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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Naperville, IL
    Posts
    4

    LOUD HVAC & Return

    I hope this is the right place to post this.

    I've got a 900 sf condo with a large open living room/kitchen with a short hallway going to the bedroom.

    The hallway has a bathroom and a mechanical closet off of it. Inside the mechanical closet, the HVAC unit is adjacent to the wall thats shared with the living room.

    The HVAC unit is connected with a straight ductwork run about 2' long and ends in a punched metal grille.

    When the HVAC is on, it is LOUD. It basically drowns out a lot of sound from the TV. Its motor noise as well as air noise.

    Does anyone have suggestions on solutions? Is this something I can find a professional to look at? I just don't want to drag someone out if I really don't have any options.

    Thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Office and warehouse in both Crystal River & New Port Richey ,FL
    Posts
    18,836
    Adding "Quieturn Vanes" to the retun duct could help a lot.Posing pics might show us more about your install.Could have other issues,like fan speed too high,duct and grille too small,etc..

    Here's a sketch ,with instructions to find the vanes,if your contractor is not familar with them.The vanes are the curved lines in the sketch.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    20
    That is quite the drawing there Dash.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Naperville, IL
    Posts
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by dash View Post
    Adding "Quieturn Vanes" to the retun duct could help a lot.Posing pics might show us more about your install.Could have other issues,like fan speed too high,duct and grille too small,etc..

    Here's a sketch ,with instructions to find the vanes,if your contractor is not familar with them.The vanes are the curved lines in the sketch.
    Thanks for the quick reply! Unfortunately thats probably not going to work because I only have a 2' run of duct that goes straight into a short larger duct segment (I assume just because the HVAC unit outlet is slightly lower than the vent) and then directly the side of the HVAC unit. I've attached a sketch, I'll try and take some pics tonight. If I had more duct to work with, I wouldn't hesitate to start contractor hunting but since the run is so short I'm not sure if there's anything I can do.
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Naperville, IL
    Posts
    4
    Here are some photos, an exterior corner, the top of the HVAC unit and the bottom of the HVAC unit as well as a photo inside the vent. I can't find any markings on the unit itself so I'm not sure what model it is other than its a Goodman. It looks like the entire length of the duct is encased in a chase wall (28" deep).

    I tried calling a few local HVAC companies and they either said they didn't do soundproofing work or just weren't very interested. I guess its not a big enough project.

    Any thoughts?
    Attached Images Attached Images     

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    254
    Quote Originally Posted by ipmark View Post
    I hope this is the right place to post this.

    I've got a 900 sf condo with a large open living room/kitchen with a short hallway going to the bedroom.

    The hallway has a bathroom and a mechanical closet off of it. Inside the mechanical closet, the HVAC unit is adjacent to the wall thats shared with the living room.

    The HVAC unit is connected with a straight ductwork run about 2' long and ends in a punched metal grille.

    When the HVAC is on, it is LOUD. It basically drowns out a lot of sound from the TV. Its motor noise as well as air noise.

    Does anyone have suggestions on solutions? Is this something I can find a professional to look at? I just don't want to drag someone out if I really don't have any options.

    Thanks in advance!

    I've been asking a remedy to this for the last two weeks. I'm in the same boat as you are, sort of. I just had a 2 TON AC and new Carrier Performance 80 installed in my hallway "furnace closet."

    My situation is not as bad. I had the installers put in foam board to help insulate my hallway AC/furnace condo closet.

    I insulated my large return cavity below the hallway AC/furnace closet with a rug on the floor and I lined that encloser with sound absorbing fiber board.

    Then, lol, I crammed a USPS postal box at the front of the filter return rectangle to lessen the noise by 50%. The unit still gets plenty of air.

    Quieting down an AC (my situation) inside a small condo is one helluva son of a gun to have anyone help with it. The funny thing is...I sit 4 ft. away from the outside condenser and I can't hear it when it's running. Now I have to try and quiet down the inside part.

    If you want...request my email addy and we can share what to do. I don't think I offered it up in my user options.

  7. #7
    That duct job hurts my feelings other than that I am speechless!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    254
    Sorry, I replied too soon before even seeing those pics.

    Still...something can and should be done if the noise is excessive.

    This is what pisses me off too.

    I'm new to all things HVAC...but there are such things as in line
    noise silencers. They are in line "silencers" that I've read about
    recently. They are like mufflers that get connected to duct work nearest
    the noise source (the blower motor).

    Whether they do much good and how much they restrict air flow, I cannot say.

    You attach them just after ducts leave the air handler.

    Dude...see if there are any NIC contractors in your area. National Institute of Comfort, or something like that. I have none in my area. They're supposed to be total pros at dealing with
    your situation.

    I bet my life my "Authorized Carrier" company chief manager will show up without one piece of equipment to assess my system situation. He will walk in and assess everything by eye and ear.

    How much does a decible meter cost? Too much for that Carrier authorized install company.

    AC and heating is so complicated. I'm betting literally 70% to 80 % of companies just "wing" it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    South Mississippi on the Golden Gulf Coast. 100 degree heat and 90% pluss humidty.
    Posts
    46
    try lining the inside of the return with fiber board. that tin looks uninsulated in pics.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    254
    fiber board sucks.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Naperville, IL
    Posts
    4
    Thanks for the info Caslon,

    Originally I thought some standard sound proofing type stuff would work (lining the inside of the closet with acoustic foam and the inside of the duct with duct liner but then measured last night and realized the duct is running through a 2'6 chase wall and if I cover the return with a blanket the living room becomes extremely quiet.

    Looks like there's an NIC contractor somewhat near me, I'll try and give em a call this afternoon. Well, I may try your suggestion of moving a big cabinet in front of the return first. Any idea if acoustic foam on the back of that cabinet in front of the vent would do anything?

    Dezertech: Is the ductwork terrible? I don't really know..

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