Return to the Heating & Air Conditioning Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Posted by smithmr1 (My Page) on
Sun, Oct 9, 11 at 17:48

I am so glad I found this forum, I have learned alot from you guys. I have a 20 year old Carrier gas pack that I am looking to replace (48NHT024), last year it was very difficult to get the heat to come on the first time and a couple of months ago the gas company had a leak in their line and while they were repairing that, they notified my wife that our heat exchanger was basically rusted through and cautioned her about even trying to light it. So I am looking to replace it, as it is beyond its effective life expectancy. I have quotes to replace with a Carrier VLA24 for $4800 all the way up to a Trane for $10,200. Obviously the VLA24 is gas heat and electric air, just as I have now but more efficient. I am trying to decide if I should go with a more advanced/efficient package, I am thinking that a hybrid system with dehumidification is certainly worth considering. I am in middle TN and our electric rates are 8.231 per kwh and gas is ~.71ccf (.725/therm).
I am basically down to the VLA24 and:
Carrier 48VTA24 Performance series Hybrid @$6200
Am. Std. Gold series (haven't got the model# yet) @7200
Am. Std Gold Hybrid (no mdl# yet) $8900
I am waiting on a quote for the Carrier Infinity as well. Obviously all units are 2 ton units. I have not been able to justify the $$ difference between the Am Std and Carrier, so I am leaning toward the Carrier hybrid unit. I am 51 years old, know zip about HVAC and want this purchase to be the last one I have to make if at all possible. I would love to hear your thoughts and opinions on this, and what you think about the infinity series compared to performance series in the Carrier line.


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Know that even the "entry level" unit you are looking at now will be much more efficient than your old unit.

I would lean to the entry level, unless you wouldn't miss the money.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

keep in mind that the gas company will always red tag your furnace unless it is in tip top shape. they only want to cover their a$$es. I would get a second opinion on that heat exchanger.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

smith

If your rates both electric and nat gas are correct and include all related costs, then they are relatively cheap and I certainly would not recommend a hybrid or DF package unit.

How long do you plan on being in this dwelling? Is this a residential home or condo/townhouse?

I like AmStd package units. I can recommend several mdls if interested.

IMO


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

tigerdunes

The rates are accurate, I realize our electric rates are low, TVA makes sure we know they are among the lowest... ha ha.
It is a one story residential home approx. 1250sq/ft heated. We plan on staying here. As for the AMStd recommendations, please feel free, I will certainly consider them. I did recieve the Infinity quotes this morning $6900 for gas pack, $7600 for hybrid and $7880 for hybrid 2.5 ton (rep said could use 2.5 ton in infinity series as it would not short cycle and gain heat)

julie
I do realize that the base unit will be improved efficiency from what I have now.. and can save money just going there, but that seems to be the easy answer. Thats why I am asking for advise from everyone, would the benefit of upgrading to the more efficient units be worth it? The basic gas pack does not dehumidify (only when running) and from what I have read here dehumidification is a definite plus.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Smith

Apparently you are the beneficiary of both cheap electric and nat gas rates. These low rates offer zero leverage for a hybrid system. That's why I think a hybrid would be a poor choice.

As far as dehumidification, this is usually a function of AC cooling not heating when added humidity might be needed with a whole house humidifier. So I am confused somewhat about this issue.

How did your existing 2 ton perform during the summer? Any comfort issues? Going up in size might mean ductwork modifications. Any hot/cold spots in home? This usually indicates ductwork/insulation issues.

Post back.

IMO

Here is a link that might be useful: Gold XM Gas/Electric Package System


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

existing unit has performed flawlessly for almost 20 years now, there is not hot/cold spots in home. I would not be considering replacement if it was not 20 years old and needing new heat exchanger. We do have some sweating on windows from time to time.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Smith

If you have no comfort issues, I see no reason going up to a 2 1/2 ton system..

IMO


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

I really did not either, I think he suggested that since it was only $200 more and provided more heat??? I reviewed the link for AmStd you provided, and I think that is the model I have a quote for(still waiting for confirmation) and am considering, however it is priced $1000 more than the Carrier Infinity system, and the Carrier has a $1000 rebate compared to the AmStd having $300. I think the Infinity is the better choice... your thoughts? Actually the Infinity series hybrid unit is less than AmStd.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Smith

That would be Carrier's XL Infinity package mdl. I see nothing wrong with that. You would want Carrier's Infinity controller. Make certain that was included in quote.

IMO


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

One followup... I am down to deciding between the Infinity 48XT and Amana APG15. I realize Infinity system is hybrid however after negotiation it is only $100 more than the Amana. I feel the Infinity is the superior system, however Amana warranty is superior. 10 yr part's and labor as well as lifetime on heat exchanger and compressor. Would you take the warranty or go with the Carrier Infinity with Infinity controller? I am not that familiar with the Amana products but am concerned about their connection with Goodman.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Smith

As I said in earlier post, a hybrid system offers little if any economic operating advantage between gas and electric heat.

With that in mind though, I would prefer the Carrier over the Amana.

And the Infinity XT pkg unit should have the Infinity controls. Any other would be a mistake.

What size are you looking at?

IMO


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

tigerdunes,
I listened to your advise that the hybrid offers little economic advantage, however after rebate it is only $1300 more than the gas pack. The gas pack quote was a 2 ton, performance series.I was thinking the hybrid was probably worth the extra money, am I wrong in your opinion? Load calculation was done and it says I need to step up to 2 1/2 ton (actually was just above the limits of 2 ton). The hybrid is 2 1/2 ton and it does include Infinity controller. I am strongly leaning towards the Carrier over the Amana (either gas pack or hybrid), but wanted to hear someone with more knowledge than I confirm that I was thinking correctly. Thanks for taking the time to help me with this.
Mark


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

mark,

amana is better warranty but amana is also bigger headache. most anyone but an amana dealer will tell you that. Having been one before i can speak to that. I believe what tigerdunes is trying to tell you about the hybrid system is it is not going to save you any money and costs more.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

tigerdunes;
If I can ask your opinion once again, I got a last minute offer from one of my vendors on the American Standard Gold series unit.... he has offered it either hybrid or gas pack model for ~$700 more than the Carrier Infinity. The AmStd does come with 10 parts and labor warranty. What is your opinion on the best way to go between these units?

Please anyone with knowledge, offer their input as well as tigerdunes.

Thanks guys for the input so far.

Mark


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Just to update and clarify my elect/gas cost have changed, and I got some wrong information the first time. Our electric rate is .927 kwh and gas is 1.02 therm.
I realize that even the base gas pack will improve my efficiency, but I want to be as proactive as I can on this issue for the future. I am down to these three options and plan on purchasing Monday, so please pass along your advice asap:
Carrier Performance gas pack 48VL (2 ton)- ss heat exh/tin plated coil - 1 year labor warranty, 10yr parts, 10yr compressor, 20 on heat exch. 4574 after rebate

Carrier Infinity 48xt 2.5 ton - with Infinity control, warranty same as above -$6100 after rebate

American Standard Gold (my choice gas pack or hybrid unit) 2.5 ton, 10 year parts and labor, lifetime heat exch, 10 year coil. $6800 after rebate.

Opinions please.... load calculation shows I am just above the 2 ton limit, so will need the 2.5 ton.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Just to update and clarify my elect/gas cost have changed, and I got some wrong information the first time. Our electric rate is .927 kwh and gas is 1.02 therm.
I realize that even the base gas pack will improve my efficiency, but I want to be as proactive as I can on this issue for the future. I am down to these three options and plan on purchasing Monday, so please pass along your advice asap:
Carrier Performance gas pack 48VL (2 ton)- ss heat exh/tin plated coil - 1 year labor warranty, 10yr parts, 10yr compressor, 20 on heat exch. 4574 after rebate

Carrier Infinity 48xt 2.5 ton - with Infinity control, warranty same as above -$6100 after rebate

American Standard Gold (my choice gas pack or hybrid unit) 2.5 ton, 10 year parts and labor, lifetime heat exch, 10 year coil. $6800 after rebate.

Opinions please.... load calculation shows I am just above the 2 ton limit, so will need the 2.5 ton.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

smith

OK, those new rates do make the hybrid system more viable only marginally. however, I still would recommend staying with a gaspak.

here are the operating cost numbers that should be used as a guide only.
Cost per 100,000 btu of useable heat
Heat pump: $1.11
Natural gas: $1.22

how long do you plan on being in home?

I don't understand why you are listing a 2 ton Performance system quote when you say you really require a 2 1/2 ton system. even at that, it is a
gaspak not DF system. you need a price on the 2 1/2 ton Performance Hybrid system for comparison purposes.

what are the heating BTUs for each system? Important.

It is difficult for me to understand the AS quote being the same price whether gaspak or hybrid(DF). But it clearly has the better warranty with
lifetime heat exchanger as well as ext warranty for labor. What thermostat was quoted? Outdoor sensor included?

I would ask for a quote on the comparative gaspak 2 1/2 ton systems for the three systems listed above before I made a decision.

so there you are.

IMO


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

tiger,

you are correct, i should not have included the 2 ton quote for system comparison. It was one of the first quoted and I have simply referred to it as a general idea of the price difference between pack and hybrid. It is roughly $1500 less than the 2.5 ton hybrid. Speculation tells me there is ~$500 difference between the 2.5 ton gas pack and the infinity hybrid. I just thought that for that amount the upgrade to Infinity system/hybrid was the better buy.

American Std. dealer had originally quoted an Amana unit, and when I notified him that I was not going with him based on not wanting the Amana brand, he offered the AmStd as an alternative. That peaked my interest and I put my plans on hold. During our negotiations I was discussing the single stage compressor on the AmStd vs Infinity dual stage, and the Carrier was hybrid etc. He told me that if it was the hybrid that I wanted he would provide that at the same price as well. ($6781) I thought that was a bit odd as well, but I figured it just confirmed how much markup he really had in the Amana. The controller is a Honeywell (did not give specific model) and it does have an outdoor sensor.

I am totally on the fence on this one, either of the two units are more than sufficient for me. We do not plan to leave this location and want a system that will be reliable and viable for years to come. Both companies have been in the business for a long long time and have good reputations in the area. I feel like the Infinity offers more features and probably is more advanced, but the AmStd is an excellent unit as well and the warranty is superior. Please if I am wrong feel free to enlighten me, I need unbiased opinions to help me with this.
I have asked the AmStd dealer what is required to maintain the warranty (if anything) and how the single stage compressor efficiency compares to the Carrier's dual stage. In addition I asked the Carrier dealer if he did insure that my existing ductwork is sized/compatible with the Infinity's requirements. I did not follow him under the floor when he was here, so I am not sure what he checked on the ductwork. I do know all were extremely satisfied with the condition and quality of the ductwork. However I had read that the ECM motor on the Infinity requires specific sizing to ensure it functions properly.

Thanks again for your input!


 o
heating btu capacity

tiger,
I forgot about your question on this. I did find that the American Standard has 30,000. The Infinity system has a range of 40,000 - 130000. I think it comes in sizes from 1.5 - 5 ton, so I would assume the 2.5 ton is in the 45,000 range. It appears this is another feather in the Infinity's cap.. huh?


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

Smith

It should be noted that the Ext warranty for labor on the AmStd mdl is roughly 10% of the purchase price.

Factoring that in, then the Carrier Infinity and AmStd quotes are really about the same.

I personally think Trane and AmStd have the best package units.

I'll try to see what the matching AHRI performance/eff numbers are on each system if that's important to you.

You should find out the BTU gas output is on each system.

IMO


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

I agree with tigerdunes. amstd as a choice of brand is superior in my opinion. what SEER is this package unit though. I didn't see a mod# for the amstd unit in your posts unless i missed it. Also amstd's extended warranty is superior. pays for pretty much anything that is involved with a failure in there unit.....freon included. as far as the 2stage compressor amstd offers one.


 o
RE: Replacing Gas Package- Advise appreciated

harlem,
It is the Gold XM hybrid (4dcy4), 14 seer. I have not asked about AM Std extended warranty as the vendor is offering 10 year parts and labor (Hiller). Seems that is the standard for Hiller to offer, basically they are providing the labor and the manufacturer is warranting the parts. AmStd does offer a 2stage compressor however it's in the platinum series and they don't offer a 2.5 ton unit in that series. It starts at 3 ton. It is interesting to me that you both prefer AmStd over Carrier. Is this based on anyone thing or just overall experience with them? I really appreciate your honest input.
Thanks a million


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Heating & Air Conditioning Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here