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Thread: Comments on this low voltage wiring?

  1. #1
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    Comments on this low voltage wiring?

    Here are some photos of how the installer ran the low voltage wires for a new system. I asked the installer to come back and clean some of this up, but am wondering if it's to code, and if not, what needs to be changed? This is in Santa Clara county, CA, in case that matters. Sorry about the poor focus. Thanks.
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    Code doesn't specify neatness (and this one gets an 8 out of 10 for shoddy) and 24 VAC wire splices are allowed outside of junction boxes, but those transformers sitting on top of the cabinet with dead-end connectors on the primary side are not allowed. Transformers and high voltage splices (120 VAC or higher) need to be in an NEC approved enclosure.

    Also, that media filter cabinet is the wrong dimensions for that furnace.

    Also, that duct insulation looks like garbage and the damper isn't even insulated at all.

    Also, drain pan doesn't span the length of the equipment.

    Also, drain lines aren't even hooked up???

    I wonder what else isn't done right that we can't see. Hope you got a great deal because you're gonna need the extra cash to fix a lot of problems!
    Everything I’m going to say today are my conclusions and my opinions, my opinions are based on my education, my training, my experience. Different people have different experiences, so they have different opinions and I make no claim that my opinion has its origin in the mind greatness. - Paul Harrell

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  4. #3
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    You must have went with the lowest bider would be my guess.

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    and he's right about those transformers. Would never pass a proper inspection.

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  8. #5
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    8 out of 10 for shoddy is being extremely Generous...
    Quote Originally Posted by CircusEnvy View Post
    Code doesn't specify neatness (and this one gets an 8 out of 10 for shoddy) and 24 VAC wire splices are allowed outside of junction boxes, but those transformers sitting on top of the cabinet with dead-end connectors on the primary side are not allowed. Transformers and high voltage splices (120 VAC or higher) need to be in an NEC approved enclosure.

    Also, that media filter cabinet is the wrong dimensions for that furnace.

    Also, that duct insulation looks like garbage and the damper isn't even insulated at all.

    Also, drain pan doesn't span the length of the equipment.

    Also, drain lines aren't even hooked up???

    I wonder what else isn't done right that we can't see. Hope you got a great deal because you're gonna need the extra cash to fix a lot of problems!
    Sent from my SM-G965W using Tapatalk

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  10. #6
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    Thanks for the comments, very helpful.

    Quote Originally Posted by CircusEnvy View Post
    Code doesn't specify neatness (and this one gets an 8 out of 10 for shoddy) and 24 VAC wire splices are allowed outside of junction boxes, but those transformers sitting on top of the cabinet with dead-end connectors on the primary side are not allowed. Transformers and high voltage splices (120 VAC or higher) need to be in an NEC approved enclosure.
    Can you expand on this? My understanding was that the transformers themselves had to be mounted outside of junction boxes, with the high voltage connections being inside a junction box. So I understand your point about the splices needing to be inside an enclosure, but wanted to check about the actual transformers.

    Also, that media filter cabinet is the wrong dimensions for that furnace.
    Good catch. Looks like the filter cabinet is bigger than the furnace opening, so is it an actual problem or just inefficient? I can see the problem if the filter cabinet was too small for the furnace, but here it looks like it's too big (?).

    Also, that duct insulation looks like garbage and the damper isn't even insulated at all.
    Good point again. The job was to replace the existing FAU, so the "garbage" insulation is from the original installation. But insulating the new damper should certainly have been part of the job.

    Also, drain pan doesn't span the length of the equipment.
    Agreed.

    Also, drain lines aren't even hooked up???
    They are hooked up, but on the back side of the unit.

    I wonder what else isn't done right that we can't see. Hope you got a great deal because you're gonna need the extra cash to fix a lot of problems!
    That's why I posted here. This is my sister's house (I'm 300 miles away so can't help much from here other than with advice), and she had a heck of a time just getting contractors to bid this project, which included zoning. One of them declared that he can't do zoning because her ducts were rectangular, so you can see what she had to deal with. This contractor was very highly reviewed and far from being the low bidder. She had them back several times already to fix mistakes, so I'm just looking for feedback from you guys on what else she needs to have them fix before paying the balance.

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    Got a photo of the finished condensate drain line? The Auxiliary drain pan needs to slide a few more inches to the left to cover the complete A/C coil. Also hopefully they installed the condensate trap inside the Auxiliary Drain pan, in case the trap develops a hairline crack over the years from heat/cool in attic or whatever. Al least the drip page will drain into the pan instead of on the attic floor and who knows what’s under that floor that can be damaged.

    Thinking if that’s only foil tape being used on all seams, over time they will leak ( air ) as the glue dries up. Thinking mastic paste would be better. Possibly there is chalk under those foil tape?

    This is probably pushing it, but did they do a somewhat detailed start up/commissioning report on your sisters house? Things like static pressures, temperature rise across HX, amprege draws of motors and compressor, static pressures, CFM, final field refrigerant charge, etc.etc. are within manufacturers specifications? Have her ask for one. Course they could easily fudge the numbers thou...

    What does the outdoor system look like?

    If they installed AHRI matched system and your SEER meets the minimum threshold along with the furnace efficiency in your state there may be rebates. Also the Federal Tax Credits.

    https://www.energystar.gov/about/fed...ty_tax_credits

    One source for rebates : https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=...iQc0GVu13UMfK_

  12. #8
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    I hope the final check hasn't been cut yet! there's a lot of work that needs to be undone then redone!

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  14. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bazooka Joe View Post
    Got a photo of the finished condensate drain line? The Auxiliary drain pan needs to slide a few more inches to the left to cover the complete A/C coil. Also hopefully they installed the condensate trap inside the Auxiliary Drain pan, in case the trap develops a hairline crack over the years from heat/cool in attic or whatever. Al least the drip page will drain into the pan instead of on the attic floor and who knows what’s under that floor that can be damaged.
    I'll have to snap a photo of the drains next time I'm up there, it's very difficult to see behind the unit with all the ductwork in the way. I looked just enough to confirm that there are in fact drains (my initial fear was that there weren't any drain lines at all), and indeed there are - but I didn't check them out in detail.

    Thinking if that’s only foil tape being used on all seams, over time they will leak ( air ) as the glue dries up. Thinking mastic paste would be better. Possibly there is chalk under those foil tape?
    Yes, I would have preferred to see mastic as well. Is that a code requirement, or just good practice (realizing that at this point the contractor is not going to do anything that's only a "good practice")?

    This is probably pushing it, but did they do a somewhat detailed start up/commissioning report on your sisters house? Things like static pressures, temperature rise across HX, amprege draws of motors and compressor, static pressures, CFM, final field refrigerant charge, etc.etc. are within manufacturers specifications? Have her ask for one. Course they could easily fudge the numbers thou...
    Good idea, but probably "pushing it" like you said. I'll ask her.

    What does the outdoor system look like?
    I had a quick look - at least they didn't put the service disconnect behind the unit, so that's a good start. But the lineset run along the house was exposed - looks like they installed a cover but it fell off, so they'll put it back in place.

    If they installed AHRI matched system and your SEER meets the minimum threshold along with the furnace efficiency in your state there may be rebates. Also the Federal Tax Credits.

    https://www.energystar.gov/about/fed...ty_tax_credits

    One source for rebates : https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=...iQc0GVu13UMfK_
    Thanks, I'll check on that.

    Regarding the earlier point about the transformer high voltage splices, my sister took another picture - it looks to me like the wires leave the transformer and go into the junction box, so there are no exposed high voltage splices?
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    Code is a minimum safety standard. It does not address appearance or performance. In fact, the equivalent in a letter grade for code is D.
    I prefer to do A+ work.
    *********
    https://www.hvac20.com/ High efficiency equipment alone does not provide home comfort and efficiency. HVAC2.0 is a process for finding the real needs of the house and the occupants. Offer the customer a menu of work to address their problems and give them a probability of success.

    Find contractors with specialized training in combustion analysis, residential system performance, air flow, and duct optimization https://www.myhomecomfort.org/


    Site member map HERE!

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  17. #11
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    Who's addressing the lack of insulation and a vapor barrier on the ducts?

    Not familiar with the exact equipment but who makes a evaporator with top refrigeration connection yet Side drain set up?

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  19. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by kdean1 View Post
    Code is a minimum safety standard. It does not address appearance or performance. In fact, the equivalent in a letter grade for code is D.
    I prefer to do A+ work.
    D "-"

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  21. #13
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    You can't have high voltage exposed like that.
    Romex is acceptable because it's within a jacket.
    You're basically looking at knob and tube wiring without the knob and tube.
    Well I guess you do have a tube.....
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  23. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by VTP99 View Post
    You can't have high voltage exposed like that.
    Romex is acceptable because it's within a jacket.
    You're basically looking at knob and tube wiring without the knob and tube.
    Well I guess you do have a tube.....
    So from what I could find on this pf42440 transformer, it's a "foot mount transformer", and does not have a mounting provision to be attached to a junction box, like a doorbell transformer often is. So does this transformer need to be mounted inside the furnace near the control board?

  24. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark johnson View Post
    So from what I could find on this pf42440 transformer, it's a "foot mount transformer", and does not have a mounting provision to be attached to a junction box, like a doorbell transformer often is. So does this transformer need to be mounted inside the furnace near the control board?
    Yes that can be done.

    The high voltage wires cannot be exposed.

    There are other type that mount on junction boxs that will work.

    Why 2 transformers?

  25. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by pecmsg View Post
    Yes that can be done.

    The high voltage wires cannot be exposed.

    There are other type that mount on junction boxs that will work.

    Why 2 transformers?
    Thank you, I'll relay this to my sister. No idea why they put in two transformers. I know they struggled a LOT with getting the zoning to work, numerous return visits, blamed everything from the thermostats to ducts to previous workers from their own company, to even my sister for being "difficult". So yeah, I can only imagine their reaction if she comes back with a long punchlist at this point. It's hard for a homeowner (especially female) to argue with a contractor who has the attitude of "look here little lady, I've been doing this for 20 years blah blah". Maybe I'll get on the phone with her when he's there.

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  27. #17
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    Yes the transformers should be mounted where not exposed to damage so inside a cabinet. The return connection with the filter to the unit is awful which makes me wonder what the inlet fitting looks like. Also the one coming off the coil cabinet should have a longer tapper.

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  29. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by mark johnson View Post
    Thank you, I'll relay this to my sister. No idea why they put in two transformers. I know they struggled a LOT with getting the zoning to work, numerous return visits, blamed everything from the thermostats to ducts to previous workers from their own company, to even my sister for being "difficult". So yeah, I can only imagine their reaction if she comes back with a long punchlist at this point. It's hard for a homeowner (especially female) to argue with a contractor who has the attitude of "look here little lady, I've been doing this for 20 years blah blah". Maybe I'll get on the phone with her when he's there.
    My wife picks up parts occasionally at one supply house. There’s always some wise guy makes a comment, the manager of the store always comments “ be careful she knows more then you”!

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  31. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by pecmsg View Post

    Not familiar with the exact equipment but who makes a evaporator with top refrigeration connection yet Side drain set up?
    ADP

    https://www.flipsnack.com/adpnow/pro...full-view.html

    https://www.flipsnack.com/adpnow/pro...full-view.html

  32. #20
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    Is that a ADP Coil? Thought they had a tan cabinet

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