Hello everyone and Happy Holidays!

Attic ductwork is ubiquitous in extant, single floor, single family housing and we are all too aware of the numerous shortcomings. A number of years ago, I decided to address the issue of a single, central ceiling return in my 1750 sq. ft,, 2002 home (10' ceilings) and the subsequent problems with cold hardwood floors and interminable recovery from setback.

I won't review my crawl space encapsulation or the fact that I have limited setback to just one degree (it makes my wife happy to "force" heating upon our typical wake-up time), both of which have improved comfort at no measurable difference in heating cost. After reading Dr. Bailes recent tretis on HDD, I suspect savings would be difficult to estimate anyway. The home has been blower door tested (precise numbers escape me, but were excellent) and insulation heavied in the attic.

Back to that single, central ceiling return.

Being a rocket surgeon in my spare time, it occurred to me that pulling cooler air from floor level in the heating season could only help the previously described problems and I found a place in the corner of a hall closet, very near the central ceiling return, where I could install an 8" flex duct. Much larger, and the duct took more space than my wife would approve. At the bottom of the duct, I installed a 90* adapter with a section of 5" X 14" filter media.

In the closet ceiling, a suitably sized, very tight clearance hole permitted entrance of the flex into the attic, where the duct is connected to an adapter on the single, enormous flex duct that leads back to the furnace.

An appropriately sized grill on each side of the bottom of the closet door ensured air movement.

I appreciate overall return air has not increased, but my calibrated, wet finger indicates considerable air flow. Also, the added duct is closed during the cooling season.

My questions to the group are, what unintended consequences may I have introduced into my system and does anyone have any thoughts on potential cost savings? My DIY efforts came in at around $50 and two band-aids.

All the best.

Views: 275

Replies to This Discussion

Why use insulated flex if the return duct is in conditioned space? You could have used a 10" hard pipe, but you would have been limited by the 5x14 return anyway.

My house is similar, 10' ceilings, 1999 construction, 150sqft less, slab instead of crawl space. The house came with (2) 20x20 ceiling returns in the hallways which have 8' ceilings. Here's what I've done:
1: Replaced the standard 4 way residential registers with fully adjustable commercial registers. Helped tremendously as supply air can now be directed to the floor w/o blowing directly on us. Well worth the $20/ea they cost.

2: Downsized HVAC system. House came with 88k furnace and 3ton AC. Replaced with 44k furnace/2 ton AC. The long run cycles help a lot with better air mixing. With the old oversized furnace setting the blower speed on high helped with air mixing, but still wasn't as comfortable as downsizing the furnace.

RSS

Discussion Forum

Manual S for Water Furnace Equipment

Started by Jeremy Begley. Last reply by Danny Gough Mar 23. 6 Replies

joining ducts

Started by Don Fugler. Last reply by Dara Bowser Nov 28, 2017. 21 Replies

HVAC integration – the past, the present, and the future

Started by Igor Mitbarg. Last reply by Lucifer Prescott Apr 11, 2017. 1 Reply

Latest Activity

Laurie Guevara-Stone's blog post was featured

Zero-Energy Homes Are Ready for Mainstream Markets

By Alisa Petersen and Michael GartmanZero-energy (ZE) homes—efficient homes that produce or procure…See More
54 minutes ago
John White replied to Cameron Home Insulation's discussion Why is Air Sealing Important?
"With effective air sealing and insulation heating and air cooling systems will not need to work as…"
3 hours ago
MacKenzie Winchel joined Evan Mills's group
Thumbnail

Home Energy Ratings

Calculating them; visualizing them; explaining them; selling them .... there is a lot to discuss…See More
11 hours ago
Franco Oyuela replied to Jamie Kaye's discussion Spray Foam vs. Fiberglass - R-value only?
"Fiberglass has an R-Value of 3 per inch while spray foam has a R- Value of 7 per inch. ... The…"
18 hours ago
Profile IconPatrick Chappuies, Sean Nickison, Priscilla Acosta and 1 more joined Home Energy Pros Forum
21 hours ago
Glen Gallo replied to Jerry Needham's discussion Blower door test for small apartment building
"Thanks Colin Interesting subject and many good answers. Thank you Jerry for the question. I have…"
22 hours ago
Yudah Schwartz replied to Jerry Needham's discussion Blower door test for small apartment building
"John What are your thoughts on the AeroBarrier system?"
yesterday
Chris Davis's blog post was featured
yesterday
Brett Little's event was featured
Thumbnail

Duct Optimization and Performance - Free CE Webinar at Webinar Online

October 31, 2018 from 12pm to 1:15pm
Good indoor air starts with proper duct design and installation. In residential ventilation…See More
yesterday
John White posted a blog post
yesterday
Profile IconChristina Mathieson, Sophia Jones and Nancy Hawkins joined Home Energy Pros Forum
Saturday
Brett Little posted an event
Thumbnail

Duct Optimization and Performance - Free CE Webinar at Webinar Online

October 31, 2018 from 12pm to 1:15pm
Good indoor air starts with proper duct design and installation. In residential ventilation…See More
Friday

Photos

  • Add Photos
  • View All

© 2018   Created by Home Performance Coalition (HPC)   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service