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mini split cost? - ripoff check - Page 2

post #31 of 52
you pulled up a year old thread for your first post?
post #32 of 52
we could use some HVAC advice on this forum, hopefully you will jump in when people are trying to determine cooling requirements, duct size an making the system dead quiet.
post #33 of 52
Dear Sir,
You might that is a rip off but you are considering a company that has to pay taxes, ins, training, licenses, overhead, trucks, tools to pull vacuum. I f you are not pulling a vacuum then you will have some moisture in the system and that will effect you compressor might even cause to fail. Every company has a different overhead cost . The price you were quoted I'm sure reflected all of the above. I am a licensed contractor and I run into this all the time, if you buy it online most of the time there is no warranty in installed incorrectly.
post #34 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by licensedhvacman View Post

It sounds like whinning. Licensed guy's have overhead and tools to do the job right . They also have to carry warranty on the equipment. When you buy it online and have an unlicensed guy install it then there is no more warranty. I wonder what you all charge for the services in your own fields. I am sure you have reasons for the price you charge and so do the hvac pro's. There is also a difference in the quality of certain brands that only experince in the trade could teach you. The reason the epa had to restrict the sell of the freon and equipment is because every home owner with a hammer is some how instantly a know it all and ends up making a mess of things and then the county, state and fed's have to step in and make more laws and codes, that we need more inspectors for, and more hoops that the contractor has to jump through, which means more cost to the home owners trying to do it right. Maybe if you paid more attention to your own trade and less on others then you to could have it installed correctly.I am not trying to start a fight, but with all the previous comments someone had to stand up for the business owner.
The Real McCoy

It is a crime for an HVAC Tech to charge $3,500 in labor charges for a day and a half of work. That would be about $200/hr., i will not pay that!!
I know this thread is old, but i am reviving it now.
I just bought 1 Fujitsu 15RLS2, 21.5 SEER, 12 - HSPF, for my family room, around 550 sq. ft.
I also bought a dual zone AOU24RLXFZ with 2- 7RLF indoor heads.
The total for everything including wire, lineset, etc. was around $5,200
In the end in pd. $5,800 for 2 different hvac techs to help me.
I ran all the wires, installed the breakers, ran the lineset, etc
I will hopefully be getting $1,500 in rebates from Fujitsu and electric co., so cost of materials will be less than the total of job!!

;
post #35 of 52
Perhaps with some regulations setting a reasonable hourly rate for HVAC folks like we've done with auto mechanics we could not have to consider DIY. The market will take you down if you are old school super high markup, screw the consumer.
post #36 of 52
At least "HVAC folks" don't SUCK like auto mechanics do. I've never had an encounter with a mechanic where I didn't feel bent over and lied to.

Price fixing is never a good idea.
post #37 of 52
Wow, I'm guessing these cost a lot because they also heat apart from cool? and labor of course? Cause the inverter unit I'm looking at for my room is $800 for 12k btu, beacause its a quiet 19db one. A regular Panasonic inverter is at around $500 and non-inverter $350 and I get free basic installation done.
post #38 of 52
Funny that this thread popped up..
I just got an estimate for a mini-split for my 19'x15' HT... $3400!!!

I politely said "no thank you" and am looking at units on Amazon.
$560 shipped and all I need is a vacuum pump for a final connection, they seem to have some good reviews.
post #39 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrGreeno View Post

Funny that this thread popped up..
I just got an estimate for a mini-split for my 19'x15' HT... $3400!!!

I politely said "no thank you" and am looking at units on Amazon.
$560 shipped and all I need is a vacuum pump for a final connection, they seem to have some good reviews.

And that pump will cost you $300 minimum for a one time use tool. And do you know HVAC theory at a technician level? Do you WHY and HOW the vacumm pump is used? You should have a gauge set to check the charge and of course know how to read and interpret the results. Depending on the distance from the condenser to the room unit you may be short on Freon. The factory charge is based on a certain line set length.

Also, do you have a brazing touch as well as the skills to use it. Refrigerant tubing is silver soldered or brazed. PLUMBING SOLDER IS NOT ACCEPTABLE.

AND

Doing what you propose is ILLEGAL. In order to work with CFC refrigerants you must have an EPA 608 license. And then you have to document any use of additional Freon or disposal of such. No vendor will sell you Freon without that license. They can't. Yes, you can buy parts, tools, even pre-charged condensers due to loopholes in the law. Selling, buying, owning an uninstalled precharged HVAC condenser is quite legal. Just don't open the valves, that's where the law is broken. Silly, isn't it. But that's the federal government at work.

Now all that aside I do my own HVAC work too. I have the pump and gauge sets as well as a drum of Freon R22. I justified it by having three HVAC systems and having to moved them twice during the HT build. It would have cost me over $5K to move these units twice. I am also an EE and have been around commercial units for years and did buy a HVAC technician training book and study it first. And I did not vent any Freon into the air. I did the "pump down" procedure properly.

Anybody can learn to do anything. I can't stand the attitude that some contractors have where they think their trade skills were given at birth. But HVAC is a lot more complicated than replacing a water heater. Just make sure you study and understand the technology first so you don't damage the new unit. Because if DIY installed, the manufacture most likely will void the warranty - especially the compressor which is what will fail with improper charging.

Also ANYONE can get an EPA 608 license by taking a course and passing the test. It's no different than a driver's license. You don't have to be an experienced HVAC contractor to get an EPA license. Just pass the test. Some HVAC techs don't like it but that's the law.
Edited by Glimmie - 3/15/13 at 11:02am
post #40 of 52
608 certification is not required to service 410A. An R-22 system is an older system, and you are correct as far as that goes. Anything you buy today will be 410A.

Some types of mini-splits have couplings that do not require brazing. If you get a system like that, you don't need to spend the money on a torch, nitrogen and a regulator. Silver solder doesn't work with the newer refrigerants becuase they operate at higher pressures. You are stuck with brazing.

In any event you will need the vacuum and a set of gauges, and the knowledge to use them properly. It's not rocket science, but it does require specific procedures be followed.

Tim
post #41 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Tim View Post

608 certification is not required to service 410A.....

Tim

Interesting. I wondered about that as there is no CFC threat, which is what the 608 fiasco was all about.
post #42 of 52
I was surprised when I found out. It's on the EPA's website.

Tim
post #43 of 52
On a separate, legal, note. I put a mini split in my theater. I actually ripped all the duct work out of my house and now have 12 zones of mini splits. They work amazingly. I have one in my theater and one for the rest of the basement and it easily heats it. Cooling should be even easier.
post #44 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by Glimmie View Post

And that pump will cost you $300 minimum for a one time use tool. And do you know HVAC theory at a technician level? Do you WHY and HOW the vacumm pump is used? You should have a gauge set to check the charge and of course know how to read and interpret the results. Depending on the distance from the condenser to the room unit you may be short on Freon. The factory charge is based on a certain line set length.

Also, do you have a brazing touch as well as the skills to use it. Refrigerant tubing is silver soldered or brazed. PLUMBING SOLDER IS NOT ACCEPTABLE.

AND

Doing what you propose is ILLEGAL. In order to work with CFC refrigerants you must have an EPA 608 license. And then you have to document any use of additional Freon or disposal of such. No vendor will sell you Freon without that license. They can't. Yes, you can buy parts, tools, even pre-charged condensers due to loopholes in the law. Selling, buying, owning an uninstalled precharged HVAC condenser is quite legal. Just don't open the valves, that's where the law is broken. Silly, isn't it. But that's the federal government at work.

Now all that aside I do my own HVAC work too. I have the pump and gauge sets as well as a drum of Freon R22. I justified it by having three HVAC systems and having to moved them twice during the HT build. It would have cost me over $5K to move these units twice. I am also an EE and have been around commercial units for years and did buy a HVAC technician training book and study it first. And I did not vent any Freon into the air. I did the "pump down" procedure properly.

Anybody can learn to do anything. I can't stand the attitude that some contractors have where they think their trade skills were given at birth. But HVAC is a lot more complicated than replacing a water heater. Just make sure you study and understand the technology first so you don't damage the new unit. Because if DIY installed, the manufacture most likely will void the warranty - especially the compressor which is what will fail with improper charging.

Also ANYONE can get an EPA 608 license by taking a course and passing the test. It's no different than a driver's license. You don't have to be an experienced HVAC contractor to get an EPA license. Just pass the test. Some HVAC techs don't like it but that's the law.


I actually do own a vacuum pump since I've been doing automotive AC for many years now.
The mini splits I've seen were solder-less setups and are touted as being completely user installable.
Online reviews pointed out that "user installable" is true with the exception of needing the vacuum.
I did find out that my friendly local AC man would take care of it off the books for $50.
All that being said, I decided to forgo the mini and just run a line off my main trunk.
post #45 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrGreeno View Post

I actually do own a vacuum pump since I've been doing automotive AC for many years now.
The mini splits I've seen were solder-less setups and are touted as being completely user installable.
Online reviews pointed out that "user installable" is true with the exception of needing the vacuum.
I did find out that my friendly local AC man would take care of it off the books for $50.
All that being said, I decided to forgo the mini and just run a line off my main trunk.

Yes it seems my info is a bit dated, well not exactly dated as it still applies to CFC's. But based on Mr. Tim's post above it looks like R410 is not regulated and can be DIY installed if one desires. That's a good thing IMO.
post #46 of 52
I am an hvac tech. I have taken the Mitsubishi installation course and they recommend that you leak test the system with nitrogen at 600psi, and then evaluate the system. They also recommend that you do that 3 times before opening the valves to let the refrigerant circulate.
Also, get prices from different companies. There are still some of us out there that charge very reasonable rates.
post #47 of 52
I have been in the HVAC industry for 30 years and have recently been through training programs for Fujitsu, Daikin and Mitsubishi. What I have heard consistently through all of these training classes is that all equipment sold from a third party direct to a consumer has a voided warranty if not installed by qualified contractor. Somebody over the Internet can tell or promise you anything as far as warranty. The manufactures in all of the class go into great detail when it comes to quality control of their products in the field. They don't want unqualified personnel installing their equipment and will not honor any warranty problems if the system is not registered properly from a legitimate wholesaler. If your willing to assume all of the responsibility for warranty parts and any possible problems in application, design, installation or operation by all means have at it.
post #48 of 52
Quote:
Originally Posted by GorillaBob View Post

I have been in the HVAC industry for 30 years and have recently been through training programs for Fujitsu, Daikin and Mitsubishi. What I have heard consistently through all of these training classes is that all equipment sold from a third party direct to a consumer has a voided warranty if not installed by qualified contractor. Somebody over the Internet can tell or promise you anything as far as warranty. The manufactures in all of the class go into great detail when it comes to quality control of their products in the field. They don't want unqualified personnel installing their equipment and will not honor any warranty problems if the system is not registered properly from a legitimate wholesaler. If your willing to assume all of the responsibility for warranty parts and any possible problems in application, design, installation or operation by all means have at it.

Well that's not the problem bud. The issue here is the labor and cost involved to install a single zone mini split . Which in most cases the cost is almost on par with centralized air conditioning
post #49 of 52
Hello,

First post on this Forum for me... Firstly want to say this site has been great on giving me a lot of info on Mini Splits which I had never heard of until recently.
I live in NJ and wanted to know if anyone has a recommendation for where I can by the Dual Zone Fujitsu Mini Splits?

Thanks for any help on this

DU
post #50 of 52
For what some hvac techs are charging, you can buy and install three of these units yourself. For that kind of markup, sure, I'm willing to take on all the liability and self insure.

Market forces at work. If you don't like that some people choose not to pay you and do it themselves, reduce your prices. If you are fine with the number of people willing to pay your asking price, leave it where it is and stop complaining about those who make a different choice.
post #51 of 52
Thank you Bigus,

I do have a licensed installer that I am considering hiring, however I wanted to price out buying these units myself from a good supplier.

Has anyone on the forum found a fair priced installer in NJ? So far what I am seeing is that NJ seems higher than other states.
post #52 of 52
Well you can get a Friedrich Breeze, that unit is supposedly plug in play and is marketed as such. Then again the unit itself costs $1,600. If you're willing to do most of the leg work (run the lines , physical install ) you could just get a licensed HVAC technician to charge or evacuate the lines for you around $50 per pound ( I was charged around 3-4 lbs IIRC). The amount of freon to be charged or evacuated is dependent on cooling capacity (tons / BTU) and how long the line set is. That is what I did for a 12,000 BTU Midea. Keep in mind anything over 12,000 BTU and you will need an AC disconnect box running adjacent to your breaker
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