Mini split quote?

john84

Member
Oct 22, 2013
203
Mass
Does $4,400 seem reasonable to install a 12k Fujitsu hyper heat mini in my basement? It’s about a 20-25 run.

anyone have that model and like/dislike it?
 

Seasoned Oak

Minister of Fire
Oct 17, 2008
7,155
Eastern Central PA
Thats about twice what the materials cost. I guess thats the going rate. Nice profit if the install goes easy. Couple hours.
You want a reputable installer, someone who really knows their stuff on these ,also one that will come back out right away if there is a problem and fix it. They say they should last 20 years but a lot less if the install is not done right. I had a cheap brand 12k installed this past summer, lasted 1 month, worked fantastic until it didnt.
Amazon product
 

Jan Pijpelink

Minister of Fire
Jan 2, 2015
1,874
South Jersey
About 4 years ago, I bought a 9K YMGI system for our dining room, which is an extension of the house. On-line for just under $1,000.
Installed the wall unit and outdoor unit myself in about 3 hours. Had a HVAC guy come over to fill the refrigerant. Was about $200.

Correction. Just checked the paperwork. Installed it in 2011. Has not failed once.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: Seasoned Oak

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,795
Northern NH
If you are DIY person, its not a hard install except for purging the lines which require special equipment. Plenty of You Tube videos on the process. Make sure the price includes a new breaker and dedicated circuit plus a local disconnect for the unit. If you paying for an install stick with Fujitsu and Mitsubishi as both have a long term reputation and tend to be on the high side for efficiencies. They usually have a couple of models in each size range that vary by how efficient they are.

The hassle with both Fujitsu or Mitsubishi is that the warranty is administered by the dealer. If its not sold and installed by an authorized dealer there is no long term warranty. There are several on line sellers for both brands but their is always a note "to be installed by an authorized tech" and few authorized techs will make an official install with someone else equipment. These on line sellers usually have a dead on arrival guarantee that they will replace it if does not work out of the box if you return it to them. They are betting that the hassle of repacking it and sending it back by motor freight is going to stop most folks from trying. Buying a 12K unit on line may be half the cost of a installed unit. I went that way and paid a tech to do the line purge.

Both brands are very reliable and unless it was damaged in shipping it will work out of the box. They are not really designed to be serviced, if they stop running, a tech will check the refrigerant pressure and that is about it before they swap out the indoor or outdoor unit. The indoor unit should be cleaned every few years depending on the household. My guess is homes with pets probably need it more often. My guess is few if any people clean them until they stop working so the tech gets a service call and its likely its not covered by any warranty so they get to sell you a new one. Plenty of you tube videos on cleaning.

Per a couple of techs I have talked to over the years, the majority of service calls are non warranty. Damage to outdoor units from foreign objects hitting the unit is the big one. Icicles can fall into them and water dripping from the roof line can freeze them into a solid block. I found out that they dont take kindly to directing a snow blower chute at them and it took a few days and a heat gun to thaw it out. Landscaping can also grow up into and around them and snowplows can destroy them. In New England they should be mounted well above typical snow depths and there are optional snow shields that may be needed to keep snow from blowing into the unit. Definitely consider then installing them out of the path of any snow slides off the roof. I have two units, one is AC only and faced upwind and my heating/cooling unit is on the downwind side of the house. The upwind unit fills up with snow but its not problem since its cooling only but the downwind unit has rarely been impacted by snow. I have a slanted piece of Azek over the top of mine with plenty of clearance. I think Fujitsu has an optional electric heater in the base pan of their units to keep ice from building up while Mitsubishi does not. My Mitsubishi is over 10 years old and I have never had a problem with ice up in the pan except during the snowblower incident. When I last cleaned it I did see some aluminum corrosion inside the indoor unit and expect it will be its ultimate failure point but expect I still have quite a few years to go.

Check with your utility, many are paying hefty incentives although I expect the dealers are probably raising their prices to eat up some of the incentives. Its been a gold rush for installers. All they need is a minimally trained tech, a storage unit for some inventory and a van and they are in business. When commercial work gets busy they can pull the minisplit guy in to help out.

You may be able to work out a deal to do the grunt work for an install for same savings if you find the right dealer. Hanging the outdoor unit, drilling a hole through the wall, hanging the indoor mounting plate and hanging the indoor unit are all DIY jobs if you can read the instructions. Just make sure that if you get a deal for doing the grunt work that its still an authorized install.
 

Seasoned Oak

Minister of Fire
Oct 17, 2008
7,155
Eastern Central PA
In my experience even if the guy is an authorized tech with a license ,he may not know what he is doing since my guy got his lic online. Did a very sloppy job installing and all the freon leaked out within a month. He did try to fix it but it was obvious he didnt know what he was doing. After another month of getting the run around I did get reimbursed for the unit from him which i promptly uninstalled and delivered to his front porch. He installed it somewhere else but as far as i know its still not working. I dont blame the equipment though
.
 

john84

Member
Oct 22, 2013
203
Mass
Thats about twice what the materials cost. I guess thats the going rate. Nice profit if the install goes easy. Couple hours.
You want a reputable installer, someone who really knows their stuff on these ,also one that will come back out right away if there is a problem and fix it. They say they should last 20 years but a lot less if the install is not done right. I had a cheap brand 12k installed this past summer, lasted 1 month, worked fantastic until it didnt.
Amazon product
That was my thoughts as well, I found the unit for as low as $2,000. I certainly don’t mind paying for a quality job but don’t want to feel I was ripped off, maybe I will contact another installer for a quote and go from there.
 

Seasoned Oak

Minister of Fire
Oct 17, 2008
7,155
Eastern Central PA
Correction. Just checked the paperwork. Installed it in 2011. Has not failed once.
[/QUOTE] Thats funny how what you thought was 4 yrs was actually 9 years. I do the same thing. Time really does fly by.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Jan Pijpelink

Seasoned Oak

Minister of Fire
Oct 17, 2008
7,155
Eastern Central PA
That was my thoughts as well, I found the unit for as low as $2,000. I certainly don’t mind paying for a quality job but don’t want to feel I was ripped off, maybe I will contact another installer for a quote and go from there.
Most home upgrades are multiples of the material cost ,not unusual. Its usually cost effective to pay for quality in both the materials and the installation. Having experienced the downside of a poor install in the past ,ill stick with the pros in the future. But yes get several quotes and better yet speak to past customers if possible.
 
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle

john84

Member
Oct 22, 2013
203
Mass
So I am considering electric baseboard, anyone have experience with the newer electric baseboard? As far as comfort and being really dry heat, efficiency and any other pros and cons?
it would be going in a finished basement roughly 600 sq feet.
 

maple1

Minister of Fire
Sep 15, 2011
10,649
Nova Scotia
Electric baseboard is very high $ to operate. Would be my last choice for anything except rare backup type or very infrequent use.

A basement mini-split install could be tricky. Condensate likes to go down, and in most basements you have to go up before you can go out. So you might have variables we can't see from here.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Seasoned Oak

Seasoned Oak

Minister of Fire
Oct 17, 2008
7,155
Eastern Central PA
So I am considering electric baseboard, anyone have experience with the newer electric baseboard? As far as comfort and being really dry heat, efficiency and any other pros and cons?
it would be going in a finished basement roughly 600 sq feet.
Dont know anyone who uses this regularly. Electric resistance is about the most expensive form of heat available. Great for a backup or occasional use but definitely not the main source of heat. While most heating fuels cost fall between $10 and $20 per million BTUs , Electric resistance is in the mid $30s (15c kwh)to low $40 per million Btus depending on your electric rate. Heat pumps mini splits and geo thermal do a very good job of chopping that back to competitive levels.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,795
Northern NH
So I am considering electric baseboard, anyone have experience with the newer electric baseboard? As far as comfort and being really dry heat, efficiency and any other pros and cons?
it would be going in a finished basement roughly 600 sq feet.
Dont let anyone BS you, new electric heat is not one bit more efficient than old electric heat. Some ads and salesman talk about magical fluid around the coils to make the heat last longer but it just means its takes longer to heat up. Electric heat is 100% efficient at its use point but as mentioned you pay a big premium.

It has its uses in very small spaces that need a bit of boost. I use one in my bathroom to kick the heat up in winter when I take shower. No need to keep the place super warm the rest of the time plus for me the electric is effectively "free" as surplus net metered solar.
 

Seasoned Oak

Minister of Fire
Oct 17, 2008
7,155
Eastern Central PA
Dont let anyone BS you, new electric heat is not one bit more efficient than old electric heat. Some ads and salesman talk about magical fluid around the coils to make the heat last longer but it just means its takes longer to heat up. Electric heat is 100% efficient at its use point but as mentioned you pay a big premium.
It has its uses in very small spaces that need a bit of boost. I use one in very small spaces that need a bit of boost. I use one in my bathroom to kick the heat up in winter when I take shower
I have one in my bathroom as well, gets used 15 to 30 min a day in winter. Also dont fall for the miracle Amish heater or the $300 Edenpure . And dont fall for the line "it only uses as much electricity as a coffee maker " Yes 1500 watts . But you dont run your coffee maker 12 hours a day 1 in every room.
 
  • Like
Reactions: stoveliker

maple1

Minister of Fire
Sep 15, 2011
10,649
Nova Scotia
Condensate pumps cost around $50 so not much money adding up from that.
True for the parts. Could present a more awkward install too. Hard to say from here.
 

Highbeam

Minister of Fire
Dec 28, 2006
18,327
Mt. Rainier Foothills, WA
True for the parts. Could present a more awkward install too. Hard to say from here.
Could be even uglier than a mini split hanging on the wall is a second ugly thing, a condensate pump, hanging on the wall under it.

Electric baseboard or wall heaters are very common here. We pay just 11 cents per kWh and when it’s in single digit temps those things surely use some power but most people are too lazy to use wood so they just pay the bill. My house was built with baseboard heat. It’s great backup heat and just fine if you have the money. 100% efficiency and zero duct losses. Easy to zone heat too.
 

mustash29

Minister of Fire
Feb 6, 2012
694
SE CT
I've been barking up the mini split tree too. SE CT here so pricing should be similar to you.

1800 sqft tri-level, but only planning to do the 1500 sqft of main living area.

$10 K for a 2.5 ton fully ducted system with Mitsubishi compressor, Air Bear super filter, etc, or 9 K for a pair of mini's, 9-12 master bed room and 15-18 for kitchen, dining, living room area. This guy was kind of full of himself, had issues returning my calls, etc.
He was willing to do a 1000 discount for cash sale on either system.

2nd and 3rd quotes were roughly 6500-7200 for Fujitsu / Mitsubishi with similar specs, 9-12 master bed room and 15-18 for kitchen, dining, living room area. Slight variance depending if I go with one "multi" compressor or 2 separate units. Putting one unit on each end of the house would eliminate a long 50-60' run of piping for the bedroom unit to reach the other end of the house. 2 units = slightly more $ but slightly higher efficiency ratings. 2 units need separate breakers and surge suppressers.

I spent a lot of time reading operation and maintenance manuals online and was amazed at how these things throttle up and down instead of cycling on and off. A 9-15 K can throttle itself as low a 3 and up to a bit more than it's max when in "turbo" mode for quick results.
 

peakbagger

Minister of Fire
Jul 11, 2008
5,795
Northern NH
My guess is the forecast powdery snow and low temps with this upcoming storm, more than a few new mini split heat pump owners will learn that there are limitations with minisplits especially if they were installed without planning for snow. That powdery stuff can get drawn in when the fan is running and block off the outdoor coil. The system will try to thaw them out with defrost cycles but if the conditions are right it just forms a hard crust a short distance away from the coil so the defrost really doesnt help. Some bransd have heater in the base pan but the heater is designed from keeping ice from forming in the pan not on the coils. Once froze up it takes a lot of heat and time to get it thawed. When I iced mine up with a snowblower it was several hours tbefore I had heat again. I tried a heat gun and got it warm enough that my grille drooped a bit in a spot. I ended up covering it with a tarp and using a fan forced electric heater to heat up the space.
 
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle

Brian26

Minister of Fire
Sep 20, 2013
550
Branford, CT
My guess is the forecast powdery snow and low temps with this upcoming storm, more than a few new mini split heat pump owners will learn that there are limitations with minisplits especially if they were installed without planning for snow. That powdery stuff can get drawn in when the fan is running and block off the outdoor coil. The system will try to thaw them out with defrost cycles but if the conditions are right it just forms a hard crust a short distance away from the coil so the defrost really doesnt help. Some bransd have heater in the base pan but the heater is designed from keeping ice from forming in the pan not on the coils. Once froze up it takes a lot of heat and time to get it thawed. When I iced mine up with a snowblower it was several hours tbefore I had heat again. I tried a heat gun and got it warm enough that my grille drooped a bit in a spot. I ended up covering it with a tarp and using a fan forced electric heater to heat up the space.
You need one of these if you plan on winter operation. Mine is I think 20 inches off the ground. Never had any issues the last 2 winters. Both my units are hyper heat units with basepan heaters. I can see my units from the window. How they work is they energize the basepan heater and reverse the refrigerant flow and melt the coil. I have run them in blizzard like conditions and the coil and basepan gets completely cleared. Yes there are some units without basepan heaters but I would never install one with the intention on running one a New England winter.


20191019_170638.jpg
 
Last edited:

Brian26

Minister of Fire
Sep 20, 2013
550
Branford, CT
I've been barking up the mini split tree too. SE CT here so pricing should be similar to you.

1800 sqft tri-level, but only planning to do the 1500 sqft of main living area.

$10 K for a 2.5 ton fully ducted system with Mitsubishi compressor, Air Bear super filter, etc, or 9 K for a pair of mini's, 9-12 master bed room and 15-18 for kitchen, dining, living room area. This guy was kind of full of himself, had issues returning my calls, etc.
He was willing to do a 1000 discount for cash sale on either system.

2nd and 3rd quotes were roughly 6500-7200 for Fujitsu / Mitsubishi with similar specs, 9-12 master bed room and 15-18 for kitchen, dining, living room area. Slight variance depending if I go with one "multi" compressor or 2 separate units. Putting one unit on each end of the house would eliminate a long 50-60' run of piping for the bedroom unit to reach the other end of the house. 2 units = slightly more $ but slightly higher efficiency ratings. 2 units need separate breakers and surge suppressers.

I spent a lot of time reading operation and maintenance manuals online and was amazed at how these things throttle up and down instead of cycling on and off. A 9-15 K can throttle itself as low a 3 and up to a bit more than it's max when in "turbo" mode for quick results.
I'm in CT as well and got quotes for $4-5k for each single zone 12-18k btu unit. I ended up installing 2 hyper heats myself that cost a little over $1k each. I'm a former auto mechanic so had plenty of flaring and ac experience. They were not hard at all to install. Both have been running nonstop for 2 years with zero issues.

I could replace the units 7 times and still be ahead over a professional install. The biggest deciding factor is the 10 year Mitsubishi warranty is actually just for the parts. Labor was only 1 year. These units are disposable appliances in most of the world. I can buy an entire new unit for the labor cost of a big repair alone. If your compressor goes on your Mitsubishi they will send a new one but your paying the labor to replace it. HVAC work is crazy expensive as you can see from these install prices.

I have installed like a dozen of these for friends and family. I have thought about doing a side business installing them and could undercut the big companies and make a killing.

Did you check the CT rebates? I think they are $1600 a ton now. CT has pledged to significantly reduce its carbon emissions and has some crazy incentives. My town had a program where you got like 10k in heat pumps for only 4k.
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: sloeffle