Our 17 year old Lennox furnace started showing its age last winter and we spent $400 to nurse it through the last month of the heating season. I spent quite a few hours over the summer looking for the right unit to replace it with and finally decided on the Lennox XP17 Heat Pump. We chose a 5-ton unit to service our 3,200 square foot home which is located in the Midwest. I preferred doing my own research rather than having HVAC salesmen out to tell me what I need.
My reasons for choosing the Lennox XP17 5-ton heat pump included the very high SEER of 17+, the 9.5 HSPF, and the iComfort technology that enhances performance and efficiency. We plan to stay in our home long-term and the wife enjoys a warm house, so I’d rather spend more in upfront costs, less in energy costs. I think it’s a good bet I’ll pay myself back long before this unit is done. The SunSource solar-ready option didn’t appeal to me since this isn’t the sunniest spot on the planet. The unit is Energy Star rated and eligible for the Federal home energy tax credit. Plus it has dual-fuel capabilities in case I want to add a small gas furnace to heat just our large basement.
To complete the system I chose the CBX32M Air Handler over the CBX40UVH air handler, mainly for the high efficiency evaporator coil. Then the fun began.
I called 3 area Lennox dealers and told them what I wanted. One guy tried hard to sell me on another brand – I later found out the other brand was offering dealer incentives which I doubt he was going to pass along to me. After scratching him off the list I had the other two dealers send someone out to look over the job. Both handled themselves very professionally and assured me that their certified installers were sharp, reliable folks.
The bids they came back with were about $600 apart at $8,400 and $7,800. The difference was $250 for the unit and $350 for the installation. These costs were about 10% higher than I had expected but I was comfortable – if not happy – with that.
Next I checked out the crews on the local online bulletin board – like Angie’s List where you can find comments/recommendations/warnings about area contractors, doctors, mechanics, etc. The first 3 comments about the lower priced company – the one I had planned to go with, were major red flags. First, they had to return to one job 4 times to get the system operational; secondly, they were rude; and the third comment used language I can’t share here to describe the whole experience. The other dealer checked out very well.
That left me with the pricier bid and thankfully everything ended well. The system exceeds our expectations with enough power to heat our home evenly and push warm air to the furthest rooms from the unit. The wife is warm and happy, and since my philosophy is happy wife, happy life, I’m glad I made the investment in another Lennox product. Just be sure to check out the installers before you decide. I figure the headaches I saved were worth the extra $600. I am really glad I spent the time to research prices on hvac systems before I pulled the trigger.