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  1. #40
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Richmond, VA
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    2,981
    Quote Originally Posted by jmac00 View Post
    anyone else think that return air drop looks a little small?

    what size is that drop and what is that "first-aid" box???

    also, the vent pipe could be undersized, that looks like a 2" PVC?

    what size furnace is that???
    That's oval flex for adapting to square duct....

  2. #41
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    5,576
    Quote Originally Posted by Sensitive gal View Post
    I will take pictures and post today. I thought it was dry skin too, but humidifiers brought humidity to 40 up from 20 and as it went up our symptoms got noticeably worse. Research said carbon monoxide mixed with water vapor creates carbon dioxide and hydrogen....carbon dioxide mixed with water vapor creates carbonic acid...which could be the culprit in the burning and itching eyes/body. The installer is coming out today and bringing his Carbon monoxide monitor that realizes down to 2ppm. It's one PVC pipe and its about 4ft from the bottom access of the gas fireplace. Even when the unit is off so much air is brought in through the vents on the front of the fireplace it almost blows the flame on a lighter out. With the industrial hygienist I told him we were sensitive to chemicals and VOCs so he took straight off on that tangent because that seemed logical at the time with the introduction of mastic and new duct tape. If this chronic low level carbon monoxide turns out to not be the case I will definitely be calling the Amana Consumer Affairs.....thank you all so much. I'm so glad I posted here. Will keep you posted later today.
    You should be speaking to a dermatologist, if for no other reason than to get suggestions on protecting your skin until such time as you've solved this issue. They may also be able to tell you yea or nay on the dry skin issue.

    I've been on a call where the PVC flue pipe was wide open in the basement. Whoever installed it failed to glue one joint and it fell apart. I measured 10ppm CO in the house, and then went down into the basement where the condensing water heater (used for heating) was located. There I measured 1200 ppm CO while running back up the stairs as fast as I could holding my breath. The occupants had no idea that this was going on. They reported no symptoms of any sort. No headaches, no irritation of the eyes, nothing.

    Dry skin, which I am suffering from as we speak, is consistent with every symptom that you described. Raising the humidity is not a way to test for dry skin. The damage to the skin is already there and isn't healed by simply applying more moisture. Time is required for the skin to heal. When I move to a moist area the itching gets worse, much worse sometimes. When I get in the shower and turn on the water it stings and itches. That's part of the deal. I get it every winter because I work a lot outside where it's very dry. Also called "winter itch". There are things you can do and products that you can use that will alleviate dry skin. A Google search turns up 21.8 million pages on the subject. It's very common.

    https://www.google.com/webhp?sourcei...w=1440&bih=767

  3. #42
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    British Columbia, Canada
    Posts
    529
    Quote Originally Posted by hvacrmedic View Post
    You should be speaking to a dermatologist, if for no other reason than to get suggestions on protecting your skin until such time as you've solved this issue. They may also be able to tell you yea or nay on the dry skin issue.

    I've been on a call where the PVC flue pipe was wide open in the basement. Whoever installed it failed to glue one joint and it fell apart. I measured 10ppm CO in the house, and then went down into the basement where the condensing water heater (used for heating) was located. There I measured 1200 ppm CO while running back up the stairs as fast as I could holding my breath. The occupants had no idea that this was going on. They reported no symptoms of any sort. No headaches, no irritation of the eyes, nothing.

    Dry skin, which I am suffering from as we speak, is consistent with every symptom that you described. Raising the humidity is not a way to test for dry skin. The damage to the skin is already there and isn't healed by simply applying more moisture. Time is required for the skin to heal. When I move to a moist area the itching gets worse, much worse sometimes. When I get in the shower and turn on the water it stings and itches. That's part of the deal. I get it every winter because I work a lot outside where it's very dry. Also called "winter itch". There are things you can do and products that you can use that will alleviate dry skin. A Google search turns up 21.8 million pages on the subject. It's very common.

    https://www.google.com/webhp?sourcei...40&bih=767
    Burning eyes too?
    Gasoline taste in mouth?

  4. #43
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Rochester, NY, USA
    Posts
    14,417
    Quote Originally Posted by beshvac View Post
    That's oval flex for adapting to square duct....

    Nice, thanx for pointing THAT out

    but what size is it. if it's 12", I don't think its big enough
    LOVE has four letters

    So does BEER, DEER,GUNS AND FISH

  5. #44
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    5,576
    Quote Originally Posted by koolkahuna View Post
    Burning eyes too?
    Gasoline taste in mouth?
    You didn't read the OP's statements carefully. Burning eyes yes, definitely goes along with dry skin. Dry air dries the eyes as well as the skin.

    The gasoline-like taste was experienced only during start-up of the furnaces, and AFAIK that's perfectly normal. Myself and most other techs I know will forewarn the HO of a start-up odor. It often occurs every winter when the furnace is lit off for the first time. A new furnace may have oil on the hx that burns off, generating a petrolium odor and in some cases even visible smoke.

  6. #45
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Tallahassee, FL
    Posts
    6,051
    Goodmans have quite a bit of oil at that. And id bet yours is getting pretty toasty.

  7. #46

    Confused

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    I'm not sure exactly what you mean by "combustion air supply" but I've attached a picture of the top of the unit where the furnace and blower are....the installer called it the intake valve. He said since it's in the garage that it would be ok....our old unit pulled air through the door he said. Is that what you mean by the combustion air supply?

    I do not know what static pressure is....is that the pressure within the ducts while the unit is not running?

    The white box is a hepa air filtration unit. It's a merv 16 rating by www.iqair.com They call it the Perfect 16. It's just all hepa filter, absolutely no ozone, no fan on it or anything.

    Yes, the pvc is 2" on the exhaust. The return duct in the upstairs is 12" diameter, the basement which i'm told was added later is 8" and the main floor is the kind you open and it's steel sheets that go down in an L shape to the 12" duct you see going into the left side of the hepa box.

    Both the main and upstairs unit are 2 ton, 15.5 SEER with 95% efficient gas heat. Our square feet is 900 sq. feet upstairs, 900 on main floor, and the 2 car garage and finished basement on the walk out basement level.
    The installer has a good reputation. We went through the local TVA here to get financing through them and they have a list of approved installers they we could use. I checked them all out and after getting pricing and looking at their BBB ratings I went with the guy I did. His price was between the two and had A+ rating with no complaints for 5 years I believe. We paid $12000 not including the HEPA boxes. He came over today and brought his carbon monoxide monitor but he hadn't calibrated it, don't believe he knew how. It started at -.02 when he turned it on. Didn't move when he held it next to the hot water heater that I cranked up so that it would produce exhaust. Went to the fireplace with the gas heat running and it bumped it up to .00 from the -.02. It didn't move anywhere near either units or in the air coming out of the vents while the units were on. He had no suggestions and left.

    When I call to get a second opinion out here what should I be asking to make sure I get a qualified person that can look at it like a puzzle instead of black and white? I don't want to get somebody else out here that is the same as my current installer.

    I'm ordering a low level carbon monoxide monitor online...can't find one around here. Found one that can measure down to 2ppm with constant digital display by Kiddiehawk.

    I've never had my ducts blasted although that was on my list to check out. When all units are off and windows shut, no bathroom fans runnng I can still feel a little cold air coming out of all the registers....just a little tiny bit.

    Also, if the furnace didn't run in the summer, there was no added exhaust to the water heater flue, but we didn't have any problems then. Why would it be any different with the opening taped over?

    I checked out the mastic. Hardcast, and it had Methyl alcohol, paraffin, clay and latex co-polymers in it. The PID unit that picks up most all VOCs only raise 2.5ppm when i put it next to the mastic....and only in the basement return. Not in the main return or upstairs. Those readings didn't change at all from the room reading, which was 2.5ppm of "something" in the air. The monitor doesn't tell you what it is.
    Last edited by Sensitive gal; 02-24-2013 at 09:50 PM. Reason: forgot details

  8. #47
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    4,421
    You need to find a contractor with BPI and or NCI certifications. Someone with both would be best!
    Make your expertise uniquely valuable.

    Make your influence uniquely far-reaching.

  9. #48
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Arizona
    Posts
    4,421
    Make your expertise uniquely valuable.

    Make your influence uniquely far-reaching.

  10. #49
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Location
    Rochester, NY, USA
    Posts
    14,417
    uuuum, 12" duct might be boarder line, I think it might be a tad small.

    and you said your pulling your supply (combustion air) from the garage......


    I think you just found your problem. I don't suppose you have any fuel cans in the garage? do you warm up your car in the garage?
    LOVE has four letters

    So does BEER, DEER,GUNS AND FISH

  11. #50
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    God's country - Shenandoah Valley, VA
    Posts
    382
    Quote Originally Posted by Sensitive gal View Post
    I just researched it and am now frightened. I turned off the units, neither has been running today because i had them set so low, but am worried about the pilot light. How do I turn that off so no gas is burning?
    There is no pilot: it has a hot surface ignitor that lights the burners directly.
    Bob Boan


    ​You can choose to do what you want, but you cannot choose the consequences.

  12. #51
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Ontario Canada
    Posts
    550
    Was the MERV 16 filter installed with your old furnace and re-used? Or was it installed new with the new furnace ?

    Do you hear a whistling sound when standing beside your furnace while its running?

    If I'm reading right, your furnace is located in the garage and ducted inside? Was this also the case with your old set-up?, or did the installing contractor modify it this way?

    Any resolution or new developments as of yet?

  13. #52
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Arnold mo
    Posts
    3,977
    Based on the pics and the allergic reaction, I'd say the main culprit is the flue gas being drawn into the fireplace opening. That flue pipe needs to be extended higher so that the flue gas exhaust does not get drawn into the fireplace air vents under the porch.
    The carbon monoxide detector won't pick up on this if the furnace is not producing CO, but the normal byproducts of combustion can still be causing the allergic reaction they are experiencing.
    An answer without a question is meaningless.
    Information without understanding is useless.
    You can lead a horse to water............
    http://www.mohomeenergyaudits.com

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