Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Updated Mechanicals

After looking at the blog, I noticed a draft I never completed. So I finished it. :-)

Looking back to '08, I was considering a new HVAC system. Our system was old, energy usage was up, and the system wasn't keeping up with the heat and cold. I should have redone the system then. But I didn't. And it continued to get worse.

Last October the furnace went down, and since we were in a better financial position than we were in '08 we decided to update the system. Since we had issues with both the furnace and the A/C it was time to update both. I got quotes, and ended up going with a SEER 16 2.5 ton unit outside, and a 80% efficient gas furnace inside. All said and done the costs came in at $5100. We then got $600 in rebates from Rheem, $500 from the State of Maryland and an additional $350 from BGE. With the combination of the SEER 16 outdoor unit and 80% efficient indoor unit, we were also eligible for $1500 in tax credits. What originally was a ludicrous cost became a manageable cost, especially since replacing the equipment late in the year minimized the time between our payment and subsequent tax return. Also, by negotiating our deal in late fall the HVAC companies were looking for work which allowed us room to negotiate.

While the up front costs were high, overall it was a good decision that I wish we would have done sooner. I don't know if we will ever get the money back for this, but doing this change two years later than we should have cost us a lot in extra energy bills. If I had to do it all over again I would have done it sooner.

Also, as we were looking at the HVAC upgrades we realized our ducts were undersized. Especially our return ducts upstairs. We decided not to undertake this task yet, as we wanted to see how much just changing out the units helped. While it has definitely lowered our costs, at times I can tell we need more air changeover upstairs. In the long run I think this task is something that should be done, but for the next few years it is definitely on the back burner.

1 comment:

Patrick said...

I'm going to eventually need to get HVAC done and was wondering who you went through?

Congrats on the new house!

- Patrick