Sedro Woolley Furnace Replacement.
Here we are again, decision time for another one of our customers.… do we put money into our older gas furnace or replace it. I try to be as honest as I can with people when making this decision. I look at age of the furnace versus the cost of the repairs and then the cost of the future repairs based on my experience. And in this case it was time for this Sedro Woolley furnace replacement.
Where did the quality go
I certainly see a lot of the York Diamond 80% in Skagit County, in fact I use to be a York dealer back when this furnace was actually installed. At that time York made a very good furnace. I personally have sold, serviced and installed 100’s of them, but today, based on actual field experience and experience with many other different brands I would say York and or Coleman all made by Johnson Controls have taken a big hit in the quality of their product.
The American Standard 80%
The new American Standard 80% gas furnace did require a little bit of modifications to the return ducting, as well as eliminating the angled base-can that the customer kept stubbing their toes on. We also added a Custom 4″ filter bank to the system, we just had to make a custom door for access because of the venting. Overall this Sedro Woolley Furnace Replacement project went fairly smooth.
Like I have stated on many occasions in Alpines blog before, American Standard is my choice of equipment to install, this is based on the fact I have sold, serviced and installed many other brands. I only like to install equipment that gives me the least call backs … American Standard is that equipment.
Mount Vernon WA Church Furnace
There are certain types of heating and cooling projects that really appeal to me, these projects generally have the biggest impact or affect for the customer and are usually the most challenging. This Mount Vernon WA Church Furnace project was for the Church Of Christ in Mount Vernon, their oil furnace was from 1951 and it was a monster. Time for a upgrade!
The Monster In The Room
The furnace was located in the church basement in a room about 9′ by 9′ and it consumed most of that room. I had to stand back out of the room just to take a good picture. One of the biggest challenges with small community Church’s is the furnace sizing. A lot of small Church’s only get occupied say 1 to 2 times per week and the rest of the time the furnace generally stays off. So you have to consider raising the temperature say from 50 degrees to 70 degrees just for a few hours, and within a short period of time. And of coarse keeping the noise level down. Perfect for the American Standard 95% 2 Stage Variable.
American Standard, To The Rescue.
One of the complaints from the church was the down stairs always seemed cold, and even though they had damper controls to help with this issue it never seemed to work correctly, therefore they abandoned that part of the system and went to space heaters. The American Standard 95% Variable 2 Stage furnace with a Honeywell 4″ pleated filter system (above) was installed to deal with just the down stairs, fortunately the existing duct work was zoned to do just that. As you can see the foot print is much smaller than the oil furnace.
Churches have a very unique situation when it comes to heating and cooling demands. In this Mount Vernon WA Church Furnace project an American Standard 95% gas furnace worked out perfectly.
New Bow Wa Heat Pump.
One of my favorite places in Skagit County is the Bow area. Most of the homes are scattered out and seem to have a fair amount of land. The town of Edison is close by and the Padilla Bay Shore Trail is a great place to take your dog for a walk. This is the area for our Bow Wa Heat Pump project.
Heat Pump VS Lp
Currently propane fuel(LP) is like the most expensive way to heat your home or business, out side of the fact that its a nice hot heat I can not think of any reason why you would choose a propane(LP) furnace over a heat pump. My customer in this case wasn't really thinking about a heat pump, but after educating him a little on the benefits and him doing his own due diligence.... he was sold.
American Standard, The Perfect System?!
I know I know ... I brag a lot about American Standard equipment, there are very good reasons why. Besides of all the countless pieces of equipment that we have installed that have had very little to no issues, American Standard has been listed either #1 or #2 for many years in Consumer Reports, competing only with Trane, and for your information American Standard makes Trane. So if you're not going to take my word for it, look it up in Consumer Reports.
American Standard is in my opinion the best piece of residential equipment on the market today. Matching up a LP furnace and a good efficient Heat Pump will save you tons of money and give you years of great service.
New Clear lake Heat Pump.
I live in Sedro Woolley and of coarse I get to travel all over Skagit County, Clear Lake seems like the secret cut off road from Sedro Woolley to Mount Vernon for local travelers. Honestly I wouldn't mind living in Clear Lake because its like the center of everything. And so is this Clear Lake Heat Pump project.
Heat Pump VS Lp
Currently propane (LP) is like the most expensive way to heat your home, out side of the fact that its a nice hot heat I cant think of any reason why you would choose a LP furnace over a heat pump. In this case my customer is already educated on Heat Pumps, its just a matter of what system he wanted and how much he wanted to spend on his Clear Lake Heat Pump project.
Sometimes It Boils Down To Experience
I can not even begin to tell you how many projects I have been awarded because of experience, and I don't mean because of me bragging to the customer on how many projects we have done. But because I can see things others can not because of my vast field experience. Most sales people in this industry are sales people that where hired away from other industries, with very little HVAC training.
Rheem Combined With American Standard
In this case my customer has a high efficient 90% Rheem furnace. Most companies would want to pull the furnace and sell matching brands. Or at the very least pull the Rheem and install a cased coil under it. But what I see is a fairly new furnace with just enough space to slide in a uncased coil into the existing base can under it. In fact we had 1/2" to spare when we where all said and done.
When you start getting salespeople coming out to give you bids, ask there background, ask how many decades they have installing these types of equipment. You might be surprised to find out that their last sale was a used Ford pickup.
Big Lake Air Conditioning.
One of my favorite places to install heating or cooling equipment is in the big lake area. A small community that is imbedded into the landscape. In this particular Big Lake Air Conditioning installation the home basically over looked big lake, perfect to watch the fourth of July fireworks.
Trane And American Standard
Most people do not realize that Trane is actually manufactured by American Standard, funny thing is that American Standard is a higher rated(according to consumer reports) piece of HVAC equipment than Trane. Although the brand name Trane is more recognized they are literally the same piece of equipment.
When the AC coil wont fit
In this particular application there is simply not enough room to get the new American Standard air conditioning coil into the existing duct system. In any gas furnace application we must install the AC coil down stream of the furnace. What to do? Well most HVAC people know that in a upflow application (such as this) you can either enter the furnace from the bottom or the side. Here we simply dropped the furnace down, entered the return air from the side and add the coil onto the top of the unit.
Air Conditioner Location
Its really not that hard to figure out where to place the air conditioner, I try to avoid putting the AC near a master bedroom and or the neighbors master bedroom, I try to avoid water spigots, clothe drier outlets and or walk ways. I also try to keep as close as I can to the electrical panel. In this case though the panel was literally around the garage and up a slope.
In this Big Lake Air Conditioning installation we where able to install a matching full cased coil onto the existing Trane furnace, run about 40' of refer line set and install a 13 seer American Standard air conditioner on a preformed pad. My customer is going to be very cool this summer.
Mix Matched Heat Pump in Skagit County.
When it comes to heat pumps a lot of people don't fully understand that you still need a 2nd source of heat. A heat pump will only work down to about 32 degrees, after that we need to switch over to an electric, gas, LP or oil furnace. In some cases their existing furnace will work just fine, and if they/we get lucky we can even install the HP coil directly into their furnace, such is the case here.
American Standard With Lennox
In this case of a mix matched heat pump we have an older Lennox electric furnace (that's in great shape) with a 3 ton blower. This furnace was designed to have a heat pump or air conditioning coil installed directly into it. There is actually a rail system setup and a filter system designed for the coil. Of course it was originally designed for a Lennox coil.
Fitting In The New Coil
The trick to fitting a coil into an older piece of equipment is the physical size of the coil versus the space it goes into. We also have to make sure the existing furnace can actually produce the air we need for the new system. Years ago our coils where much smaller, the reason they grew in size was because of efficiency, the larger the coil the more efficient the system can get. And with today's minimum standards the coils are much larger.
All Working Great
We where able to find an American Standard heat pump coil that fit (with a custom modification to the rails) into the existing Lennox furnace. The new American Standard heat pump(mix matched heat pump) matched up to the coil and the Lennox furnace produces more than enough air. With a few modifications to the control system and a new Honeywell thermostat we had that old Lennox electric furnace turned into a full heat pump system.
We actually saved our customer a lot of money by not selling him a complete system rather converting his existing furnace to a heat pump. He will see his bills drop dramatically and of course he gets air conditioning.
Simple Sedro Woolley Air Conditioner.
This year we have sold and installed record numbers of air conditioners. In this case we actually replaced the existing gas furnace with a new American Standard furnace at the same time. Seeing how the home was fairly small the customer decided against a high efficiency furnace. In reality the difference would have only been about a 15% savings on a very small gas bill.
American Standard Furnace
As you can see the new furnace installed right next to the washer and dryer in the utility room, nice tight fit. Seeing how it was the same efficiency there was no need for redoing the venting. We did have to cut down the existing base can to make the coil fit, everything else just got reconnected.
Air Conditioner Location
When it comes down to it there is a compromise when I look at the Air Conditioners location. I have to think about the refrigeration lines from the indoor coil and the high voltage lines coming from the panel. I also have to think about cosmetics, no one wants an air conditioner located in the front of their home. Overall this Sedro Woolley Air Conditioner turned out great.
York and American Standard combination
Once in awhile you mix and match the equipment, meaning the indoor coil and furnace, like this York and American Standard match up. And usually its because the existing furnace is fairly new like this York 80% gas furnace that's only 9 months old. As long you have the proper airflow and your equipment can match up physically without causing improper air flow it will work just fine. Keep in mind you should still match up your indoor coil and air conditioner.
American Standard Color
I have to admit that somehow the folks down at American Standard have picked the perfect colors for their equipment. I have yet to see one of their air conditioners or heat pumps stick out, they seem to always match up to the home. I wish the refer pipe cover would come in the same color, well at least its paintable.
American Standard Air Conditioner
I can not tell people enough how much I prefer American Standard over any other brand, usually I will install a less expensive piece of equipment IF the customer is on a budget, its a manufactured home and or American Standard simply will not match up to the existing furnace. I feel American Standard is a better built piece of equipment, that's just not my experience talking but also consumer reports over the last 6 or so years.