New "Fedral Gummint" AC SEER minimum, etc

Re: New "Fedral Gummint" AC SEER minimum, etc
Hi,
There was a feature on tv news here last nite, said that the federal minimum on SEER ratings for AC units would increase from 10 to 13 as of Jan. 1, 2006. Also implied or stated the following:
a.) New 13+ SEER units cost lots more. b.) Are lots bigger (condensing unit). c.) Folks should consider buying the old stuff now, to avoid higher cost and "Gawd Knows What Else". Implies a rush on the old stuff.
Is this accurate info?
I have been out of the AC equipment loop for a long time:
1.) What refrigerants are used in the old stuff? 2.) What refrigerants are used in the new stuff?
What are the HVAC vendors doing? Pushing the new for the additional revenue? Or could it be they are promoting scare tactics to promote sales of the old stuff?
Any/all discussion of the old vs new stuff would be much appreciated. "Los Federales" have made a hideous mess of this kind of thing before, don't know why they wouldn't again.
Thanks, Puddin'
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Current model/new anything cost more than last years model.

Do you need an unit. Then contact some licensed contractors and see what it will cost. If not "forget about it " http://198.147.238.24/ac_calc/default.asp
Seer is a yearly number. Getting a high seer for an area that does not require a lot of cooling would be a mistake.

Media hype, slow news day again

measure. Buying a older compressor will be easy for quite a while. The only change is in NEW SYSTEMS. The compressor plants are at full production making the older less effecient compressors. The older stuff will be around for a LONG TIME.
Pushing the new for

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More, but not "lots more". Anytime you purchase something that will SAVE you money, it will COST you money.

Depends on the manufacturer. Most will be bigger. Usually taller (as opposed to wider) with the idea that more surface area on the coil means more efficient operation.

It's not that bad and I wouldn't panic-buy, though I know a couple commercial customers (a church and a school) that are rushing out to buy "new" equipment before the price goes up.

See above. The other thing: There are many out there that aren't convinced that it will go to 13. Many are fighting for 12 to be the minimum and many don't want it raised at all. I think it will go to 13.

Depends on HOW old you are talking about, but the majority of them use R-22.

R-410A
As David Byrne once said: "Same as it ever was...."

Most manufacturers are selling either unit at the same price.

They may lower the price on the R-22 units to make the move faster, but don't hold your breath.

I think R-410A is here to stay. Most were apprehensive at first, but they seemed to be doing O.K. I think the argument of "Well, it runs at a higher pressure so you are going to have more leaks!" is unfounded.
Just my 2 cents, but wadda eye nose........
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I replaced a 30 year old unit with 15ser Lennox last fall, and as someone stated, it is taller, and fits on like a 2x2 pad instead of the old 2x4 foot pad.

The new stuff in general is much improved, and more efficient. Generally quieter as well. Consider also a new furnace. if that is part of your setup.
And as always, a good installation is key, with someone who can service the unit in the future.
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Darn government; trying to force you to save money! Buy a 10; show them you won't be pushed around.
Next thing you know they will try to make you buy a car with better mileage.
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Yeah!!
Them summ bitches!!!!
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Maybe in your case it's not cost effective to go with higher efficiency.. However remember most peak power is generated with natural gas and in the southwest a lot power is generated with natural gas. And AC is the bigger driver for peak power needs in the summer. Even though it is not talked about very much in many ways the US's natural gas situation is more perilous than oil and the prices are reflecting it.
No one in power has had the guts to face reality. We could have built many nuclear plants in the 90's instead of natural gas. We could have built port facilities in the last five years to import LNG, either of which would have kept gas prices down.
Just like folks in New Orleans ignoring that flooding was a certainty with a large hurricane, no one in power would bite the bullet and either build higher levees or start encouraging people to move out.
Sorry for ranting folks but once and awhile just can't resist.

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The new 13 SEER is the law. It is one of the last things Clinton got before he left office. We have known about it for a long time. R-22 systems will still be made till 2010. R-22 refrigerant for service till 2020. There will be used,stored,reclaimed R-22 long after that for service. Some of the new units will be r-22, mostly 13 &14 SEER. Most of the 15 SEER & up will be R-410a. Prices will vary by manufacturer. There will be cheaper builder models and more expensive stuff as well. I would not change a unit for the hell of it, nutty way to do business.
Stretch
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American Standard (and Trane....same diff) claim they will not manufacture any R-22 units after the first of the year.
Not sure if that is true, but that is what the rep told me.....
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