I am currently in the process of buying a condo in Norfolk, VA. Some relevant details:
The building was built around 1904.
The conversion to condos was completed sometime in the 90s.
My unit is on the third floor and is about 1400 sq ft. This is the top floor.
During the inspection several weeks ago, the inspector noted that the air handler inside the building was not matched to the compressor outside at ground level. The air handler was 8 SEER and the compressor was 13 SEER. In addition, the temperature differential was on 4 degrees, when the recommended range is 14-22. I asked the seller to replace the air handler to match the compressor, as well as fix the rest of the minor issues in the home, expecting that they would decline replacing the handler and take care of the smaller issues. No harm in asking, right?
I expected the seller to decline replacing the air handler and fix everything else. To my surprise, he offered to replace the air handler if I would take care of everything else. This is the current system in the condo, it's 1.5 tons.Goodman GSH13 Heat Pump
- installed in 2008.Goodman ARUF SmartFrame Air Handler
During the walkthrough today, cooling performance was very poor in my (amateur) opinion. The outdoor temperature was about 82, and the thermostat had been set to 80. I set the thermostat to 70 and it took 25 minutes to cool 1 degree. It took about 3 hours running constantly to cool 6 degrees to 74.
Is this performance expected of a system like this? My initial Googling leads me to believe that a 1.5 ton system might simply be too small for a 1400 sq ft condo on the 3rd floor of a building, and I will have to deal with it. I might look into upgrading both down the road, but at this point, I will not let something like that make the deal fall through. I highly doubt the seller would be willing to replace both the heat pump and air handler now
An additional issue was that there was constant dripping at the corner of the air handler around the drainage pipe. This leads me to believe the installation was poor workmanship. The seller is having the contractor who installed the system fix that issue (haha, but at least he'll fix his work).
Should I see if I can get someone to look at the temperature differential of the system? Are there any other measures I should take?
Any advice from the esteemed Bogleheads would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!