Mini-split – DIY or bring in a pro? Frustrated with quotes
EDIT TO ADD:
After posting this, the forum auto-recommended a number of related articles. It sounds like $4000 is about “market” for this job.
It also sounds like it is possible to do this as a DIY but many people just bring in a pro since it’s not something you do often enough to justify the investment in skills development and specialized tools (although some brands may be possible to install without those tools…) and it’s nice to have the warranty on the work.
However, does anyone have any specific recommendations for which model of mini-split to buy given the nameplate that I have shown in my attached picture. The main constraint is that I want to plug it into a 15 amp 120V electrical circuit.
I’ve got a mini-split that is old and broken. Nameplate attached. The outside unit is on a balcony and plugged into an exterior outlet that is connected to a dedicated 15 AMP breaker. The inside unit is directly on the other side of the wall (tubes just need to run about 8 feet long to reach the top of the wall.)
I’ve been trying to figure out the best way to go about this.
My opinion is that this isn’t complicated. An AC company should be able to find a similar unit (12,000 BTU, runs off a plug into a 15 AMP circuit) and the installation should be a simple drop-in taking less than a day for a single technician.
I don’t have any AC tools or experience working with refrigerant and so I wanted to get someone else to do this.
However, I’m having a hard time getting a reasonable proposal. I keep getting quotes from people who want to upgrade the electrical (to a 240V or a larger breaker on the 120V) and the prices seem high. I don’t want to mess with the electrical; I just want to replace the broken unit with an equivalent model. Everyone seems to be having a hard time finding a similar unit and they seem to be padding the amount of labour that is involved by a fairly large margin.
An example of a quote I received was $3800 (Canadian) for parts and labour for this job but that does not include repairing the drywall or running the electrical wires through the apartment (which would be a nightmare and maybe not even possible.) Does that seem high?
Should I consider just buying the unit online and doing a self-install or is that not a practical idea as a one-off DIY project?