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

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5
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2answers
10k views

Is it OK to have heating registers and returns near the ceiling?

I've got a question about a new house - a friend of my mother's is buying a new place and when she did a walkthrough (before the drywall was up), she noticed that all the heating registers and returns ...
5
votes
3answers
11k views

How can I improve second floor HVAC performance?

I have a forced air heating and air conditioning system that performs poorly on the second floor: It is way too warm in the summer and a little too cold in the winter. I live in a 1920s masonry row ...
5
votes
3answers
5k views

Should I be concerned about fridge/freezer airflow?

We just recently had the following counter/cabinet system put into our basement family room. After everything was done, I started to get concerned about airflow. The enclosure was built in such a ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

What is the maximum angle I can set my window AC unit?

We know an AC unit must be angled to allow runoff. But what is the maximum angle and what is the issue with having to large of an angle? I've seen people say the angle is "5/16" or "3/16" but this is ...
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 ...
5
votes
1answer
4k views

Where should carbon monoxide detector be located?

How many carbon monoxide detector is need in house and where it's more strategic to place it? Is it better to place it low close to the ground or high close to the ceiling?
5
votes
1answer
146 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 ...
5
votes
4answers
157 views

What concerns should I have installing a HVAC unit and ducts in a home that's never had it?

We're looking at a house in southern Alabama that has no central heating and air. I would like to put one in. The house was built in 1950. What should I be considering about the installation?
5
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1answer
1k views

two condensate drains?

we just had a new AC system installed in my florida house. the unit is in the garage, and the air handler is vertical with the evaporator on top. the unit he removed had 2 condensate lines: one that ...
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 ...
5
votes
1answer
405 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
1k 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 ...
4
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8answers
10k views

Would putting a sprinkler on my roof help cool my home?

Anyone ever put a sprinkler on your roof to help out your A/C on unusually hot days? Just wondering if it helps.
4
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5answers
20k views

What kind of wall switch is needed for a natural gas fireplace to ignite consistently?

When we moved in, our natural gas fireplace worked well: Flick the switch & it would ignite. Years later, it started acting erratically: Sometimes, the switch worked, other times, no luck. We'd ...
4
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3answers
2k views

Advice for replacement/repair of an HVAC with a cracked heat exchanger?

My townhouse has a downflow 1994 Rheem 2.5 ton HVAC unit on its roof (combines both A/C and heat). We have had two issues with the unit and have been in the townhouse for a little under two years. In ...
4
votes
2answers
5k 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
250 views

Who do I hire to design my home HVAC system?

Preface I need to buy a new HVAC system for my 1930s home. I currently have forced air duct system. My gas furnace was installed in 1985 and is rusting out, and I'm not sure about the air ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Is there a trick to getting round HVAC duct pieces to fit together

I have been doing some basic HVAC duct work as part of a remodeling project and I can never get the pieces to fit together without massive amounts of elbow grease and mangling the ends. Is there some ...
4
votes
1answer
6k views

Convert line voltage heating system to use low voltage thermostats

I currently have two line voltage ceiling radiant heating systems in my condo each with their own DPST thermostat. I'd like to use low voltage thermostats such as the nest. I found this ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

What are these two pipes coming out of the house?

I am trying to figure out the purpose of a couple of pipes that are currently coming out of the house. First, a couple of notes: One-story house. HVAC system is in the attic. It is winter here. ...
4
votes
1answer
7k views

Is flexible gas pipe safe to use for main or long runs?

The house we purchased is a "tear-down". A builder bought the older structure, partially tore it down and built a bigger house on the old footprint. A lot of the original gas piping is still in the ...
4
votes
3answers
12k views

Why is my furnace blower noisy when it starts?

The blower of my furnace makes a loud noise every time it starts. I understand that a large fan and the movement of large amounts of air will produce some noise. What I am puzzled by is the noise that ...
4
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3answers
132 views

Geothermal Resources

I am very interested in learning more about Geothermal solutions for my house. What are the best resources for learning about and planning a Geothermal systems for a residential house? Also, does ...
4
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3answers
6k views

Why is my gas furnace vibrating when blowing hot air but not when blowing cold air?

I have a gas furnace. I recently replaced a bad blower motor. At that time I also cleaned out the blower housing and squirrel cage. The AC runs fine with no vibrations or any symptoms of an off ...
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?
4
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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 ...
4
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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 ...
4
votes
2answers
116 views

DIYer to skilled tradesperson

What is the process a DIYer has to go through to become a skilled tradesperson? Are the only options apprenticeships, or are there other paths to follow to learn a trade/become licensed? What type ...
4
votes
2answers
92 views

Resources for designing new HVAC [closed]

Our house is a bungalow with full basement and is currently heated via electrical baseboard heaters in every room. I'm converting this to a central air system heated by a gas furnace, and possibly ...
4
votes
2answers
8k 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 ...
4
votes
1answer
4k views

What would cause my furnace to only work with the filter removed?

My Carrier furnace works fine without the air filter in place on the return. With the filter in place it works for a while and then stops with a complaint about "limit, or flame rollout is open" ...
4
votes
4answers
16k views

Can I using a 3-phase connection to power 1-phase AC unit?

I have preparation for an AC connection with 3-phase 220V 3X16A breaker. I want to install a 220V 1-phase unit, which also needs a 16A breaker. The physical connection has screw-on terminals, so there ...
4
votes
2answers
70 views

Solution for fiberglass ducts that have collapsed in basement?

I have two furnaces in my house, one for the basement and one for the rest of the house. I noticed that while using the basement furnace this winter that no air was coming out of any of the basement ...
4
votes
5answers
95 views

How to Lower the Ouptut of Oversized Furnace

Questions I would like to lower the output capacity of my furnace if possible. How can I do this? Is it worth doing, or should I just live with it? Is there an easy way? Some ideas: replace burner ...
4
votes
4answers
221 views

Is transitioning to all electric heating smart?

I am in the process of overhauling my home heating and plumbing. I bought a 2600sq/ft 1980s Cape Cod in southern Maine on the coast. I've reinsulated the walls and roof and am continuing to make ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

How do I improve heating in back room of house?

The back room of my house is quite warm in the summer. The room is on the north side of the house (Alabama, USA), so the outside walls don't get direct sun exposure. The attic insulation is a little ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Connection for C wire on Mastertrol Mark V zone control panel

I have spent hours searching the web for information on this 20+ year old zone control panel, which supports 3 zones of Heat and A/C. The thermostat I'm replacing (on Zone 3) connects to T4/T5/T6 as ...
4
votes
3answers
12k 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
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
1k views

What are effective ways to frame a return air duct?

Consider an in-floor return air duct that is 32" x 22". A standard air filter that closest fits the register is 30" x 20". What materials should I use to frame the duct so it will snugly hold the ...
4
votes
2answers
18k 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
803 views

ductless AC split systems?

Does anyone have the ductless split AC systems offered by Mitsubishi, etc.? Is installing them a DIY job? Can you share your comments about them, in general? Edit: Inspired by DA01 comment, I'd ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

What's wrong with my thermostat (fan / limit control)?

I previously asked about wiring the White-Rodgers fan/limit control on my wood stove. It's now wired and the wood stove is fired up. I ran the fan wires to the fan (hot) and I capped the limit ...
4
votes
1answer
550 views

How can I determine if my HVAC system has features which are not currently wired to my thermostat?

I recently upgraded to a Nest Thermostat. This new thermostat supports many more terminals and features than my previous thermostat. My old thermostat had the basic terminals; G,R,C,Y, and W. I am ...
4
votes
7answers
49k views

Should I insulate air conditioner coolant pipes?

I recently replaced some rotted insulation on the coolant pipe that runs out of my AC unit and into the evaporator in my house. When cleaning inside the actual AC unit itself I noticed that the ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Why won't the fan run independently of the air conditioner?

I have central air and heat, with a Nest thermostat. My system has Y, G, R, C and W wires coming out of it: which are wired into my Nest like so: In between, there is a splice where the C wire is ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

Adding AC to forced air system

We have an old house that happens to have forced air. Unfortunately, according to an HVAC tech it looks like there aren't sufficient return vents to add a compressor to our furnace. I guess I'm ...
4
votes
1answer
10k views

How should I wire this White-Rodgers fan and limit control? What about the thermostat?

I have a wood-burning stove, that is used as an auxiliary heat source in the house. There's a regular electric furnace, and adjacent to it is the stove. The warm air duct (out) from the stove ...
4
votes
3answers
496 views

Do I need to level the outdoor AC cooling unit?

I've read somewhere that the outdoor AC unit needs to be leveled. My outdoor unit is a bit slanted due to the floor not being completely flat (pic below). However, I don't see any obvious structural ...
4
votes
2answers
132 views

Dust reduction and removal?

I have a room with west facing windows (I dont think the direction bears any importance to this question), but for some reason this room seems to accumulate dust on surfaces a lot faster than other ...