Does this sound like a load of hooey?

So I'm having three HVAC / heater companies come into my house to quote replacement of my AC and gas furnace. One of the companies is the one that currently does our service. We've been pleased with them for that. I asked the sales guy over the phone which products they use the most in my neighborhood. He said Lennox and Trane. I asked if they are qualified to install Rheem if I wanted it. He said yes, but advised against it. When I asked why he said that Rheem/Ruud does make nice stuff, but they've found after doing a lot of work in my neighborhood that the Rheem gas furnace design does not "work as well" with the way the ducting systems are designed for our types of houses (I live in a neighborhood development; there are about 7 different basic home styles but they all have much the same fundamental lay out as far as the heating / cooling / ducting goes). He said that they have had much better results using Lennox in our neighborhood.
Is there any truth to whether the nature of the ducting layout, etc, in a home will suggest that one brand (or really one company's design) of a gas furnace may work better than another?
BTW, this heating company has been around for a very long time and most of their installers are NATE qualified.
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Tony wrote:

I can think of no reason whatsoever.
I suspect (strongly) they're trying to steer you towards their brands because their markups are higher. If you intend to continue dealing w/ them as a vendor, your service will probably be marginally cheaper in the long run if you stay w/ a brand they represent.
Assuming the others are also competent (devil you know vs the one you don't?), if you want a Rheem specifically might be worth switching...
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They do admit that Lennox is the primary brand they deal with.
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: So I'm having three HVAC / heater companies come into my house to quote : replacement of my AC and gas furnace. One of the companies is the one that : currently does our service. We've been pleased with them for that. I asked : the sales guy over the phone which products they use the most in my : neighborhood. He said Lennox and Trane. I asked if they are qualified to : install Rheem if I wanted it. He said yes, but advised against it. When I : asked why he said that Rheem/Ruud does make nice stuff, but they've found : after doing a lot of work in my neighborhood that the Rheem gas furnace : design does not "work as well" with the way the ducting systems are designed : for our types of houses (I live in a neighborhood development; there are : about 7 different basic home styles but they all have much the same : fundamental lay out as far as the heating / cooling / ducting goes). He said : that they have had much better results using Lennox in our neighborhood. : : Is there any truth to whether the nature of the ducting layout, etc, in a : home will suggest that one brand (or really one company's design) of a gas : furnace may work better than another? : : BTW, this heating company has been around for a very long time and most of : their installers are NATE qualified. : : Why don't you ask them for the details that make that so? See what their answers are. If you're a longtime customer they should want to please you. If they end up lying or getting caught in a lie, well, that's an indicator. One lie can ruin years of loyalty and credibility by exposing their "now" attitude, not yesterday's.
HTH, PopS
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Every time I call the local Guitar Center to see if they have something in stock, they ask for my phone number "So I can make sure you're taken care of properly when you get here". Same line every time. Sounds similar to the "best furnace for your neighborhood" concept.
I suspect maybe they have lots of Lennox & Trane AC units left over and they don't want to keep them around all winter. If you like the service, let them have their foibles and stay with the company.
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Naming companies is not really a comparison. Like Ford and GM. The contractors should be doing the manual calculations and tell you a model number so you could check the specs on that unit.
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Possible? Sure. Probable? I'd want some specifics. Perhaps the blower size or something is different, the plenum size is not easy to match, whatever. If he made a statement, he should be able to back it up with facts.
At the same time, point out why you prefer the other brand and let him give reasons why that would not be better.
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wrote in message

Thanks to all. I was sort of feeling that there may be some baloney involved here. We have an appointment to have them come over this week. When the guy gets here I'll be asking for specifics. What is nice is that they are prepared to give me references for both their Lennox installs and the couple of Rheems they've done in my neighborhood.
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determine what brand. The size of the house is the main factor. I go by the golden rule and get about 3+ bids. Sometimes change is good and if I was fed that line I would be changing. They probably don't do allot of business with Rheem and don't get a good price from them, that sounds more like it.
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Tony wrote:

Heh, heh, heh....
Ask them how the air (heated or cooled) that is forced into the duct system is different with their Lennox unit that makes the Lennox so much better. Is it higher pressure, is the air straightened out by the Lennox? Perhaps the air from the Lennox is more pliable, therefore makes the turns better. Maybe the Lennox unit actually lubricates the air so that it will slide more easily through the duct system.
Gotta admit that is a good line, though.
--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
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Gee Robert,
I sell Lennox and Trane too. I have found their blowers are usually more powerful than Goodman and some other lower priced brands. When I do a survey for replacing equipment, I always measure the air flow with a capture hood. Half the systems I measure have air flows of 200 CFM per ton OR LESS! Should be 350 to 400 CFM per ton! So a more powerful blower would be a plus for me! I do very little with Rheem, so I don't know their blower capacities, but if the company in question actually measures air flow they may be telling the truth. If there is access to replace the ducts, it may not matter, but it would probably less expensive to use a furnace with a more powerful blower to do the job.
My company of three people just bought our second capture hood, a TSI Accu-Balance for $2,000.00. That price may be why many people don't measure air flow. Those who do measure air flow have different ideas about the quality of different brands than other contractors. No, the different brands ARE NOT ALL THE SAME! An otherwise well installed unit with a wimpy blower will still perform poorly. I see it all the time.
How many contractors do you know that actually measure air flow on every system they install. There are over 100 HVAC contractors in my area, and I only know of two of them besides us that do measure air flow!
Stretch
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Stretch wrote:

So are you saying that a Lennox unit with 350 CFM will do better than a Rheem with a 350 CFM (both measured)? Or are you saying that the L unit will have 350 and the R will have less?
--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
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I am saying that a Lennox will provide more air flow than the Goodman andf most other brands of the same nominal size. I am not as sure about Rheem because I do not deal with many of them, but the last time I did, it had low air flow. I am not sure if that was the duct system's fault or the equipment's fault, the customer did not pay me to go that far. Additional testing would have determined the reason for the problem.
It is possible the Rheem has a less powerfull blower. Checking their engineering manuals against Lennox engineering manuals would tell. Just to dismiss the statement that Lennox is better as bunk and say all equipment is the same is unjustified. I sell Lennox and Trane, because over time, they have performed better for me. Cheaper brands are cheaper because less is put into them. Less metal (lighter cabinets and coil fins); less engineering, less safety factor in the design, less powerful blowers, less quiet,etc. I have found the higher priced stuff lasts about 5 years longer in my area than the cheaper stuff. So the price per year is usually less.
The same goes for the installer. The cheap guys usually do a sloppy job. (But I must admit, some of the high priced guys do a sloppy job too). I just feel the Lennox is generally better than Rheem. The Rheem is better than some other stuff.
There was a lady from upstate NY who asked questions about Rheem and Carrier on this forum. The Carrier system was more money, but her husband pushed her toward the Rheem. That is what she got. The Rheem was noisy and they had poor air flow in some rooms. She regretted it. I conversed with her by email for a while off the group, based on that, I would say go with the Lennox. Rheem isOK, Lennox is better.
Stretch
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Stretch wrote:

I am not saying that one brand may not be better than others. I am saying that a duct system will perform the same if the air is being pushed through it at the same rate regardless if it is a Rheem, Ruud, Goodman, Carrier, Lennox, etc. Duct systems do not require a certain brand of unit.
But it is a damn good line to use for the uninitiated if you are pushing a brand name. (And if you are into misleading your customers).

What you say makes a lot of sense, but that is not what the OP asked. Reread his post and you will see that my response makes sense.
If his HVAC contractor had said that this unit has a higher CFM and will perform better, I would accept that, but I will not accept that a brand will perform better due to the duct system. (Even though that may actually be the case.)
--
Robert Allison
Rimshot, Inc.
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He said he didn't know what the Rheem would do. No claims made.
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Seriously, when your bullshit detector beeps, listen to it.
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