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Need Help Evaluating Quote

josephny
josephny Member Posts: 105
edited February 18 in THE MAIN WALL
I received the quote below after extensive discussions and back and forth.

House is 3 floors, 1500 sq-ft per floor (stacked), very well spray foamed in zone 6.

I am nervous about going with a heat pump. I am also nervous about ducts (noise and pollutants). But, I lean towards ducts rather than looking at minisplit units.

I'd sure appreciate expert eyes on this.

Thank you!

Redacted pricing -- sorry for the violation.



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Comments

  • ratio
    ratio Member Posts: 2,732
    We don't discuss pricing here. Please redact the actual numbers & reupload the image.
    josephnyErin Holohan Haskell
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    ratio said:

    We don't discuss pricing here. Please redact the actual numbers & reupload the image.

    Done -- sorry for the violation.

    Erin Holohan Haskell
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    Fan Tech is a good product
    Cant say I've heard a lot of good things with LG Equipment.

    9-Tons of equipment? Get an independent Manual "j" performed

    Mitsubishi
    Fujitsu
    Daikin

    Whats the back up source of heat, Electric, Oil, NG, LP?

    Once again the Name of the installing contractor is more important then the name on the box's!
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 15,443
    Heat pumps are fine -- so long as you have a backup heat source as well. And, ideally, one which you can run with a generator, independently -- which means oil or LP. At least in in my humble opinion (and that of a lot of Texans, after the last few days...)
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    LS123
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    pecmsg said:

    Fan Tech is a good product
    Cant say I've heard a lot of good things with LG Equipment.

    9-Tons of equipment? Get an independent Manual "j" performed

    Mitsubishi
    Fujitsu
    Daikin

    Whats the back up source of heat, Electric, Oil, NG, LP?

    Once again the Name of the installing contractor is more important then the name on the box's!

    Yea, 96kbtu seemed like a lot to me also from the little I know.

    I thought (I guess I'm just repeating what I'm told) that LG was top notch.

    For back up, contractor is proposing (as an option), electric heat strips. But, what I don't know is whether backup heat is necessary just to eliminate the damage in the tiny chance that the equipment breaks, or whether the likelihood of breaking (and a substantial wait time for parts) is higher with a complex system like this?

    My other thinking is a propane boiler for a radiant hydronic heat combined with the water coil in air handlers for the 2nd and 3rd floors.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105

    Heat pumps are fine -- so long as you have a backup heat source as well. And, ideally, one which you can run with a generator, independently -- which means oil or LP. At least in in my humble opinion (and that of a lot of Texans, after the last few days...)

    Lots of conflicting information and stories out there for the uninformed about whether heat pumps really are okay in zone 6.

    Interestingly, you bring up the question of backup heat also. Are you thinking supplemental heat or backup for when equipment fails or when electric goes out?

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 15,443
    The backup heat -- or the auxiliary electric heat strips -- is there for when the heat pump can't supply enough heat for the structure. Which may or may not be a real issue in zone 6, depending on the specific heat pump. The backup heat -- but not the heat strips -- are also there for when the heat pump dies and you want to stay warm. If the backup heat is grid-independent -- that is, LP or oil and you have a generator -- it's also handy when the grid goes down.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,346
    Is this a house you're building, or one that's already built? If the latter, what's there now?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    edited February 18
    Heat Pumps have a place in all "Zones". Its just a balance between cost of operation with electric and alternate fuel Oil, NG, LP
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105

    The backup heat -- or the auxiliary electric heat strips -- is there for when the heat pump can't supply enough heat for the structure. Which may or may not be a real issue in zone 6, depending on the specific heat pump. The backup heat -- but not the heat strips -- are also there for when the heat pump dies and you want to stay warm. If the backup heat is grid-independent -- that is, LP or oil and you have a generator -- it's also handy when the grid goes down.

    Thanks. Trying to keep my terminology straight so I was wondering if there is a distinction between backup heat and aux heat, but I suppose it's nuanced: Backup heat can be for then power goes out or equipment fails or it can be for when equipment just can't product as much heat as is necessary.

    The LG unit's literature (and sales) says it's good to -13 F. Who knows what "good" means?

  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    Steamhead said:

    Is this a house you're building, or one that's already built? If the latter, what's there now?

    Gut reno. Almost done with framing. So, nothing is there now as far as HVAC.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    As the outside temperature drops so does the Heat Output. Add to that the more frequent defrosts cycles that are actually Cooling Cycles and they can get a bit uncomfortable. Thats when some form of Aux Heat is required. Electric strip elements are the cheapest to install but the most expensive to operate.
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,346
    For what it's worth- several years ago we had to replace a steam boiler over the Christmas-New Year holiday and the daytime high was 15° or so. The house had mini-split heat-pump units that were supposed to be good down to zero, but they were only able to keep the house to 55° during that period. We set up some space heaters in the basement while we were working.

    These units kept the house from freezing, but that was about it.
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,346
    josephny said:

    Steamhead said:

    Is this a house you're building, or one that's already built? If the latter, what's there now?

    Gut reno. Almost done with framing. So, nothing is there now as far as HVAC.
    Why not install hydronics? No forced-air system will ever equal the comfort of a good radiant or radiator system. Plus, you really don't want fans blowing COVID and other germs around, do you?
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    pecmsg said:

    Heat Pumps have a place in all "Zones". Its just a balance between cost of operation with electric and alternate fuel Oil, NG, LP

    That's very interesting. It wasn't that long ago that heat pumps were simply inappropriate for the colder climates, right? My concern is that a heat pump (this LG unit, for example) will be able to work when it gets down to -10 F (and windy).

    And then there's the cost of operation -- I pay $0.105/KWH now and that will be increasing by several percent a year, likely for a a few years. I pay $1.79/gallon for propane. If my newly developed knowledge and skills are correct, that means that I pay $0.0309/KBTU for electric and $0.0195/KBTU for propane. Which means the only way electric heat is even on par as far as operating cost with propane is with an average COP of 1.6. Given the high level of insulation for the house, the return period (years) on excess cost to go with heat pumps would be substantial. Combined with the much more complex environment (i.e., things to go wrong and break) and the quality of radiant hydronic heat, I am all the more confused.

    See how dangerous a little info can be (;-)

  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    pecmsg said:

    As the outside temperature drops so does the Heat Output. Add to that the more frequent defrosts cycles that are actually Cooling Cycles and they can get a bit uncomfortable. Thats when some form of Aux Heat is required. Electric strip elements are the cheapest to install but the most expensive to operate.

    I've seen mention of the defrost cycles and how it creates such a nicely chilled inside air.

    I've also seen mention of the efficiency degrading as the temp drops, which negates the major benefit of heat pumps, right?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    Add into that calculation the straight electric that will be needed during defrost. I switch over my jobs around 20 - 25°F to the oil or gas furnace.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    Steamhead said:

    For what it's worth- several years ago we had to replace a steam boiler over the Christmas-New Year holiday and the daytime high was 15° or so. The house had mini-split heat-pump units that were supposed to be good down to zero, but they were only able to keep the house to 55° during that period. We set up some space heaters in the basement while we were working.

    These units kept the house from freezing, but that was about it.

    Ugh! To spend $xxxxx and then be cold would really suck.

    The contractor swears up and down that these LGs won't disappoint.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    josephny said:

    Steamhead said:

    For what it's worth- several years ago we had to replace a steam boiler over the Christmas-New Year holiday and the daytime high was 15° or so. The house had mini-split heat-pump units that were supposed to be good down to zero, but they were only able to keep the house to 55° during that period. We set up some space heaters in the basement while we were working.

    These units kept the house from freezing, but that was about it.

    Ugh! To spend $xxxxx and then be cold would really suck.

    The contractor swears up and down that these LGs won't disappoint.
    and I have a Bridge you'll love!

    This the same contractor that specked 9-Tons o:)
    josephny
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    Steamhead said:

    josephny said:

    Steamhead said:

    Is this a house you're building, or one that's already built? If the latter, what's there now?

    Gut reno. Almost done with framing. So, nothing is there now as far as HVAC.
    Why not install hydronics? No forced-air system will ever equal the comfort of a good radiant or radiator system. Plus, you really don't want fans blowing COVID and other germs around, do you?
    I am very very much leaning in that direction!

    Another contractor is putting together a quote for a propane boiler with radiant under the first floor and (I think) under the second floor, but he says that the effectiveness of radiant heat is tremendously degraded if there is anything other than hardwood floor (no carpeting). He is also putting air handlers with a hot water coil (same boiler) for the 3rd and (I thnk) 2nd floors. And I can't remember what he said about AC but it was a term I hadn't heard. Something like super-duper AC.
  • Youngplumber
    Youngplumber Member Posts: 538
    I would get a hot air furnace as back up heat and use the ductwork for the ac. Back up generator to run the fan for the furnace and pumps for the hydronic system if the power goes out. Use hydronic heat as my primary system for comfort and efficiency. If I had the money and blank slate. 
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    You need to start at the beginning.

    A Proper Manual "J" Load Loss calculation. From there you can compare apples to apples. Right now your wasting the contractors time, there all going to say different sizes and cost of operation.

    Tacos Calc is good for the heating.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    Now along with that is What are you doing for bringing in Outside air into this sealed home? You should have a complete air change every 3 - 4 hours to exhaust indoor pollutants and supply fresh air.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    I did a Man J and I believe the heating load is approx 60kbtu and the cooling about 25kbtu.

    And the contractor says he did a Man J and the 96KBTU he proposes "isn’t a crazy amount oversized but it definitely is over about 18K BTU. The issue is you still need a certain amount of cfm to deliver the air throughout the entire floors. The 36k BTU units also modulate down to roughly 18,200 BTU and the 24k unit modulates down to around 8,000 btu’s"

    We have an ERV (Fantech 200D, but I'm looking at the 260 also) -- think that would be enough?
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    As far as the 200 vs the 260, he writes:

    "Think the SER 260 is a bit of overkill after looking at it, there is roughly 4000 ft/sq when you take the third floor knee walls into consideration. Remember the more fresh air we bring in is the more air we have to condition. We will pull exhaust from all the bathrooms for the ERV. Normally we would duct the supply right into the return of the air handler but it would be tough to get it to the second floor units return so I will put it high wall across from the return grill. I can do the same with the first and third floors"

  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    Huge difference in calculations. Can you post your Manual "J"?

    I'll believe the 60K & 25K. Your contractors 96K (Hes actually installing 108K BTU/h) for cooling is 50% higher huge red flag even with inverter units.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105

    Here it is. It's my first one, so I'm sure I made mistakes.

  • Steamhead
    Steamhead Member Posts: 14,346
    First glance shows part of the problem. Your cooling load is less than half of your heating load. So a heat pump that can handle the heating load will be wayyyyy oversized for cooling, and definitely won't control indoor humidity well during the summer.

    Where in NY are you located? We probably know someone who can help..................
    All Steamed Up, Inc.
    Steam, Vapor & Hot-Water Heating Specialists
    Oil & Gas Burner Service
    Consulting
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105

    I would get a hot air furnace as back up heat and use the ductwork for the ac. Back up generator to run the fan for the furnace and pumps for the hydronic system if the power goes out. Use hydronic heat as my primary system for comfort and efficiency. If I had the money and blank slate. 

    Hydronic radiant for primary heat.

    Hot air for backup heat.

    Ducts for both hot air and AC.

    Sorry if this is stupid of me, but what is cooling the air for the AC?

  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925

    Is that report just 1 floor and theres 2 stories?

  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    Steamhead said:

    First glance shows part of the problem. Your cooling load is less than half of your heating load. So a heat pump that can handle the heating load will be wayyyyy oversized for cooling, and definitely won't control indoor humidity well during the summer.

    Where in NY are you located? We probably know someone who can help..................

    I'm in Sullivan Count. I chose Rochester on the man j because there wasn't a location in Sullivan available.

    Can you explain a little about how a heat pump oversize for cooling won't control humidity well?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    It doesn't get enough run time. If its not running its not taking moisture out of the air.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    pecmsg said:


    Is that report just 1 floor and theres 2 stories?

    All 3 -- whole house.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    pecmsg said:

    It doesn't get enough run time. If its not running its not taking moisture out of the air.

    Got it -- makes sense.

    What about the modulating aspect? Does that address the short runtime?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    josephny said:

    pecmsg said:


    Is that report just 1 floor and theres 2 stories?

    All 3 -- whole house.
    So the whole house is 1500 sq Ft?
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    edited February 18
    josephny said:

    pecmsg said:

    It doesn't get enough run time. If its not running its not taking moisture out of the air.

    Got it -- makes sense.

    What about the modulating aspect? Does that address the short runtime?
    Inverter units are fine but have other issues with oversizing,

    Oversizing is never good.
  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    Based on that report if it was my choice

    Thermo Pride Oil http://www.thermopride.com/wp-content/uploads/PS020019-051519.pdf (LP is available http://www.thermopride.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/PS0400032.pdf )Get there 2-Ton coil and the BOSCH 3-Ton Inverter Driven heat pump.

    The Installing Contractor is the biggest choice you have to make.
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    pecmsg said:

    josephny said:

    pecmsg said:


    Is that report just 1 floor and theres 2 stories?

    All 3 -- whole house.
    So the whole house is 1500 sq Ft?
    No, 1500 sq ft per floor, 3 floors.

  • pecmsg
    pecmsg Member Posts: 1,925
    that changes everything

    BOSCH 3-Ton Inverter Driven with HW coils for the 1st and 2nd floors. The attic unit for the 3rd I wouldn't chance freezing a coil so Straight electric back up.

    Is the basement included in that figure?
  • josephny
    josephny Member Posts: 105
    Basement is not included in the 4500 sq-ft total.

    Basement has insulated walls and concrete slab with no insulation under it.

    I don't understand about the Bosch recommendation. It is the same technology as the LG, right?
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