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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    19
    I am in the midst of getting footers poured for my new house - it will sit on a few acres in a wooded environment. The lot is a bit steep on one side - where I will have to build up 10 feet before I even hit start the basement. Then another 10 feet for the first floor. I am thinking the ground that is 20 feet below the first floor might be a good place for the units. I think I will also have a standby generator there and even the outside part of a tankless water heater (still deciding on this - as the price is high). I am wondering if I can build a nice vented enclosure for the these units ( ie block work would be cheap now ... ) - that if properly done, could be cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter - to give better Heat Pump efficiencies ?

    Is this even possible and feasible ?

    Thanks - Dan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,597
    as long as you have ample room on all sides, so that the hp isn't sucking in the discharged heat from the generator, and
    the generator isnt losing combustion air from the h2o heater.

    most hp's are top blow and require a minimum of 5 ft of free air above to prevent recirculation of the discharge air.

    and please leave ample room and access to service everything.

    by the way, i don't know where you are building, but have you cosidered duel fuel. may be more comfortable/efficient.

    [Edited by billva on 06-28-2005 at 07:46 PM]

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    19
    Thanks BillVa - I can have the standy gen separate, as well as the tankless water heater (if I go that route - I am still mixed if it is worth the cost ... however, this being a second home for retirement in that magical 10 years, I am thinking it would be good to have this - given I am going to be there only on weekends for awhile ! ).

    Do you think it is possible and worth the effort to enclose the heat pump, albeit well vented, so that it might be a little cooler in the summer, warmer in the winter.

    And I am looking at dual source Armstrong and York.

    Thanks - Dan

    Originally posted by billva
    as long as you have ample room on all sides, so that the hp isn't sucking in the discharged heat from the generator, and
    the generator isnt losing combustion air from the h2o heater.

    most hp's are top blow and require a minimum of 5 ft of free air above to prevent recirculation of the discharge air.

    and please leave ample room and access to service everything.

    by the way, i don't know where you are building, but have you cosidered duel fuel. may be more comfortable/efficient.

    [Edited by billva on 06-28-2005 at 07:46 PM]

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    1,042
    It's certainly possible to enclose it. You're going to get a negative benefit out of the deal, though. It would stay warmer in the winter if enclosed, yeah, if it weren't sucking the heat out of 3000 cfm of air all the time. You want it as open to ambient air as possible so that it doesn't have any opportunity to suck in air that it just pulled the heat out of.

    Remember that cold air falls, and almost all heat pumps are top discharge now. If you build a wall around it, the cold air will just pool up around the unit. If you want efficiency, put it somewhere open and exposed to any wind or breezes that may happen by.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Kent, WA
    Posts
    129
    I would also think about radiant sun shine. Is your heat pump used mostly for heating or cooling? You could choose a sunny/southern facing location if heating is its primary role, or a shaded/north facing location if cooling is its primary job.

    As others have said, you'll be sucking so much air through the fans that putting them in a pit or vented shelter won't matter much unless you're trying to shade them from sun. If you could somehow draw the air through the ground first so its always exposed to 50-60F air, that would help. But I don't think this is what you had in mind.

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