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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    20

    Question

    Hey Folks,

    I'm almost ready to begin my install. Still trying to cleanup from the old oil furnace which seems to have left the basement black and smelling like oil. I'll be pressure washing soon and making the area look all nice and pretty.

    I have some questions based on my readings and watching the scrutiny on this website. Now, before I get into it, understand that I will indeed get a licensed contractor to finalize my work. The brazing, evacuation and final termination of wires and gas lines will be done by a licensed contractor. I'm just doing the setup to save costs.

    I'm installing a Goodman GMS9 which is a 93% AFUE furnace in my basement with a 3-ton 12 SEER condensor and coil outside, about five feet above the height of the basement floor.

    I'm understanding that I will have to run two separate drains for the coil condensation in order for there to be a true secondary backup in case of failure of the primary. Is that correct?

    I'm also understanding that there will also be a vent/flue condensation drain that will now be a third drain. To be on the safe side, I plan to run this as a separate drain and make sure it does not drain to the outside air due to the potential to freeze up. Actually, I plan to tap all of these into the washer drain near the floor and install a tee in each of them in case I need to monitor or inspect the flow of condensation.

    All three of these pipes I plan to run to the wall with a proper pitch and then along the wall making two turns to get to that drain I mentioned close to the floor. I plan to maintain the pitch along the wall to maintain the drainage.

    I've seen and read all your critiques in the hall of shame and everywhere else you have commented and I have learned a lot. I plan to take my time with the running of the exhaust/combustion pipes and connect them into a concentric vent for a neat exterior appearance. Yes, I will clean up the pipes and make them "pretty" because I'm like that too.

    I've paid close attention to the warnings in the install guides and on this site as to properly shield the wires (on the proper side, opposite of the drainage). I also plan to use that more rigid electrical pipe/shield to come down to the furnace rather than the flexible stuff; I think it looks neater and more professional. Yes, I plan to install a shutoff switch.

    One contractor suggested that I remove the tin ductwork I have in the basement that runs up through the walls and install flexible ductwork for its insulation properties. I need your opinion here. I have noticed that some ducts are 4x8 and some are 4x12. The ones that are 4x8 are where there are multiple registers in one room and the ones that are 4x12 are where there is only one vent in that room, usually a smaller room. There seems to have been some serious craftsmanship and some scientific thought in the way this ductwork maintains the same width throughout all the twists and turns through the basement and up through the walls. And to think this was done in 1940 or earlier.

    Remember, I have returns in EACH room of this two-story house. I'm not as experienced as the rest of you in HVAC, but I think that the fact that there are so many returns and the fact that I'm using 100% tin throughout, my airflow resistance will be as low as it can possibly be with this number of ducts and returns, compared to insulated flexible ducts. I don't want to add registers unless I have to.

    So my thought is to have the contractor fire up the unit when I'm done, check the load, resistance, return, rise, and all that jargon and make sure air is flowing optimally. As long as it is, then I'll just seal the tin joints with mastic, insulate them and go from there.

    My whole point was to verify my understanding of the number and configuration of the drainage pipes needed for that unit and about the general preferance to attempt to keep the custom tin-job for its generally better and lower airflow restriction in this home that could possibly be discovered to be under-ducted. I just think that knowing and fearing that it can be under-ducted, it would be a bad idea to install insulated flexible ductwork without planning to add ducts (yet).

    Thoughts?


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    420
    Sorry I don't want to sound like a jerk and Im sure you'll get a lot of this BUT:

    Hire a contractor for the whole job will ya? You're asking rudimentary questions and clearly have absolutley no understanding of what your doing. Capital improvements made to income generating properties are a Fed (and state too, at least here) tax write off, dollar for dollar. Don't be cheap. In addition, do you intend to flush all that oil down through the aquifiers under you home or just into the municipal sewage line. Either way, you've got to be kidding. We have been getting more and more calls like this. "Come and inspect start up etc. By the way, can you do all that for under $500 bucks. or $700 or $1000 even?" No f*&&*^! way. What are you looking to save--a few thousand? Well who can blame you except if you fu*k up the install up it'll cost you all that and more and you can't deduct from your taxable income twice for the same work (ie. warrenty will not cover your mistakes, if any) within a given period. Jeez, now after all that,














    NO DIY questions.

    [Edited by drcustom on 04-01-2005 at 08:28 PM]

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    420
    Sorry, though the gist of the post stands, I could've used a cup of coffee before posting and sounding like a hard*ss. Good luck to ya.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Fort Worth, TX
    Posts
    11,376
    Dr. C -

    Let us know how you REALLY feel next time, okay?



    Seriously, for stetson, the good doctor has a valid point. Think about it for a minute. You have good contractors out there who have spent years learning and honing their skills in the installation of HVAC systems. And yes, there's a bunch of hacks out there calling themselves contractors who bring shame to the industry.

    Either way, for those who think residential HVAC is just a walk in the park, how many times on this board do we read about resi installs gone bad? Both in this section and in the "Wall of Shame"?

    If you want it done right, find a guy who understands how to run a heat load calculation, understands airflow, knows the refrigeration circuit and electrical troubleshooting like the back of his hands. If you settle for anything less, that is what you will get...LESS.

    This is America, so of course you can do it yourself, but my question to you is, when all is said and done, are you really saving all that much money when you're showing a considerable amount of evidence by your questions posed above that you're not all that versed in proper HVAC installation?
    • Electricity makes refrigeration happen.
    • Refrigeration makes the HVAC psychrometric process happen.
    • HVAC pyschrometrics is what makes indoor human comfort happen...IF the ducts AND the building envelope cooperate.


    A building is NOT beautiful unless it is also comfortable.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Zelienople, Pa
    Posts
    2,965
    Sorry thing is there is a hack on every corner in this town that will "start up" his equipment.
    How tall are you Private???!!!!

  6. #6
    drcustom
    what did you sugar coat it for?, start telling the truth!!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Location
    Sarasota. Fl
    Posts
    1,298
    Anyone ever notice that 8 out of 10 times people are putting in Goodman equipment?

    I wish people would stop dealing there equipment until Goodman can show they will control there distributors.



    It is the job of thinking people not to be on the side of the executioners.

    ~Albert Camus

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Posts
    34
    Sorry Stetsonw, you came to the wrong place: The forum guidelines do say "no DIY questions", however unevenly enforced. That said, I do not agree with the guidelines, but perhaps the sysadmin is afraid of some sort of legal liability, and the HVAC guys do not want to see their livelyhood siphoned away. Of course, this is the opposite behavior of those in the computer industry, like the ones that created the Internet that permit this site to even exist: advice is freely requested and freely given, yet hundreds of thousands of people continue to make an honest living doing it.

    I have heard of Goodman being disparaged by many HVAC guys, but the reasons escape me. Companies that make shody products generally do not last very long, yet Goodman is still around, and they appear to be made in the USA, at least according to the website.

    Regarding your ductwork: I would hope that even in the 1940's, there was scientific principals behind the design of your system, and if the quality is good, I would personally leave it alone. Perhaps if you have some exposed ducts in non-climate controlled areas, they could be insulated or selectively replaced. Additionally, have you checked for asbestos? You need to follow up on the rules for dealing with that...but from my limited knowledge, most advise to just leave it alone unless it is damaged. You or your contractor need to do a cost/benefit analysis on replacing the ducts, and not just act on a hunch. IF the ductwork is damaged, exposing asbestos fibers, then you have a very serious situation. That said, I think your construction predates the use of asbestos ductwork.

    I also hope that you are dealing with the oil contamination in an enviromentally sound way. That said, as a homeowner I applaud your desire to DIY as much as possible, but I have found in many DIY projects that sometimes it is just best to get a professional if the learning curve is steep. And like any profession, there are healers and quacks, so get references.

    Good luck, and let the rest of us know how it turns out.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Posts
    10

    Frown

    Im a little confused here ??? You mean I work all those long a&*% days trying to get a few bucks in my pocket, go to all the schools, trane lennox , carrier, but not goodman, etc, and acheive a cfc universal liscence not to mention all the others, and Goodman will sell you ( no CFC ) (no LIscence) all those parts with out asking for a liscence ?? maybe I should try pulling teeth and just set up a stand along the road and charge 20 bucks a tooth , oh that pisses me off,,.....
    Get payed for your skills not your Brawn.............

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio, United States
    Posts
    12,921
    Hey Doc there's your buddy. Why don't you sell him some credentails so he can go pro. Unfortunately I don't sell them at my website. http://www.Imacheapskate.com.

    Goodman is not the only line sold on the web and to all you Trane guys what about your "stuff" being sold by the Big Box stores.

    Give me a break. Almost every supplyhouse, in every town sells to unlicensed installers, some of them are your employess. A homeowner doesn't need a license to install a furnace in his own home, maybe a permit.

    Those aren't the people that really hurt us. It's the fly by night "installers" that don't play by the rules.

    Dugturd is right about the rules and the uneven enforcement or lack of enforcement. He got plenty of DIY information out of Pro members.



    [Edited by twilli3967 on 04-01-2005 at 08:23 PM]
    No Heat No Cool You need Action Fast

  11. #11
    We can tell him to find a descent contractor to do the work. But the way it usually goes is these DIY'ers refuse to listen and go ahead with it themselves anyways. The only logic they see is how much money they can save by doing it themselves. The bottom line is they are cheap and don't care about quality. That's why they always have a Goodman sitting there. He will get as much information as possible without paying a dime and then do the job himself. Good Luck with the install.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    420
    Originally posted by dogturd


    I have heard of Goodman being disparaged by many HVAC guys, but the reasons escape me. Companies that make shody products generally do not last very long, yet Goodman is still around, and they appear to be made in the USA, at least according to the website.

    I won't comment on the merits of Goodman products. I don't install their line though not because I have anything against the equipment. Seems that anyone, and I mean ANYONE, can get their hands on it wholesale. It does, around here, have a reputation for being the equipment of choice for seasonal hacks and overly ambitious DIYers. I walk into a hideous, inevitabely non-performing install and almost all the time, the nameplate says it proudly--GOODMAN. The equipment is fine and I'm sure any qualified HVAC installer can make em purr like a kitten, but they do seem to fall in um, the wrong hands all the time. Why and how can it be stopped??

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    20
    Thanks for the honest input. I am working with an installer, I just want to understand a lot of what's going on. I'm a senior I/T engineer and a lot of this stuff works the same once you start setting up millions of dollars of data-center equipment. I'm just doing the work that an apprentice would do. I'm never going to break that freon line or even open the case for gas or electricity.

    I'll be there to watch, but I respect the trade. This is just like in my own trade. I am willing to bet you that in my 18 years of working in my industry, give me a week with any of you more senior HVAC techs and I can make you into an EXCELLENT apprentice as well. You'll find lots of similarities in the concepts of balance, load, rise, etc. Does it make you qualified and bonded to do the work I do? No. But can you setup under my direction and have me wrap it up and certify it? Certainly. You guys do this with your apprentices ALL the time.

    There's no oil in my basement. But the soot and years of an old furnace being in there makes it smell like that. Not to mention the old couch in there that smells like that too. In the 65 years of existence, there may have been a mishap at one point with black smoke or something. I don't know.

    I like this forum. Lots of diverse opinions and emotions. This makes it genuine. Keep it coming.

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