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New Furnace / Central Air Conditioner Time??

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Deal Addict
Oct 9, 2011
1335 posts
754 upvotes
GTA
sickcars wrote:
In the end so far we are very happy with 40k btu furnace from a 80k btu.
I’m trying to wrap my mind around this. You went from an 80k btu unit down to 40k? How does this work? Why did you have an 80k unit if a 40k is sufficient?

I still don’t understand how the math would work. If your 80k unit was a mid efficiency one, ie 80%, then your max output would be 64k btu. Assuming you went with a high efficiency 97% 40k unit, your output would be 38.8k btus. That’s a gap of 25k btu’s!
Deal Addict
Jun 16, 2009
3639 posts
2118 upvotes
Woodbridge
You are correct. The second installer just replaced the furnace matching the size that existed in the house without considering duct or house size. 80K unit that we replaced was also high efficiency but nothing but troubles over the years primarily because it was way oversized.
I am very glad that OP went with the recommended size.
dpw198 wrote: I’m trying to wrap my mind around this. You went from an 80k btu unit down to 40k? How does this work? Why did you have an 80k unit if a 40k is sufficient?

I still don’t understand how the math would work. If your 80k unit was a mid efficiency one, ie 80%, then your max output would be 64k btu. Assuming you went with a high efficiency 97% 40k unit, your output would be 38.8k btus. That’s a gap of 25k btu’s!
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[OP]
Deal Guru
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Mar 13, 2004
12843 posts
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Ontario
As newlyborn already said, our previous HVAC company that came in to replace a very old 80k btu unit but instead of sizing it correctly and looking at the ducts and so on they saw a family who just had the furnace die and was in desperate need of a new one. They came over to look and said it was a crack heat exchanger and turned off our gas. My parents not knowing any better & it being in the middle of the winter were put in a situation where they did not have much choice. We agreed to buy a new furnace from them which was a York high efficient 80k unit for over $4,000 (not sure exactly on the price) You would think they would size it correctly but just took out a non high efficient 80k unit and put in a new 80k high efficient one.

Shortly after the install (a few days or a week) we started running into issues. In the first 5 years they must of came out to our house multiple times and replaced a bunch of failed parts. The owner of the company who installed it figured out it was oversized because he said we needed to open up a new big air return & even some exhausts which we did but it did not resolve the issue, but of course he also never told us the furnace was oversized. I even ended up contacting York to complain & they sent out their own tech + the installer but could not figure out the issue at the time. I had to call out a separate company and pay out of my pocket to have them check out system and after he started looking around and taking some air temps he figure out the furnace was oversized for the home and it was tripping the high temp limit causing our issues. I then went back to the original installer told them what i found and demanded a new furnace, I wanted a 60k 2 stage unit because it was worth the same we had originally paid for the oversized 80k unit but they would not do it, went back and forth for weeks but nothing.

After all of that either the gas valve or motherboard started to go on the 80k york last year and we finally said forget it as it was time to replace it & here we are with a new 40k but unit from @newlyborn with no issues.

Hopefully that gives you some background on how this started.
dpw198 wrote: I’m trying to wrap my mind around this. You went from an 80k btu unit down to 40k? How does this work? Why did you have an 80k unit if a 40k is sufficient?

I still don’t understand how the math would work. If your 80k unit was a mid efficiency one, ie 80%, then your max output would be 64k btu. Assuming you went with a high efficiency 97% 40k unit, your output would be 38.8k btus. That’s a gap of 25k btu’s!
Jr. Member
Sep 23, 2014
136 posts
113 upvotes
Vaughan, ON
Ash and his team had done a great Job in replacing my old Furnace. His price is very competitive, prompt service and helped me out with all the queries I have.

The old furnace is 1997 Carrier (60,000 BTU) unit and replaced to Lennox (45,000 BTU) unit. New Lennox model is 2 stage, variable DC fan with 96% efficiency. Additional work done is new exhaust changed to White piping (as per new code) and new external fresh air intake. And also, air filter placement is outside the furnace now. The new furnace is pretty quiet as well.

I would gladly recommend Ash (RFD name: newlyborn) and his company (Fair Deal Heating & Air Conditioning). Attached the old and new furnace pics.
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User avatar
Jul 5, 2005
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Toronto
If my 1990 mid-efficiency 78K btu is 80% efficient should I be looking at replacing it with a 65K btu 96% efficient 1 or 2 stage furnace?
[OP]
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Mar 13, 2004
12843 posts
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Ontario
Ideally yes you want to drop down the BTU however you also need to look at your current HVAC setup, the ducts size for example could force you to 40kbtu as they did in my case. Lots of factors need to be taken into consideration before figuring out the correct size furnace needed so you will need to call out a HVAC professional to check it out all. However based on your previous posts it sounds like you will be buying the furnace yourself then getting somebody to install it so you wont be able to get somebody to come out and check it out for free. I'm sure if you requested a service call for this and paid you could get an HVAC tech out. Also keep in mind you will likely need to upgrade your intake and exhaust pipes with the new white ones by law. So might not be worth trying to save money by buying your own furnace with no warranty and then you have to pay extra for those pipes.
GSD wrote: If my 1990 mid-efficiency 78K btu is 80% efficient should I be looking at replacing it with a 65K btu 96% efficient 1 or 2 stage furnace?
Deal Addict
Jun 16, 2009
3639 posts
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Woodbridge
@sickcars has summarized well. Sizing of the furnace SHOULD NOT be solely dependent on your existing furnace size. There are various factors that need to be taken in consideration and house size is one of the biggest factor besides
1. Duct size
2. Insulation
3. Detached, Semi, or in middle town house
4. Windows
5 Age of the property
If you want to be 100 % sure than do a leak test ( cost upto 500 $) to determine the heat loss/gain calculations.
GSD wrote: If my 1990 mid-efficiency 78K btu is 80% efficient should I be looking at replacing it with a 65K btu 96% efficient 1 or 2 stage furnace?
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Newbie
Oct 13, 2020
0 posts
2 upvotes
Oakville, Ontario
I had a very similar experience as @joyceetal with Costco in August but with a different contractor that came to my place. I'm in the GTA as well. Costco was the first place I contacted to arrange an estimate on replacing my furnace and ac. I was quite pleased with setting up of an appointment to come to my house but it all went downhill from there. The company confirmed in their email to me that they do the following:

From their email: "The home comfort adviser coming to meet with you will begin by taking measurements of the duct-work and layout of your home. We will perform for you a heat loss/heat retention calculation and an engineering analysis, which will directly impact the type and size of equipment compatible with your home. Once done, we will then spend time with you discussing the various - makes, models, warranty options, any promotions available, answer all your questions and provide you will the full cost of installation. Based on the questions you may have, we will set aside 60-90 minutes to complete everything."

It went downhill fast after they arrived. When the person arrived he had a quick look at my existing furnace and ac. Then he suggested we gather in my kitchen with my wife and I around our kitchen table and started telling us how Costco and their company will take care of us and we have nothing ever to worry about. Showed us the "most popular" $15K package (plus tax) which he said was also the best fit for us. Not one measurement was taken or calculation done whatsoever. Only throwing the most expensive price at us and seeing if it stuck.

I asked about how he knows what size furnace or ac needed and that I was told that they do the measurements and calculations first. He said with this package that I would be taken care of because of their "No Loopholes, No Hassles, Just Right, We Respect You" guarantee and if anything is wrong that the company and Costco will fix it for free and they only put in the right size systems. He said that they only do the calculations after I sign to buy a package. What a trap and misrepresentation.

Even with the $1000 or $1500 Costco cash back, it made no sense to me and I told him that. I haven't shopped around yet at that point and went to Costco because of their fair pricing on things for cell phones, tires, etc... Boy was that an eye opener.

He then said that he could take at least $3K off the price and if I made him a decent offer that he'll do the calculations needed and get everything going. Even called his boss to ask a question I had that he couldn't answer. I knew at that point I needed to do some more due diligence on my part.

I would recommend staying away as well unless someone has the extra cash to blow or knows exactly what they are willing pay for a system with knowing what model numbers and part numbers they want or are getting. Their pricing and sales strategy/tactics was on a whole different stratosphere. Not what I would consider Costco principles.
[OP]
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Mar 13, 2004
12843 posts
4461 upvotes
Ontario
Wow $15,000 for Furnace & AC? Did you already get it replaced from another contractor? If so what size Furnace/AC does your house need? What brands did you get?

Sneaky companies, they are trying to get people who may not know much about it & think getting 3k off the 15k price is a great deal so their sign up!
robinoak wrote: I had a very similar experience as @joyceetal with Costco in August but with a different contractor that came to my place. I'm in the GTA as well. Costco was the first place I contacted to arrange an estimate on replacing my furnace and ac. I was quite pleased with setting up of an appointment to come to my house but it all went downhill from there. The company confirmed in their email to me that they do the following:

From their email: "The home comfort adviser coming to meet with you will begin by taking measurements of the duct-work and layout of your home. We will perform for you a heat loss/heat retention calculation and an engineering analysis, which will directly impact the type and size of equipment compatible with your home. Once done, we will then spend time with you discussing the various - makes, models, warranty options, any promotions available, answer all your questions and provide you will the full cost of installation. Based on the questions you may have, we will set aside 60-90 minutes to complete everything."

It went downhill fast after they arrived. When the person arrived he had a quick look at my existing furnace and ac. Then he suggested we gather in my kitchen with my wife and I around our kitchen table and started telling us how Costco and their company will take care of us and we have nothing ever to worry about. Showed us the "most popular" $15K package (plus tax) which he said was also the best fit for us. Not one measurement was taken or calculation done whatsoever. Only throwing the most expensive price at us and seeing if it stuck.

I asked about how he knows what size furnace or ac needed and that I was told that they do the measurements and calculations first. He said with this package that I would be taken care of because of their "No Loopholes, No Hassles, Just Right, We Respect You" guarantee and if anything is wrong that the company and Costco will fix it for free and they only put in the right size systems. He said that they only do the calculations after I sign to buy a package. What a trap and misrepresentation.

Even with the $1000 or $1500 Costco cash back, it made no sense to me and I told him that. I haven't shopped around yet at that point and went to Costco because of their fair pricing on things for cell phones, tires, etc... Boy was that an eye opener.

He then said that he could take at least $3K off the price and if I made him a decent offer that he'll do the calculations needed and get everything going. Even called his boss to ask a question I had that he couldn't answer. I knew at that point I needed to do some more due diligence on my part.

I would recommend staying away as well unless someone has the extra cash to blow or knows exactly what they are willing pay for a system with knowing what model numbers and part numbers they want or are getting. Their pricing and sales strategy/tactics was on a whole different stratosphere. Not what I would consider Costco principles.
Deal Addict
Jun 16, 2009
3639 posts
2118 upvotes
Woodbridge
Folks I see that competition has now stooped to a new low. We all know who it is. I am sure he will try to get this post removed in no time but I will keep the customers / RFD informed
1. Apple remains apple no matter where it is made. Today when it comes to manufacturing World has become a global village Its the quality control that matters. Not many brands have a budget friendly yet providing all needed features. Lennox Merit ML296 stands out best for the price and features. Brands like Lennox will not risk their reputation by releasing something that is not reliable. Anyways I can provide any make and model that interests and suits your budget.
2. When getting AC installed please make sure that you get matching coils. ADP coils are cheapest coils so don't simply fall for discounts that you are actually not getting. One of my furnace customer reported that he got better pricing and selection when he called directly.
3. Trane XR 13 is a bare bone AC which is builders model. You can find enough reports here on RFD itself how noisy it is. Being in the industry I havent seen any Trane dealer using it anymore.

Last but not least. Best equipment is that meets your budget and requirements. Brand is important but more important is the installation.
Last edited by newlyborn on Sep 18th, 2021 9:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.
HVAC Pro-Committed to customer, not brand. Past RFD Reviews
2022 Central Air Conditioner & Furnace Group Buy
Deal Addict
Jun 16, 2009
3639 posts
2118 upvotes
Woodbridge
Rumors spread so far about me and my company ( counting further as only way left for competition )
1. Ash is not licensed and not registered ( Accusations were deleted. Thank you RFD Mods as they were easily able to verify the lies)
2. Ash is being sought by TSSA. Everyone has my phone no. other than TSSA who could easily pick the phone and call me to verify my credentials. Find it funny.
3. Immigration is after me and I am an illegal person ( Thank you RFD mods again to clear this mess). Again people from RFD can approach me but not the immigration officers.
4. Latest tactics - Lennox Merit ML296V is made in Mexico hence there is no Lennox credibility or reliability attached to it. Even iphones are made in China. Lennox ML 296V is one of the best solution for people who are looking for a budget friendly 2 stage variable motor furnace.

Please keep tuned as to see which is the next rabbit coming out from the hat.
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2022 Central Air Conditioner & Furnace Group Buy
[OP]
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 13, 2004
12843 posts
4461 upvotes
Ontario
I find it very sad that the competition is getting desperate to lie and say these sort of things because they cannot compete and know you have gotten great reviews and feedback from people on RFD and outside. You would think any good business man/woman would sit back and figure out a plan to properly compete with you so they could win back clients but nope instead they make up lies because they cannot provide the same service as you do. Customers will see all the positive feedback online and in this thread and they will see the truth about you and not some fake account causing issues.

You know what they say, when other companies hate you and need to attack you personally it means you are a real threat to them and are doing something right for your business and customers.
newlyborn wrote: Rumors spread so far about me and my company ( counting further as only way left for competition )
1. Ash is not licensed and not registered ( Accusations were deleted. Thank you RFD Mods as they were easily able to verify the lies)
2. Ash is being sought by TSSA. Everyone has my phone no. other than TSSA who could easily pick the phone and call me to verify my credentials. Find it funny.
3. Immigration is after me and I am an illegal person ( Thank you RFD mods again to clear this mess). Again people from RFD can approach me but not the immigration officers.
4. Latest tactics - Lennox Merit ML296V is made in Mexico hence there is no Lennox credibility or reliability attached to it. Even iphones are made in China. Lennox ML 296V is one of the best solution for people who are looking for a budget friendly 2 stage variable motor furnace.

Please keep tuned as to see which is the next rabbit coming out from the hat.
Sr. Member
Jan 19, 2013
669 posts
566 upvotes
Ottawa
vparvath wrote: Ash and his team had done a great Job in replacing my old Furnace. His price is very competitive, prompt service and helped me out with all the queries I have.

The old furnace is 1997 Carrier (60,000 BTU) unit and replaced to Lennox (45,000 BTU) unit. New Lennox model is 2 stage, variable DC fan with 96% efficiency. Additional work done is new exhaust changed to White piping (as per new code) and new external fresh air intake. And also, air filter placement is outside the furnace now. The new furnace is pretty quiet as well.

I would gladly recommend Ash (RFD name: newlyborn) and his company (Fair Deal Heating & Air Conditioning). Attached the old and new furnace pics.
Is that white glue/solvent they used where the white vent pipe connects to the furnace? Cant get close up of picture
Jr. Member
Sep 23, 2014
136 posts
113 upvotes
Vaughan, ON
The glue/solvent used looks dark purple for the white pipe connects.
Jr. Member
Nov 2, 2015
181 posts
139 upvotes
Oakville
TomLafinsky wrote: You might be doing great work, are very knowledgeable and your prices might be great. But you and your sidekick are really annoying. There are just so many times people can hear how great one is... In the end it starts to sound fake.
It does seem like a lot but I'm betting he's getting some coin for every person he persuades
[OP]
Deal Guru
User avatar
Mar 13, 2004
12843 posts
4461 upvotes
Ontario
Actually I get a whole $0, I get nothing in return & I don't want anything. I do it because we have had so many issues with our past furnace that I'm extremely happy to finally resolve everything and have a properly working one & I feel I owe him for taking care of us & going out of his way. I only promote people/companies that I have dealt with and know they do quality work because I'm the guy people come to and ask for recommendations on things be it hvac, computers, cars etc. I hate shitty quality items and work and refuse to promote crap but I belive people who do quality work and go out of their way deserve to be promoted and have good luck.

not only that but I promote him a lot as you guys know, there is no way I can track what new clients I send his way because i don't tell them to say I sent them and so on, so that would never work.

JivesHVAC wrote: It does seem like a lot but I'm betting he's getting some coin for every person he persuades
Deal Addict
Oct 19, 2020
1048 posts
667 upvotes
GTA
newlyborn wrote: Folks I see that competition has not stooped to a new low. We all know who it is. I am sure he will try to get this post removed in no time but I will keep the customers / RFD informed
1. Apple remains apple no matter where it is made. Today when it comes to manufacturing World has become a global village Its the quality control that matters. Not many brands have a budget friendly yet providing all needed features. Lennox Merit ML296 stands out best for the price and features. Brands like Lennox will not risk their reputation by releasing something that is not reliable. Anyways I can provide any make and model that interests and suits your budget.
2. When getting AC installed please make sure that you get matching coils. ADP coils are cheapest coils so don't simply fall for discounts that you are actually not getting. One of my furnace customer reported that he got better pricing and selection when he called directly.
3. Trane XR 13 is a bare bone AC which is builders model. You can find enough reports here on RFD itself how noisy it is. Being in the industry I havent seen any Trane dealer using it anymore.

Last but not least. Best equipment is that meets your budget and requirements. Brand is important but more important is the installation.
Long time reader, first time poster.
I have nothing to do with "fourseasonscomfort", but believe he is at least partially correct about the ML296V.
I'm sure you're a great contractor based on the reviews, however...

People really need to research what they're getting into when they consider a "low budget" 2-stage/variable furnace.
There are reasons why they are $500 to $1000 cheaper - they are not equivalent to the more premium products, lennox cuts corners on the cheap merit units. They do have their place.

The ML296V may have less cabinet insulation and lower quality parts. The circuit board is definitely different - no support for communicating t-stats. The basic design is the same though.
The Merit line is indeed low budget/builder's grade: They are indeed made in mexico, likely by people earning under $5 an hour in bad conditions. (some people prefer to put americans to work)
They don't necessarily have the same quality control.
The same units are sold under low end lennox brands such as Ducane, Air-flo, Concord, etc.
You will never see the merit style units sold under Armstrong or Air-ease names.

But what really stands out is the bad blower programming...

There is barely any difference between the low and high fire airflow for most sizes. The difference is under 100 cfm!
What this means is that the airflow is a pretty much compromise between what's ideal for low and high fire.
For the small 45k version used in small houses, instead of being 500 to 600 CFM on low and 750 to 800 on high, it's more like 700 on low and 760 on high!
Low heat can feel little cool/drafty -> 30 to 40F temp rise instead of the usual 40 to 55F+ of modern furnaces.
The extra airflow on low can mean more noise too. On high heat, these furnaces run hotter than others.
A good 2-stage/variable, sized close to heat loss and controlled by the right thermostat feels more like hot water heat than forced air with no noticeable draft and minimal noise.
The ML296V could deliver more of a "builder's forced air" experience, which makes sense, because it is a low budget furnace being sold as a premium product.

Slow the fan down below factory to get low fire supply air temperature right and the high fire airflow gets too low, potentially reducing heat exchanger lifespan.


The EL296V has the low and high fire CFM closer than equivalent units from other manufacturers, but still way better than the merit version. The ratio is what matters more so than factory setting - can make adjustments without making it run too hot on high fire or too cool on low fire.

This can be confirmed by looking at the blower speed settings in the install manual or technical guide.

Also not a fan of goodman GMVC units - used to be a great budget model until they introduced the comfort-bridge BS and removed W2 from the board. The board decides how long to wait until locking into second stage based on previous cycle times and target cycle length ->it has no idea whether second stage is required to maintain the setpoint and worse yet, does not allow for down-staging.
To get the full benefit from a 2-stage furnace - continuous heat in extreme cold, the staging needs to be controlled by the thermostat so second stage can be cycled on and off to maintain while there's a continuous W1 call.

Goodman cabinet quality is poor if a relative's 2011 gmvc95 I briefly worked on is any indication -> thin metal, poor finish, sharp edges, reliance on thick rubber seals rather than good fit to stop air leakage. Screw holes may strip out after loosening/tightening the fasteners a few times.

2-stage is still a major improvement over single stage despite any deficiency in the equipment. This is particularly true when the heating capacity is cut in half as you did for "sickcars". The customer will always happy especially when its not bouncing off the high limit any more. 80k furnaces do not belong in old toronto 800-1200sq ft homes with duct systems engineered for low airflow natural draft furnaces that run 70F-100f+ temp rise.


Re: coils, if it's a ahri approved match with a number, should be okay - it's been tested or at least simulated.
Last edited by insertname2020 on Oct 21st, 2020 6:12 pm, edited 5 times in total.
Hvac advice warning - inaccurate information on forum, vested interests in selling builder's equipment. Selling dealer-only brands without being authorized is a red flag. Report to CRA if offered no tax cash-deal. If it's 2 good to b tru, it is.
Deal Addict
Jun 16, 2009
3639 posts
2118 upvotes
Woodbridge
Thank you for your thesis and enlightening post. I can easily insert the name in your screen name and so does most of the RFD's. I am expecting more from competition "fourseasoncomfort" with whom you have allegedly no connections. Smiling Face With Open Mouth
Please know that my screen name is "newlyborn" but it should not be construed as I was born yesterday.

Lennox ML296V is one of the best solutions which provides all the features with in the budget. Have been installing it for years and no one has any complaints including RFD members here.

ADP / Aspen coils are not same as branded coils . Customers spending tonnes of money on builders model noisy Trane XR13 have a different expectation. I am not sure how many customers realized that they never got the REAL PACKAGE. When I spend top dollors, I expect to get branded coil and not some compatible product.
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