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Phil, Mechanical Engineer
Category: HVAC
Satisfied Customers: 8437
Experience:  Retired HVAC/ Electrical & Boiler contractor. Industrial
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The AC is on and blowing but not cooling. AC guy came out

Customer Question

The AC is on and blowing but not cooling. AC guy came out and put in more coolant. Today, still not cooling - they're back and say the wires are burnt. The unit is around 20 yrs old - they say we need entire new unit and air handler. $6,500
JA: Did you double-check the thermostat's settings? And what about the filters?
Customer: They changed the thermostat to a digital type. We still had the round (I think Rheem) old style.
JA: Do you plan on doing the work yourself?
Customer: No.
JA: Anything else we should know to help you best?
Customer: from what I read, it seems that if it's just burnt wiring - why could that not be repaired. Do you feel that 20 yrs is old enough and this should just be replaced? Also, online they talk about a capacitor causing this. ?
JA: What confuses you?
Customer: They arrived at this 2 days in. If it was so dire, then why did they not just say upon first inspection that the unit is shot - get a new one. Maybe they make more by selling a new one - I guess we are at the mercy of these guys. New units on amazon for 2K - worst case.
Submitted: 10 days ago.
Category: HVAC
Expert:  Phil replied 10 days ago.


- at age 20 the system is due to be replaced

- the technicians were incompetent.

- Pricing is this way 1/3 for equipment, refrigerant etc. 1/3 labor costs. 1/3 overhead costs and profit.

I would deal with a different outfit, get some other pricing.

Tell me which direction you are from the center of the nearest larger town or city, I will see if I can find a well rated well established outfit for you.

Customer: replied 10 days ago.
I live in Natrona Heights, PA which is about 20 miles north of Pittsburgh. It's less than a mile from both Butler & Armstrong Counties.
Expert:  Phil replied 10 days ago.

Click here please, this is a well rated old line outfit with very good ratings.


Tell them you want a cost estimate for a quick and cheap repair on the existing system... if it is over $500 Tell them you want a quote on the ....

"simplest, most basic 14 SEER efficiency Bryant brand system they have, all PSC motors"


Tell them that you specifically do not want the cost or complexity of ECM type motors and controls.

Make that clear, tell them that is what your consultant recommended for you. Tell them you are shopping for prices.


It is time to select the 'finish and rate your expert' link near the top of your page and rate my work now, I will appreciate it.


I am a retired mechanical engineer and HVAC/ electrical/ refrigeration and boiler contractor ... with 56 years in this business. The last 20 of those years consulting for major firms nationally..All I ask is please select the ***RATING LINK***at the top of your page, that is the only way I am credited through the site. Rating does not affect your charges nor ability to refund if not satisfied.