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Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC | HVAC Efficiency

Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC

Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC – I have a Heil gas/electric package unit in my home. I, particularly, want to know, if I can close off a section to save on heating. Heating dealers have not been helpful as they hedge on whether and how this can be done with the system still running at it’s most efficient. I have closed doors to seal off area. Then closed floor registers. Should I also close air return in that area? I just read this should not be done at all as it decreases units efficiency? Will you please advise. I am thinking of closing off part of the house to save energy on HVAC. Thank you.

The Answer:

Closing Off Part of the House and HVACHello and Thank you for emailing High Performance HVAC, Dorothy, Your registers should not be closed off as it is bad for the unit. The unit was installed based on the size of your home and the needed airflow for the house. This is designed airflow and requires all registers to be open to get the designed airflow through the unit and all the ducts. Closing off registers restricts airflow and is the same as a dirty filter which restricts airflow and causes problems with the unit. I have seen this before and I cover this on the HVAC filter page. In a gas pack it will cause excessive heat build up inside the unit and cause the unit to trip on high limit safety if you close off too many registers as the required airflow is not moving across the heat exchange so the heat continues to build up in the heat exchanger and eventually trips this high limit safety. Leave all your registers open and make sure you have a clean filter to maximize the unit. The best way to get the most efficiency out of the unit is to get a programmable thermostat and run the unit only as necessary. For more information on this see the thermostat pages concerning programmable thermostats and there use. Additionally, making sure you have good windows and doors to minimize heat loss will also help. Adding insulation to your attic space and other areas will also help reduce the amount the unit runs will result in savings and additionally having a humidifier installed will also help you remain comfortable in the winter time. For more information on why a humidifier will help you remain more comfortable in the winter see the humidifiers page.

Thanks for emailing High Performance HVAC. Hope this helps you.

Richard High Performance HVAC – Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC

Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVACRichard Many thanks for your very prompt response! What you say ties in with what I read regarding stress on the unit. However, this Victorian “cottage” is 3,000 sq. ft. w/ 12 ft. ceilings is now too big for only my husband and I. Is there not a way we can isolate the unused space and save on heating without stressing the unit? We have done all that you suggested. Storm windows, doors, etc., except for the attic insulation. The company that installed the unit is no longer in business and the man that I got to service it after that died. last fall. I’m in a very small town and the nearest Heil dealers seem to be 40 or more miles away. I did print a list of those I found. Haven’t called any yet as I ran across your webpage. My final question is, given the size of the unit, could I convert to 2 zones somehow? And, only heat the occupied part in winter? Thanks for you patience and help.

Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC – Conclusion

No unless you installed a whole new system (two new systems for zoning) or de-rating your current unit and buy another smaller unit. Also it doesn’t have to be a Heil dealer to work on the unit. Many gas packs are very similar in design and functionality. Any qualified HVAC tech should completely understand your unit and how to repair it. Not many would know how to de-rate it though. This would likely need Heil involved to give you the engineering data for derating and exactly how to derate the equipment. We are talking about a 2 ton system (I think) so you can’t derate too much. Generally the tonnage is the size of the air conditioning and doesn’t refer to the heating because the system is designed for airflow for air conditioning. You don’t want to derate the air conditioning but you can derate the gas heater side of the equipment. If the unit is older than 5 years I don’t recommend this. Richard

More about energy efficiency can be found here.

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Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC

Home Inspector HVAC Training | Heating and Cooling

Home Inspector HVAC Training

Mechanical Code Book

Home Inspector HVAC Training

Thank you!! I am training to become a home inspector and the info contained on this site is helpful in identifying issues that require a HVAC professional to resolve. Read more…….

You’re welcome! I understand that everything at High performance HVAC is limited and there is so much more to learn about and for me to write about when I get the time for it. Don’t limit yourself to just what is contained on High Performance HVAC as there is so much more to learn as far as HVAC training and learning air conditioning and heating systems. Additionally, some of that knowledge you learn will come with experience so even after studying air conditioning and heating and other areas of home inspecting there is more to learn in the future that only comes with time and experience.

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Air Source & Geothermal Heat Pump Heating Systems

Air Source & Geothermal Heat Pump Heating Systems

Residential Heat Pumps

Air Source & Geothermal Heat Pump Heating Systems

A heat pump is an electric cooling and heating system used to compress and decompress gas to heat or cool a house. This mechanical device pumps heat from a cooler to a warmer location and can extract heat from air, water or the earth. Heat pumps functions like an air conditioner in the summer and an electric furnace in the winter, thus encompassing both a heating and cooling unit in one device. The COP, or coefficient of performance, which calculates the ratio of heat output to electric power consumption, measures the performance of a heat pump.

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Dual Two-Stage Split System with a Dual Slab Coil

High Performance HVAC Air Conditioning & Heating: Ask the HVAC Man?

Dual Two-Stage Split System with a Dual Slab Coil. Huh?

Richard

Very nice site!

Dual Two-Stage Split System with a Dual Slab CoilDual Two-Stage Split System – I have a question; my home was fitted out by the previous owner with a twinned system, and a thermostat (Totaline P374-1900) which was not designed to control discreet, paired units. I confirmed this with Totaline. The result is only one unit runs, and the second unit is never activated. It functions, but not automatically.

Your website mentioned dual compressors in one systems, and mine is similar, two independent compressor/condensers. Seeing the separate condenser units, I first thought the house was zoned, and later discovered both units feed into one Aspen BHA40 4-roll coil.

Besides the issue of the wrong thermostat, I’m having problems finding an HVAC person who understands these hybrid systems and will service it. Is this configuration that uncommon?

I live very near Houston Texas, so if you know of a local HVAC person with the skills to help me out – let me know.

PS – I checked with Honeywell about the possibility of their thermostats working with my setup. They emailed me – they would only work with a HVAC professional. I thought this was strange since they sell them in the hardware stores.

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SATURDAY, OCTOBER 18, 2014