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Old 02-03-14, 12:28 AM   #21
AC_Hacker
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Originally Posted by Servicetech View Post
What I don't get is why do these "exotic" features have such a hefty price premium on conventional split systems?
One of the first things to look at is whether we actually have a 'free market' that benefits the buying public, which is the promise of capitalism.

It's a different technology, but compare what we are paying for Internet vs. what the rest of the world is paying. Here's an interesting report RIGHT_HERE.

It seems that we are definitely getting taken for a ride by the giant Telecom companies and their fleets of lobbyists.

I would argue that the price difference for our Internet is not so different to the difference in price for domestically designed HVAC equipment, vs. Asian designed equipment.

Another thing to consider is that we graduate about 80,000 engineers a year (half of whom go to work for the department of defense), and China graduates about 320,000 per year and India graduates about 340,000 per year. This isn't even counting Japan.

So, I tend to doubt that our markets are 'free' to the point that competition would favor lower prices, AND in industries that supply non-military products, we are falling behind more aggressive technological countries.

-AC

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Old 02-03-14, 05:34 PM   #22
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All this same technology is available in mini-splits at a much lower cost.
Yes, but what I'm saying is just because the units are built with nearly the same parts, they don't all act the same. The mini-split units seem to be built in the same manner as the new flat-screen TV sets and laptop computers.

You can walk down the row at Best Buy and tell by dead reckoning that there are only 3 or 4 types of display panels in all the TV's of a certain size. Once you start playing with remote controls and menus, it is obvious why one unit costs 30 percent more. The cheaper unit isn't as "smart" as the more expensive unit. The choice is yours: if you can live without wifi and streaming video, buy the vizio and save $200. If you need netflix and chromecast, buy the sharp. They're 99.9% the same on the inside.

The new breed of mini-split units seem to share the same situation. The new fuji and mitsi units will do the wifi with your (nest/honeywell/hunter/insert name brand) programmable thermostat and behave with your iphone sending commands. They will integrate with your home automation if you buy the right one. The off brands, forget it. And that's just gimmicks. The main control programs have been overhauled to make them act different in normal operation, mostly for the better..
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Old 02-03-14, 05:50 PM   #23
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As a Libertarian, don't even get me started on how much the government is controlling the economy and our lives.. Libertarian Party | Maximum Freedom, Minimum Government
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Old 02-03-14, 08:54 PM   #24
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All this same technology is available in mini-splits at a much lower cost.
The rest of the world has been buying into the mini-split package. With the outsourcing of our manufacturing jobs overseas, suddenly (within the last decade or so), lots of people can now afford air conditioning for their huts and flats. Only recently has the mini-split begun to gain traction in the American market. Since these systems are already being sold affordably everywhere else, the manufacturers can't really create a highly lucrative market in the USA.

In contrast, the "traditional" split system has a deep entrenchment and long history in the USA. Originally lavish, it has fallen to merely expensive in image. Even now, existing homeowners are coached into buying replacement central split systems (due to the r410a "mandate") of contractor-grade quality. With the lion's share of units sold barely qualified at 13 SEER, the manufacturers have no reason to lower existing prices or charge less for high-efficiency systems.
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Old 02-04-14, 01:21 AM   #25
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I've been doing some research on this subject, and have found a few generalities.
Thanks for this post, really great information.

-AC
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Old 02-06-14, 10:54 AM   #26
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I'd like to see these things become so common that they carry them in home improvement stores, not just online (think hot water heaters). Once the price/performance hits a sweet spot for me, i'll buy one. I remember when window AC's were huge, inefficient and super expensive...now you can buy a nice one for not much over $100. The more methods i can use to heat my house, the more alternatives i have if one should become too expensive/or stop working. Natural gas skyrockets? Switch to electric...wood unavailable, switch to gas...etc etc.
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Old 02-06-14, 11:42 AM   #27
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I'd like to see these things become so common that they carry them in home improvement stores, not just online (think hot water heaters). Once the price/performance hits a sweet spot for me, i'll buy one. I remember when window AC's were huge, inefficient and super expensive...now you can buy a nice one for not much over $100. The more methods i can use to heat my house, the more alternatives i have if one should become too expensive/or stop working. Natural gas skyrockets? Switch to electric...wood unavailable, switch to gas...etc etc.

You mean like this.
Search Results for*mini split*at The Home Depot

This is the unit that is in my room right now keeping me warm.
http://www.homedepot.com/p/GREE-Ultr...NA1A/204062244
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Old 02-06-14, 01:04 PM   #28
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I'd like to see Menards carry them in store. Their prices usually are far lower then HD/Lowes...plus they run 11% off and other deals almost weekly. Not sure if they carry them online yet. Plus you can return just about anything should you have any issue.

I've been -10F or lower 19 times! this year so far! I'm thinking a mini split isn't going to work too well in my climate...without a good backup heat (wood?) and a TON of insulation (literally).
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Old 02-06-14, 01:17 PM   #29
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The unit in the first page of this post will put out heat to -13 deg.
http://news.mehvac.com/Bulletins/FH_Product_Guide.pdf
Granted that is at a reduced rate.

Highly energy-efficient system that features 100% rated heating capacity at 5F, 82% at -4F, and 62% at -13F

https://www.acwholesalers.com/hvac/p...-FH09NA-sp.pdf

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Old 02-08-14, 09:34 AM   #30
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This FH09NA is also known as FH25 in Scandinavia.

Below independent heat-mode test by VTT:

http://www.scanoffice.fi/uploads/vtt...S-06121-12.pdf

Note , "defrost " included the data!

This FH -serie and the earlier one (FD) known as exellent heaters.
Bad:
After defrost -25 serie very "lazy" to start heating (PCB-control = ****) .

Choose always the next more effective one in the serie!

Old Test rgd. FD35 (no longer for sale):

http://www.scanoffice.fi/uploads/vtt...S-08820-10.pdf

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