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Old December 5th, 2013, 11:36 AM   #1
MonkeyBiz
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Default Furnace brands

My saga continues find a suitable furnace for my house. I know Shawn is the resident HVAC guy... From reading different threads, there seems to be a couple more HVAC guys on here, just not as prevalent. Plus, at the end of the day, there is almost no one that doesn't have an opinion on furnace brands. So, trying to make a some what educated decision. This is what I have it down to.

AMANA
95% AFUE
45,000 BTU
2 stage, multi-speed
Stainless steel Exchanger.
$2,9XX.xx

Bryant
95% AFUE
Digital Programmer
60,000 BTU
2 stage, variable speed
Stainless Steel Exchanger
$28XX.xx
(Rebates available)

Carrier
96% AFUE
Digital Programmer
60,000 BTU
2 stage, multi-speed
Stainless steel exchanger
$24XX.xx
(Rebates available)

I know for the most part, it's similar to the Ford-GM-Dodge argument. What are the experiances with different brands from people here?
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Old December 5th, 2013, 11:41 AM   #2
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Whats the square footage of your home?
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Old December 5th, 2013, 12:19 PM   #3
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It's basically a mansion.


864 with a full basement.

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Old December 5th, 2013, 12:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonkeyBiz View Post

AMANA
95% AFUE
45,000 BTU
2 stage, multi-speed
Stainless steel Exchanger.
$2,9XX.xx

Bryant
95% AFUE
Digital Programmer
60,000 BTU
2 stage, variable speed
Stainless Steel Exchanger
$28XX.xx
(Rebates available)

Carrier
96% AFUE
Digital Programmer
60,000 BTU
2 stage, multi-speed
Stainless steel exchanger
$24XX.xx
(Rebates available)

I know for the most part, it's similar to the Ford-GM-Dodge argument. What are the experiances with different brands from people here?
Based on this I would go with one of the 60,000 BTU units. At 864 sq feet you probably need more than 45k btu's.

There are plenty of calculators out there you can google. I just did a quick one at 864 sq feet with 8 foot ceilings and normal insulation in our area's weather factored in and it called for 50K+ some change.

Between the Bryant and the Carrier I would now purchase the customer service of the local HVAC install place. I wouldn't worry too much about the brand. Though I would compare the warranties.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 12:54 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by kickstand View Post
Based on this I would go with one of the 60,000 BTU units. At 864 sq feet you probably need more than 45k btu's.

There are plenty of calculators out there you can google. I just did a quick one at 864 sq feet with 8 foot ceilings and normal insulation in our area's weather factored in and it called for 50K+ some change.

Between the Bryant and the Carrier I would now purchase the customer service of the local HVAC install place. I wouldn't worry too much about the brand. Though I would compare the warranties.
The warranties are identical. 10 year parts, lifetime on heat exchangers. Although, I have heard that yeah, it's a life time on the ORIGINAL heat exchanger.. That they will only give you one free one. That seems to be pretty universal for all of them.

My wife I put them compared side by side, and excluded the prices, and we both more comfortable with the Carrier. I was just interested in others opinions.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 12:56 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kickstand View Post
Based on this I would go with one of the 60,000 BTU units. At 864 sq feet you probably need more than 45k btu's.

There are plenty of calculators out there you can google. I just did a quick one at 864 sq feet with 8 foot ceilings and normal insulation in our area's weather factored in and it called for 50K+ some change.

Between the Bryant and the Carrier I would now purchase the customer service of the local HVAC install place. I wouldn't worry too much about the brand. Though I would compare the warranties.
I thought you were a wood stove guy.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 01:04 PM   #7
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I thought you were a wood stove guy.
He did not present "Wood stove" as an option. Please disregard my opinion.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 01:53 PM   #8
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I'm surprised by the prices, but it looks like you are pricing high efficiency units. One thing I would think about is how long you plan to live there; and if there will be a pay back to it. If you do go high efficiency, at least look to see if you qualify for a tax break.

We went with a basic furnace in our last house since we didn't plan to stay for more than 3-5 years. It didn't hurt when we sold the place, as we could still say we had a new furnace. I don't think anybody asked the efficiency of the unit. They just saw a new furnace. We had central air installed at the same time, so that helped.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 01:55 PM   #9
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45k BTU probley wont cut it with that square footage in this northern part of the US. I agree with kickstand, use the online calculators to figure out what size furnace you need and pick one with a good warranty. Im doing all the ductwork and furnace in my new house right now, except Im using a used furnace (fingers crossed).
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Old December 5th, 2013, 02:17 PM   #10
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I don't see a chimney on your house, so you may only be able to use a High Efficiency style furnace because of the venting.

I never deal with Amana, nor have I worked on very many of them, but they had a bad reputation for a long time. I think they are past that now.

Out of your brands, all I can say is be sure to choose something that isn't dealer only, and is well supported by the whole sale stores in your area. I don't know your area. Meaning, if you have a problem, you can call any HVAC guy and they can get parts. Most all of them have long warranty's on the heat exchangers anymore. I've had pretty good luck with Payne (Bryant rebadged for non-Bryant dealers). The other brand I like is Rheem, and Trane (although Trane can be kinda pricey, it's pretty good equipment).

I can't comment much on the pricing, it's very relevant to the install, duct work, venting, blah blah blah.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 03:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonkeyBiz View Post
My saga continues find a suitable furnace for my house. I know Shawn is the resident HVAC guy... From reading different threads, there seems to be a couple more HVAC guys on here, just not as prevalent. Plus, at the end of the day, there is almost no one that doesn't have an opinion on furnace brands. So, trying to make a some what educated decision. This is what I have it down to.

AMANA
95% AFUE
45,000 BTU
2 stage, multi-speed
Stainless steel Exchanger.
$2,9XX.xx

Bryant
95% AFUE
Digital Programmer
60,000 BTU
2 stage, variable speed
Stainless Steel Exchanger
$28XX.xx
(Rebates available)

Carrier
96% AFUE
Digital Programmer
60,000 BTU
2 stage, multi-speed
Stainless steel exchanger
$24XX.xx
(Rebates available)

I know for the most part, it's similar to the Ford-GM-Dodge argument. What are the experiances with different brands from people here?
in my opinion the best deal is the Carrier and i work for Trane. use to work residential many years ago, we sold carrier and amana. Trane is good, pricey. only difference between the bryant and carrier is the variable speed motors, thats why it 400 more. its mainly for comfort level and most likely you wouldnt notice it. just make sure your thermostat is controlling the stages of heat and not the furnace controller, it will be more efficient. you could probably get away with a 45k btu if you have any insulation and ok windows but mine as well go with 60k as it should spend alot of its running time in low fire to maintain temp. just my 2 cents
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Old December 5th, 2013, 04:29 PM   #12
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Carrier and Bryant are made on the same assembly line, just different cosmetics. The Carrier dealer could get the variable speed blower for you I'm sure. Depending on what utility company you have there are some rebates through them. Usually ECM blower is $150 rebate and that makes it more than worth it in my opinion.

We have sold Bryant for years and have had very little trouble with it. They have a good wholesaler backing it also, that counts for alot.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 07:38 PM   #13
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The Carrier has the ECM blower in it. That was one his selling points that he hit on a few times. I listed it as a multi speed blower because that is what google said it was. In the pamphlet that he gave me it is Performance series Vs the Comfort series. The quote was for the Performance series.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 07:39 PM   #14
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Are those prices installed? My buddy picked a 75k BTU furnace for me last spring from the wholesaler for $550. It is not a high efficiency unit. One of these days I cut the part of the gable end out of my cottage and stuff it up in the attic.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 07:43 PM   #15
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Yes, those are installed prices.
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Old December 5th, 2013, 08:26 PM   #16
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These are the specific furnaces that were quoted

Amana:
http://amanadealer.com/product.sc?productId=302

Bryant:
http://www.catalog.bryant.com/wcs/pr..._SIT70,00.html

Carrier:
http://www.carrier.com/homecomfort/e...naces---59tp5/
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Old December 5th, 2013, 08:29 PM   #17
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I think my old one was a Trane, worked well I guess. No major issues in the 8 years I was there, and it is now 13 years old.

My new one is an Armstrong Air, never heard of it but it seems to work well, it's only a few years old though. It's 95%+ efficient

FWIW to the comment that people may not look at it when you sell the house, I can honestly say that was one of the things I checked on every furnace was the efficiency. I felt A new furnace that was only an 80% told me they did stuff in the cheap.

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Old December 5th, 2013, 08:29 PM   #18
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Old December 5th, 2013, 08:32 PM   #19
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I think my old one was a Trane, worked well I guess. No major issues in the 8 years I was there, and it is now 13 years old.

My new one is an Armstrong Air, never heard of it but it seems to work well, it's only a few years old though.

FWIW to the comment that people may not look at it when you still the house, I can honestly say that was one of the things I checked on every furnace was the efficiency. I felt A new furnace that was only an 80% told me they did stuff in the cheap.
I when my inspector did his curisory glance at it, he said that it was a 90% effeciency furnace. It even says right on it that it is a High Efficeny furnace... in 1994
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Old December 5th, 2013, 08:53 PM   #20
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My dad has been in the business for over 40 years, still doing quotes for residential now.

I put a new furnace in two years ago. Things I learned...

Most people/installers over size a furnace thinking bigger is better. I dropped to a 66k btu from a 80k btu and went up to a 95 efficient from 80. Runs slightly longer, but house feels more evenly heated. Bills went down about 70 dollars a month avg. Winter 1600 ft2 no basement. Ive got a Lennox.

Price your replacement parts and check availability (even with warranty) to see how long you could be without heat.

Just how much will you save over X years and will it cover the extra cost to go with an ultra high efficiency unit.

Many houses have bad duct design and flow, new or old. If the ducts can't physically handle the flow of air, your new furnace will not perform. Definitely check for closed off vents, crushed returns, damaged ducts.

My dad actually installed an 90 efficient in his new house, said everything was so well insulated it didnt make sense to spend any more. He pays under 100 for heating in the winter, 1200 ft2, no basement. 6" walls, insulated...

Good luck!
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