Replacing Furnace

I'm replacing our old natural gas, forced hot air furnace. The first contractor came out today & is going to get back to me in a few days with his estimate. He deals with "Bryant" but I don't know what are the best (& worst) names in the heating field. Does anyone know of any web sites devoted to heating/cooling for the home that can be relied on? Also looking for recommendations on whether I should go with filtration & humidification systems when having the new system installed. ( I already have a Sears whole-house console humidifier & have been heating mainly with a large coal stove for years......My wife hates it!!<G>)
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I am getting a price on having central ac installed at the same time as well

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well
Same as the first reply, make sure they size the unit by a manual J.
If not the outcome can be horrible.
If your in the south with more cooling days, go with a higher S.E.E.R. unit.
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http://hvac-talk.com/vbb/forumdisplay.php?forumid=1 Tom

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Dick wrote:

First get more than one estimate. Next, use the brand that goes along with the installer. The installer is far more important than the brand.
As for filtering, how are you doing now? Any problems? No, then stick with the same type you have should work.
The humidifier is a no brainier. Get one with the new system. You will like it and if you don't your wife will not let you forget it. BTW I don't blame her, and you will send her roses after you get a good modern gas system.
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Joseph E. Meehan

26 + 6 = 1 It's Irish Math
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Get more than one.

The worst one is the one that is installed by the town HACK...normally the lowest bidder. The best is normally installed by someone that does a manuel J & D on your home & duct system.
The best equipment is the one that is installed & set-up properly.
The best equipment installed wrong equals the biggest piece of shit you have ever had!!

There are several good installers & business owners right here.

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Look into the media filters by Aprilaire & Trion, they will make the living enviroment cleaner & healthier. (just make sure that the duct work can handle the more restrictive filters) This means that they may have to rework some of the ductwork to insure proper air flow for the heating & cooling.
The humidifier is one that will save you time (no more filling those darn tanks) :-)
Just make sure they run a manuel J to size the furnace & air conditioning.
And a manuel D to insure that the existing duct work is properly size for the correct furnace.
Good Luck,
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I have a Bryant gas hot air furnace/air conditioner in one of my homes. It had 27 years on it when replaced and no detectable carbon monoxide.
RB
Dick wrote:

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All that says is that it was more than likely installed properly.
Maybe maintained once in a while.
And that 27yrs ago Bryant made a decent furnace.
....
What it doesn't say:
Is rather this particular retailer that sells Bryant, is going to install it to manufactures instructions, follow codes, set it up properly, size the unit according to the homes requirements & make sure that the ductwork is adequite for the furnace.
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Dick wrote:

from what I've heard, most name brands are comparable in quality; the difference is in the installer. Find someone who seems to work carefully and methodically, who thinks critically and maybe even asks you questions to help him figure out what's best for your installation.
I found a guy like that here where I live, super nice guy, I happened upon him when he was just starting out and had a wife and 5 hungry kids. He's been honest and hardworking, and his business has grown tremendously in size - so much so that he's more of a manager of a large service firm now, and they still are understaffed - i.e., he's hard to get now.
He told me - and Consumer Reports generally confirmed it - that most brands are similar. At the top end, Trane may be a little superior, and at the bottom end, he had a low opinion of Janitrol (he had to fix a lot of them in new home subdivisions). But Carrier, Ruud, Bryant, Heil, etc. - all were of similar quality and construction.
Get >=3 bids.
Can't help much with the humidification/filtration part. Some people really like them.
In the two places I've lived, the integrated humidifier broke and I'd never have known it until it was taken apart and was all dried up. Not that they're unimportant - just hard to tell when they're really working.
On filtration, you can do pretty well just with a pleated filter. If your budget is large, the fancy electrostatic ones may be worth it - but the cost for trapping 80% of the 10% that gets by a pleated filter (guessing at those numbers) - is pretty high.
Good luck, Russell.
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Janitrol is one of the ones to stay away from.

If you have a humidity gauge you can tell rather the humidity is high or low. (recommended if you have a humidifier, to insure you have enough, but not to much to cause mold)

I'm glad you said you were guessing, cause you are way off.
Pleated are normally in the 30-40 % range. The electrostatic are junk.
The Media Pleat is one of the best for filtration and not causing the unit to suffer when it comes to air flow. (Aprilaire & Trion)

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