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  1. #1

    Air handler in attic

    We just bought a new house and we have an old air handler in the attic. There is little to no insulation on the air handler itself. The ducts have minimal insulation. We are looking at replacing the whole unit and ducts.

    We have an oil based boiler that feeds a hyrdonic heater in our air handler.

    I've been looking at the Trane Hyperion which seems like a novel idea of constructing it like a refrigerator.

    Any other good air handlers out there for the attic? I hate losing heat to the attic. We live in Boston area. Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    southern california
    Posts
    535
    All of the major brands would be about equal. I would try to find a space within the house to relocated it in order to minimize heat loss

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    N.E. Ok.
    Posts
    1,370
    If it has to be in the attic that airhandler seems to be a good idea. I have no experience first hand but the concept seems valid.
    If it not mandatory in your area request R-8 insulated flex and mastic all joints, the contractor may do this as standard but ask about their sealing methods.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    86
    In addition to making sure the ducts are well insulated & sealed, you may want to consider laying the ducts at floor level (assuming flex duct, they will still need to be strapped, they should be as straight as possible with no sagging) & having additional insulation blown over them. (You will probably need to contact a separate insulation contractor for this work & coordinate between the contractors a little bit to make sure everyone understands the plan.) You can achieve much higher insulation levels by doing this than by duct R-values alone. I also recommend seeing if your local utility/utilities have any rebates for the duct seal and/or the insulation; you may very well be able to save some bucks on the work.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    86
    Quote Originally Posted by Puzzler View Post
    In addition to making sure the ducts are well insulated & sealed, you may want to consider laying the ducts at floor level (assuming flex duct, they will still need to be strapped, they should be as straight as possible with no sagging) & having additional insulation blown over them. (You will probably need to contact a separate insulation contractor for this work & coordinate between the contractors a little bit to make sure everyone understands the plan.) You can achieve much higher insulation levels by doing this than by duct R-values alone. I also recommend seeing if your local utility/utilities have any rebates for the duct seal and/or the insulation; you may very well be able to save some bucks on the work.
    I really should have mentioned that laying the ducts on the floor may not be possible in your attic. This depends on the layout of your attic, the location of the equipment and the location of the trusses.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Rochester NY
    Posts
    4,736
    Redefine your thermal boundary so it includes your hvac equipment. You'll be able to get smaller, higher efficiency equipment that is much quieter and more comfortable.
    Which makes more sense to you?
    CONSERVATION - turning your thermostat back and being uncomfortable. Maybe saving 5-10%
    ENERGY EFFICIENCY - leaving your thermostat where everyone is comfortable. Saving 30-70%

    DO THE NUMBERS! Step on a HOMESCALE.
    What is comfort? Well, it AIN'T just TEMPERATURE!

    Energy Obese? An audit is the next step - go to BPI.org, or RESNET, and find an auditor near you.

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