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  1. #1

    Purest possible residential HVAC setup for new home for child

    My daughter has very bad allergies and a very weak immune system

    We are building a new house and we are entirely focused on creating as clean an environment as possible for her (no carpets, no rugs, etc).

    Clearly a whole house HEPA filter seems to be the way to go - what we would like your opinon on is are other add-ons like charcol filters, UV lamps (Non ozone), gas phase filters, etc that will improve upon a whole house HEPA.

    If i could create a clean room at home i would, but that costs hundreds of thousands - we are comfortable spending up to $30k - $50k on the HVAC equipment for a our 4,000 sq foot house (not including duct work etc) to make it the best environment for her as possible

    Thank you in advance - all advice is much appreciated

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Upper Michigan
    Posts
    3,588
    Trane make a clean effects air filter setup, it's pretty expensive, I would get the biggest one they make and use a transition between it and funrnace. There maybe something better than this so wait awhile and someone else will chime in.


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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    The Quad-Cities area (midwest).
    Posts
    2,626
    The Trane unit is not very well constructed (you get what you pay for). They were catching on fire. Maybe they have that problem solved.

    The Carrier/Bryant Infinity/Evolution Air Purifier is better constructed AND does more (cleaner air).

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    steeler nation
    Posts
    2,054
    have you contacted a qualified engineer or iaq specialist?
    IV IV IX

    use your head for something other than a hat rack.......Gerry

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    Upper Michigan
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    Quote Originally Posted by George2 View Post
    The Trane unit is not very well constructed (you get what you pay for). They were catching on fire. Maybe they have that problem solved.

    The Carrier/Bryant Infinity/Evolution Air Purifier is better constructed AND does more (cleaner air).
    The trane units are pretty expensive, why did they burn up?


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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    North Richland Hills, Texas
    Posts
    14,914
    Quote Originally Posted by Joehvac25 View Post
    The trane units are pretty expensive, why did they burn up?
    Most of the small number of cases were upflow air handlers that dripped water on the collection cells.
    The problem was solved 5 years ago, and the potentially bad collection cells replaced under a voluntary recall.

    I'm not a fan of the Clean Effects/AccuClean because the vast majority of homeowners don't maintain them, or any type of EAC, as they should.
    I'm also not a fan of the Carrier air cleaner because of the high cost of changing the filter.

    I'm more a fan of good high efficiency media air cleaners and source control of IAQ gremlins.
    If more is needed to deal with some specific problem, it can be added to a system.
    If more government is the answer, then it's a really stupid question.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    6,320
    Mark is correct simple is better and basic fundamentals is most important. Start with proper sizing (paramount) very tight sealed ductwork, good extended media (HEPA) filter MERV 12 or better and most important start with a clean coil. Coils come with a coating of machine oil from the manufacturing process and this promotes mold growth. I clean all coils with a good green cleaner, treat it with an algaecide and spray it down with a Teflon coating.

    Proper sizing is critical for humidity control, maintain the home with a dew point between 50 & 55 degrees and a relative humidity level below 50% will combat mold growth & growth of dust mites which is a source of allergies in many young people.

    For the most part UV lights are of little benefit however in your case they could have some benefit, additionally a good whole house supplemental dehumidifier with outdoor fresh air capabilities would be helpful; the Thermastor products are excellent you might also look at Lifebreath.

    As far as whole house high end filtration systems like the Carrier and Trane units I would look at the Lennox Pureaire the best of all (IMHO) but as stated they are expensive to maintain. I am not enamored with any of the equipment manufactures certainly not Lennox or Trane but the Pureaire is an excellent product.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2002
    Location
    I don't know
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    2,903
    Forget about high end filters and uv lights.

    Electronic air cleaners produce ozone and bypass filters don't move enough air to be effective.

    Filtering the pollution out of the air after the fact is an exercise in futility; the propose of the filter is the keep the equipment clean.

    ----------------------------
    One of the best things you can do is install a central vac that's vented outside.

    A new, tight house should have a HRV or ERV to vent out excess moisture (showering/cooking) and noxious fumes (new building materials)

    Avoid particle board where possible since the glue has formaldehyde in it.

  9. #9
    Guys,

    Awesome stuff - thank you

    We have hired an enviromental engineer to help us with the home material selection (low output, aged materials, low acidity materials, floating floor for less adhesive materials, etc)

    Great stuff - THANK YOU

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Portland OR
    Posts
    1,969
    Here are my thoughts on what I would do if I was in your situation.
    First, I would highly seal the home or use spray foam insulation to KEEP OUT all possible issues
    Second you will NEED an HRV or some sort of fresh air ventilation
    Third Radiant floor system or Daikin Quaternity(the quaternity might be to much for your size house)
    If you do not go radiant or ductless make sure your ducts are sealed as good as they can be, 6% or less is good 3% or less is possible and we routinely are able to seal our duct systems to a 3% duct loss on a brand new home. Any ductwork that you can keep inside the envelope is a good thing, open web joists or conditioned attic areas for the trunk lines.
    The Trane clean effects is a great product, but you need to clean in monthly or more often for best performance. The Carrier unit is the same as the Honeywell truClean and the truclean may cost a bit less so you might want to look into that but as others have said they are expensive for replacement filters. A HEPA filtration system is also a great option if you want very very low ozone emissions but a HEPA system costs about 3X as much as tru clean filters in my experience.
    Lastly, you might also want to look into some of the new plumbing pipe options. I recently had a customer use a type of plumbing that had no VOC emisions and it was fused together.
    Look at no or zero VOC paint and finish's and have an air test performed once the house is operational via an Air Advice or similar unit to verify that everything is as clean as stated.
    Check out my YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/skyheating1 We have customer testimonials, product reviews and more!
    Like us on FACEBOOK if you like our advice here!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Rochester NY
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    4,721
    Quote Originally Posted by motoguy128 View Post
    Keeping the home under slightly positive pressure will make a big difference.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shophound View Post
    constantly circulate and filter this air. .
    Quote Originally Posted by SkyHeating View Post
    highly seal the home or use spray foam insulation to KEEP OUT all possible issues
    Second you will NEED an HRV or some sort of fresh air ventilation

    make sure your ducts are sealed as good as they can be, 6% or less is good 3% or less is possible and we routinely are able to seal our duct systems to a 3% duct loss on a brand new home. Any ductwork that you can keep inside the envelope is a good thing, open web joists or conditioned attic areas for the trunk lines.

    have an air test performed once the house is operational via an Air Advice or similar unit to verify that everything is as clean as stated.
    Manage RH to stay between 40-50% rh. Avoid dust/static on one side and mold on the other.
    Which makes more sense to you?
    CONSERVATION - turning your thermostat back and being uncomfortable. Maybe saving 5-10%
    ENERGY EFFICIENCY - leaving your thermostat where everyone is comfortable. Saving 30-70%

    DO THE NUMBERS! Step on a HOMESCALE.
    What is comfort? Well, it AIN'T just TEMPERATURE!

    Energy Obese? An audit is the next step - go to BPI.org, or RESNET, and find an auditor near you.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    North Richland Hills, Texas
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyHeating View Post
    Third Radiant floor system or Daikin Quaternity(the quaternity might be to much for your size house)
    you mean Daikin Altherma?

    Quaternity is their fancy ductless splits, The Altherma system is the one that does hydro heat + AC.
    If more government is the answer, then it's a really stupid question.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Portland OR
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    1,969
    Quote Originally Posted by mark beiser View Post
    you mean Daikin Altherma?

    Quaternity is their fancy ductless splits, The Altherma system is the one that does hydro heat + AC.
    No I mean the Quaternity, it has built in flash streamers and air purification. Plus since it does not have any ducts it won't allow any duct leakage and with up to 22 SEER and 15.8 EER and 11 HSPF it is incredibly efficient. It can also control humidity with dehumidification on demand in high humidity areas. It is a ductless meant specifically for air quality and I have used it with many customers with moderate allergies or humidity concerns with great success.
    It just really is not the right solution for a large home and can only be used in a 1 outdoor to 1 indoor unit combination. You can not use the Quaternity indoor wall port with any of the multi port ductless.
    Check out my YouTube channel - http://www.youtube.com/user/skyheating1 We have customer testimonials, product reviews and more!
    Like us on FACEBOOK if you like our advice here!

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