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  1. #144
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    Aug 2012
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    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    when you call them tell them you want to know the esp and duct issues so they will send a "comfort consultant" rather than a "salesman"
    Will do. Thanks!

  2. #145
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    Delaware
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    you want a tech that can use his tools. I told you this eighty posts back. If the contractor you have been thinking about install this new system and they CAN NOT perform the static pressure test, do not hire him to do the install. This is such a simple task.

  3. #146
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
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    6,465
    Also, I'm not very familiar with Florida but I think Florida power and light does energy audits, don't know how thorough or how much it costs but might be worth looking into.

  4. #147
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Also, I'm not very familiar with Florida but I think Florida power and light does energy audits, don't know how thorough or how much it costs but might be worth looking into.
    I had the FPL audits done last week and have described what they did and the results a number of times in earlier posts in response to questions throughout this thread. Been there, done that... FPL does not calculate total CFM or ESP, nor do they evaluate duct "sufficiency". They do duct leak testing and evaluate the R-rating of insulation and provide rebate certificates to have ducts sealed and insulation added. Those repairs were completed last week.

    Thanks anyway.

  5. #148
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    Aug 2012
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florida Joy View Post
    I had the FPL audits done last week and have described what they did and the results a number of times in earlier posts in response to questions throughout this thread. Been there, done that... FPL does not calculate total CFM or ESP, nor do they evaluate duct "sufficiency". They do duct leak testing and evaluate the R-rating of insulation and provide rebate certificates to have ducts sealed and insulation added. Those repairs were completed last week.

    Thanks anyway.
    I was curious how evenly my ducts were cooling the various rooms in my 1827sf living area, so early this afternoon I took some temperature/humidity readings that I’ll share. I’d like to know if closing up the supply in the guest bedroom near the front of the house just a tad might even out the temps a bit. Any ideas?

    When I took the readings, the old 3.5 ton Rheem was running non-stop, but it was overcast and it was finally able to maintain t-stat setting without struggling, even though temp outside was 85 degrees, 80% RH, dew point 79 degrees.

    As I suspected, the rooms in the rear half of the house were warmer than those near the front. The rear has all the sliding glass while the front is closer to the air handler.

    My entry door is located on the NW side of the house, not quite midway from front to back. The entry foyer is what divides the house into two sections, each with a different roof orientation. Toward the front are the guest bedrooms and bath, the laundry, and the garage. Toward the back are the master bedroom/bath and the kitchen, and finally, across the width at the rear of the house are the dining room, the open beam family room, and a screen room that has been enclosed as conditioned space (my office).

    (1) The t-stat is in the hallway leading to the guest bedrooms at the front of the house, directly above the return air filter grille. With the t-stat set at 75 and reading a temp of 75, actual temp at the t-stat was 77 degrees with 40% RH.

    (2) In the foyer, temp was 77 degrees, 40% RH. Entry door in the foyer is a 20sf solid glass door and the foyer “wall” opposite the front door is a 4-section sliding glass door (73sf of glass) leading to the screened atrium “inside” the footprint of the house. The atrium has glass doors along all 3 inside walls. The atrium is lovely, but the foyer is usually the hottest place in the house because of all that glass on the SE side.

    (3) Laundry room temp/RH was 75.9/40%. The air handler is in the laundry, which is off the foyer leading to the garage.

    (4) Temp/RH in the first guest bedroom down the hall from the t-stat was 72/43%. The wall between this bedroom and the atrium is an 8ft wide sliding glass door and there’s another 3X5 ft window in the SE wall.

    (5) Temp/RH in the guest bath was 72 degrees/43%.

    (6) Temp/RH in the largest guest bedroom at the very front of the house was 69.8/42%. There is only one window, 4X6. This has always been the coolest room in the house.

    (7) Temp/RH in the kitchen was 74.5/42%. The kitchen has no window, but shares an 8 ft wide sliding glass door with the atrium at one end and it's opened to the dining room which has an 8 ft sliding glass door opening to the backyard and the lake.

    (8) Temp/RH in the master bedroom, across the hall from the kitchen, was 72/43%. Only one window in this room, 3X6. But the rear wall has an 8ft wide sliding glass door opening to the office that has 8ft wide sliding glass door opening to the backyard. The master bath was a bit warmer at 74/40%.

    (9) Temp/RH in the dining room (with its 8 ft glass doors to the backyard and the lake) was 74/41%

    (10) Temp/RH in the open beam family room (with its 8 ft glass doors to the backyard and the lake) was 75.4/41%

    (11) Temp/RH in the office (with its 8 ft glass doors to the backyard and the lake) was 76/40%. The office also has a 5X9 set of windows in the NW side, and it’s where I have all my computer equipment. Except for the foyer, this is usually the warmest spot in the house. Whoever closed in this space ran the A/C duct to this space as an “extension” off the ducting to the family room. Running a new duct directly from the junction box (or whatever it’s called) will be included as part of the install work when I get the new A/C.

    I’m relatively happy with the temperature spread throughout the house, except for the guest bedroom at the front being too cold when I’m comfortable in the master. If I had an A/C that could “maintain” these temps on a sunny day when it’s 95 degrees outside, and not cost me 5 times as much in electricity during a summer month as it does during the month of December, I'd be jumping with "joy".

  6. #149
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
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    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
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    Balancing dampers and a flow hood should solve uneven temp swings. Comfort institute members should have flow hoods and be able to balance. In a perfect world you would have properly sized supply and return duct in each room with balancing dampers. You need to find a cOntractor who understands all of this and has solutions to resolve issues such as hot/cold rooms.

  7. #150
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    Aug 2012
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    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Balancing dampers and a flow hood should solve uneven temp swings. Comfort institute members should have flow hoods and be able to balance. In a perfect world you would have properly sized supply and return duct in each room with balancing dampers. You need to find a cOntractor who understands all of this and has solutions to resolve issues such as hot/cold rooms.
    I just knew you'd come up with the "perfect" (i.e., expensive) solution! LOL

    Adding return ducts in each room is NOT going to happen. I'm not willing to pay the price for perfection. I'll settle for "close enough", if it's within my budget!. Will discuss the temperature differences with the Comfort Institute folks I found online last week, when I get a chance to set up an appointment.

    I'm not giving up in my search for the "right" contractor and the "best possible" installation choices, but I've been quite busy with other issues, so the A/C is not #1 on my list right now, since it's WORKING fairly well for the time being.

    I do appreciate eveyone's advice. I know I've still got a lot to learn, but at least now I feel better prepared to ask the right questions and not accept baloney answers when dealing with HVAC contractors. HVAC seems so much more complicated these days (as is everything) and there are so many hacks out there, I wonder how they've managed to stay in business for 30-35 years.

  8. #151
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    Aug 2012
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    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florida Joy View Post
    I’d like to know if closing up the supply in the guest bedroom near the front of the house just a tad might even out the temps a bit. Any ideas?

    I’m relatively happy with the temperature spread throughout the house, except for the guest bedroom at the front being too cold when I’m comfortable in the master.
    Well, I just looked at the supply grille in the front bedroom and answered my own question! It's been set to almost all the way closed, probably by my son. My son and daughter-in-law always sleep in this b/r when they visit, so I guess it's been that way since at least May 2010!

    I'll discuss the air balancing issue if I manage to get a Comfort Institute tech out to the house next week.

  9. #152
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    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Balancing dampers and a flow hood should solve uneven temp swings. Comfort institute members should have flow hoods and be able to balance. In a perfect world you would have properly sized supply and return duct in each room with balancing dampers. You need to find a cOntractor who understands all of this and has solutions to resolve issues such as hot/cold rooms.
    What are balancing dampers? Is that something installed inside the existing supply duct or does it go in the return? Additional return ducts in each room are out of the question.

  10. #153
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    Oct 2010
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    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florida Joy View Post
    What are balancing dampers? Is that something installed inside the existing supply duct or does it go in the return? Additional return ducts in each room are out of the question.
    Balancing dampers go into the supply duct runs and you can adjust the damper depending on how much air you want to be supplied to any given room, you have to have some way to measure how much air is coming out at different damper settings. There are more economical solutions than putting a return in each room.

  11. #154
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    Aug 2012
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    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Balancing dampers go into the supply duct runs and you can adjust the damper depending on how much air you want to be supplied to any given room, you have to have some way to measure how much air is coming out at different damper settings. There are more economical solutions than putting a return in each room.
    When I lived in northern Virginia (3 story townhouse) there were mechanical dampers in the basement between the air handler and the supply ducts leading to each of two zones, one feeding the second floor, the other feeding the first floor and the finished basement. In the summer, I'd have to adjust both dampers manually to get more A/C to the top floor, whereas in the winter I'd have to adjust to get more heat to the first floor and basement.

    Having a northern home where supply ducts are exposed in the unfinished "utility room" in the basement is a bit different from my current single story Florida home, where there is no access to supply ducts coming off the plenum in the attic.

    Is there such a thing as a damper that could be controlled by other than mechanical means, that is, something I wouldn't have to adjust by hand? Perhaps something with wireless controls?

    So many things may be possible today, I just need to know what the options are so I can ask the right questions.
    Last edited by Florida Joy; 08-19-2012 at 01:35 PM. Reason: typos

  12. #155
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    Oct 2010
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    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
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    Yes but you would be looking at boo coos of money for something like that and you don't need it. It should only have to be balanced one time to get the proper amount of airflow designed for the space

  13. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Yes but you would be looking at boo coos of money for something like that and you don't need it. It should only have to be balanced one time to get the proper amount of airflow designed for the space
    So, in my mind's eye, I'm seeing a tech in the attic installing a fixed mechanical damper at the "junction box" (or whatever it's called) where the ducting to the front bedroom originates. It would be a "set it and forget it" damper.

    Is my mind's eye seeing the solution clearly, or does it need glasses? LOL

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