I have a newer Trane 4 ton VS that is H/C 2 rooms down and 2 rooms upstairs. The stratification gets pretty bad when it's gets warmer outside. I have absolutely NO option for a separate system upstairs, there is no room for another unit. The continuous fan helps, but not much.
Right now in the winter, I open the downstairs registers up and close the upstairs registers JUST A LITTLE to push more warm air downstairs. I do the opposite in summer to try and push more cold air upstairs. The T-stat is downstairs by the stairway. It's REALLY obnoxious now that we can need heating and cooling sometimes in the same day (Texas).
Please let me know some opinions on these 3 ideas/solutions, keeping in mind money IS an object, and I don't need anything incredibly fancy or complicated.
1. A honeywell mini-zone zoning controller with 2 dampers 1 up/1 down. If this needs a purge, I want to avoid that. Is it possible to only have dampers close partially? This is pretty expensive, and would be the last resort.
2. A simple wall-switch controlled damper that would close the upstairs air a little when less air is needed up, or open wide when more air is needed. No dump zones, as long as it doesn't close enough to cause overpressure.
3. A wall-dial controlled booster fan that when stopped would act like a slight restriction the the upstairs air, but when running would "steal" more air from the downstairs and push it upstairs. No overpressure, no dump zones.
Thanks to all for any constructive input.
#2 of your limited choices is the best one.
They also make trunk dampers with a "cable" to operate manually,eliminating the need for wiring.
oops... didn't mean to limit
If you gurus have any "inventive" solutions that don't require me to sell a kidney, PLEASE pass it along.
Dash, if my 3 scenarios seem thin, please pass along your ideas.
The limited part is the price,a good two zone system with a bypass damper is the best solution.
The least costly,two manual dampers,easier then adusting all the grilles ,if they can be accessed easily.Cable operated ,or powered dampers would be the next choice.
Could the bypass damper be a weighted inertial mechanical damper, or would it have to be controlled by the zone controller? That could help with the cost... I could dump it into the downstairs room farthest from the t-stat.
I did notice that the Aprilaire zone dampers claim to have an "Adjustable close position"- do you think this would allow them to only close partially so as not to need a dump zone?
Please post any links to wall-switch controlled dampers or mechanical dampers of the type you mentioned.
Thank you very much (again)
[Edited by old yeller on 03-29-2005 at 01:28 PM]