$1800 for a heat pump compressor? Seriously?

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The compressor in my 13-year old Lenox heat pump died yesterday through an internal short. The repair guy told me that I could expect to pay from $1700 to $1800 for a new one.
While I'm no HVAC guy, I do understand basic mechanics, and I know that there is nothing either technologically or mechanically wondrous about compressors. I can't get my head around why this part should cost more than a replacement car engine or a nice riding lawn mower.
I had a good read on the technician. He was very candid and frank in our discussion and he took the time to show me what his troubleshooting steps were. He helped me explore possible alternatives to save a buck, but he could not tell me why a new compressor cost so much.
Am I being severely up-charged by the reseller, or is this the going rate. If this is the going rate, then could anyone tell me why they're so expensive? If it helps, the repair guy said my unit was a 4-tonner. I don't really know what that means, but I assume it indicates the general size.
Thanks in advance for your thoughts on this.
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snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

No - I'm HVAC Guy.

Get the exact model and part number for the compressor and post those details here.
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.......and you are going to know what with that info? Its a 4 ton. Get over it "notAhvacGuy". Are you going to magically know all the details to give him a price installed over the internet? You really are a clueless hoot. Bubba
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Hi HVAC Guy, good to meet you.
I'm not sure the numbers for the compressor, but the Lennox model number is HP25-511-1P.
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Don't focus on that. You made it up, remember?
-zero
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Even here in rural south Mississippi, 4 ton compressor replacement *installed* is $1770.00 plus refrigerant and any applicable sales tax. OTOH, you could spend 8 - 10 large for a replacement system that is a lot more energy efficient, with the R-410a refrigerant, and a 10 parts and labor extended warranty.
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Whether or not I buy an entirely new unit is the question right now. If I go with the new unit, then I have to seriously consider replacing the heat pump with an oil system. I'm not a big fan of heat pumps to start with. They tend to just blow cold air non-stop.
I'm having a guy out today to give me some prices.
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DO NOT PUT 1800 into a 13 yo L4ennox Heat Pump. It is time for an upgrade!
--
Bob Pietrangelo
snipped-for-privacy@comcast.net (home)
  Click to see the full signature.
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On Tue, 20 Nov 2007 06:48:46 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Stop worrying so much about price and pay more attention to the mechanics like: Does he know and use a micron gauge. Can he braze "properly" Does he really know how to charge a system properly along with about 100 other details that would make your system last as long as it should. Personally, I wouldnt put a new compressor in a 13 yr old heat pump unless I got it free (and that aint goina happen). If the price bothers you so much, get another estimate. Bubba
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I hear you, Bubba, and you make sense. I just really struggle with the whole "throw it in the trash and buy a brand new one" mentality that has taken over the country in the last 40 years. I still try to fix everything I can from miter saws to socks.
That said, I will probably bite the bullet and buy a new one. The thought of having better efficiency and performance appeals to me anyway.
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On Tue, 20 Nov 2007 07:42:22 -0800 (PST), snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

Unfortunately, you'll have to "get over" the "throw it away" mentality. Its a fact. IF you can fix it yourself them it might be worth it but other than that it will cost you more in the long run. Operating costs and the fact that the rest of the shit on the unit will fail soon too. Thats just the way it is and us hvac guys dont run cheap. Its not because we want to rape and pillage the customers. Its just a fact that our operating expenses are ridiculous like many other businesses. Bubba by the way.....the "hvacguy" is an idiot so dont take to seriously what he says.
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Okay, Bubba, I've now obtained a few quotes. What would you do?
Amana - 15 Seer. 10 Year warranty on parts and a lifetime warranty on the compressor. $6,500 installed.
Carrier Infinity - 16 Seer. 1 Year warranty on parts. $8,000 installed.
It should be obvious which direction I'm leaning, but I'm not familiar with the equipment. Am I comparing a Lexus with a Hyundai?
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wrote:

I could live with either one as far as equipment goes and many more. Obviously you can see prices vary widely. Once again, you need to look at 3 very important parts. 1) Who is going to do the best install and be "johnny on the spot" when it breaks down? (It Will break down, you know?) 2) Where is the 5 or 10 year LABOR !! warranty? 3) Who will do a proper load calculation when you sign on the dotted line? Make price a factor but dont make it your ONLY factor! Bubba
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"Atta Boy Dave! "
seriously , look into replacing it ,
and i'll guess that you called a lennox dealer too ?
13 years is a good run for a hp compressor ,
and lets suppose you can find one cheaper , or "not hvac guy" can find you one on e-bay , who you gonna get to install it and warranty for you ?
again , look into total replacement , cheaper in the long run , more nergy efficient , and a manufacturers extended warranty to boot
you do the math ;-)
snipped-for-privacy@gmail.com wrote:

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wrote:

All depends one 4 ton compressor is pretty much good as the next .
Biggest deal is the acid test--not such a bigge to replace if no burnout--if the contracter dint test or at least whiff the gas then he's outa the bidding.
Otherwise figure 600 or so recover braze, probly 5 hours tops and figure 60/hr-call around find a good mechanic.
--








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wrote:

Figure 700 or so

burnout--if
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Simon Schnizzard wrote:

$60 an hour for who? ROFL
Maybe 10 years ago.
--
Zyp



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Well,.......we can a dream a little, cant we? :-) Bubba
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wrote:

Bingo, and sorry about that man.
--


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