilac or Lexus would soon prove to be an expensive, problamatic piece of junk if you only have it serviced when it breaks, and then take it to the neighborhood shade tree mechanic with left handed monkey wrenches and s six pack on the work bench.

Personally I would not hesitate to install a Goodman on my home with the same confidence as an expensive counterpart, but then i would be doing the install so I have the same degree of quality control as the Big Boys with their factory authorized only service people.

The bottom line, when shopping for HVAC equipment begin by shopping for the highest quality installer, then trust his judgement to meet your needs. You may rest assured that a Technical school trained service man or woman that has all the necessary EPA certifications and annual contractors follow up training will be glade to show you his or her credentials.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 3:32PM
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As for the warranty of ten years,are you sure the HVAC company that will install is going to be in bussines for that long,if they go out of bussines you are out of luck.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2005 at 7:22PM
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Sorry Matthew didn't mean to stomp your feelings ... what I said was a statement an Independent guy told me. It does seem to make a little sense. Goodman and Janitrol are one of the least expensive brands and there for get used a lot on low budget sales.

Not to say "rich folks don't buy cheap too." If the brand gets used a lot in areas that are less likely to be maintained then most likely they will have more problems. I would think this also applies that the installers who maybe cut corners to save a buck will also come into play.

I have sold top of the line variable speed systems to areas I would not have thought would buy or afford! But they also singed up for the maintenance plan too!

Posted by: matthew_hubba (My Page) on Thu, Jun 30, 05 at 21:41

I have a Goodman A/C and live in a very affluent neighborhood. In fact, many homes in my neighborhood have either Goodman or Lennox. I have had a Goodman for years and have not had one problem.
That's a bunch of BS that Goodman's are in poor neighborhoods! That type of crap is what the Trane crowd likes to say and try to convince everyone that Trane is only in rich neighborhoods. Some people think shelling out $3,000 on a Trane system installed is getting their moneys worth..HA! not so!

    Bookmark   July 17, 2005 at 1:02AM
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I have two houses.

One, a two-story with two Goodman systems - only 4 years old. One is a gas-pack and the other is split. Both have required constant repairs (both evaporator coils, one compressor replaced) - and now are so hacked up that I'm thinking of replacing them. Also, they are very loud and inefficient. My most recent electric bill was $275 on that 4000 sq. ft. house - and it is always very warm in the house (because the A/C never really seems to work).

My other (single-story) house is 2750 sq. ft. and a 1-year-old 4-ton Carrier package HP (12 Seer). It is equipped with the thermidistat and is set up to control the humidity also. I keep it very cold there (71). My electric bill was $110. The Carrier runs with a fairly quiet hum. The 4-ton Carrier Performance HP with variable speed blower and humidistat was about $4500 after rebate installed a year ago.

I think the Goodman has a piston compressor and the Carrier a scroll - also they use different refrigerants. One is obviously a low-end system and the other a mid-high end system, but all the same, I would never buy a Goodman again - nor a house with one on it. And I'm seriously considering replacing the 4-year-old Goodman units with Carrier before I sell the house.

Assuming the insulation is comparable (which it may not be), if the Goodman's were as efficient as the Carrier, I should have an electric bill of perhaps $180 instead of $275 on the larger house. But, it's not just the saving that matter. It's reliability. It has been a nightmare keeping those two Goodman A/C units working.

-Ocelot (in Alabama)

    Bookmark   July 17, 2005 at 8:05PM
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I would agree that the quality of the install is the major factor in service callbacks, more so than the brand.

That being said, most anybody can buy Goodman equipment. Whereas Trane only sells through authorized dealers which means they have to at least show some minimum capability.(Comment above regarding "you can buy Trane @ Home Depot & Walmart" is wrong, you have to use the dealer that has a contract w/ the local HD).

Jajus, if the contractor is only pushing Goodman & doesn't have access to the other brands I would be concerned. That would suggest he could be a fly-by-night operator so be sure you check out his credentials/references. Furthermore, I'd ask to see the load calculations as a 5-ton unit sounds like it could be undersized for 5500 sq ft. Finally, I would be concerned if he is offering a single unit for a multi-level residence unless he is installing zoning capabilities.

Bottom line, get 3 or 4 quotes from different contractors.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 9:47AM
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From the posts on this thread, I get the impression that the fundamental statement of hiring the best installer is not sinking in. People.. It isnt the equipment it is the installer. If you have continual problems with your car, is it the manufacturer, or is it the mechanic that is repairing the car?? Sometimes in a dealership, the mechanic is very poor, just the same as the shadetree mechanic.

This year Goodman- Janitrol decided to raise the prices of thier units. I would consider buying stock in the company. The company made money with lower priced units, they have a special manufacturing facility that does not pay import taxes on units intended for export, this gives them an edge. The cost of TRANE and thier advertizing budget should give you a clue as to thier actual cost. GOODMAN is not the bottom of the heap, just the cheapest.

If you understood cost vs sell, you could see that Goodman made a name for themselves as cheap, not as junk.

As to the bad compressor, I recently repaired a very expenhsive refrigerator and installed a compressor that was bad. It isnt the equipment manufacturer, it is the parts manufacturer that fails.

As to coils, the very worst coils I have worked on were in the 2 high end brands. The caterpiller coil, and the double coil that was sandwiched. What I see as a problem is installation problems never solved.

In N. Texas TRANE is the featured unit in HD. Once again it isnt the manufacturer but the installer.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2005 at 11:25AM
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Well, Bob, you're an installer (for many years), so I'll take your word for it.

One problem with my goodman house is that I had a home warrantee. Terrible things! Every time I called the warrantee company, they passed the service order to a different service company. One of them replaced an evaporator, the next company replaced a compressor, a third replaced the other evaporator. It's a stupid way to run a warrantee company, from my POV.

My Carrier installer must be a great guy! I'm still seriously considering hiring him to redo my other house.

He likes to chat. There is a watercress farm near here which he services. He told me how many tons of ice they make there every day (to ship the watercress in) - and what a monstrous chiller they make it with. If I repeated it, you would think I was nuts. (100 tons of ice, every day, if I recall correctly.) Now, just because he works on those behemoths doesn't mean he's good for my little house units, but it does mean somebody, who has a big stake in the results, trusts him.

My neighbor used to build and maintain refrigeration systems for blood banks - used to store millions of $$$ worth of blood products. He's probably pretty good too - but out of my budget.

Meanwhile, Jajus in NY asked about brands. If Carrier and Trane have good installers, then since it's the results that matter, he should go with the brand that has the good installers.


    Bookmark   July 19, 2005 at 1:14AM
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More antedotal evidence. We recently bought a custom built "higher end" house that was built in 1994. It has a Goodman (which I'd never heard of either). We're on the 3rd service call in less than a year. The AC blower fan went out over a week ago and we're waiting for the part.Fortunately, it's covered by a 1 yr Home warranty. The only thing that hasn't been replaced is the Compressor. The house has never cooled properly. We have 4 finished levels. The basment will be 65 degrees, the 1st floor 72, 2nd floor 80 and nearly 90 in the finished attic.
Eventually, we're going to get install a 2nd unit just for the attic and 2nd floor. It won't be a Goodman.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2005 at 12:48PM
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ang, its not the goodman , its the desighner ...... theres should be one unit per floor. dont be cheap

    Bookmark   July 19, 2005 at 12:59PM
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About buying Tranes from HD - I am well aware that HD contracts many of the installers for different equipment and ACs. I almost purchased a wood storage unit from HD when I was told that they use local contractors (cheapest and most incompetent ones) to build them.

However, I do know somebody who purchased a Trane at HD and had local contractors install his system and it was not properly installed. Why? HD, like some GCs in construction will cut corners and go to the lowest bidder. That's an unfortunate reality in business and many times unavoidable.

As for my Goodman, it was properly installed by a gentleman with 30 years experience with Bryant, Lennox and Trane systems. The system in my house has never failed once as well as other properties that I own. In fact, I have 2 Goodmans on my house - one for upstairs and downstairs. Work great!

matt_in_savannah, you did not stomp my feelings at all. The fact remains though in high end neighborhoods they don't always maintain their equipment or buy into maintenance plans either. I knew a man who did not take very good care of much of anything and went through a lot of repairs on his Lennox. However, I take good care of my system, especially when it comes to changing the air filters and keeping my ducts clean. The keys are good installation by competent AC professionals and conscientious care by the owners.

It's like cars take good care and it should do well!

    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 12:44AM
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I don't have 30 years of experiance, but with my measly 20 years under my belt of service and install. NOTHING BEATS A PROPER INSTALL.
I use Trane, Carrier, Goodman/Janitrol (exactly the same, Usually both lables are in the box!) Heil, Coleman, ETC... my service calls are approximately equal accross the board. if the homeowner never changes the filter, or if the backyard unit is in a dog pen, the carrier(best built unit in my opinion) will last just as long as the goodman. dog pee sure does destroy a condenser! if the filter pluggs up and the unit freezes up, oil will not make it back to the compressor and it will fail quickly. If I come to a unit that is full of leaks, I know the unit was not installed properly, or the compressor was not changed properly. a installation needs to have ALL air and MOISTURE removed before being charged with freon. acid will destroy carrier,goodman and Trane all as quickly. a 12 seer scroll compressor in a goodman will be just as quiet and just as energy efficient as that same compressor in a trane or carrier. Install and manitain equal, results equal.

    Bookmark   July 23, 2005 at 1:31PM
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w/ respect to HD and Trane.
I talked to my installer about that. He is specing out a Trane system for me. I contacted him, not through HD, but after talking to Trane via e-mail. Anyway, he explained that under the HD-Trane partnership Trane determins who is qualified to install there systems, not HD. Only Trane's top installers (they call them "Comfort Specialists") can participate.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2005 at 9:28PM
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Some very good info here as stated in several of the posts, AC units are assembled using components supplied by a few large companies. In each batch of parts made anywhere by anyone a certain number are going to fail, whether you get one or not depends on luck, nothing else, having Trane Rheem or Carrier on the name plate won't change this. One thing we can,t seem to get over to people on this forum is the importance of correct sizing and a good installation. Many point out the high Goodman failure rate vs Trane, Carrier and others. As pointed out by several other posters, Goodman can be bought and installed by anyone, while Trane Carrier and the others are only sold and installed by franchised dealers. This one fact alone accounts for a lot of the difference in failure rates. I have encountered Goodman units installed in manners one would not believe. In one case tthe unit had been installed by the homeowners brother in Law, the unit was about ten years old and had been a constant source of trouble. The homeowner was cursing Goodman to the max and decalaring it junk. Freon had been added to unit each year since the inital installation and there had been other problems.The unit failed on a 96 degree day two weeks ago and the lady of the house called our company on the reccomendation of a friend. We were quite busy, however, the lady sounded so distressed. I decided to make the call. I am retired, my son runs the company, I still hang around the shop it's hard to quit after 60 years. When I got to the house I ran into the worst installation I have encountered in my time bar none. First the unit had been installed on one of the fiberglass bases anplaced in soft dirt. Weight of the condeser was causing pad to sink, the return line was crimped to a point where it was 3/4 closed. The connections had been made with soft solder and were so poorly done I don,t see how they held a day. The condenser coil was almost completely plugged by dirt, I checked the A coil it was also nearly completely clogged, Power was being supplied with some wiring that looked like heavy zip cord. I also found small leaks at both A coil connections. I told the lady the only solution would be to, remove freon from unit fix kinks in line put, in proper wiring
disconnect the unit place the fiberglass pad on a gravel bed or pour a concrete pad. The lady wanted a price and I gave what I considered a reasonable one. She gave the go ahead, the husband showed and said he would pour a concrete pad that day and they would spend the night at a motel. We removed the unit cleaned both coils, ran some proper wiring resoldered everything and reinstalled the unit next day. It worked fine. I recount this to show how Goodman gets some part of it's bad name. Goodman is also bad mouthed by may because of their policy of selling to anyone. However, in closing any hvac unit made in the USA will give decent service if properly installed and maintained. Any Unit hacked in and not maintained will give problems regardless of the brand. Any unit operateds on inadequate wiring will have a high number of fan motor and compressor failures .

    Bookmark   July 26, 2005 at 12:24AM
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I insall goodman all the time. i also install trane and carrier, also installed frazer johnson. the number 1 call back i get is no cooling because of dirty-airfilters.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2005 at 7:39AM
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Boy am I glad to find this discussion going on... I live in PA and have been making due with two window unit ACs. I just agreed to having a Goodman 2.5 ton installed at my house, built in 1953.

Unfortunately, I don't have specs on my house to share, but here's what I know:

1. I have a split level house.
2. I am replacing all the windows in the house by the end of August.
3. I have an existing furnace (older but in decent condition, or so I've been told).
4. I only have six windows that face east or west, the remainder (approx. 16 of them all face north or south.)
5. My square footage is probably about 2200.
6. I have a fair amount of shade in the back from an aluminum awning over french doors.

Here are my questions:

1. Is a 2.5 ton 12 seer unit really the right size? The HVAC guy told me that he'd really rather put in a 3 ton unit in this house, but that the duct work (we're using the existing ducts from the furnace) are too small to support that much air flow. He says that if I go with the 3 ton (which he'd "love to sell me"), the volume of the air will be so great that the ducts will make noise when they expand and contract as the air goes on and off.

Is this a meaningful explanation? Doesn't it stand to reason that more airflow in smaller ducts would cause the volume of air flowing into the house to flow faster?

Secondly, he priced me out a Goodman and a Trane. There was an 800 dollar difference between the two units. Based on what I'm reading here, it sounds like the difference is really all about the installation, not the unit itself.

I just want to be sure I'm buying the right size, the right SEER and the right unit.

I'd appreciate any help you can give me on this topic.

Thanks in advance!

    Bookmark   July 26, 2005 at 12:08PM
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You posted " they are looking at a 5 ton unit because thats all the furnace could handle". Thats not the way to size HVAC equipment. Get more bids, or get the sizing done by a third party that has your goals in mind. The equipment may have a attractive warranty but the contractors warranty is only one year.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2005 at 12:52PM
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Hi, I'm getting a Goodman condensor tommorrow and am nervous about it after the comments I have just read. I bought my first home about 9 months ago and the seller screwed me over with the air conditioner, the furnace and the water heater. The water heater was leaking and I had to replace it. I had to knock down part of a wall to get access to it because it's located right beside the furnace and we were unable to get it out without removing the furnace also.

The condensor is about fifteen years old and today, the motor finally failed on it. It had freon leaks and I had to get somebody to come out to fix it about once every three weeks. It has already cost me about 800 dollars in repairs and I have gone through three different service men. The one this morning finally told me that there was no option but to replace the unit.

Anyway, I called up one company and the guys looked a bit dodgy when they came out so I told them the financing for replacing it hadn't come through. I was going to get a Rheem with them for around $1450 which is a good price as it's a 2 ton but they were really rude to me when they came out. They were angry with their boss for giving them the wrong directions to my place and had spent around and hour and a half looking for me. I'm glad I didn't go with them.

I was pretty desperate to get this sorted out though so I called somebody else. He said he'd do it for 1300 but that I should go with a 10 Seer Goodman that was 2 tons. My place is a duplex appartment (around 1000 sq feet). It's a two bedroom. The condensor that was previously installed was only 1.5 tons but he said I should go with the extra size as there was not much difference in price and it would cool the place faster which sounds reasonable to me.

However, he only wants to install a Goodman. The installation plus the new condensor is going to cost me $1300 which is cheaper than the Rheem but the warranty on it isn't as good. It's only 5 or 10 years for the condensor and 1 year for parts and labour. The guy sounds like a nice guy over the phone though so I told him that I'd go with the Goodman if there wasn't much difference in terms of reliability. I'm now wondering if I have made the wrong choice. I'm also worried because somebody said that Goodman's were really loud earlier and I told him that I wanted a quiet one and he said all of the modern air condensors are pretty quiet and there isn't much difference between them. Can anyone tell me if this is true or not. I only have until tonight to make up my mind as this will be installed tommorrow morning. I don't want to make the wrong choice so any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2005 at 3:12PM
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good man is just asgood as any i install them a few times myself.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2005 at 9:29PM
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To get some idea of the effects of brand name in the HVAC industry, back in the late 1980's I was contracting in Pensacola, Fla. At the time Rheem was regarded as a high end unit along with Carrier and Trane. Heil-Tempstar was the new kid on the block in that market and regarded as mid-line contractor grade equipment, while RUDD was lumped in the low end with Goodman, Day & Nite and Janitrol.

Little did the consumer know that Rheem was the parant company, and Heil-Tempstar was their Canadian counterpart. In turn, Rheem had purchased the RUUD in order to get more production facilities in the USA. When Rheem took over RUUD they discontinued the RUUD name for two years, but do to customer demand, they once again began using the RUUD name.

All three of the units Rheem, Ruud and Heil-Tempstar were exactly the same piece of equipment, the only difference being the labels that were attached to the cabinets. In fact, it was common to pick up a unit at the wholesaler that was devoid of labels and you got a additional cardboard tube that had the peel and stick vinyl label set for whichever brand you required.

At the time the manufacturers suggested retail price of a 2.5 ton condensing unit was $899, the Heil-Tempstar was $825 and the RUUD was $799. The manufacturers warranties were identical, and in fact you used the same warranty card, pre-addressed to a P.O. Box in Georgia for all three brand names. The wholesale price also remained the same. Now I ask you, if my wholesale cost was the same, the equipmant was identical and all installation parameters remained the same, yet the RHEEM commanded over $100 more per installation, which unit do you suppose we pushed as the higher quality unit?

Since that time the brand names have been sold back and forth a couple times, but the basic design of the equipment still remains the same.

in fact, ask any tech who is willing to be honest about his or her answer and they will tell you, the design and layout of most condensing units is so similar that in most cases we simply open the unit, diagnose the problem and make the necessisary repair without even paying attention to the brand name on the unit until it comes time to write the bill and you need the Name for the paperwork.

When you open a condensing unit you will find one of two conditions, a plain jane workhorse that only has the essential component to make it work, or a high end unit that has a list of extras such as high pressure limits, low pressure limits, delay on make timers, crankcase heaters, digital logic boards and half a dozen other components that are nice features but not really necessary to the operarion of the machine. I might add, these are features which are all available as after market add ons for the lower cost units but seldom installed because they simply aren't necessary and the plain and simple fact is, the more complex you make a piece of equipment the more points of failure you introduce into the design.

In an earlier post people took offence to the claim that the low end units were installed in poorer neighborhoods, which in turn accouted for their higher statistical failure averages. Take offence to that if you will but in truth that statement is absolutely correct. Drive through any large apartment complex and see what brands they are running. For every one Trane or Carrier unit you find, you will find 500 Janitrol, Goodman or Ruud units. In turn, most apartment complexes rely upon inhouse maintenance people to service the units rather than contractors. In some instances those in house maintenance techs are certified HVAC techs, but in most cases they know just enough to keep it running, usually on a last leg, lick and a promise hope it works basis. In fact, I once got called to a major apartment complex in Pensacola where they were complaining about excessive noise from the roof mounted AC condensers. When I climbed on the roof I soon discovered the problem. All of the units were screaming because the condenser coils had never been cleaned and the head pressure was off that gage, and what was their inhouse maintenance mans solution? He was going across the street to the Firestone tire dealer and getting old discarded automobile tires. He then lifted the units and put two tires under them as a vibration damper. After nearly two weeks on the roof of those buildings I finally managed to get the tires removed and properly cleaned the coils to resolve the problems.

In the process of cleaning coils I found 3/4hp fan motors where a 1/3hp should have been, wiring harnesses that were repeatedly cut and spliced by just twisting the wires and wrapping a bit of electrical tape on them, Line set leaks that had been repaired by wrapping with automotive fiberglass tape and resin, rubber hose pieces split and wrapped around a line and held in place with radiator clamps, control panel service covers intentionally left off so they could have a quicker access for service, and a list of other nightmares.

I will whole heartedly agree that the statistics show Goodman, Janitrol, Ruud and Rheem to have a much higher failure rate than their Carrier or Trane counterparts, but then Carrier and Trane have an unfair advantage, they only distribute through factory certified dealers and installers while its anybodies guess what happens to the cheapie unit once it leaves the wholesale house.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 10:48AM
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Aw shucks man, you dished my favorite units, Rheem, Rudd.

Correct me if you disagree;

Rheems's "S" tube primary heat exchanger is superior to Carriers stamped primary heat exchanger.

Rheem learned the lesson of necessary flexibility to the primary heat exchanger after the fiasco of their earlier stamped passageway stainless steel primaries that developed cracks because the stainless was too ridgid. I replaced a couple of those heat exchangers under warranty and the replacement heat exchangers were supposedly made out of softer stainless steel which could flex more and not crack.

Rheem also came out with the first fully modulating gas valve for residential heating systems. These valves were capable of putting out heat at anywhere between 40% to 100% of rated value, mind you, unlike a two stage valve, not just at 40% or 100% of rated output, but anywhere in between. At the seminars and updates that our distributor held every year, we were told that not only did the control system Rheem used modulate the valve, but it learned the needs of the homes heat usage and each time started the valve output based on its learning. An example would be if you had a 60,000 btu furnace and you lost 45,000 btu's of heat, the control system would only open to 45,000 and sample the time run and the shutoff point of the thermostat and ratchet down to maintain temperature with the longest running time possible. In theory which we know is always more perfect than reality, the control system would try to put out only as many btu's as were being lost.

Rheems constantly on, low speed fan is reputed to maintain the soft continuous heat most associate with hydronic systems by reducing the tendency for air stratification and keeping air in motion so that the thermostat can react more quickly and accurately to temperature change.

I also believe Rheem was the first residential heating furnace that was compressed down to almost television cabinet size. You could mount them on an elevated surface and not have to crawl around on your knees and stomach to service them.

When I contracted, I pushed Rheem, but when I ran into die hard Carrer lovers, I could always acquire a Payne which was made by Carrier. Because I was not a Carrier authorized franchise, they would not sell me a Carrier brand but would sell me a Payne. I often turned them toward Rheem by asking them if they really wanted a "Payne in the basement" and by the price difference if the logic of superior product didn't work.

I liked Rheem more back then, and unless someone has some superior technology now, I will still prefer Rheem products (I like the fact that their condensors do not have exposed fins.).


    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 12:50PM
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Please dont think for a moment that I am dissing Rheem,,in fact Rheem is one of my favorites as well, not only for HVAC, but for water heaters and boilers, including commercial live steam boilers.

The point I was making is that while many people are cussing and discussing brand names, in many cases the two units they are comparing are exactly the same, which was pointed out by VSTECH in another post where he stated that often both the Goodman and Janitrol Labels are packed in the same box, which corresponds to what I had said about the Rheem, Heil-Tempstar, and Ruud machines in the late 80's.

i will not deny that Carrier and Trane build top of the line equipment but I personally feel a homeowner could get a lot more Bang for their Buck by selecting a more moderately priced unit and insuring it is properly installed by a competant installer.

Now on the other hand, if i was installing a system in a school, motel or hospital that required 50 to 10,000 tons the only people I would call would be Carrier or Trane, but then we would be dealing with Chillers, live steam package boilers and welded pipe circulating hydronics, mutlti ton air handlers that are often larger than some peoples houses, high pressure ducting with Volume and Velocity controls, Pneumatic controls and a myriad of other items which a homeowner would probably never have opportunty to even see, which is another technology entirely.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 3:43PM
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I seem to have some evidence that points to the fact that BUILD does matter. In about 30 years experience with heat pumps as a homeowner, I've only had one fail during my watch. This was a Marvair compressor hooked to a similar make of air handler and I would guess that compressor was around 8 years old (assuming the orig. home owner installed it when he built the house). I had an Amana condensor installed leaving it mated to the Marvair handler. Since then I replaced the other Marvair unit while it was working, assuming it would fail soon, along with its air handler with a Carrier Tech 2000. So now I have an 11 year old Carrier, and I can tell you the install crew made several mistakes putting it in (I guess not critical ones), a 25 year old Marvair handler and a 15+ year old Amana condensor. I have never had any of them serviced, except for a couple of times when a capacitor needed replacement. No coil cleaning other than maybe hosing the outside coils once in a while with water. I do change filters regularly. So maybe there's some makes that can survive less than perfect installs and less than rigorous maintenance...

    Bookmark   August 9, 2005 at 8:00PM
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Air conditioning unit is 1/2 of the system, the ducts are the other 1/2. The best box in the world, if connected to a poor duct system, makes a poor overall system. Maintenance is as important as the quality of the box, so learn all the places to oil, no matter what box you buy. Don't trust your A/C man to do the simple job of oiling (voice of experience, I'm just now replacing my A/C because my A/C man never oiled). Then there is the refrigerant, Freon (very expensive and getting worse) and Puron. Think about this before you buy.

    Bookmark   August 23, 2005 at 8:51PM
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I moved into a new house on 02/2004 1880 square ft. and had the installer of the furnace install a Goodman 2 ton 13 SEER air conditioner and humidifier. Worked well for the ten days I used it in 2004. Then in June 2005 I turned it on and it did not work. Called service and they found the Schrader vavle was defective and all the freon escaped. He did a pressure test, found no leaks, and replaced the freon. I was only getting an 11 degree ratio (difference between outside temp and inside temp. Called service again and the guy found the Schrader valve was again defective and replaced completing same procedure as first service. Then he checked ratio and found it again to be only 11 degrees and proceeded to lower the furnace fan speed from high to low, that's when he got ratio up to 16 degrees saying it was acceptable. This created a new problem as very little cool air was released into the house and there was ALOT of condensation on the furnace supply ducts. I keep the temp at 74 degrees during heat waves but the temp in the house kept rising and the unit never shut down (it ran for up to 12 hours at a time). Called service again and they replaced the coil inside the furnace still with the same results. I check and change the filter constantly after 200 hours of use or less. I also covered the unit last winter and shut down the breakers until June. No one can figure out what is wrong. Also the ducts are clean (had that checked) as well as air flow throught the ducts. The exterior temp on 09/09/05 was 90 degrees yet the unit ran all day from 9 am to 10 pm and would not go below 76 degrees in the house. Any takers on this one?

    Bookmark   September 13, 2005 at 10:25AM
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was a heat/cool load calculation performed correctly sizing equipment?

940 sq ft/ton does not seem right(1880/2 tons)...

While you don't say where you live, I would say AC system is undersized by up to 1 ton....

    Bookmark   September 13, 2005 at 10:42AM
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The salesman said that two ton would be good enough (maybe he was wrong) I will investigate further. I live north of Toronto, Ontario, Canada about 30 miles. Thing I don't understand is that it worked great for the ten/twelve days I used it in the summer of 04. Like today it ran all day to keep the temp at 74 and the outside temp hit 90. Strange...

    Bookmark   September 13, 2005 at 5:35PM
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sounds undersized too me

    Bookmark   September 13, 2005 at 7:08PM
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I have 1100 sqft downstairs + a bonus room upstairs with 300 sq.ft. The bonus room does not have a proper return, it's the same size as the supply (undersized) so basically I'm heating and cooling the 1100 sq. ft with 2.5 tons

    Bookmark   September 13, 2005 at 8:26PM
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This message is to jsioui

I really hope you are still out there. I recently purchased a 1.5 ton central A/C for my home which is also in Toronto, ON. The HVAC guy said 1.5 ton is enough for 1100 sq ft. But I'm finding that the A/C runs constantly to keep the house cool at 24C or 75F and I can never get colder than that. Help! I'm worried the unit is undersized but the A/C guy keeps telling me everything is normal.

Thanks for any help out there.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2006 at 6:30PM
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So I called another contractor who is a friend's uncle in the HVAC business. He said the A/C running constantly to keep the house at 24 is normal, especially on hot days. He said the system should turn off around midnight once the temp outside cools and the house gives off heat. Other than that, not much you can do.

Does this sound right? Should the A/C run for 8 or 9 hours straight in hot temperatures?

Any comments would be greatly appreciated.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2006 at 10:03AM
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usando,I am a long ways from your climate but here in Mobile Alabama we design our systems on a 95 degree ambient.That means the unit should run a 100% of the time at 95 degrees and should keep your home 20 degrees cooler than the ambient temp.Ofcourse that is ideal conditions and no two structures are the same.Find out some details on how they size your sytems for your area.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2006 at 10:57PM
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brand names aside, as that does seem to be an old road
we travel here...
I think bama_dude wrote something that bears repeating...

a/c is only designed to lower ambient temp by 20 degrees..

this is what a/c is designed to do,
if it is 95 outside, it will not be 65 way.

Here where it is a cooling climate with high humidity
oversizing is a battle. 2 stories..2 units...
these homes come in regularly with no load calcs,
a 400 to 500 sq ft per ton load, and homeowners
wonder why humidity is high & units short cycle.
also cost to operate are higher as units cycle on &
off so often & this wears the unit out sooner.

proper sizing along with proper design & install
are the keys to comfort & health of house.
these are every bit, as important as the brand name...

    Bookmark   June 25, 2006 at 10:04PM
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I have a 2400 sq ft home in Southern California and am considering replacing my 19 year old Carrier 5 ton A/C unit with a Seer 13 Goodman. I have two estimates and one tech told me I should either replace the unit with a Seer 10 (he still has some in stock) or also replace my forced air gas furnace (which is a Seer 10) with a Seer 13 because if I didn't I would have problems with the coil. The other A/C tech told me the Seer 13 and the Seer 10 are compatible and it shouldn't cause any problems. Am I better off replacing the whole system due to its age? What should I believe???

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 3:21PM
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I would assume your unit is still running? Why spend the money if it is working well? How much do you depend on the furnace anyway in SoCal? Tnot!!

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 8:27PM
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Thanks for your response Bruce. My system is not running well. The outside A/C unit is old and rusted and stopped working several days ago. It also had a problem last year. They got it running again but I think it is on borrowed time and needs to be replaced. Can I replace the A/C with a Seer 13 and not replace the Seer 10 furnace until it has problems?

    Bookmark   July 5, 2006 at 9:45PM
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I think that the Goodman is a great value installed buy a reputable company . However, I think Trane has the best eqipment but you pay for it initially . At our rental beach house on the FL Panhandle the originally installed Trane split heat pump system has not failed us except for recently patching drain pan since 1990 in spite of the salt spray etc. We are now contemplating replacing it because of energy efficiency, continuing drain pan patching and too much corrosion . The only reason we would not go back with Trane is if were planning to sell the house within a few years . - in that cas go with Goodman or Rhemm/Rudd. BTW, my residence in Atlanta has Goodman systems installed by the previous owner and they work fine so far after 8 years .

    Bookmark   July 7, 2006 at 8:13AM
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Claudia I replaced a 13 year old rusted Amana unit that was still running fine because of a leaky drain pan under the coil, in the crawl space. I took a month deciding, had something like 7 people come in. The Goodman bids were the lowest, one was ridiculously low, but they were not being sold by reputable companies. Some wanted to install without doing a purge of the system with nitrogen. Finally I went with Carrier because of the company, their number of years in the business, they were authorized dealers and they gave me a fair price (lower than Trane). The clincher was that my other unit still working great after 13 years was a Carrier. You would want to replace the entire unit with a system that old.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2006 at 6:59AM
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Thanks for the info, but my furnace is still in good condition according to the tech that examined it. Is it advisable to replace it anyway? If so, can someone tell me why?

    Bookmark   July 8, 2006 at 3:33PM
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You don't have a heat pump like I have which does both heating and cooling so I would think it's independent. SEER is a measure of cooling efficiency and if you live in a hot climate then a higher SEER (up to a point) is better. There is a chart that most mfrers provide, or you can probably find it on the web somewhere that shows you (estimate) how many additional dollars can be saved per KWH used for each additional SEER. For the A/C unit I would think 13 SEER would be fine. Also there is a new standard beginning 2006 that requires 13 SEER to be the minimum. I don't know anything about gas furnaces but I would think if it's running leave it alone. I had a rusty old Amana heat pump that I never had serviced regularly that was cooling OK, but when the guys put the outside unit in, they didn't change the inside unit which houses the coil. That started to leak after some 20+ years of service so I got rid of both.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2006 at 8:32PM
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I have been a member to this garden web for a few years. I live in Amarillo Texas. I purchased a Goodman 14 seer AC and their 93% gas furnace two years ago. The "Carrier" company that installed it as a side job said it was one of the best constructed units they saw. The parts are all GE, the compressor is Copeland Scroll, which is insulated with a blanket. So the only actual thing that the company makes is the housing, which has the hail flanges. Stop degrading the company that is bringing us affordable comfort. They are no longer the janitrol of old.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2006 at 11:14PM
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just purchased installation of Goodman 3.5 ton, 13seer heat/ac unit plus 3 new duct runs and moving of exterior unit for $4300. HD price for 3 ton Trane was $6700. Cool Ray price for 3.5 ton Trane was $6850. what a huge difference!

    Bookmark   May 2, 2007 at 2:32PM
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Looking to purchase a Goodman unit from a reputable installer in SC. Area to be cooled is approx. 2100 sq ft and they are looking to install a 2.5 ton unit. Online calculators I have tried to use show anywhere from a 2 ton to 4.4 ton (assuming it would be rounded to a 5 ton). Does anyone know of a good rule of thumb or online calculator (as a sanity check)? Thanks!

    Bookmark   June 18, 2007 at 1:51PM
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There is no rule of thumb if you are a respectible company.
Do a google-"hvac cal". This will lead you to a load calculation program you can use for $50.00- once.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2007 at 6:07PM
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I kinda like Rheem, but today I got a rude awakening. I was asked to clean the outdoor coils of 2 systems. Cottonwood had coated the coils. The case was almost against the fence and the other unit with about 2.5 inches of clearance. I opened the first unit, and found the inside coated with the cottonwood. I washed the coil as best as possible, and decided to try and do a better job. The outside louvers were in the way, but I decided to warp them away fron the coil to attempt to clean the coil. I ended up standing inside of the coil area. I cleaned on the unit for about 1 hour before feeling that I had done the best I could do.

The second unit had a blanket of cottonwood on the outer side of the coil. The sides would not warp out of the way, so I used my specially made cleaning wand to attempt to clen as much as possible. I only cleaned 3 sides to my satisfaction. The front side was impossible to clean. I needed to remove the system to an open area then clean the coil. I told my boss of the problem (His Units), he was concerned, but satisfied that I did my best. The second unit had so much cottonwood on the coil areas, that I scooped up full handfulls on the one exposed side(compressor side) The other 2 sides were only washed. I warped the louvers away and washed as good as possible, but I felt the cleaning was a sorry attempt. The third side was only washed from the inside of the coil. I had good pressures so I was happy with what I did.

What I decided was to increase all coil cleanings of units with louvers to $100. I am normally a cheap trick, but when I spend over 1 hour to kinda wash the system, and need to spend another hour, this is not right that I leave the job half assed. To do the job right needs more time.

I did a couple of TRANES with louvered sides. They took about 2.5 hours. I felt the effort was needed, but the customer was angry that I spent so long. (Or so he seemed to be) I lost a customer from that cleaning.

When I can scoop 4 handfulls of wet cottonwood from one side, there needs to be a better solution.

    Bookmark   June 18, 2007 at 7:49PM
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Because of the rebate offer I spoke with two salesmen today one from Lennox and the other sold Goodman or Amana. What a shock for a 4 ton. 13 yrs ago we bough a Rheam 10 seer I think for $3k and it's still working great.

I'm not seeing a great el/gas great savings to buy a 15 seer for $7k to 9K. 13 seer runs about $6-7K. I think the rebate would be about $300 and only on a 15 seer.

I know it's no gty but the one fellow said about 25% saving on 13 Seer and 40% on the 15 seer on electric. This is Las Vegas, July bill can be $250-$300 for 2000 sq ft house and the rate will go up soon.

After reading the board I think I will check into a Goodman and Rheam (because I've had no problems with it)and if it needs to be replaced I've got info in hand.

This forum has been so much help. Thanks

    Bookmark   June 20, 2007 at 4:18PM
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Cottonwood Fluff can be Carefully burned off with your torch.

Pro's do it all the time. I'd practice on a dead unit but they say
it's the best way and does no damage.


    Bookmark   June 20, 2007 at 4:49PM
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tommyd66 said "I have been a member to this garden web for a few years. I live in Amarillo Texas. I purchased a Goodman 14 seer AC and their 93% gas furnace two years ago. The "Carrier" company that installed it as a side job said it was one of the best constructed units they saw. The parts are all GE, the compressor is Copeland Scroll, which is insulated with a blanket. So the only actual thing that the company makes is the housing, which has the hail flanges. Stop degrading the company that is bringing us affordable comfort. They are no longer the janitrol of old"

I bought the same exact thing - A dual stage 60K/90K Furnace and a 3.5 ton 14 SEER air conditioner. Cost me less than $3500 for the whole shootin' match and I installed it myslef - Paid $125 to have my installation inspected and the A/C charged

I could have paid $8K to $9K for a Trane or Lennox installation and maybe it would outlast my Goodman . . . . maybe not

I'm very happy with my units, my installation, the comfort in my house snd the energy bills so far - Check back with me in 10 to 15 years and I may have another opinion, but for $3500, I'm VERY happy so far


    Bookmark   June 21, 2007 at 2:54PM
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Trane is just too pretty.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   June 21, 2007 at 3:50PM
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We are in a similar boat. Just replaced a 7 SEER, 3-ton, 21 year-old Trane heat pump with a 14 SEER Goodman system. Got a Copeland scroll compressor, TXV/TEV on indoor coil, hard start cap, strip heat back-up, from a local supply house on my own. Paid a pro to install it. Got a 10 year warranty on parts with the pro-install. Saved $2K over xxxx brands. Paid off trip to Italy with the cash saved.

Good luck and take care.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2007 at 10:54PM
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Well, based on my experiance, I WON'T be getting another Goodman -- sorry. I overpaid Sears about 6K to intall a Goodman 12 SEER heatpump unit back on Jan 2001. Not it's dead, the condensor coil developed leaks in several places and is not covered by the Sears 10 year warranty. I'm inclined to believe it's a faulty product and not the installation. It was running along side a RUUD unit that has been running strong for 9 years. What does THAT tell you??

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 6:30AM
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What good is the Sears 10 year warranty if it doesn't cover major parts such as the compressor, evap coil, or condensor coil? What is covered by the 10 year Sears warranty? Usually the parts listed above but not labor. Goodman now warrants parts for 10 years on new units sold.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 7:27AM
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Not much good at all I suppose. The Sears 10 year parts warranty provided with my Goodman unit covers about every part EXCEPT the condensor and evap coils (unlike other mfg warranties). I've requested Sears's response on this.

I'm sure newer Goodman's are improved with better warranties, but I'm personally not going to take another multi-thousand dollar chance on another Goodman unit.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 10:11AM
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I think that Sears is full of sh%t. Do you have a copy of the warranty?

Are you going to replace the coil on the outside unit? If so, make sure that they match it to the inside coil.

If you cannot get the coil replaced under warranty, and you want to compare the price of just the coil itself, you can call DESCO at 717-846-3384 (Sears should be able to get it cheaper but who knows). DESCO is a contractor that sells Goodman to the public. You will need the model# from the outside unit when you call. A new Goodman 13 SEER, 3 ton, outside unit costs about $1300 from DESCO, plus shipping. I'm not sure if they still have 12 SEER coils/units. If Sears isn't going to do warranty work, then you can call other HVAC contractors for quotes and see how they compare.

Good luck to you.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 2:20PM
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I do have a copy of the Sears warranty, I can PM it to you if you wish. However, I think you are the only person on my side. I called Sears and they told me they only warranty the Kenmore brand and not Goodman. The funny thing is that Sears sold me the Goodman unit as a Kenmore product and the warranty has Sears and Kenmore written all over it! I got the feeling they were just trying to get me off the phone as fast as possible. I just contacted Goodman today see what they can do...
The repairman (from Sears) said that they cannot replace the coil. According to him, a new EPA law stats the if the unit has leaked more than 30% of the old style refrigerant, then it has to be replaced completely with a new unit. Is this true??
I appreciate the DESCO contacts, I will try that.

But the lessons I learned (for me personally that is):
1. Avoid buying a Goodman or Goodman sourced unit - as of now unless something changes.
2. Read the warranty very carefully and ask questions before you buy.
3. Don't use Sears HomeCentral services ever again!

    Bookmark   June 28, 2007 at 8:58PM
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I want go "on the record" and temper my feelings about Goodman and give them some credit. I did contact Goodman directly was told that the condensor coil IS covered by a 10 year parts only warranty - despite what Sears said. But, I also found out that there were other problems with my system. Sears evidently installed a 10 SEER evaporator with my 12 SEER condensor, and it appeared that the evaporator unit was damaged (by a drop?) before the install. So basically I was only getting 10 SEER efficiency at most and unit failure may have been accelerated by the bad install -- who knows? I'm shopping for a new unit - and more importantly - a reputable installer. FWIW, two out of three HVAC sales guys I talked to so far recommended a Trane. My main requirements were quality and longevity, warranty. The last one recommended a Trane or Lennox, with Lennox offering the "better deal" to him. Only one of the three had positive things to say about Goodman - BUT THIS IS BY NO MEANS A SCIENTIFIC CONCLUSION.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 6:49PM
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If you have a mixed SEER system from the start, no matter which mfr (Trane, Goodman, Lennox, Carrier), problems will be inevitable - it's not just a bad install, it's a bad decision to put a lower rated evap coil with a higher outside unit. The reverse is sometimes done but not the way you have it. Don't blame it on Goodman, blame it on the installer - Sears. Plus they tried to cover their a$$es after they realized their mistake. Good for you for contacting the mfr directly.

As far as which system to get now, it's not the mfr but the best installed price of a good matched system. American Standard makes Trane, Carrier makes Bryant, Rheem and Ruud are the same, Lennox makes Ducane, Goodman makes Amana and Janitrol, there is York, etc. There are also still sub-brands of the above. Don't necessarily write off Goodman because of a bad Sears job.

Best of luck.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 8:12PM
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I have an ancient York system that needs to be replaced. I recieved several quotes and am torn between a Goodman and a Trane. There is a $600 price difference. I don't use my AC much here in Michigan. Any comments between the two?

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 11:06PM
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Just for information.
Trane build their own coils- inside and out.
Trane builds their own compressors.
Trane builds the entire systems.
They do use parts such as motors, reversing valves, contactors, capacitors etc from other manufacturers which specialize in those components.
If a compressor fails, they want to know why and take it back to the factory and disassemble it to determain why and if it's the installing companies fault- they buy it.
Goodman spends a lot on advertizing- not to the public, but to the contractors, trying to get them to buy their products by giving away or discounting freon, tools etc. They are in every refrigerant magazine and book 5 times and send mailers out twice a month to hundreds of thousands of contractors ( I get them twice a month at least). They raised their prices to cover the new warranties. They have improved some, but have a ways to go to convince me to ever sell them.
Goodman will not out last AND outperform top equipment as it ages.
Goodman's are cheaper because the materials and manufacturing techniques are cheaper. You simply can't build top quality and sell it 30% cheaper than other top quality equipment. Selling more means nothing. If a car was built and sold for $5,000.00 new, you can bet they would sell more cars than anyone else in the country- but it would be still be a 5k car and you'll replace it after two or three years.
Goodman is a good enough system for a good enough price.

jsioui- If your only getting an 16 degree air split- the system is not working.
The static psi needs checking, the freon psi needs evaluating, and the system match should be re-checked. There is something wrong and the right tech can find it with the right tools.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2007 at 1:05AM
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FWIW: I've been using Goodman straight AC systems in rental properties for years. No problems at all.

So I decide to install a variable speed 14SEER heat pump system in my own home. The evaporator came with several bad welds in the U tubes. These were so bad that it could be heard hissing from 10' away when the installer started putting the nitrogen to it. No way this coil was tested or inspected. Since then I've heard of two more bad evaps in new Goodman air handlers with the exact same problems... and that is just in my particular county way down here on the gulf coast. Apparently they have a blind welder and an inspector who is pencil-whipping his inspections. Or maybe they're hiring the handicapped and got themselves an inspector who is not only blind but deaf as well.

I also know of a scroll compressor in a Goodman that recently went out after being in service for three weeks.

    Bookmark   July 30, 2007 at 4:42PM
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I had a very bad experience with SEARS. They lied about installation then took my $500 check and promised to cash it only after the job is completed, yet they cashed my $500 check right away and I never heard from SEARS again for 2 months, no one ever showed up to install even after I remined them over the phone until I finally after 2 months of nothingness found SEARS vice-president and told him my opinion about SEARS, then he overnighted $500 to me... SEARS? Never again.

Now a question: my house in mid-SC is about 2500 sq. ft. probably rather 2300-2400 sq. ft. The Carrier A/C 4 ton 12 SEER unit was installed in 1991 and runs w/o trouble till now (2007) but I decided to go with heat pump and I was offered the only option: GOODMAN 4 TON, but I began doubting the size of it. Does a 2400 sq. ft. brick house in mid SC need a 4 ton unit or rather a 5 ton unit?

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 6:21AM
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Get a contractor to do a calculation (it's called a Manual J). I'm in upper SC too, have about the same sq ft, but 2 story and have 4 1/2 ton in two units, but you can't go by that. Generally if a certain tonnage has worked well in the past then that is good to go with. If you like Carrier take a look at their Infinity series.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 9:24AM
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The ductwork has to be sized to handle 5 tons.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 10:59AM
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I have the following 4 issues that I hope to get opinions and suggestions on:

1. I'm being offered a GOODMAN 4 ton (ok) 14 SEER (very nice) heat pump with R-22 refrigerant (problem?) which damages ozone layer AFAIK and which seems to be going universally banned on Jan. 1, 2015. Should I rather get a unit with R-410A (Puron) refrigerant? Are some folks still buying systems with R-22 refrigerant?

2. The contractor, after I asked him about Manual J, he told me he installed the existing A/C unit there the unit's been there for many years and he says I should go with 4 ton system (just as the existing 4 ton A/C is) and he seems not willing to do the Manual J although he's been in business for several decades. Is Manual J very important or almost like mandatory for every installer or is it usual that a heat pump contractor does not do the Manual J?

3. Pricing issue: the split Goodman 4 ton 14 seer system seems to cost around $2000 ranging from $1800 to $2600 on the internet. The quote I got is $5500 connecting to the existing ductwork. Do you think it is a fair price to pay, on a low side, on a high side or normal? I was wondering if equipment (split unit: condensing unit and air handler) costs say $2500 including thermostat etc. then they charge $3000 for a few hours to one day's work? Is that high or normal?

4. Variable speed motor blower: my contractor says he's not really favoring it since it blows often at low speed and does not deliver much air into the house. Is that true? Would you go with regular multiple speed or rather a variable speed motor blower?

5. Gas (propane) furnace is in my storm cellar basement. It's been there for many years. Is it ok by SC code to have a gas/propane furnace in a basement/cellar?

Thanks in advance and for your past opinions and suggestions.

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 8:16PM
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Neonrider, I'm going to seperate the facts from fiction and opinion. You'll get all 3, separatetly.

"1. I'm being offered a GOODMAN 4 ton (ok) 14 SEER (very nice) heat pump with R-22 refrigerant (problem?) which damages ozone layer AFAIK and which seems to be going universally banned on Jan. 1, 2015. Should I rather get a unit with R-410A (Puron) refrigerant? Are some folks still buying systems with R-22 refrigerant?"

- As an owner of this system, I can comment as follows: The GSH14 series Goodman's have a Copeland scroll compressor (industry preferred), 10 year parts warranty, and put out 12 EER and 14 SEER, excellent numbers for operating efficiency and energy savings. R22 should not be a deciding factor, only a contributing factor. It will be around for many years and is a problem only if it leaks. It may get more expensive in the future. I put the exact same R22 unit, 3 ton heat pump, in June '07.

"..which damages ozone layer AFAIK"

- I have no idea what this means or what you are talking about.

"2. The contractor, after I asked him about Manual J, he told me he installed the existing A/C unit there the unit's been there for many years and he says I should go with 4 ton system (just as the existing 4 ton A/C is) and he seems not willing to do the Manual J although he's been in business for several decades. Is Manual J very important or almost like mandatory for every installer or is it usual that a heat pump contractor does not do the Manual J?"

- Most contractors do not do a Manual J. Ductwork inspection is critical, both for sizing and leakage of supply/returns. I was OK with my present 3-ton, so I replaced with the same.

"3. Pricing issue: the split Goodman 4 ton 14 seer system seems to cost around $2000 ranging from $1800 to $2600 on the internet. The quote I got is $5500 connecting to the existing ductwork. Do you think it is a fair price to pay, on a low side, on a high side or normal? I was wondering if equipment (split unit: condensing unit and air handler) costs say $2500 including thermostat etc. then they charge $3000 for a few hours to one day's work? Is that high or normal?"

- Internet pricing is one thing, install of an HVAC system by a pro is another. A quality install is essential. HVAC suppliers can have a 300% mark-up in parts plus labor to stay in business. Remember also that the air plenum duct section and air handler discharge duct (2 pieces) have to be fabricated by a sheet metal shop for your install. Refrigerant lines may be need to be replaced, cleaned, purged, brazed, and charged. Also, proper electrical cables and breaker box should be replaced/installed. Buying HVAC by yourself on the internet and having a pro to install separately is challenging (and not recommended), but it can be done. Pros don't like to install sytems that they didn't buy from a wholesaler - no profit plus no trust in the source. You will get no installation labor from the installer. Goodman does not warrant internet purchases - check their website You can try to negotiate the install price from a contractor if you have an idea of his purchase price of $2500.

"4. Variable speed motor blower: my contractor says he's not really favoring it since it blows often at low speed and does not deliver much air into the house. Is that true? Would you go with regular multiple speed or rather a variable speed motor blower?"

- This is a personal choice. V/S blowers have a lot of advantages: quiet, efficient, adjust to ductwork condition, cheap to run, better humidity control in a/c mode, adds 1 more SEER point to air handler. Cons: more complicated electronics, expensive to replace after 10 year warranty period. I went with the 3 speed, not v-s. My choice.

I would add the following advice to you:

- Get the optional thermostatic expansion valve (TXV), which regulates refrigerant flow to the evap coil. It will provide the highest SEER in a/c mode at all times. Best $50 that you will spend. It is installed in the liquid refrigerant line outside of the air handler.

- Goodman's filter rack for the 1-inch air filter in the air handler is poorly designed. I have to rip out the old filter to replace it. Get a separate 4" media filter to avoid this problem.

Good luck

    Bookmark   November 9, 2007 at 9:48PM
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AFAIK - As far as I know. C'mon man, you've got to get up on Text language :-) (Don't feel bad, I had to google it).

    Bookmark   March 11, 2008 at 4:50PM
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"AFAIK - As far as I know. C'mon man, you've got to get up on Text language :-) (Don't feel bad, I had to google it)."

- Thank you. I don't text. I hate cell phones.

Take care.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2008 at 7:30AM
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I have a self contained external Goodman unit. No internal blower unit, just duct work under the house leading to and from the outside unit.

It has been trouble free since it was installed in 2001.

The most painful part is the HVAC service guys that show up to do the yearly maintenance. I have had some real yo-yo's show up that looked like they just started that day and didn't have a clue. That scares me way more.

I think a good service man is worth their weight in freon or whatever they use these days.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2008 at 9:19AM
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I'm aorry, I made a mistake in the date. We moved in to the house in 2000. This probably makes more sense, but 7 coils in 8 years is still strange. We know it's the coils, not just a guess, because we see them when they have taken them out of the house. Any other ideas on what could be causing this? Sure do appreciate any answers!!!

    Bookmark   March 27, 2008 at 1:08PM
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hi everyone,
I have been installing goodman a/c equipment for close to 25 years and have had very few warranty related issues. Usally a defective board or as of recently defective China made capacitors that either loose their capacitance or blow. I usally replace them with 440 volt capacitors and the problem is solved. I have serviced many rheem and carrier a/c systoms and have found many to have leaking A or slant coils. The cost of new coils for those brands if available is almost as high as a new air handler. Goodman a-coils are still reasonably priced.I worry that when the 2010 mandate comes in and all that is available are r-410a systems it will be a nightmare for service techs. All modern a-coils have very thin wall copper a-coils in them and as the temp drops on them and the copper contracts at 120-150psi compared to 70 to 80 psi on r-22 systems their will be many more leaks produced then compared to r-22 a-coils. I have personally noticed that compressor failures on R-410a systoms are very common compared to r-22 systoms which are rare to almost never. My 2 cents worth

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 2:44PM
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One more Recommendation...If considering a new Goodman condensing unit go the 14 seer route for about $100-200 dollars more depending on size. Why, for 2 reasons, 1) it is more more efficent then a 13 seer unit. 2)It will come with a copeland scroll compressor in it and to me it is almost bullet proof and much quieter than a piston compressor. Copeland is the king when it comes to compressors...PERIOD

    Bookmark   March 31, 2008 at 3:00PM
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Great timing! Can't seem to pull the trigger on a Goodman 14 seer, 4 ton unit AC. I need to have all of the ductwork installed as well. I have been considering a ruud / rheem due to the number of negative Goodman posts. Just a few hundred dollars difference beween the Goodman and Ruud units. The refrigerant question is making me stumble as well R22 or R410? Any further advice on it? I have a/c wall units now and the sound of them are annoying. The air handler on the central air will be located in the attic right in the hallway above the bedrooms. I need to make sure the air handler is quiet -- no annoying whining please! Any further advice is appreciated. The house is a ranch style, no basement. Thanks.

    Bookmark   April 21, 2008 at 7:37AM
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Molly, go with the R410. However, some things to consider. Not sure how old your A-coil is, but you'll probably have to replace it, assuming your current unit is R22. Your copper line-set from condenser thru house to a-coil may have to be replaced if going with r410. If the lines are 3/8in, 3/4in, or 7/8in, then the lines can be flushed and reused with the r410. If you go with the r22 and have a leak like 5 yrs from now, it will cost you a fortune just for the r22 gas. Do your research and ask plenty of questions. In the long term, the r410a will probably be your best bet, unless you're not planning on living there for many years.

    Bookmark   May 2, 2008 at 2:15AM
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Hi guys,
Our house was finished in Nov. and with the recent hot weather we used th a/c only to find out one of the units wasn't cooling. Serviceman wrote the following on the work order,"A/C needs new compressor/capacitor and shrader valve stem due to R22 leak from bad valve stem." For those of you knowledgable about such things, is replacing these components sufficient or since this is a new unit should it be replaced? Thanks for the help

    Bookmark   June 11, 2008 at 6:52PM
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I would have thought the low pressure switch (lack of refrigerant) would have tripped out the compressor before it failed. I would ask why it didn't.

I would also get a new condenser (outside unit). Easier to replace than cutting out an old compressor plus better for you to start with a new condenser. Make sure they flush out the refrigerant lines properly and install a new filter/drier in the small line at the condenser (cleans the junk in the line from the compressor blow-out).

Good luck.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2008 at 10:02PM
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Thank you so much, garyg. I appreciate the response and will call them back in the morning.


    Bookmark   June 13, 2008 at 12:11AM
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Anyone living in a hot climate area should include a heat recovery unit on their AC system. Allows using a 13 SEER AC and still get efficiency in the SEER 20 range when you put the free hot water savings into the equation....

    Bookmark   June 13, 2008 at 5:15AM
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Hi, I have a question. I have a 2000 sqf house and putting new AC. I was quoted for 3.5t outside unit and 4t coil(inside). Now guy saying that if he put 3t outside and 5t coil it will actually be better. Any advise which combination will be better for me? There is a vaulted sealing on first floor (about 50%).


    Bookmark   June 20, 2008 at 6:05PM
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"Now guy saying that if he put 3t outside and 5t coil it will actually be better."

You need to start a new post.

NFW on the 3-ton condenser and 5-ton evap unless it's an ARI-rated match. Ask him for the ARI# for that combo. No ARI#, get another contractor.

Good luck.

    Bookmark   June 20, 2008 at 9:44PM
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I think we made a mistake? Our 20 yr old heat pump failed in Jan. We just installed a Goodman (Amana)3.5 ton split system in our 1540sf single story home. The new ac ran all day yesterday, the first day of installation, yet the home never cooled below 75deg (outside high temp range 93-100, 10-14% humidity)? Installer said: thermostat needed to "seat in, and the core temp of home needed to cool down."

AC ran all day again today, yet could never get below 74 deg (outside high temp range 97-102, same humidity). The old Rheem 2.5 ton heat pump did just as good as new unit, which comes as a surprise to me? Isn't this new unit supposed to be more efficient?

I have lived in several homes in this area over the last 25 years, and none of the ac units have run constantly. My last home, 1630 sf, had a 3 ton unit, yet the ac would only cycles on for 15-20 minutes, and cycles off for 15-20 min, easily keeping 68-72 deg. If I turned the thermostat lower, the house would get colder. I don't know how low it would go, but mid 60s easily, possibly high 50s?

After reading this board, it appears we have made some mistakes, like choosing a unit that has r-12, or at least I think it does? It also appears we made a mistake by not choosing the 14seer over the 13seer, so to get the better, quieter "scroll" compressor? Maybe we bought the wrong brand of equipment?

We are worried now, that this supposedly more efficient unit (as compared to low seer value of the old equipment) will be too costly to run if it is necessary to run it all day to achieve a reasonable, but not great level of cooling?

Did we buy junk?

East of Sacramento, near Folsom, CA

    Bookmark   June 21, 2008 at 8:42PM
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Goodman has had a problem with its 5 ton heat pump beeing shipped with wrong txv installed for unit size. I also have recently had to replace a compressor in a goodman due to short to ground and the replacement compressor failed within one week of operation also shorted to ground. This is not goodmans fault however as compressors are a part prvided by a manufacturer and installed in all brands. you can find copeland comps in trane, goodman, amana, carrier,etc..... overall Goodman has been a reliable low end unit, minor problems with contactors, dual caps and the ever present dirty filter and coils do to lack of service.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2008 at 1:19PM
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I appreciate all of the great info. Can you tell me how to determine if it's a good installer or not? There seems to be about a 100 to choose from in my town. Maybe a few questions I can ask to determine if they do quality work? I can check the BBB but I figure usually even a bad install would last a year or two. Thanks.

    Bookmark   September 2, 2008 at 11:26AM
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I think if you have read all these messages you would come to the conclusion
that the differences is more in the install than the equipment. I use goodman
equipment, but i sell myself not the equipment. Go with the dealer you like and one that has a good rep. Later paulbm

    Bookmark   April 28, 2009 at 7:48PM
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I have a Goodman air conditioner in a new build home 5 years old. We have had nothing but problem with this unit, and 2 major repairs, leakey valvue and leakey coils.
Goodman waranty paid for parts, but we have paid out $800 in labor so far. You all need to know Goodman will not cover labor and that is the expensive part. I think both or installer from Air Serv, and Goodman are to blame, and neither will answer me. They both get an F raiting from me.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2011 at 1:15PM
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Just had my Goodman installed today on my trusted A/C repair guy's recommendation for something in my budget. So far, so good; but I just got it. I wanted to post this thought: The A/C I was replacing was an Amana, purchased in 2003, $5,000 including an "April Aire" air filtration system. It was actually too big, they told me, than what I needed for my 1300 s.f., but it was the best quote for the best system at the time. Cooled this house like a meat locker. I thought I was set. Then, July 3rd, lightning struck it and it was toast. So much for going for the gold. This time I'm going for Goodman.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2011 at 8:24PM
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CLEANING of the coils and any openings that air was meant to flow through is THE most important maintenance task and the major reason for lack of performance/defects.Yes there are a small percentage of failures in any mass produced product,and the more electronic options added are more opportunities for failure.As for who manufactures what...if you really want to know - check the Consumer Product Safety Commission for recall lists.According to release#04-229(Sep.30,2004) Goodman produces items for Amana,Trane,American Standard...

    Bookmark   April 29, 2012 at 6:51PM
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Thanks for all the information on how to make the AC run better. I will try cleaning out my coils and see if that helps. I can't afford another AC bill that was as high as my last one.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2015 at 12:52AM
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Wow, Tigerdunes has been here giving information for 10 years or more! Good job, Tigerdunes!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2015 at 11:27AM
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Well I'll join in. We replaced an old 8 seer heat pump system with a 13 seer Goodman system and in the process we uncovered several shoddy duct work configurations made by the builder/contractor.

We found the main return was half the size it should be, and the output ducting also had choke places in it with turns that really acted ad restriction baffles! They "Made" It FIT!

We straightened all that out and WoW! Not only are all the rooms within 1/2°F of each other, my power bill is 65% Lower!

Worth EVERY penny. She was a 20year old leaking poorly installed Bryant.

Very quiet system. The little wall section was to bounce noise away from our deck located to the right. Its not needed now and is basically a cosmetic device blocking it from view from the deck. It bullet proofs any fan noise that might be heard otherwise.
My bedroom window is above it and its a non-issue.
We poured the slab and decided to use the old fiberglass base as well.

So..... look at the ducting also. The house was built well by a reputable builder but the HVAC guy got one past him.

    Bookmark   February 7, 2015 at 11:54AM
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