NEw Residental HVAC Advice Needed

I am going to start looking for a replacement for my 20+ Carrier HVAC gas heating system on my home - split - and I want to know what to expect from the new systems. Are the high SEER units worth the extra money? What brands and rating should I look for. I will likely buy the system and have it installed by a local. I intend to replace the inside unit also. Any ideas?
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Keep it simple..... Brand only has a very small part in the grand equation.... Most any brand will be servicable *IF* its correctly sized using Manual J heat load/loss calculations, and correctly installed. Its not going to be the lowest price either. Consumer Reports is a pretty good indicator, but make sure that there is a local supply house for that brand that is well stocked. When it breaks, you don't want to have to wait days for parts.
"The bitter taste of a poor quality installation will linger far longer than the initial sweetness of a low price."
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On 2/6/2011 1:41 PM, Greasehorse wrote:

Listen to Steve, he knows his HVAC and has a heck of a business in the Southeast where a good air conditioner has become a necessity. Talk to your friends and find out who they trust and have had good service from. A less than high end brand of equipment, if installed and maintained in the proper manner, will give you a better level of comfort and service than the most expensive system that is just thrown in by someone who takes no pride in their work. I went out on a call today with my friend GB where we found the supply and return duct work laying on the ground under a house because the original installer did not connect it to the package unit properly. We also found that the evaporator coil was plugged up which prevented air flow in the system anyway. It was a case of a bad installation and improper service to the HVAC unit. It's not a matter of finding the finest equipment, it's all about finding the best HVAC company in your area.
TDD
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