Variable Speed ECM Blower Motors | HVAC Heating & Cooling Systems 5/5 (1)

ECM Variable Speed Blowers

Variable Speed ECM Blower Motors
An ECM Variable Speed Blower Motor in a squirrel cage blower

Variable Speed ECM Blower Motors – Variable speed blower motors have become increasingly popular in residential air conditioning and heating systems and for good reason; these motors increase efficiency of the systems and offer a whole range of other benefits that help the system and the consumer.

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Variable Speed ECM Blower Motors

Variable Speed Blower Motors first offer a higher efficiency for air conditioning systems based on the manufacturers set up of the control with the ECM Variable Speed Motor. Each manufacturer calls it a different thing such as Trane calling it the Comfort R  and Carrier calling it Infinity Control. Despite what the manufacturer calls it helps efficiency with air conditioning by starting the blower slowly and letting it run at a 50% speed for the first few minutes (up to 7 minutes) to remove more humidity. This increases comfort and efficiency by removing more moisture from the air. The lower the humidity in the cooler you will feel so the variable speed blower with this type of control will enhance comfort.

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Closing Off Part of the House To Save Energy on HVAC | HVAC Efficiency No ratings yet.

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.

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Variable Air Volume Box with Hot Water Reheat | Commercial HVAC No ratings yet.

Variable Air Volume Box with Hot Water Reheat Variable Air Volume Box with Hot Water Reheat – The variable air volume box or VAV box is a commercial solution to adding multiple zones to large buildings. VAV boxes offer zoning solutions so that separate zoning demands or temperature selections can be maintained in different areas of … Read more…

Air Conditioning and Heating Sizing | HVAC Technical 5/5 (1)

Air Conditioning and Heating Sizing – How many tons of air conditioning and heating do I need per square foot?

Air Conditioning and Heating Sizing

Rules of Thumb

It is not uncommon for HVAC estimators or HVAC contractors to use various rudimentary techniques which are generally referred to as rules of thumb. Some will say on the low end you need 1 ton of cooling for every 500 square feet. On the high end you will need 1 ton of cooling for every 700 square feet. These rules of thumb will also generally take into account a basic heat gain calculation for the kitchen and the number of people who will occupy the structure. At best these rules of thumb are educated guesses and may not give you an accurate calculation of what you really need. Unless the contractor used software based on the above mentioned manuals it would be to your advantage to actually do a proper load calculation for the structure based on Manual “J” or Manual “N” whichever is appropriate for your HVAC application.

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Types of Boilers | HVAC Heating and Cooling 5/5 (1)

Types of Boilers

There are many different types of boilers in the boiler room today in a variety of heating applications. There are two main categories of boilers among the different boilers and those two categories are steam boilers and hot water boilers. Either of those categories can be fueled by oil, gas, or electric (although electric is uncommon for steam boilers). They have different designs and piping configurations as a steam boiler system is designed to turned the water into steam and uses gravity and pressure to deliver the heat and the hot water boiler systems are designed to simply make hot water to be circulated (by a circulator pump) through a piping system to provide heat. Typically, hot water boilers are more efficient than steam boilers for a few reasons. First, there is less heat loss throughout the hot water piping and the shell of the boiler because the hot water boiler operates at a lower temperature than the steam boiler. This means there is less heat loss throughout the entire boiler and piping system. Secondly, because the hot water boiler operates at a lower temperature, it requires less fuel or energy to convert into heat. What kind of boiler do you have in your boiler room?

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The NEC and HVAC Chapter Two 5/5 (1)

The National Electrical Code (NEC) and HVAC: The Basics

The NEC and HVAC Chapter Two

The NEC and HVAC Chapter Two – Chapter Two of the National Electrical Code (NEC) covers Wiring and Protection and starts at Branch Circuits, Feeder circuits, GFCI requirements and protection,. An HVAC installer may want to pay attention to branch circuit requirements. Article 220 in Chapter two of the NEC includes calculations for branch and feeder circuits including service calculations. (Table 220.3)

  • Specific branch circuit requirements for HVAC can also be found in Chapter 4 Article 440 – Air Conditioning and Refrigerating Equipment Branch Circuit Conductor Sizing
  • Article 424 – Fixed Electric Space Heating Equipment Branch Sizing
  • An entire chapter on motors including feeder circuits for motors

Chapter Two of the NEC also covers basic lighting which by code is done by Volt-Amperes per square foot. (Table 220.12)

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Rooftop Economizer CO2 | HVAC Control 5/5 (1)

HVAC Rooftop Economizer - CO2 ControlRooftop Economizer CO2 | HVAC Control

This damper is part of a free cooling system for a rooftop economizer. It is part of an economizer damper system which allows free outside air cooling when the outside air temperature and humidity are ideal. This economizer also works on CO2 control so that if the CO2 levels inside the space rise above a set point the economizer damper opens allowing fresh outside air into the space while venting the air laden with CO2 to the outside.

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DDC Automated Logic M-Stack | HVAC Control 5/5 (1)

DDC - Automated Logic M-Stack - HVAC Control

DDC Automated Logic M-Stack

DDC Automated Logic M-Stack – This Automated Logic M-Stack provides control for multiple pieces of HVAC equipment and integrates network communication all in one single stack. This direct digital control system is integrated with pnuematic controls. DDC allows automated HVAC control processes to take place and adds higher efficiency to an HVAC system.

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Hot Water Unit Heater Protecting a Mechanical Room No ratings yet.

Hot Water Unit Heater Protecting a Mechanical RoomHot Water Unit Heater Protecting a Mechanical Room

Unit heaters are used in various places to protect equipment and provide comfort to occupants. This hot water unit heater provides protection for a mechanical room where there is a large air handler and other associated equipment in the mechanical room. This system is controlled by DDC. A thermostat on the wall detects the temperature of the mechanical room. The DDC system will maintain a temperature set point by energizing the hot water unit heater fan and modulating the hot water valve open on the hot water piping. The actuator and hot water valve can be seen in this photo on the right lower half of the system. The valve is a two position valve so it is either open or closed with no modulating the valve on the unit heater. Other unit heaters for heating mechanical rooms or providing comfort include electric units heater when hot water is unavailable, gas fired unit heaters when gas (either propane or natural gas) is available, and infrared heaters typically found in large garages or warehouses for basic comfort of workers in those spaces. There are also steam unit heaters that utilize steam and a steam coil for heating spaces where steam is available. Most unit heaters are forced air unit

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Ceiling Fan in a Garage | HVAC Airflow No ratings yet.

Ceiling Fan in a GarageCeiling Fan in a Garage | HVAC Airflow

This ceiling fan keeps the air moving in a large garage where repairs are made to heavy machinery. In addition to providing a level of comfort by keeping the air moving in the shop the ceiling fan also helps to keep noxious fumes at higher elevations and moving towards the exhaust fans so the noxious fumes from heavy equipment can be removed from the shop area. The black metal you see hanging from the ceiling of the shop are baffles to keep the noise levels to a minimum. The whole shop is designed to keep noxious diesel fumes from the vehicles being repaired from affecting the occupants of the shop. 

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Infrared Radiant Heating Systems | Garage Heaters No ratings yet.

Infrared Radiant Heating Systems | Garage Heaters
Infrared Heating System

Infrared Radiant Heating Systems | Garage Heaters

Infrared Radiant Heating systems provide comfortable heat in larger areas and spaces such as garages, warehouses, and other open spaces where other types of heating systems are not practical or efficient. Infrared radiant heat works through thermal radiation transmitting heat to large objects including floors and walls. These large objects heat up through thermal radiation and then release that heat to the surrounding air through convection making the space or open area comfortable for the occupants. There are few common types for providing infrared radiant heat that include electric radiant heating and gas fired radiant heating systems. Oil-fired radiant heating systems are also available. Temperature outputs for these systems range from approximately 300° F. all the way up to over 3500° F. for high intensity infrared radiant systems. At those high surface temperatures it should be noted that infrared heating systems should not be used in areas where combustible materials are located.

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Types of HVAC Thermostats | HVAC Control No ratings yet.

Types of HVAC ThermostatsTypes of HVAC Thermostats  – There are many different types of thermostats. Thermostats also have various levels of complexity. Below is a list of the basic thermostat types. As we have time we will update the list to make sure it is as comprehensive as possible.

  • Non-Programmable Mechanical Thermostats – Many of these thermostats are the mercury bulb type which uses mercury to make contacts to energize the heat or cooling. Mercury is a highly toxic liquid conductive metal and needs to be handled with care. Human exposure to mercury is hazardous and if the bulb containing the mercury is broken great care should be taken to clean it up and dispose of it properly. Additionally, when the thermostat is replaced the old mercury type should be disposed of at an authorized disposal agency. Some mechanical thermostats do not contain mercury but use a calibrated magnetic strip and a bi-metal spring. These thermostats are effective but not as popular as the mercury type. Most of the non-programmable mechanical thermostats can be calibrated with special tools. It is recommended that only a qualified HVAC Technician perform these calibrations. The non-programmable mechanical thermostat comes in many different varieties for many different applications.

Types of HVAC Thermostats

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What Happens When My Boiler is Flooded 5/5 (1)

What Happens When My Boiler is Flooded
Outside boiler is prone to flooding

What Happens When My Boiler is Flooded

Richard,

What Happens When My Boiler is Flooded – Hurricane Irene was a disaster for us as we live in a Northern state that was hit by flooding from the rain of Hurricane Irene. As a result of the loss of power and the flooding our basement was flooded. Our boiler happens to be in the basement and we will soon need the heat. We have had a few contractors come by and look at the boiler with one contractor telling us we need to replace the boiler and another telling us we can rebuild the boiler. My husband is the do it yourself type and he wants to turn the boiler on and see if it will work and then go with it for the winter however I am concerned about the boiler and the safety issues. What do we do? My husband has agreed to follow your recommendation. What Happens When My Boiler is Flooded

Thanks for you advice and you have a great site!

Beverly R.

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DDC Outside Air Economizer System | HVAC Control 5/5 (1)

DDC Outside Air Economizer System | HVAC Control  economizer dampers

DDC Outside Air Economizer System

DDC Outside Air Economizer System  – Outside louvers allow the DDC control system to open dampers and introduce fresh air into the building. Building automation system, or the energy management system as it is sometimes called, monitors outside air temperature and humidity and based on a calculation and opens the outside air dampers when this calculation determines a precise set point. Introducing outside air into the building not only makes common sense it is also required by the Mechanical Code in commercial applications. This is required mainly for health reasons as it rids the building of volatile organic compounds and CO2 which is naturally produced by humans. Large concentrations of CO2 can build-up inside the building and needs to be vented as too much CO2 negatively affects human health. It is therefore important that along with the intake of outside air into the building there needs to be an exhaust air damper to maintain good building pressure. Negative pressure inside a building is bad as it causes infiltration moisture issues which leads to mold and mildew. Too much pressure also creates its own problems so it is important, with an outside air damper system, to monitor and maintain building pressure. Enthalpy wheels add to the efficiency of a good economizer system.

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Condensing Units | Heating and Cooling 5/5 (1)

HVAC Condensing Units

Air Conditioning and heating equipment uses high voltage. Caution is always advised when working around high voltage. When in doubt call a professional. Safety First!!

What you will learn from this article:
1) Basic description of a condensing unit
2) The differences between a heat pump condensing unit and an air conditioner condensing unit
3) The HVAC compressor or the heart of your air conditioner or heat pump
4) Basic description of some components in the condensing unit
5) Condensing Unit fan motor
6) Maintenance and upkeep of the condensing unit
7) Basic instructions on cleaning the condensing unit
8) Loose electrical connections in the condensing unit
9) Lots of resource and related links to help to learn in depth information about HVAC and condensing units

Condensing UnitsAir Conditioning & Heat Pump condensing unit is a simple yet technical piece of HVAC equipment. It sits out in the back (or side) of your house and kicks on and off almost by itself. At least it seems that way to most people. In this box made of sheet metal, is the heart of your HVAC cooling system. Or for those with heat pumps, it is the heart of your HVAC heating and cooling.

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Motor Controls for HVAC – Residential Air Conditioning and Heating 5/5 (1)

Motor Controls for HVAC – The Air Conditioning and Heating Thermostat

Motor controls are necessary to start and stop air conditioning and heating motors automatically or manually. The most common manual motor control for air conditioning and heating, which the average person is familiar with, starts and stops the blower motor on their home air conditioning and heating system. It is the Fan – Off – Auto switch on the air conditioning and heating thermostat. This switch when placed in the on position turns the blower motor on and circulates air continuously until the user turns the thermostat fan switch to either the off position or the automatic position. When the thermostat fan switch is placed in the automatic position the blower fan will operate automatically based on the temperature setting of the air conditioning and heating thermostat. In most residential systems the air conditioning and heating thermostat is the primary controller for the whole system.

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HVAC Definitions Terms & Acronyms | Heating Cooling 5/5 (1)

HVAC Definitions Terms & Acronyms

This is a comprehensive list of HVAC Acronyms and HVAC Terms. High Performance HVAC is certain there are more terms and acronyms. If you know of something we missed please email us. Thanks!

HVAC Definitions Terms & Acronyms - VSD or Variable Speed Drives
VSD or Variable Speed Drives

AC – Air Conditioning or Alternating Current

ACCA – Air Conditioning Contractors Associations

AFUE – Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency

AHU – Air Handling Unit

AI – Analog Input

AMCA – Air Movement and Control Association

AO – Analog Output

AQS – Air Quality Systems

ASHRAE – American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers

AV – Automatic Air Vent

AWG – American Wire Gage

B – Boiler

BACnet – Computer communication protocol for building automation systems and control networks

BAS – Building Automation System

BI – Binary Input

BMS – Building Management System

BO – Binary Output

BP – Backflow Preventer

BTU – British Thermal Unit

BTUh – Brtish Thermal Units per Hour

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HVAC 3R NEMA Rated Control Panels | DDC Installation 5/5 (1)

HVAC 3R NEMA Rated Control Panels | DDC InstallationHVAC 3R NEMA Rated Control Panels

HVAC 3R NEMA Rated Control Panels – These control panels offer resistance to inclement weather. They house the DDC controllers for two small chillers and two air handlers. The chillers provide chilled water for air conditioning to the air handlers. The controllers offer energy management for the air conditioning system. The controllers were mounted outside for a few reasons. The main reason was because this location was closest to the HVAC equipment which provides air conditioning to the building. The secondary reason was because there was no safe or ideal location to install these panels inside the building.

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Data Center HVAC Modeling Software | Critical Facilities No ratings yet.

Data Center HVAC Modeling Software | Critical Facilities Looks like good software for designers of HVAC Systems in data centers. I am wondering if it is possible to integrate this in a live data center for real time modeling of how the data center floor is operating at any given time of day or night. … Read more…

Water Heater Maintenance Extending the Life a Water Heater 5/5 (1)

Water Heater Maintenance: Solving Problems and Extending the Life a Water Heater

Water Heater Maintenance

There are tons of reviews for water heaters and many that mention the water heater only lasted a few years or the water heater has rusted or corroded and the reviewer states the water heater is a piece of junk. I would contend that if some people would perform annual maintenance these water heaters would last many more years. Maintenance is very easy to perform and for those who are not the do-it-yourself types you can call your local plumbing service provider to take care of the maintenance for you.

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