(Heating, Ventilating, and Air Conditioning) For questions about installing, repairing, and troubleshooting HVAC systems.

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4
votes
3answers
9k views

What's causing the rumbling sound when my furnace kicks on?

I have a new, 3-year old, high-efficiency furnace in my home. Last year it started making a slight whining noise that was audible during the very first stage, before the blower motor started. No ...
4
votes
2answers
15k views

Workarounds for single-zone HVAC? Second thermostat? Adjust vents?

I have a two story brick home built in 1970 with a relatively new HVAC system blowing through original ductwork. In the summer its too hot upstairs and too cold downstairs. I know that the full ...
0
votes
1answer
1k views

How do I turn off the power to my programable thermostat?

I am installing a new programable thermostat. In trying to cut power to the old one I have tried a couple of things but not sure I have done enough to cut all power. One, I shut off the furnace ...
2
votes
1answer
486 views

Will I see any performance gains if I reconfigure my thermostat to control the second stage of my 2 stage furnace?

Our furnace is a two stage one that was installed last year (a Bryant 80t). When it was installed, it was installed with a thermostat for a one stage furnace. This appears to be because this model ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I reclaim heat from an enclosed furnace room?

Our home has two furnaces (oil fired hot air) and an electric water heater in an enclosed room (approx 6'6" x 9'). Three walls of the room divide it from the remainder of a finished basement, the ...
0
votes
1answer
295 views

How can I replace a 4-wire manual thermostat with a programmable thermostat?

I"m replacing a 4-wire manual baseboard thermostat with a programmable SBFT2W thermostat. After connecting the wires, there are two lead wires from the old stat that are still unconnected. They are ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Can an HRV replace the air exhausted by a range hood?

I'm in the process of buying a 1950s ranch house. It doesn't have the greatest insulation, so I'm planning to do some improvements over the first few years to tighten things up. I'll certainly do the ...
-3
votes
1answer
2k views

why won't my furnace turn off once it reaches the desired temperature

I have a moncrief furnace and replaced the thermostat but the furnace will not cut off once it reaches the desired temperature. What could be wrong?
0
votes
1answer
402 views

Why do I have a large PVC pipe venting warm air outside intermittently?

There is a large PVC pipe (3 actually) which vent air intermittently. I started noticing I could see steam rising over my deck in the morning and then I found that these pipes vent air at least a ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Why aren't Geothermal heat pumps more common?

Air conditioning and heating are major energy consumers in American buildings - commercial, residential, and industrial. I have been curious for a while as to why it isn't more common to use the ...
3
votes
1answer
574 views

How do I support vertical runs of round ducting?

Supporting ducts horizontally seems pretty straight forward--just a loop of strapping underneath to support it. What about when the duct runs vertically? Do you use the same kind of strapping but ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Do joints in adjustable duct elbows need to be taped?

Do the joints in adjustable duct elbows need to be taped as well once they're adjusted or are they considered air-tight?
3
votes
1answer
164 views

How to find this particular hot water heat pump?

I have this pump pictured attached to my furnace. I actually have two of them. This one, however, is on a circuit that has been empty for a few years and is now rusted shut and needs replacing. I have ...
2
votes
3answers
3k views

How can I improve hvac air flow to my attic?

Two years ago I converted the attic of my 1.5 story house into a livable space. It had no HVAC ducts going up, so I ran some coming from the basement where the furnace is. Air flow to the attic via ...
0
votes
0answers
85 views

I have no furnace, only electric blowing heaters. How do I get ventilation?

I have a 100 years old building with a store on the main floor. Since the building was built over 100 years old there is no ducting whatsoever. There is also no furnace. In the summer we just hook ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

Should my thermostat's blue wire be going to W2?

I've recently moved into my first house and am looking to replace the existing basic thermostat in the home. Here is a picture of how I found it wired: Researching the wires, I've read that ...
2
votes
1answer
443 views

What is involved in sizing and designing ducts and ductwork?

I have a one-story house, and it looks like it would be easy to run new ducts myself in the attic. What should I know before trying to design a duct system myself? I have seen ductwork that's metal ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How to best keep floor vent by shower dry/mold free?

We just moved into a rental home. It turned out after living there for a few weeks that we discovered the vents were innudated with mold. They were so bad the landlord had to replace all the vents in ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Why would a repairman install a 1/3 HP fan motor into a 1/5 HP unit? [closed]

Why would a repairman install a 1/3 HP fan motor into a 1/5 HP unit? He had to cut the shaft to make it fit. Two weeks later unit quit again and then he had to come and replace the capacitor MFD ...
3
votes
4answers
525 views

Air conditioning on a shoestring budget

Without purchasing expensive air-con units, or solar panels - and the associated moutings and electrical paraphernalia, is it possible to create a temperature difference of 10-20 °C using materials ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

How should one size ductwork for a new air return duct?

I recently had a contractor build a wall which split one room into two. The new room is an office with two computers, and four monitors. It gets very, very hot, until the air conditioning turns on, ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Can I reroute this air duct?

I'm quite new to dealing with HVAC duct-work. We would like to install a suspended ceiling in this room. Since the finished ceiling will be higher than this duct-work, we're going to build drywall ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Are there high flow floor heat registers available?

The weather has been pretty warm lately so we've been running our A/C. I noticed that it didn't seem like much air was coming out of the registers, so I checked to make sure the blades/louvers were ...
2
votes
1answer
119 views

What is the cost of one percent efficiency on an oil heater?

We've now had about 7 contractors come to our house and give us estimates for replacing a) our oil heater (system from the early 1980's, estimated at around 65% effeciency), and b) our central air ...
3
votes
1answer
372 views

Is it OK to shut off the A/C at the breaker?

My A/C continues to run even after the thermostat says it should shut off. Can I shut off the A/C by tripping the circuit breaker until it can be looked at? Is there any safety issue with doing this? ...
3
votes
1answer
332 views

Is it normal for air to be leaking from where the drain hose connects to the central A/C unit?

I'm trying to determine if I have a leak around my central AC unit. Basically when the unit is on, I feel cool air blowing outside the "furnace plenum" as I believe its called. If you look at this ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Why isn't my heat pump system kicking out cool air this year?

I have a Carrier heat pump/air handler system (looks pretty old) with a honeywell T-stat (looks pretty new) and I am not getting cool air. Heat worked all winter, but I have used it in at least a ...
1
vote
0answers
946 views

How can I properly drain heatpump condensate?

I have a heat pump in the attic That drains to the ground outside two floors below. I naively added a hose fitting so I could redirect the water where I wanted it, slightly up hill. This created a ...
4
votes
0answers
157 views

When cleaning HVAC ducts, is treatment for fungi and bacteria routine and mandatory after 20 years? [closed]

Is treatment for fungi and bacteria routine and mandatory after 20 years? Or should we test for fungi or bacteria first? This would be in addition to air duct cleaning.
8
votes
3answers
3k views

Are new “low noise” whole house fans actually quieter?

I've dealt with a number of older whole house fans (10 years and older) and the one thing they all had in common was a ton of noise. Are the new "low noise" fans actually that much quieter than the ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Is there a filter-reminder thermostat that uses run-time instead of total time?

My HVAC filter is in my crawlspace and is a hassle to change. I don't want to change it more than needed. "Change it every month" is bogus advice because in some months (like May) we don't have to run ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Does an air return duct do anything when the air conditioning or furnace is not running?

I recently had a contractor create a new wall which cut me off from the rest of the house. There is one AC/Heating vent in the room and when the door is closed it gets very, very hot. As soon as the ...
2
votes
2answers
434 views

How much current should I expect this motor to draw when it's running steadily?

This fan lists its "Max. Amperage" as 3.2. I assume the motor draws that much when it's first turning on, then settles down to some lower current. How much current should I expect it to draw when ...
3
votes
2answers
5k views

Can I increase air volume by adding more fans?

I have a straight 25 foot rectangular duct that is 0.9 sqft in cross-sectional area (11" by 12"). There are openings on either end, and nowhere in the middle. I wish to move about 1000 CFM through the ...
6
votes
3answers
5k views

How can I determine why my A/C runs all day?

I have a Bryant AC/Furnace unit. My house is 10 years old. A heat wave hit this weekend & temps got up to 95°F outside. I had my thermostat set to 75°, and it ran all day. The ...
1
vote
1answer
190 views

HVAC unit won't come on

This morning I noticed that my main floor wasn't cooling. I found the condensation pump full ( little giant model VCMA-15ULS ). I disconnected the hose from the unit to the pump, drained it, dumped ...
2
votes
1answer
280 views

Will an electronic air filter harm my furnace?

If I install a furnace-mounted, electronic air filter, like this one, will it harm my furnace due to reduced air flow? How will I know if it reduces air flow too much?
4
votes
1answer
818 views

How can I protect A/C condenser wires?

I bought a replacement condenser fan motor for my outdoor A/C unit. The old unit was CW direction only. This one is CW/CCW and has 4 wires stick out of the side that change direction depending on how ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Do I need to increase my HVAC trunk line size?

I'm thinking of finishing my basement. I currently have a main trunk coming off my furnace that measures 20" wide by 6" tall. I'm trying to future proof my home in the event my current furnace can't ...
3
votes
3answers
4k views

Can I sense filter replacement need based on filter pressure drop?

I should first point out that the system I'm referring to will be a self build DIY project. Fan and Filters being the only items purchased complete, And I'm still in the design phase but I'm not a ...
2
votes
1answer
146 views

When I set the thermostat to X degrees, is that the temperature at which air is pushed out through the vents?

My hunch is that most ac units aren't that sophisticated, and they just pump air that is "cold enough" or "hot enough" and pump it until temperature rises to the specified value. Is that right?
5
votes
1answer
140 views

Does lack of zone control delay hurt heat pump?

I had a new HVAC single heat-pump system installed with dual zone controls: 2 thermostats and 2 dampers for separate zones. The system works, but the zone control board does not have any time ...
7
votes
2answers
41k views

What are the pros and cons of two AC systems vs a dual zone system?

I have a Cape Cod with 1000 ft2 on the first floor and an apartment in the attic. In a few years I may get rid of the apartment and build up a second story + attic. Both the first floor and the ...
5
votes
1answer
910 views

Is there a wireless thermostat that will make relocating easier?

I've got a single zone which covers all three upstairs bedrooms in my home and the thermostat is located in the master bedroom. We prefer it to be somewhat cooler at night, but the baby in the ...
5
votes
1answer
347 views

Is it possible to recover waste heat from a boiler?

I did a google search and came back with industrial products, but no residential prosucts. I have a System 2000 boiler and hot water tank. When the furnace is firing, the temp of the exhaust through ...
4
votes
1answer
636 views

What could cause a furnace to short cycle?

My Ducane MPGA100B4B furnace is shortcycling (2 minutes from fan on to fan off) The thermostat's Heat Anticipator setting doesn't seem to matter for the on-time, maybe the offtime changes The ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

Why is my furnace filter alarmingly clean?

I have central air and heat at my appartment I moved into about 6 months ago. Today I decided it was probably long past time to figure out how to change filters in the furnace so I poke around until I ...
3
votes
2answers
5k views

Is a lip necessary on an HVAC ceiling register boot for use with flexible ducting?

I've installed some new ceiling register boots to use with flexible ducting and realized after install that they have a smooth connection with no lip. I'm assuming they are made for metal ducting, as ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

How do I lower a cold air return from the ceiling for a basement rental?

I am living in the basement level of a rental unit with forced air heat. There are 9 heating vents and one cold air return, all of which are in the ceiling. The air isn't mixing very well resulting ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

Can I run heating duct work through the attic?

Problem... (in Buffalo NY) We just about finished remodeling our master bedroom. Everything insulated, drywalled and we're living in it. Now that the winter is upon us, we're already finding this ...