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Unread 2018-07-31, 05:07 PM   #1
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Default Home AC Unit issue

We have a 10 year old home and it has the original AC unit. Coleman, 2 ton unit that does fine and performs the job. There are a lot of better units... but this is what was with the house when we bought it.

Never had any issues with it in the past.

Last week 07/23/18 I noticed it wasn't cooling as well and pulled the filter and noticed the lines were frozen over.

After googling I left the filter out for a little bit, turned the ac unit off, and the fan on "on". This melted the ice and we had a company come out the next day to inspect and see what the potential issue could be.

The company sent a tech out and he immediately went to the outside unit and said it was low on freon (R22). He did not check why it was low or to diagnose if there was any other issues. He said 2 lbs low and refilled it and said we were good to go.

Unit cooled and worked fine on 07/24-07/26 or so. We were on vacation and my father in law was watering and checking our mail and mentioned it was warm again.

He cleaned the outside coil with cleaner and replaced the filter. It helped slightly... Fast forward to Monday 07/30/18 and I have the same company send another tech out and he finds the A Coil frozen over and cannot check it.

He comes out today 07/31/18 and we had the unit run with just the fan to melt it again. He checks and says "whoa your low again on R22". I mentioned when we called last time the last guy never checked anything and I wanted him to check for a leak. He said "you must have a huge leak to lose this much in a week". He checked the A coil in our basement and found no issues. He did the soap test with the green liquid on the a coil, every fitting, curve, bend,90-degree turn, coupling, connector, etc downstairs and no leaks. He went outside and did the same outside on the lines, compressor, coil, etc and no leaks.

He then proceeded to say he couldn't find the leak... and he recharged it for free and left... before he left he offered 3 options.

option 1: uv dye test to look for leaks, would do it today and take a week to check. $400

option 2: Put in leak stop and recharge, would do it today for $425, no warranty on it and no guarantee it would work.

option 3: replace whole ac system for $4,300....
Any thoughts?


We have a different ac company coming out tomorrow for a "free estimate on it", essentially having them look for leaks.

This is in Wichita BTW
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Unread 2018-08-01, 09:33 AM   #2
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I had to recharge my system this year too. Basically, R-22 won't be available in 2 years. My guy gave me 3 options.
1) Recharge and hope it holds for the season (which is the option I chose)
2) Add stopleak and recharge (what I will do if it doesn't hold next year)
3) Replace the system. Since it will not be serviceable in 2 years, there is no point in replacing leaking parts at this point.

I know it's different parts of the country, but here in Ohio I was quoted about 2/3 of your replacement quote above. I would shop around and get a minimum of 3 quotes for replacement.
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Unread 2018-08-01, 10:32 AM   #3
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That is a typical and inefficient builders grade unit.

I would replace the unit with an American Standard, Lennox or Trane at least a 14 SEER but 16 SEER if you can afford it.

I would pass on the 90% furnace since the payback isn't there and get an 80%.

2ton is what you would have for a 1000sqft house. Make sure you get the correct size, how big is your house?
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Unread 2018-08-01, 09:40 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by DIYAutoRepair View Post
That is a typical and inefficient builders grade unit.

I would replace the unit with an American Standard, Lennox or Trane at least a 14 SEER but 16 SEER if you can afford it.

I would pass on the 90% furnace since the payback isn't there and get an 80%.

2ton is what you would have for a 1000sqft house. Make sure you get the correct size, how big is your house?
upstairs is 1000SQ, basement is unfinished.
We are not planning on staying here more than maybe 1 year.

We had another quote for a York unit and all AC components being replaced with a different company for $2700.

I think we are going to end up going with them. The company is much more reputable and has been in wichita for almost 100 years.
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Unread 2018-08-02, 07:26 AM   #5
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If you're not staying then it's a good selling point "New AC" and 2700 is cheap.
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Unread 2018-08-02, 08:22 PM   #6
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If you're not staying then it's a good selling point "New AC" and 2700 is cheap.
yeah, that is the approach we are going. They are throwing in a year of the maintenance on it as well (spring and fall check and service) ( on top of the normal warranty).
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Unread 2018-08-03, 09:35 AM   #7
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That all seems inline with my experiences. The first 2lb the guy probably just assumed nobody had touched it in years and it could have been an exceptionally slow leak that would have been a waste to diagnose, but losing it again AFTER refilling then it becomes a thing.

I had that exact same thing on my 8 year old unit but it was because the guy who refilled it didnt reseal it right and it lost it all in a matter of a couple of days. It happened twice with one company during my regular services so I had to fire the company.

But they said basically all of the same things. Put some stop leak in and pray, spend serious money trying to find a leak and then likely replacing coils and whatnot, or just trash the whole thing and start anew. I just upped my maintenance regimen and started research doing work myself. Its basically just some light electronics and plumbing. Ive rebuilt washing machines, fridges, etc, how hard can it be?
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Unread 2018-08-04, 05:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ryan Stewart View Post
That all seems inline with my experiences. The first 2lb the guy probably just assumed nobody had touched it in years and it could have been an exceptionally slow leak that would have been a waste to diagnose, but losing it again AFTER refilling then it becomes a thing.

I had that exact same thing on my 8 year old unit but it was because the guy who refilled it didnt reseal it right and it lost it all in a matter of a couple of days. It happened twice with one company during my regular services so I had to fire the company.

But they said basically all of the same things. Put some stop leak in and pray, spend serious money trying to find a leak and then likely replacing coils and whatnot, or just trash the whole thing and start anew. I just upped my maintenance regimen and started research doing work myself. Its basically just some light electronics and plumbing. Ive rebuilt washing machines, fridges, etc, how hard can it be?
I agree. They just wanted to replace the whole system before diagnosing the problem. Neither guy from the first company seemed to even care about being here.
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Unread 2018-08-10, 10:26 PM   #9
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Had a 2 ton and new coil put in a unit last week. Was 2300 after taxes and 10 year warranty
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Unread 2018-08-15, 10:54 PM   #10
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Had a 2 ton and new coil put in a unit last week. Was 2300 after taxes and 10 year warranty
kc?

did they put a new lineset in as well? what brand unit?
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Unread 2018-08-16, 10:10 AM   #11
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our AC went out in June, I priced out a new variable speed air handler, 2 stage 3 ton heat pump. 3k installed buying parts myself, using my dads business license.

A coil is freezing due to drainage issues most likely.
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Unread 2018-08-19, 08:49 PM   #12
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our AC went out in June, I priced out a new variable speed air handler, 2 stage 3 ton heat pump. 3k installed buying parts myself, using my dads business license.

A coil is freezing due to drainage issues most likely.
checked all the drains and anything associated with it. Had multiple companies advise there was an internal leak somewhere.
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