DIY Air conditioning - some information!

Hi, being doing some research on DIY air conditioner systems (see my previous thread 'B&Q Air Conditioning'). My main concern is to get a company that provides good backup service and advice.
Raised a number of questions to a company called www.global-cooling.co.uk and very impressed in that they replied to my email after a few hours.
Thought I'd share the Q&A as hopefully it will be useful to other people.
I plan to place my order with them in a two weeks time.
Seem like a good company!
Al.
1. Can the hose from the IU be routed out from the side of the box as opposed to behind the box? Yes it can be routed either out the left hand side, the right hand side or out of the bottom, or out of the side then upwards. The pipework contains a bending spring which prevents kinks. 2. Is the vacuum pump required on a self-install? What's the purpose of using this? The vacuum pump is very strongly recommended, the vacuum pump is a tool to remove the air from the system and also check for pipe work leaks before release of the refrigerant. The Millenniumair DIY units are a professional air conditioning system exactly as an engineer would put in.
3. If the pipes between the IU and EU are too long, do you suggest cutting them to size or wrapping them behind the EU If you hire the vacuum pump, this comes with tools to shorten the pipe work to make it a neater installation, therefore I would recommend this option, however you can coil it behind the unit ( it only takes a minute to shorten though!).
4. What is the difference between the copper and soft pipes and which one would you recommend? The best material for air conditioning installation is refrigeration grade copper. It is more durable, increases efficiency of the air conditioning unit, less likely to have a refrigerant leak in future. The soft pipes are obviously easier to work with but they are bulkier and sometimes not as tidy as the copper pipes. We offer both, our 4m copper kits are supplied with the system, rubber pipe is available as an extra at 20 per metre + VAT.
5. For the pipes (either soft or copper), how easy is it to cut them to length and what tools would I need? These tools are included in the vacuum pump hire kit. This hire charge is 150.00 with a 100 refund upon its return to Global Cooling Ltd. This includes carriage to and from you and is generally for a week to 10 days hire ( longer periods can be arranged if required ).
6. I have a 3x4 meter computer room, which is in the loft, so gets hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Can you help me choose a AC model please. I think it would be sensible to get a heat pump as well though I appreciate your comments on this. Certainly, from the size and nature of your loft I would recommend the Millenniumair 12000 btu F Panel Inverter. This also has fresh air function ( to draw air from outside into your room which is filtered ), an active ion generator that purifies the air by killing air bacteria. It also has two extensive dust and pollen filters ( photocatalytic). This is a heat pump system with full remote control functions. Please also bear in mind that it is an inverter and therefore extremely low running costs and much quieter than standard air conditioning. It can run at 3p per hour!!
7. I'm assuming the IU can be plugged into the mains using through a normal 3-pin plug and no other power source is required i.e. for the EU?
That is correct and it comes with a factory fitted 3 pin mains plug of 1.5m length attached to the indoor unit. No external power supply is required as this obtains its electrical feed from the internal unit power supply.
8. How often does the unit need re-gassing and is a procedure I can do myself e.g. can I buy the gas from somewhere?
If you are leak free and have used the vacuum pump then never! ( Only a small percentage of air conditioners develop a leak due to part failure - so far with Millenniumair it is 0.001 % If you do develop a problem with refrigerant we have nationwide engineers, they must be used as to actually handle the refrigerant needs qualification and certification.
9. Do I need any specialist tools? I have the basic spanners etc. I note on the B&Q website that a cutter is recommended to cut a hole in the wall. Guess this is something I need to buy.
A core cutter is required, however you do not have to buy, any good hire shop, hss, speedy hire etc. should be able to hire you a core drill with 60mm core bit for a day for about 20-30.
10. Finally, for your recommended model, can you provide me with a total price please? I may be able to collect the unit so would that then remove the shipping price? If you can collect we do not charge shipping, if you also return the vacuum pump and we do not incur any carriage costs the full 150.00 of your hire can be refunded.
Therefore a cost breakdown would be :- Millenniumair KFR-34GW/BP 562.83 Inc. VAT Wall Mounting brackets for outdoor unit 29.38 Inc. VAT
( If you are floor mounting your external unit then this price can be removed 29.38 )
( If you require delivery this is 29.38 Inc. VAT and Vacuum hire charge is 50.00 Inc. VAT with a refundable 100.00 deposit applicable ).
Total cost if collecting ( and returning pump) 592.21 Inc VAT ( Inc. Wall brackets).
Total cost if having delivered 671.59 Inc VAT.( Inc Wall brackets).
Please refer to this forum page for more details about the advantages of Millenniumair over B&Q air force systems.
http://air-conditioning-forum.global-cooling.co.uk/viewtopic.php?tB
For more details on the product I have recommended please refer to http://www.global-cooling.co.uk/millennium12fpanel.php for full technical specification and information.
With our Millenniumair systems you receive a 12 month warranty and full instruction CD and manual to aid your installation.
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u wouldn't have some kind of interest in this co. then? And look how long ur nose is now then. Smudger
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Err. No.
Worth sending your message to all the other reviews out there though. Maybe you'll catch sight of the conspiracy.
Al.
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Fair enough question, though your post didn't look like an advert. Thanks for the helpful posting: doing something similar is one of those jobs I'd quite like to do (when I've done all the other jobs that, being realistic, I'll probably never start!)
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Please let us know how installation goes, as I for one am very interested
Regards Jeff
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Well, bit the bullet and placed an order for the unit today. I will update on how the install goes.
I had to buy a core cutter set (33) as renting one for the day was around 44 from HSS (although this did include a mean looking drill).
Al.
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Al wrote :-

Have you ordered the plastic pipe or only the copper ?
Regards Jeff
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The copper pipe comes as part of the the system as default. I have a feeling it might be just a bit short. The plastic pipe would work out to an additional 118 so I'm *really* hoping the distance is right!
Al.
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On 2 May 2005 05:28:22 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com wrote:

Hi,
BES <www.bes.co.uk> do copper refrigerant pipe, look under 'ref & aircon' on their site.
cheers, Pete.
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Well, completed job on Saturday. Took two people - had to hall external unit up three stories via ladder onto a flat roof!
Glad I bought the core cutter - did a great job of making the holes - I elected to do two smaller ones instead of one large one.
The internal unit has copper pipes which have a nut that need undoing. This took ages as they are on very tight and the pipe itself is soft(ish). Nearly threw the unit out a couple of times as it was getting me frustrated. Eventually, managed to undo the nuts.
Connecting copper pipes are a bit of a pain to route around whilst trying not to get any kinks or sharp bends in them. I've never worked with copper pipes before, so it was a learning process also.
I hired a vacuum pump from global cooling. This showed my system as a whole didn't have any leaks. However, when I released the refrigerant, it started escaping from a connection that I hadn't tightened very well. Makes me wonder if the pump really was working properly...
GC provides a mobile number and I called the guy twice on Saturday - very helpful. For me, this was the main requirement - getting direct help when I needed it. I dread to think if I could even get through to B&Q's helpline!
Unit is great and very quiet. Have tried the heating function - works well. Haven't had the weather yet to stress test the cooling function. The internal unit has a nice light which turns different colours depending weather it's cooling, heating or providing fresh air - very useful feedback.
BTW - the installation video CD provided is for the previous model - causes a slight bit of confusion.
All in all, very happy with unit and particularly service - definitely recommend them. Roll on summer.
Al.
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Thanks for the feedback
Regards Jeff
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