Mike Cappuccio, owner of N.E.T.R., Inc., a residential and commercial HVAC and refrigeration contractor in Massachusetts,, discusses commercial AC brands.
John Maher: Hi, I’m John Maher. I’m here today with Mike Cappuccio, owner of N.E.T.R. Inc., a residential and commercial HVAC and refrigeration contractor in Massachusetts. Today we’re talking about commercial AC brands. Welcome Mike.
Mike Cappuccio: Good afternoon, John. How are you?
John: Good, thanks. Mike, what are some of the brands that are available for commercial AC systems?
Major AC and Heating System Brands
Mike: Well, for commercial AC systems, John, for the conventional type of systems, not the VRS systems or the ductless systems that you’re seeing now new coming out, the four major brands of air conditioning and heating systems often in the commercial market are Trane, Carrier, York and Lennox. Those are your four big brands, John. Most of these four manufacturers all make other brands too that are very similar to this piece of equipment that they have a different name on. I mean, when you look at a lot of them, but those are your four big boys that play in that commercial market right there.
How to Determine the Right AC and Heating Systems Brand
John: Okay. Is it important to pick a good brand for my AC system? And how do I know that I’m getting a good brand?
Mike: Well, I mean, any one of those four are good brands. I mean, everyone has their preference as far as what they look at with those different types of units. A York might be a little bit different design than Trane. York might use different controls than Trane. Carrier might be a little bit different than Trane and York. Lennox has their own little specialty things that you got to look at. I mean, all four of these brands are good brands. It really comes down to preference, sometimes weight. If you’re doing replacement equipment, if you’re doing replacement units, when you look at these four different brands, sometimes you have to look at, “Hey, who’s brand has similar to the same weight, maybe, as my unit? Who might have the easiest adaptor curb to put up there that’ll fit onto my unit and make it fit right?” There’s a lot of different things you got to look at, but those are your four good brands.
I mean, as far as preference goes, I mean, I like Trane. Trane is one of my favorite brands of rooftop air conditioners that have a nice control system. It’s an easy control system. I like the Carrier too. Lennox has its perks, but my preference is I like Trane.
Lifespan of Commercial AC Units
John: Do you find that those units last a really long time, or what’s the lifespan on a commercial AC unit
Mike: Commercial AC rooftop units split system is a 20-year system, John. Again, depends on how well you maintain it. If you maintain it well, you might get 25 to 30 years out of it. If you don’t maintain it at all, you might only get 10 years out of it. It really depends on how well you take care of that particular piece of equipment.
Benefits of a Quality Commercial AC System
John: What are some of the benefits of getting a high quality commercial AC system like that?
Mike: Well, first off, when you purchase one of these four brands like this, as far as getting parts, parts availability are very easy for these four major brands. They all have major parts stores in the areas versus you might get an off spin brand or something, we call it a no name brand or a misprint brand that might come off of one of those manufacturers that is just difficult to get parts for, might not be available in the next five to 10 years. These brands here that have parts availability, technical support is really key with these as far as people in the factories that offer the technical support to the technicians in the field is very good with the bigger brands. Some of the smaller brands just don’t have that ability to have those people to help people with parts availability, how to pick the parts you need. Something goes wrong technically and you might need help fixing it. That’s where those big brands really come into play, where you’re not buying an off spin brand.
John: Right. Have you encountered that issue where somebody calls you maybe for a repair or something like that, and then you go out, they’ve got this off-brand unit and you’re not able to get the parts to repair it, and they end up having to replace the whole system maybe?
Mike: Yes, I’ve seen that happen, John. Absolutely. Where You just can’t get the parts for it. It’s a brand that you’ve never even heard of. Sometimes you run into air conditioning systems that you look at them sometimes, they don’t even have a name on them sometimes. It’s just a plate on them and a model serial number that might be a name you just don’t even recognize. You’ll be like, “Wow, this company makes air conditioning systems now?” It’s very odd. That’s why we try to stick with these four major brands, you really do, because you know the wholesalers, you know who has them, you know where you can get the parts for them. Parts availability and stuff is readily available. You can just go to a store and go to one of the parts stores that sells these brands and you can have these parts within hours.
John: All right. Well, that’s great advice, Mike. Thanks again for speaking with me today.
Mike: Thanks, John.