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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Southwest Saskatchewan, Canada
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    3
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    VanEE HRV Control Recommendations?

    Hello!

    Long time lurker, first time poster. I recently had a high efficiency furnace (two stage, variable speed blower, power vented) installed to replace a 41 year old unit. The advice on the forum help a lot as to brands and details, so thank you. Our issue now is with humidity. Not dripping off the walls or anything but buildup on the windows and doors causing some minor issues. After some research I found that high humidity in the winter is a common issue when going to a new furnace. I've been looking at HRVs to help with this problem. I think I've settled on the VanEE 40H+. We have a 1,000 sq ft house so I think the sizing should be about right.

    I'm wondering about controls for the HRV. There seems to be tons of ways of doing it with different types of controls and amount in the house. As I mentioned our house is 1,000 sq ft, a blower door test showed "average" air exchanges (can't remember the exact number) on our half of the duplex (east side, south facing) built in 1979, we have 1.5 bathrooms (only the full has a fan), partially finished basement, and we we're looking to update our doors and windows (triple pane fibreglass) in the next few years. Any suggestions for types of controls and placement? Currently we have our furnace thermostat in the hallway and is a basic unit.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Posts
    2,440
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    I have never seen high humidity after the install of a new sealed combustion heating system in an old home in the winter.

    I have seen high humidity in new homes in the winter from all the building products having high moisture content and still drying out.

    Now if you are cooling constantly and don’t have a proper exhaust fan I could see that raising your humidity.

    Are you sure that your new furnace is not exhausting into your home?
    Are there any other gas appliances that may not be venting properly?
    Do you have a unvented gas log set that is being used?
    Do you cook constantly and don’t have a proper exhaust fan?

    Something seems amiss, in Cincinnati I have never seen high humidity complaints in the winter time. Maybe post your location and someone with knowledge of your local may have input.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Madison, WI/Cape Coral, FL
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    9,633
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    Avoid setback during extreme cold weather. Keeping the home +68^F during cold evenings will warm the coldest surfaces and avoid condensation. Increase the exhaust fan operation during this weather to increase the air change. Being on the edge is best for heating cost and comfort. Installing and HRV will end up over-venting and making the home to dry. The edge of frost is ideal even if you must warm a few degrees.
    How many are in the home and what are the temps/%RH and outside temp when you see frost?
    The smallest of HRVs will be too much and hard to control ideally. The return on investment will be pennies on slight increase in air change. Clothes drier used and exhaust outside? Avoid drying clothes inside during the extremes.
    Info will help us become aware of your problem.
    Regards Teddy Bear
    Bear Rules: Keep our home <50% RH summer, controls mites/mold and very comfortable.
    Provide 60-100 cfm of fresh air when occupied to purge indoor pollutants and keep window dry during cold weather. T-stat setup/setback +8 hrs. saves energy
    Use +Merv 10 air filter. -Don't forget the "Golden Rule"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Southwest Saskatchewan, Canada
    Posts
    3
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    Thread Starter
    I set notifications for this post but apparently I didn't get the emails. I'm here now though!

    We're in southwest Saskatchewan, Canada. To answer some questions:

    Are you sure that your new furnace is not exhausting into your home?
    -It's not, power vented out the side. Visible exhaust while it's running and our CO alarm isn't going off that's within a metre of the furnace and water heater. Installed and inspected by established professionals.

    Are there any other gas appliances that may not be venting properly?
    -The only other gas applicance is the water heater that was installed at the same time. Power vented out the side of the house.

    Do you have a unvented gas log set that is being used?
    -No fireplace of any kind.

    Do you cook constantly and don’t have a proper exhaust fan?
    -Supper would be the most moisture heavy, but not constant cooking all day. Exhaust is vented back into the kitchen from the unit. This was installed about three years before the furnace. I originally didn't as the run would be decently long and working in the attic is a pain (fibreglass bats with blown in fibreglass insulation on top, I'm honestly surprised I haven't fallen through the ceiling yet).

    -Bathroom was vented to the soffits, no actual vent just the pipe ending above it. This is from the original construction. I replaced the fan when we moved in. Never had much issue and left it until now. The extra humidity was building up causing ice and staining on the soffit and outside wall. I vented it out the gable end of the house a week or two ago to fix that. Fan is powerful enough for the run and elbows, etc. It had been running through a 3" original pipe, down from the 4" running off the new fan, but is now 4" all the way, insulated straight pipe and angled.

    Keeping the home +68^F during cold evenings.
    -The thermostat is set to drop down to about 18 or 19c I believe at night but the evening is 20 or 21c.

    How many are in the home and what are the temps/%RH and outside temp when you see frost?
    -Three in the home. Probably about -10c and colder, can't say about RH though, probably 'dry'.

    The return on investment will be pennies on slight increase in air change.
    -We were looking at it more for the humidity than cost savings.

    Clothes drier used and exhaust outside?
    -Yes on the clothes dryer and previously we exhausted in inside during the winter (it used to be super dry in here) with one of those diverter boxes but have set it to back outside when we noticed the humidity issue. Come spring I'm going to replace the old flexible hose with a straight pipe and new vent. The current flexible pipe is dirty but still providing good airflow and has a short run.

    Asking around a few people locally that have upgraded to a HE gas furnace and they have noticed an increase in humidity but not sure how much compared to us.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Southwest Saskatchewan, Canada
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    3
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    Thread Starter
    One other thing I should note, we are one half of a duplex. The wind comes from the other side and there is some leakage into our half. I seal everything up anytime I'm working on something but I'll probably never completely seal it up between us.

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