Lennox vs. Rheem/Ruud

miamibeachJuly 8, 2007

I am renovating an 800sf condo in South Florida and one of the things I am changing is the A/C system.

The HVAC contractor had recommended a Lennox 13ACD-024 unit, but after doing some research I am questioning his decision.

I am on the 4th floor of a 4-story building, and the units go on the roof. First issue is that the trap door to access the roof is only about 23"x29" which means all the Lennox units (smallest size is 24"x24") won't fit through it. The only brand that I've found that would fit without a problem is Rheem/Ruud (19"x28").

Second issue is that I think I would rather get a system that uses R410A instead of R22, and the Lennox 13ACD uses R22. The Lennox alternatives are the 13ACX and 14ACX, but these are also 24"x24".

I think I would rather go with Rheem/Ruud to keep the installation simple. From reading the dimension specs from their website, it seems like I have a choice between these models:

RAND-024 (13 SEER R-22)

RANL-024 (13 SEER R-410A)

RAPL-024 (14 SEER R-410A)

RANL-024JEZ (13 SEER R-410A)

RAPL-024JEZ (14 SEER R-410A)

So here are my questions:

1. Is it worth going through the extra hassle of getting a Lennox unit on my roof?

2. Is there any difference between the Rheem and Ruud models? They seem completely identical to me.

3. Would I need to replace the copper pipes if I go with an R-410A model?

4. Does anyone have experience with the Rheem "Comfort Control System" (Models ending in -JEZ). According to their website, it provides: On-board diagnostics, fault recall, active protection and increased dependability. It sounds to me like this could be just marketing with no real benefit to me.

Thanks so much for your help!

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I'd take any Rheem/Ruud over a Lennox in a flash. Hmm, 72 in, 92 out here right now and mine 12 year old unit is purring along. Anyway, the 13ACD is a really cheaply built unit, more along the lines of Rheem's Corsaire series.

The RAND/RANL is a nice 13 SEER series. I've had no experience with the Comfort Alert module on any brand but it is handy. It tells the tech (and passes the code to the homeowner with some thermostats) exactly what went wrong. A major fault it locks out the unit to save the compressor. The JAZ version has the compressor protection just without the diagnosing module.

It is possible to change refrigerants on the same lineset. The installers need to blow them out carefully to rid them of old mineral oil.

    Bookmark   July 8, 2007 at 4:13PM
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Thanks for the info. I am definitely going to get my contractor to switch the the Rheem models. However, how do I make sure I am not getting ripped off by a contractor without getting multiple quotes? I am working with one main contractor who has an A/C guy he works with, so I am not sure I have much of a choice on who I go with as far as A/C.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2007 at 1:06PM
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"However, how do I make sure I am not getting ripped off by a contractor without getting multiple quotes?"

- You stated the obvious. You need multiple quotes.

I believe that Rheem units can be bought over the internet. While I do not recommend this, you can get an internet price and use it as a baseline to compare against your quote from the contractor if he's willing to separate his equipment cost from his labor price.

Best of luck to you.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2007 at 2:45PM
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