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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    24

    New construction zoning question

    Just beginning the process of building a new 1 1/2 story; we hope pretty much duplicate our present home's floor plan of around 3800 sq ft. The house is in Savannah, GA. We have the master and guest room downstairs with a very open dining, keeping or gathering or whatever you call it, kitchen, breakfast area, etc. Two bedrooms separated by large play area upstairs and a finished bonus area over the garage. The upstairs and downstairs have a dedicated AC and gas furnace. The bonus area over the garage has it's own heat pump.

    The new house will be built with efficiency in mind; foamed insulation, sealed attic, good windows, etc. My general layman's thought was a properly sized Greenspeed HP downstairs, and a less efficient two speed HP for the upstairs. Looking to have short, efficient properly sized ducting. I'm undecided if I want or need a gas furnace for the downstairs and feel like I would want one just because gas is cheap and I expect that to continue. Savannah has 1847 HDD and 2365 CDD. I'm comfortable that this particular builder's HVAC sub does the necessary Manual Js and Ds and installs a good system.

    Now, to my question. While looking at a possible builder's personal home last night he mentioned zoning the master and guest bedroom on one system, the rest of the downstairs on a second and a third dedicated for the upstairs. The thought being the master and guest are rooms that are low use rooms. In my past I remember some larger homes being zoned this way, however, I have never lived in one. I'm not a fan of zoning through airflow adjustment. I had a Carrier system zoned that way in a home 17-18 years ago and never thought it worked well, but I realize advancements have been made.

    What's the opinion here on zoning the downstairs master/guest on one system and the rest of the downstairs on another?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    The Quad-Cities area (midwest).
    Posts
    2,737
    I'm not sure I understand the post. Will there be 2 or 3 systems? You said the master bedroom (and guest room) will be "low" use rooms? Does this mean they won't be used? I like zoning but it needs to be done correctly (as with any thing else).

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    24
    Sorry I wasn't clear. He was talking about 3 systems. One sized for the downstairs bedrooms. "Low use" was probably the wrong term; not as occupied or used as the rest of the house during most of the day. There would be a second downstairs unit for the kitchen, dining, keeping, breakfast area. A third unit dedicated to the entire upstairs.

    I'm fine with 3 units per se, I have that now. One for the entirety of my first floor, one for the entirety of my second floor and a small HP for the bonus area over the attached garage. If someone had asked how I would think a builder would install HVAC in a new house, this is what I would have thought.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    24
    Too late to edit post. From what I understand about high efficiency heat pumps and how it is generally better to set a comfortable temp and leave it rather than setbacks, putting a dedicated unit to two rooms on the same floor with the rest of the floor on a different unit caused me to ask the question here.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    The Quad-Cities area (midwest).
    Posts
    2,737
    Quote Originally Posted by wensteph View Post
    Sorry I wasn't clear. He was talking about 3 systems. One sized for the downstairs bedrooms. "Low use" was probably the wrong term; not as occupied or used as the rest of the house during most of the day. There would be a second downstairs unit for the kitchen, dining, keeping, breakfast area. A third unit dedicated to the entire upstairs.

    I'm fine with 3 units per se, I have that now. One for the entirety of my first floor, one for the entirety of my second floor and a small HP for the bonus area over the attached garage. If someone had asked how I would think a builder would install HVAC in a new house, this is what I would have thought.
    Thank you.....it's more clear now. How many sq. ft. will be on the first floor? The problem with a separate system for only the two bedrooms is finding a system small enough. That is where zoning is so useful. It'll depend on the sq. ft. of the those first floor areas.

    The Carrier zoning and Greenspeed HP would be no problem together if the area will allow.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Philadelphia PA
    Posts
    2,190
    So the choice is 3 seperate units or 1 unit with 3 zone dampeers ( which does not include "The bonus area over the garage has it's own heat pump".
    I am inclined by forst cost and efficiency to lean toward the one unit with zone dampers because of the potential diversity and that the oneunit may run longer than several indidviual units
    You have got to learn from other people's mistakes! Because God knows you don't live long enough to make them all yourself !!!!!!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    24
    george2, we are just at the point of choosing an architect and having something for a builder to bid on. The one we talked to and toured his new house is a friend. I'd like for him to get the job, but it depends on what he'll do it for. What we have talked about is what we have now that we like. Downstairs is probably 2400-2600. The two bedrooms, closets and baths are around 800 sq ft. I think you hit on the real problem. Finding something small enough that would't short cycle on a tight house. My immediate reaction when he said that is I'm not sure I want to do that. Hence pitching it to the kind, knowledgable folks here.

    genduct, I've left out the garage bonus room to simplify the discussion. I had not thought of one unit for virtually the entire house. I guess I'm too conventional, I'd have a hard time getting on board with that, I guess I'm used to seeing more units outside. Assuming zone dampers work much better than what I had 15 years ago, one downstairs greenspeed HP running two dampered zones (bedrooms and then rest of downstairs) and one 2 stage HP running two dampered zones (upstairs and garage bonus room) makes sense.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Louisville, KY
    Posts
    12,189
    In Savannah, I'd be looking at multi-head ductless split systems.
    Perhaps you should have read the instructions before calling.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    The Quad-Cities area (midwest).
    Posts
    2,737
    Quote Originally Posted by wensteph View Post
    george2, we are just at the point of choosing an architect and having something for a builder to bid on. The one we talked to and toured his new house is a friend. I'd like for him to get the job, but it depends on what he'll do it for. What we have talked about is what we have now that we like. Downstairs is probably 2400-2600. The two bedrooms, closets and baths are around 800 sq ft. I think you hit on the real problem. Finding something small enough that would't short cycle on a tight house. My immediate reaction when he said that is I'm not sure I want to do that. Hence pitching it to the kind, knowledgable folks here.

    genduct, I've left out the garage bonus room to simplify the discussion. I had not thought of one unit for virtually the entire house. I guess I'm too conventional, I'd have a hard time getting on board with that, I guess I'm used to seeing more units outside. Assuming zone dampers work much better than what I had 15 years ago, one downstairs greenspeed HP running two dampered zones (bedrooms and then rest of downstairs) and one 2 stage HP running two dampered zones (upstairs and garage bonus room) makes sense.
    Regarding your last sentence to genduct, I think you would be happy (and confident) with that 2 system set up. Maybe consider the Greenspeed (variable-speed) for the second floor as well. The Carrier zoning dampers are modulating. No by-pass dampers are required. It's a sweet system all the way around.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Keokuk, IA
    Posts
    5,520
    Your contractor pricing may vary, but a Greenspeed with 3 zones will probably run abotu the same price or even slightly less that a pair on Infinity 16 heat pumps and both will get down to almost the same minimum CFM per zone, but the Greenspeed will have higher effciency.

    Also consider Carrier rebates this time of year. It appears the Infinity 19 heat pump has a much higher rebate than the Infinity 16, making it the best value.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Savannah, GA
    Posts
    24
    moto, just so I'll understand, is your opinion in favor of a 3 zone Greenspeed conditioning the entire house?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Keokuk, IA
    Posts
    5,520
    I think I'd lean that way. But I'd want to quote it both ways and consider the advantages and disadvantages. Having 2 systems does give you some redundancy if one goes down.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    The Quad-Cities area (midwest).
    Posts
    2,737
    Quote Originally Posted by motoguy128 View Post
    Your contractor pricing may vary, but a Greenspeed with 3 zones will probably run abotu the same price or even slightly less that a pair on Infinity 16 heat pumps and both will get down to almost the same minimum CFM per zone, but the Greenspeed will have higher effciency.

    Also consider Carrier rebates this time of year. It appears the Infinity 19 heat pump has a much higher rebate than the Infinity 16, making it the best value.
    It has been awhile since I have sold Carrier and dealt with the rebates. Are the (manufactures) rebates available on new contraction? His home is in the planning stage right now but it could be something to plan around since the rebates occur (spring and fall) every year (it seems).

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