New Heat Pump or....

I currently have a 12 year old rheem split unit heat pump. The "A" coil is in the closet and has a drainage problem. The water backed up spilled onto my carpet and on the sheetrock and went under the wall into another room. I know I will have to get the unit removed so that I can properly kill the mold and mildew that will surely grow in there. So, I have two questions..............
One. Is this unit worth moving into the crawlspace? I have plenty of room under there, I just don't know if it is worth moving. If it does not have pump-down valves, the freon will have to be reclaimed and then re-charged. I will also have to have a horizontal drain pan. The ductwork is minimal, assuming that the water has not seriously damaged the trunk line underneath. Wiring is brought from underneath, so no junction is necessary. A local contractor quoted 675 to do it, but I think some of that was enhanced by the desire to sell me a new unit, or maybe not.
Two. If I do replace it, what brand of unit best fits my needs? We are going to sell this house in about three years. I do not want to put a top of the line unit in only to move and leave it three years from now. I don't want to leave a poor quality unit in, but I think a large investment would be wasted. I will need a 2.5 ton. I have an 11 seer now, so I want to go to at least at 13 seer. Also, I think I would gain efficiency from having a few problems fixed.(No reduction on trunk line currently, Branches taken from very end of trunk line, relocation of thermostat from foyer to hallway, proper size on liquid line{current liquid line is one size smaller than what comes out on the condensor, it is pinched off and brazed to accomodate a smaller line}) My primary concerns are enough efficiency improvements to off-set some of the costs and a decent quality unit that I would not be embarassed to show to someone wanting to buy the house.
I am considering a Frigidaire unit and I have someone coming out to price a carrier unit. I thought of having a York system priced and maybe a Rheem or Ruud. I have heard alot of bad things about Lenox and Goodman, But nothing from a proffessional who did not sell a competing unit.
It would be nice to get the advice of someone that has no financial interest in my decision.
Background on the unit. Rheem Classic XI, manufactured in 1993. Model Number is RPLA-024JAS. (2-ton)
Thanks for any recommendations.
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Hi Mike,
I've done quite a few jobs like yours, different ways of course. So, where to start, if I read right, your air handler in the closet is a downflow.
I'd definately try to get it out of the house if you can swing it, a nice 2 ton Package Heat Pump with 10kW strip and concrete pad would look nice to a home buyer, and they come in 13 seer.
I sell Amana and Heil and Goodman, now, if you read around these groups much, I believe Goodman is getting a bad rap for no reason, now before they bought Amana, they were pretty cheaply made, but now, they're copying some of Amana's tricks, so much so, they now look ALmost alike, same color, dark gray, same compressor, main difference is the cabinet design and some of the components, expansion valves or metering device, GE or Emerson motors, but after installing all 3 systems, I'd install a Goodman in my house without question, maybe not a gas pack, but then I've had some of my worst problems with Amana gas packs, mainly a bad run of leaking evap coils, what a pain.
As far as Ruud and Rheem, they're the same unit, I've never like them, after working on most brands, they seem to be one of the cheaply built brands I've worked on. Frigidare is slightly above the Rheem/Rudd brand as far as builds go, Lennox is almost a different animal altogether, like their price, high, and so is York and Trane, proprietary in their parts.
Stay away from Carrier/Bryant, worst line of units from them I've seen in many years.
Hope I didn't leave you with more question than you had.
mrkool
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Not giving you a hard time, MrKool. Just commenting on some of the things you have posted:

Goodman got a bad rap (and they deserved it!) because they would sell unit to ANYONE off the street. That meant any Joe Blow that said "I know how to solder a pipe!" could pick one up and "install it". Now, I know everyone says it's not brain surgery or rocket science, but if you have poor methods like:
1) Using soft (plummers) solder 2) not using nitrogen 3) not installing filter/driers 4) not using A VACUUM PUMP! (with proper manifold or micron guage) 5) not adjusting the charge after initial start up 6) etc., etc., etc......
I see it all the time. Person calls up wanting their unit serviced because it's not working. Compressor is grounded out. "How can that be??!! It's only 2 years old!!!" Then you look at the soldered joints, lack of filter/drier, unit tilted towards the house, and just general piss-poor job of installation and you KNOW that someone that wanted to make a quick buck put it in. "Maam! This unit is under warranty. You need to all the guy that put it in." and she says "I've been calling him for 2 months and he doesn't return my calls". Why should he/she! They already got their money. The other thing is quality. I have seen 2 year-old units that have faded to a (almost) pink and just LOOK terrible after a short time. Maybe they have gotten better, but i am still not going to install one until they can prove to me they are making a better product.

Rheem? Cheaply built??!!! I can take you to many a house that will have a 25 year old Rheem or Ruud that is still running and not a spec of rust on it (O.K., maybe the fan blade on some of the older ones). No offence, but to say Rheem is cheaply built and then praise Goodman??!!! You're crazy! My main problem with Rheem is they were bought out (by some foreign company) and they are getting to be a pain in the ass to deal with. Especially when it comes to getting parts.

Bullsh*t! (see above) Almost all of Nordyne's stuff (Frigidaire, Gibson, Tappan, Kelvinator, etc.) is cheaply made!
Hey! How 'bout them Maytag stainless units!!!

I'll agree with you on that (Sorry CarolinaBreeze Man! ;-] ). When I first started out, my boss installed Luxaires. I just remember going back to a unit after a year and it had looked like it had been through a war! Grill was completely rusted out, cabinet faded to some ungodly color, and NOISY!!! I hated those things! .

I used to feel that way about 10 years ago. They had a real problem with piss-poor units: Accumulators on heatpumps would peel, rust and develope leaks within 5 years. Condensor coils would develope "stress cracks" (right where you can't even get to them to repair, which you shouldn't HAVE TO repair!), grills that would rust out in no time and look like sh*t. But now they have improved. We have installed a LOT of units over the past several years and have not had trouble with a one of them (O.K., a few of the ECM motor modules went bad, but that's about it). I have one in my house now for about 8 years and I haven't had to do a thing to it. I think out of all the brands we sell, I put Carrier at the top of the list. Second would have to be American Standard. Cabinets are not designed as nice as Trane, but they have been [retty dependable so far. No problems with them.
As many have stated before, the brand is only 10% of the job. 90% is HOW IT IS INSTALLED!!!! Almost every brand now has an "upper line" in their models where they offer 5 years parts/ 10 years on the compressor. A buddy of mine (that has been trying to get my business) runs the Goodman warehouse (in the DC area) and says that they offer a LIFETIME guarranty on their compressors (for the original owner). I believe that is just on the higher seer equipment, but that's a good selling point as far as trying to get their reputation back with the contractors.
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wrote

Goodman units are STILL crap. I went to the local reps training..if you want to call it that, and I swear..still using the same crap they were before..even the VS air handlers are still the same crappy cheap stuff....sneeze on it and it dents.

Amen...
How about em..replaced two already..gotta love that so called unit replacement warranty..LOL

Look...Luxaire is the Goodman of York. I dont like them either....the cases ARE cheaper, the paint DOES fade. However, I can bet that you were looking at prob an older BHR model.. Yorks new Affinity...nothings close to it that I have seen and I sell Trane now too.

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My take: Rheem/Ruud is a good brand, Trane is very nice but highly overpriced (and I'm a Trane dealer). Lennox is decent equipment but is a real PITA when getting parts. High end Carrier is good stuff, the lower lines (Bryant, Payne, DayNight, etc) are pretty much builders grade stuff. Goodman is junk, plain and simple, no matter how they paint the cabinets or round the corners or add louvers - they've just prettying up the pig. Any HVAC dealer can buy one - they're not a "dealered" brand - so the dealers who "talk bad" about them are the ones who have decided not to install them (as a side note, the newer units do appear to be better built). I don't care for York, but then we don't see a lot of them around my area, no dealers and no one really installs them. Anything Nordyne puts out (that includes your Frigidaire, I believe) is cheaply made and not worth the money, in my opinion.
You'll hear a lot of folks tell you that the installer is much more important than the brand, and I fully agree - I'd rather have a poor quality unit that's properly installed than a high quality unit put in by monkeys. That said - if you install junk, you get junk. A great installation of junk equipment is still ... junk equipment. Hire a good installer, and have them install good eqiupment ...
I'd be VERY leery of a contractor quoting your $675 to move a furnace out of a closet, into the crawlspace, extend ducts/electrical/gas/drain/flue etc etc ... this is quite obviously a contractor looking to get their foot in the door, and I'm betting they won't be on the job an hour before they find something that "must be done right now, before we can go any further" that'll tack on a couple bills to the cost ... and it'll just keep going from there. If they DO perform the job for $675, ask them for the phone numbers of a few of their competitors - you'll need it next year when you need service and they're out of buisness ...
I'd also be leery of installing a package unit (like another poster mentioned) and tieing in to your existing overhead duct system (assuming it's overhead, that is). Doing this invariably results in poor performance, poor airflow, increased run cost, and decreased system life. If you want a package unit, do away with the overhead ducts, install a new duct system (properly sized) and enjoy the comfort..
--
Scott McDaniel

"Mike Job" < snipped-for-privacy@charter.net> wrote in message
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AMEN SCOTT.
However I have no trouble getting parts for Lennox.
The contractor should measure the existing air flow before he bids duct modidfications. He should do a load calculation before bidding new equipment. Goodman is better than Nordyne, but I would not put either in my house. Goodman got less noisy with their last re-design, but still louder than Lennox, Trane, Carrier. I don't want one outside my bedroom window. Don't get anyones low end unit. depending on utility costs, go middle to high for best performance, quiet, lifespan.
Stretch
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