WaterFurnace Pricing

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Chad, Mar 20, 2019.

  1. Chad

    Chad New Member

    In 2011, new construction home with installation of 3 HydroTemp geothermal units. Unfortunately, main level geothermal unit (covering approximately 3100 sqft) is failing. Copper coils with multiple leaks and failure of stage I compressor.

    When building the home, used HVAC company that our builder recommended. That company has undergone some management changes and now does very little geothermal work.

    Installing HVAC company basically is telling us that they no longer use HydroTemp secondary to many problems with their units. They recommended replacing the unit and gave us two estimates for a new unit (one made by Aaon, the other by Bard).

    I have lost faith in current HVAC company. After a web search, WaterFurnace seems to be one of the best units around. There is 1 WaterFurnace Pro dealer in our area. Have met with him twice. He and his company seem honest. From what I'm told, they install / maintain more geothermal units in the area than all other local companies combined.

    Just received his estimate for WaterFurnace equipment. The following applies:
    • Unit will heat / cool approximately 3100 sqft. Most ceilings 10'.
    • Current HydroTemp unit for this area was a 7.5 ton unit.
    • New HVAC company is proposing usage of a 5 ton unit.
    Bids:
    • WaterFurnace 7 series 5 Ton unit with hot water generation. 10 yr parts and labor warranty. $22,500
    • WaterFurnace 5 series 5 Ton unit with hot water generation. 10 yr parts and labor warranty. $17,000
    Questions:
    • For 3100 sqft, HydroTemp unit was 7.5 ton. New proposal is 5 ton. Does 5T seem appropriate? 7.5T unit oversized for area?
    • How is proposed pricing for 7 series and 5 series? I have no current comparison. There are other WaterFurnace dealers in the area, but they are not Pro dealers. I could obtain a bid from a non Pro dealer, but don't want to waste their time. I'd prefer to go with Pro dealer given their geothermal experience.
    • New HVAC company is giving me a ballpark estimate of $120 electric cost savings / month with 7 series unit over 5 series unit. Thus conservatively, I was estimating $1000 annual savings with 7 series unit over 5 series. Is this a reasonable estimate?
    Thanks in advance for the help. Chad
     
  2. ChrisJ

    ChrisJ Active Member Forum Leader

    Is there a manual J heat loss/gain from the original HVAC company?

    Do you know if the 7.5 unit ever runs in 3rd compressor stage? That unit probably has a 5 ton & 2 1/2 ton compressors.

    I have been down this road, replaced my Hydro-temp unit 2 1/2 yrs ago.
     
  3. Jarvie Bentley

    Jarvie Bentley New Member

    Sounds like we are kinda of close to the same thing. Here is my story so far:

    I'm am new to geothermal, only having in this house I just purchased a little over a year ago. I recently got what seems to be the dreaded "low pressure alarm" on my premier 2 that was installed in 1999. I had a tech come out to check out and he found that I'm about 6 psi low (R-22) with a leak. The leak has not been located. The tech has recommend a replacement due to cost of repair. ( $375 to locate leak, $1000 in new freon, couple hundred for repair if it can be done, plus labor, etc., etc.) He believes it could pretty quickly add up to nearly half of what I would be looking at for replacement.

    I am looking at replacing my unit with either a Series 5 or Series 7 but I'm not brand loyal to Waterfurance. I'm looking at Waterfurnace because that is what is there now and it seems to be a top end brand. There are really only two authorized dealers for WF in my area that I can find, (in between Lansing, Jackson and Ann Arbor). I do use the hook up for the DSH for hot water and have a 50 buffer tank the feeds a 40 gal tank. I also will be replacing the loop pumps that still work but are original so should probably be replaced. Based on their calculation I need a 5 ton unit. (2800 sq./ft. above ground w/ 900 sq/ft finished walkout). I got my first quote yesterday and I was a little surprised at the prices I was given, seeing that there will not be any work needed on the loop other than replacing the pumps and all other equipment in place. Yes, I do understand there will be some duct work and other things that go with replacing the unit that need to be accounted for.

    Quotes:
    5 series with the two loop pumps, hot water generation, WIFI thermal stat, air purification filter system, and a ten year parts and labor warranty for $19,750.
    7 Series with same options for $25,453.

    I know that WF supplies 5 yr. parts and labor and 10 year parts on all sales. I do understand that it is just an allowance for parts and labor and I may have to pay above what they will compensate. Out of those prices I believe $2500 was for the loop pumps ( which seems high but don't really have any reference). so that would make the Series 5 about $17,000 and Series 7 about $22,500. Interesting that ours quotes came in nearly exact even being in complete different regions in the U.S.

    Questions:
    Does this seem like a fair price? I was under the impression the loop was the costly part of the system to put in.
    In a two level (three if you count the walkout) with only R-19 walls would it really be worth getting the Series 7 or would you recommend just staying with the Series 5?
    How difficult would it be to change my own loop pumps?

    I plan on being here for at least 20 yrs. so I want to get this right. Sorry for the long winded post just trying to give you as much info as I can.
     
  4. Chad

    Chad New Member

    I don't have a manual J.

    Don't know if it runs in 3rd compressor stage. Original HVAC has bypassed 1st stage compressor so that we have some heat currently.

    Unfortunately, we have 2 other HydroTemp units.

    Sorry I cannot be of more help re: your questions.
     
  5. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    3100 sqf new construction should easily being handled by a 5 ton 7 series.

    Between heating and cooling we see a 30% difference in performance with the 7 series.....
     
  6. Chad

    Chad New Member

    Thanks for the information.

    Pricing seem reasonable?
     
  7. waterpirate

    waterpirate Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Just worked at a house today where the hvac company replaced the upstairs hydro temp unit. after re purging the downstairs unit went on the fritz. What is the issue with these units?
    RE the original poster. Doc is the resident WF expert and I always recommend a unit that has local support from a long time dealer/installer.
    Hope this helps
    Eric
     
  8. Chad

    Chad New Member

    Thanks for the info.
     
  9. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I usually staying a bit out of commenting about new prices in other areas.

    The 7 series needs a variable speed pump, chances are that they need to provide this.

    The importance is that you get someone for whom this is routine.

    I always compare it brain surgery, you don't want a freshman surgeon who does it once a month, you want someone who has done a few hundred or thousand, and is doing a couple surgeries a day.
     
    waterpirate likes this.
  10. Colton Weber

    Colton Weber Member

    I just had a 5 series 3 ton unit installed. Existing open loop. 16k before rebates. So for a 5 ton 17k sounds like a good price to me.
    100% would have gone 7 series if I did not have the existing open loop. 7 series does not like open loop. But it is much more efficient then the 5.
     
  11. Chad

    Chad New Member

    There are 2 HVAC companies in our area that do substantial geothermal work. The 1st I've already mentioned (a WaterFurnace Pro dealer). The other company primarily installs GeoComfort units. I got a bid from this latter company.

    I sent PDFs of our house plans to both companies. We are replacing the geothermal unit for our main floor. With my calculations, main level has approximately 31oo sqft. Primarily 10' ceilings. Our great room is vaulted and communicates with the 2nd floor. Have basement and 2nd floor above main level, each with their own geothermal unit.

    WaterFurnace dealer didn't provide me with a specific calculation, but claims a 5 Ton unit will suffice for the main level. The GeoComfort dealer did a load calculation. He says that load calculation showed a need for 5.64 tons of cooling at 100 degrees outdoor temperature and 75 degrees indoor temp. We live in the Midwest (southern Missouri). Have some summer days at 100 degrees and some winter days at 0 degrees; however, both are relatively rare.

    Current bids:
    1) WaterFurnace 7 series 5 Ton unit with hot water generation. 10 yr parts and labor warranty. $22,500
    2) WaterFurnace 5 series 5 Ton unit with hot water generation. 10 yr parts and labor warranty. $17,000
    3) GeoComfort Navigator YT072 6 Ton unit. 10 yr parts and labor warranty. $14,611

    Questions:
    • WaterFurnace dealer is suggesting a 5T unit while GeoComfort is suggesting a 6T unit. How do I determine correct size? Should I ask WaterFurnace dealer for an actual load calculation?
    • Are there any major differences between WaterFurnace and GeoComfort units? From what I'm told, 5 series has 28.0 EER and 7 series has 41 EER. I THINK GeoComfort has 18.0 EER with full load and 24.8 EER with partial load. Both units use aluminium coils. I think both units have 2 stage Copeland Ultratech compressors.
    • I asked GeoComfort dealer about whether or not they sold a unit similar to the WaterFurance 7 series with variable speed compressor. He said that GeoComfort makes them; however, he has not installed them in the past. Said something about there being more electrical components in such units thus making the unit more susceptible to lightening strikes and other electrical issues. Is there any truth to this?
    Thanks again for all of the help. Trying to make an informed decision, especially with our early failed HydroTemp unit.
     
  12. Jarvie Bentley

    Jarvie Bentley New Member

    Waterfurnace 5 Series is made in a 3 through 6 ton capacity. The 7 series is only made up to a 5 ton. I was told due to the efficiency in the 7 Series Waterfurnace determined there was not any benefit from making a 6 ton unit. From my understanding the 7 Series should be more than capable of providing your needs for that square footage. As far as I know, I don’t believe Geo comfort really has any units that are truly comparable to the 7 series, But there are a lot more people on here more knowledgeable in this field that I am. As far as them being more susceptible to damage due to lightning strike I kind of feel like that is a bit of a stretch and a bit of a down play of the more high tech systems. If you were concerned about lightning strikes you can install a whole house surge protector on the main switch of your panel for a couple hundred dollars.
     
  13. Chad

    Chad New Member

    Thanks for the info.

    We have a whole house surge protector.

    Trying to decided between the WaterFurnace and Geocomfort units. Geocomfort unit is appealing given that it's $2500 cheaper than the 5 series.
     
  14. Chad

    Chad New Member

    Trying to decide between the 3 units:

    5 Ton WaterFurnace Series 5 (28.0 EER, 4.8 COP)
    5 Ton WaterFurnace Series 7 (41 EER, 5.3 COP)
    6 Ton Geocomfort Navigator (24.8 EER, 4.4 COP)

    I have equal confidence in the 2 installers.

    Is there a way to get a ballpark assessment of either monthly or annual utility costs for each of the 3 units?
    DocJenser noted the 30% improved performance between Waterfurnace 7 & 5 series; however, it's hard for me to equate this into a dollar amount. Again, we live in southern MO where we have occasional but not frequent 100 and 0 degree days.

    WaterFurnace 5 series vs. Geocomfort. Waterfurnace has better EER / COP specs, but costs $1800 more (after accounting for tax credits).

    WaterFurnace 7 series vs 5 series. 7 series has better EER / COP specs, but costs $3700 more (after accounting for tax credits).

    Thanks again for all the help.
     
  15. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Waterfurnace over Geocomfort every day. I admit I am bias now, we are a Waterfurnace dealer, but also have installed HYDRON (Geocomfort).

    7 series over 5 series every day. Forget the savings, just for comfort reason it is a no brainer.
     
  16. bdbsenji

    bdbsenji New Member

    Go with the Waterfurnace Sserries 7!!!! I have a 4 ton Series 7 downstairs and a 3 ton series 5 upstairs and the 7 series is superior. I replaced an older Waterfrunace Envision 5 ton unit with the 4 ton series 7 which conditions 2800+ sq. ft.The 7series never runs on its highest speed and I do not have back up (resistance) heat. The unit runs a lot on lower speeds, is ExTREMELY quiet and keeps the temp within .2 of the setpoint temp. Would highly recommend the 7 series!
     
  17. Chad

    Chad New Member

    Why Waterfurance over Geocomfort? Are there any specific advantages to the Waterfurnace?

    Why is comfort that much better for the 7 series? Are you inferring that the 7 series keeps the temp much closer to the thermostat set point than than 5 series?

    Thanks for all the help. Much appreciated.
     
  18. Chad

    Chad New Member

    Your experience gives me some clarity.

    The Geocomfort dealer is saying that we need a 6 ton unit. Waterfurnace dealer is recommending a 5 ton unit. One concern I have with the Waterfurnace quote is that I'm questioning whether they've undersized the quote (given that Geocomfort dealer is recommending 6 ton unit and original HVAC installed a 7.5 ton Hydrotemp). All feedback on this forum seems to indicate that a 5 ton Waterfurance unit will cover our square footage.

    0.2 degrees within setpoint? I can't even fathom that. Our Hydrotemp unit is often 2 or 3 degress off of setpoint (could be a function of our thermostat, but I'd guess this has more to do with the Hydrotemp unit).

    Thanks for your feedback.
     
  19. bdbsenji

    bdbsenji New Member

    The two largest manufacturers are Climatemaster and Waterfurnace. Both companies make THE most efficient systems on the market. However, Climatemaster has had many problems with their most efficient unit. Waterfurnace has not. The 7 series will run A LOT, but on slow quiet speeds and vary speeds while operating thus allowing the unit to maintain the temperature very precisely. When the unit is running on its slowest speed it is hard to tell if it is running, even when you are standing next to it. Good luck!
     
  20. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    AHRI heat capacities:

    Geocomfort 6 ton = 56,200 BTU/h

    WF 7 series = 51,000 BTU/h
     

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