dslreports logo
site
 
    All Forums Hot Topics Gallery
spc

spacer




how-to block ads


Search Topic:
uniqs
4124
share rss forum feed


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

What's reasonable to expect in this case?

About three weeks ago our A/C suddenly crapped out (only installed in June of this year). I'll say up front that it appears to be a manufacturing issue and not an install issue. Simply put, wires inside the compressor were loose and, presumably, the vibration of the frequent fan activity caused them to touch and short out. The control board on the furnace burnt out as, it seems, also did the blower motor on the furnace. The A/C guys blame the furnace, while the furnace guys blame the A/C unit.

The more detailed narrative is as follows.

1. The A/C stopped working so we called the installation company for warranty service. They attended and saw the burned out control board on the furnace, stated that this was the problem and told me to call the furnace company for repairs (hopefully under warranty). They did not look at the compressor unit at that time.

2. The furnace company ordered the new control board on the strength of the A/C tech's diagnosis and came out to install it. While working on the furnace, the technician received a shock, which flipped the breaker, causing him to wonder if the A/C had been wired improperly, so he went outside to look at the compressor. He identified the short, realized it wasn't a wiring issue with the install, explained that the compressor would have come from the manufacturer with the loose wires, and suggested that we call the A/C company back to repair it under warranty. He also pointed out the blown fuses on the line coming in from the A/C unit on the furnace control board. He charged me $200 labour and kindly covered the control board under warranty (although admitted that he shouldn't, since the A/C short actually caused the damage, not a control board defect).

3. The A/C guys came back out and repaired the short on the A/C unit. They completed the repairs under warranty, but blamed the furnace for the surge that caused the short (again, suggesting that perhaps warranty shouldn't cover the damage, but helpfully putting it through anyways). However, upon testing, the blower would not start up on the furnace and the A/C technician told me I'd need to get the furnace guy out again to repair it (he suspected it was still related to the, now replaced, control board).

4. The furnace technician came back out and realized that the blower motor had also been fried by, presumably, the same surge that killed the control board. He has now placed an order for that part and said he'd put it through under warranty again (I'll still play another $200 in labour, approximately), however, his boss called me and said that they might not be able to waive the charge for the part. I'm still waiting on that.

Presumably, everything will be working again once that blower motor is replaced.

So my questions are two-fold.

1. On the basis of my description (hopefully adequate), is there any way to know definitively which equipment caused the surge?

2. If the problem was caused by the A/C unit, is it reasonable to expect the A/C company to reimburse me for the expense I've incurred paying the furnace company for their work (if the blower motor is not covered by warranty in the end, I'll have paid them almost a thousand dollars)?

By the way, the reason we're dealing with two different companies is that we bought the house this spring with a new furnace having just been installed by the renovator who flipped it, but didn't know which company had installed it. When we went to put in the A/C unit, we shopped around for the best price and service.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)



cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7

said by Styvas:

1. On the basis of my description (hopefully adequate), is there any way to know definitively which equipment caused the surge?

No, probably not. At least not with what you provided. I find it hard to imagine a surge from the furnace caused a short. It's just a 24v line and that's not connected to the directly compressor. Typical compressor wiring isn't all that complicated so I just don't see it.

2. If the problem was caused by the A/C unit, is it reasonable to expect the A/C company to reimburse me for the expense I've incurred paying the furnace company for their work (if the blower motor is not covered by warranty in the end, I'll have paid them almost a thousand dollars)?

I think it's reasonable, but I don't think it's going to happen. If it was all the same company, and/or the same dealer maybe.


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

In my entirely uneducated opinion, the key items for trying to figure out the direction of the surge are a) the fuses on the control board for the A/C wiring were blown, and b) the breaker didn't go until the furnace guy received a shock from the control board.

One thing I didn't mention is that the blower did work for a little bit even after the A/C system stopped cooling.

Here's the sequence of events that I experienced.

1. Noticed an odd smell (burning?) from the vents.

2. Realized that the smelly air being blown out of the vents was not cold.

3. Went downstairs and could smell burning odor in the furnace.

4. Looked outside and realized the compressor had stopped running.

5. Let the furnace run for a bit longer and then realized that the blower had stopped.

6. Turned off the system at the thermostat and called the A/C company.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

1 edit
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

By the way, the reason we're dealing with two different companies is that we bought the house this spring with a new furnace having just been installed by the renovator who flipped it, but didn't know which company had installed it. When we went to put in the A/C unit, we shopped around for the best price and service.

The amount and type of damage you describe is more indicative of a large electrical surge either from the power company or lightning strike. A simple shorted compressor would not likely do the damage to other components especially the fan motor.


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

That may be, but it seems to me that, if the 120 volt line shorted to the 24 volt line within the AC unit, it would send 5 times the power into the furnace than the control board and other items on that circuit is rated to receive. That would cause quite a bit of damage, in my estimation.

A large surge from the power company or lightening strike (far less likely) would surely have caused other problems in the house on other circuits. It seems unlikely that it would happen and be confined to that AC/furnace circuit alone.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to Jack_in_VA

I'm not sure what your bolded section is intended to convey. As I've mentioned, the problem in the AC unit appears to be one from the manufacturer, not the installer. A pricier installation wouldn't have changed anything about a faulty unit.

Regardless, the installer is responsible for service related to warranty issues and defects.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1

It's not whether it was a pricier install, it is that you had a second company work on the unit while it was still under warranty. That is just bad policy.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

I'm honestly not sure what you mean.



DarkLogix
Texan and Proud
Premium
join:2008-10-23
Baytown, TX
kudos:3

The company that installed it should cover it atleast for a year, parts and labor.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

Which they are doing, but their equipment damaged other equipment, so is it reasonable to expect them to cover the cost of repairing that damage?



DarkLogix
Texan and Proud
Premium
join:2008-10-23
Baytown, TX
kudos:3

Yes.

If they installed it all they should cover it all, parts and labor for at-least 1 year.


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

I'm honestly not sure what you mean.

Basically I'm talking about this.
said by Styvas:

Which they are doing, but their equipment damaged other equipment, so is it reasonable to expect them to cover the cost of repairing that damage?

Two installation and service companies and two different manufacturers with you in the middle instead of one installation and service company in the middle of possibly two manufacturers. I think it will be hard to prove your claim that "their equipment damaged other equipment".


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to DarkLogix

Just to play the devil's advocate (and I do want the answer to be yes to my question above, of course)...

If my brand new toilet leaks due to some flaw and floods my house requiring costly repairs (e.g. flooring and drywall soaked, etc) clearly the warranty on the toilet dictates replacement or repair, but should the toilet company pay to replace my flooring and drywall? In a perfect world they'd take responsibility for the damage, but I wonder if there's any obligation to do so.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)



John Galt
Forward, March
Premium
join:2004-09-30
Happy Camp
kudos:5
reply to Styvas

Solution: get all of the relevant players on-site at the same time and let them fight it out.

Stop being the middleman in the cluster.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to robbin

said by robbin:

said by Styvas:

I'm honestly not sure what you mean.

Basically I'm talking about this.
said by Styvas:

Which they are doing, but their equipment damaged other equipment, so is it reasonable to expect them to cover the cost of repairing that damage?

Two installation and service companies and two different manufacturers with you in the middle instead of one installation and service company in the middle of possibly two manufacturers. I think it will be hard to prove your claim that "their equipment damaged other equipment".

That is certainly complicating things. It would have been nice to know who had installed the furnace when we first considered AC. Having no communication with the previous owner, however, that was unfortunately impossible.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

Check the serial number of your furnace with its manufacturer. They might know what is your warranty status. If the AC was installed by certified contractors and that the furnace manufacturer approved of that AC being connected to their furnace, than you should be golden.... "should".


robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

Are you saying that you didn't know what brand the furnace was when you shopped for the AC?

If your brand new toilet leaks hopefully you have good insurance because I think all you will get is a new toilet.



Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom
reply to Styvas

Like I said, "A shorted compressor normally does not do anything else but blow it's supply fuses or trip the breaker". Good luck on getting the AC company on covering your furnace issues.

Also you need to consider the "Flipper" installed the furnace.



Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to robbin

said by robbin:

Are you saying that you didn't know what brand the furnace was when you shopped for the AC?

We knew what brand it was, but not the name of the HVAC company that installed it. We also knew that it was installed in July of 2010, so any warranty on labour (typically one year) would no longer apply, although we hoped that warranty on parts would apply.

Now that we are going through this process, we are realizing that the manufacturer's warranty doesn't even technically transfer to a subsequent home owner, so any warranty coverage we are getting is because of the generosity of the furnace company.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


DarkLogix
Texan and Proud
Premium
join:2008-10-23
Baytown, TX
kudos:3
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

Just to play the devil's advocate (and I do want the answer to be yes to my question above, of course)...

If my brand new toilet leaks due to some flaw and floods my house requiring costly repairs (e.g. flooring and drywall soaked, etc) clearly the warranty on the toilet dictates replacement or repair, but should the toilet company pay to replace my flooring and drywall? In a perfect world they'd take responsibility for the damage, but I wonder if there's any obligation to do so.

Well ya, but if the toilet damaged say the septic tank and it was installed by the same company then shouldn't the company fix both?


cdru
Go Colts
Premium,MVM
join:2003-05-14
Fort Wayne, IN
kudos:7
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

Now that we are going through this process, we are realizing that the manufacturer's warranty doesn't even technically transfer to a subsequent home owner, so any warranty coverage we are getting is because of the generosity of the furnace company.

What brand is the furnace? For a residential application, usually the parts warranty would transfer.


alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

Now that we are going through this process, we are realizing that the manufacturer's warranty doesn't even technically transfer to a subsequent home owner, so any warranty coverage we are getting is because of the generosity of the furnace company.

What's the manufacturer? Im curious to read their warranty policy.
My Lennox furnace's basic coverage is transferable. That's for parts.

Also, sometimes the installer has to register the furnace, meaning that the manufacturer could know who installed it.

Im surprised there is no sticker on the furnace saying who installed it.


Jack_in_VA
Premium
join:2007-11-26
North, VA
kudos:1
Reviews:
·Millenicom

said by alkizmo:

Also, sometimes the installer has to register the furnace, meaning that the manufacturer could know who installed it.

Im surprised there is no sticker on the furnace saying who installed it.

Again it could very well be the "flipper" That's exactly how many of them maximize their profits. Maybe that's why the OP doesn't know?

robbin
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-21
Leander, TX
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

We knew what brand it was, but not the name of the HVAC company that installed it.

Just to clarify, the furnace was manufactured by one company and the AC is of an entirely different brand. Is this correct?


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to cdru

said by cdru:

said by Styvas:

Now that we are going through this process, we are realizing that the manufacturer's warranty doesn't even technically transfer to a subsequent home owner, so any warranty coverage we are getting is because of the generosity of the furnace company.

What brand is the furnace? For a residential application, usually the parts warranty would transfer.

The furnace is branded Payne which I believe is a cheap brand of Carrier/Bryant).
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to Jack_in_VA

said by Jack_in_VA:

said by alkizmo:

Also, sometimes the installer has to register the furnace, meaning that the manufacturer could know who installed it.

Im surprised there is no sticker on the furnace saying who installed it.

Again it could very well be the "flipper" That's exactly how many of them maximize their profits. Maybe that's why the OP doesn't know?

We went through the realtor to contact the seller/flipper and learned who had installed it. That's why we had that particular company come out to complete repairs when the A/C guys told us the problem was the furnace and not the A/C unit. We could have had the A/C guys repair it, but we'd have had no warranty coverage on the furnace through them (at least that's what I originally thought).

Why there was no sticker on the furnace is anyone's guess.
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON
reply to robbin

said by robbin:

Just to clarify, the furnace was manufactured by one company and the AC is of an entirely different brand. Is this correct?

Yes, the furnace is Payne (as posted above) and the A/C is KeepRite (associated with Carrier, but perhaps not manufactured by them).
--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1
reply to Styvas

said by Styvas:

The furnace is branded Payne which I believe is a cheap brand of Carrier/Bryant).

quote:
If you're the original homeowner and you register your eligible product within 90 days of installation, you will receive a 10-year parts limited warranty*. Check with your Payne® contractor for the latest warranty information. You'll find your Payne warranty certificate included with the Owners Manual.
quote:
*Warranty period is five (5) years if not registered within ninety (90) days. Jurisdictions in which warranty benefits cannot be conditioned on registration will automatically receive a ten (10) year parts limited warranty. R-22 compatible air conditioner and heat pump units receive a 5 year parts limited warranty and are not eligible for a 10 year parts limited warranty regardless of jurisdictions.
So you have minimum 5 years.

Go claim for the blower. But labor isn't covered, sadly.


Styvas
Go Canucks Go
Premium
join:2004-09-15
Hamilton, ON

said by alkizmo:

said by Styvas:

The furnace is branded Payne which I believe is a cheap brand of Carrier/Bryant).

quote:
If you're the original homeowner and you register your eligible product within 90 days of installation, you will receive a 10-year parts limited warranty*. Check with your Payne® contractor for the latest warranty information. You'll find your Payne warranty certificate included with the Owners Manual.
quote:
*Warranty period is five (5) years if not registered within ninety (90) days. Jurisdictions in which warranty benefits cannot be conditioned on registration will automatically receive a ten (10) year parts limited warranty. R-22 compatible air conditioner and heat pump units receive a 5 year parts limited warranty and are not eligible for a 10 year parts limited warranty regardless of jurisdictions.
So you have minimum 5 years.

Go claim.

I was just Googling for that myself. lol! Note that it says "original homeowner" and it is not transferable. I don't see the non-transferable part in the section you've quoted. It's on the registration card available at »www.docs.hvacpartners.com/idc/gr···P459.pdf.

OWNER-OCCUPIED, RESIDENTIAL APPLICATIONS
This warranty is to the original purchasing owner only and is not transferable. Except as otherwise stated, if the product is installed in an owneroccupied
residence and is properly registered within 90 days after original installation (see Warranty Conditions below for registration
instructions), then the warranty period will be ten (10) years from the date of installation. Otherwise the warranty period is five (5) years
from the date of installation. The warranty period on the heat exchangers is twenty (20) years.


--
"Moving your Tylenol to the low shelf in your medicine cabinet is not the way to prevent children from falling off a stool when reaching for the top shelf." (said by Savant, May 2008)


alkizmo

join:2007-06-25
Pierrefonds, QC
kudos:1

said by Styvas:

I don't see the non-transferable part in the section you've quoted.
»www.docs.hvacpartners.com/idc/gr···P459.pdf.

»www.payne.com/warranty.html

What you have is the registration card to get 10 years instead of 5 years. You can't get 10 years unless you're the original owner OR unless Ontario forbids registration requirements.

Either way, you have at least 5 years. Even without the receipt, they'll calculate the 5 years started 90 days after the manufacturing date (In the product links in that page). I doubt that the furnace was stored for years after it was manufactured.