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  • Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

    How have you zoned off ducted hot air heat and AC systems in existing homes to get room-by-room temperature control?

    Have you used motorized dampers with individual stats or some other method?

    What about a pneumatically operated dampers?

    Have you installed wireless control system?

    Ever used anything like this? Home Comfort Zones

    If yes, what is your opinion as far as installation ease, cost and quality of equipment, etc. What are your likes or dislikes about the system.

    If you looked at it and decided against it, why or what do you see wrong with it?

    Saw this on TOH over the weekend and wondering as it's only available in 6 states out West so no exposure to it here.
    ---------------
    Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
    ---------------
    “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
    ---------
    "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
    ---------
    sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

  • #2
    Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

    Number 1 reason why I dont like duct zone systems on forced air is they are inefficient. For example a 3 ton air conditioner requires 1200 cfm of airflow to work properly. If you have a single zone calling for cooling, which has a single 6" diameter pipe capable of carrying 90 cfm, wheres the other 1110 cfm going to go? It goes through a bypass duct that is weighted to allow a certain barometric pressure in the duct system. All that extra cooling is going to be "dumped" wherever the installer decides. Not to mention the zoning is only done on the supply side, and all the returns pull all the time.

    I refuse to bid 95% of the zone system requests I get. If I cant talk a customer into multiple systems I tell them to call someone else.

    Zone systems can be great for comfort if done right, but they are most often hugely inefficient.

    Andy

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

      Gotta upgrade the whole system to zone properly. IMO

      Variable speed evap blower w 2 speed condenser, still gonna need to bypass even with this setup.

      I'm currently doing a multi-zone Carrier "Infinity" system for a contractor friends personal home. Carrier makes some dedicated hardware that interfaces with the zones to keep everything communicating properly...

      Let me see if I can find some of the hardware...




      Item on the left is a 4 zone controller ( this takes the signals from the zone controllers and furnace / AHU giving the dampers instruction

      Item on the right is an Infinity zone control ( very very smart system) this is what goes in the controlled space.

      The Infinity 4 wire communications buss has impressed me:-)

      Disclaimer: I'm a Carrier Dealer

      Okie
      Last edited by OkieBill; 04-05-2009, 09:24 PM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

        IMO Carrier has the best zoning with multi-stage equipment setup on the market. I've installed 1 Bryant Evolution system which a customer requested. It is REALLY nice stuff. That thermostat is the easiest multi-function stat I've ever used.

        Andy

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

          Yea, The stat asks you all of the questions on start up and off you go...

          Of course calling this systems controller a stat is a little misleading...lol

          System gives outdoor temp at the stat by asking the condenser


          Stat will tell the customer what is wrong with the system in plain english and tell them to call me

          I once had this stat let me know that my return was restricted on start up, it was right

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

            I am with ruudguy, I do not install zoning system unless absolutely necessary, but if I do I use the XCI zoning system, by far the easiest I have ever used, has a 2 and 4 zone controller as well and uses PO and PC dampers.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

              BOD D....which episode did you see this on? while i understand the short comings ofthe application, i'd like to watch the episode to see what the TOH expert has to say. thanks.
              there's a solution to every problem.....you just have to be willing to find it.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                I just watched the sales pitch for the "My Temp System"

                What a mistake!!!! This Rube Goldberg of a system is fraught with problems from the start.

                Air bags Just when I thought pneumatic controls had gone away...

                I bet a simple system air balance would solve a majority of these customers problems...

                Of course if the customer has the pocketbook who am I to not sell the $2-4K system BUT don't think that there are alot easier and cheaper ways to solve air distribution issues

                Okie
                Last edited by OkieBill; 04-07-2009, 09:06 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                  Maybe try http://www.arzelzoning.com/Arzel_Comfort_House.swf Its a cool way to add zoning to an existing system uses Air to Open and close dampers Powered by a 24V Fish tank pump but its a neat idea WWW.Arzelzoning.com

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                    I agree with Rudd. Problem with zoning any forced air system, AC equipped or otherwise it the loss of balance when one or more of the zones is closed or open. It can have a huge effect on an evaporator coil when you restrict air flow. However, it can be done through the use of dump and balance zones. They do work but again there is always going to be a trade off regarding noise and air flow. I have had some success with multi stage blower speeds though. What I would really like to see is multi stage blower speed coupled with a variable TXV system that would allow the evap coil to go from one output to another. Two coils would probably be the way to go with both in operation for full flow conditions and dropping to a single for slower speed operation. It works but the cost of the equipment is going to be up there.
                    sigpic

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                      Originally posted by NHMaster3015 View Post
                      I agree with Rudd. Problem with zoning any forced air system, AC equipped or otherwise it the loss of balance when one or more of the zones is closed or open. It can have a huge effect on an evaporator coil when you restrict air flow. However, it can be done through the use of dump and balance zones. They do work but again there is always going to be a trade off regarding noise and air flow. I have had some success with multi stage blower speeds though. What I would really like to see is multi stage blower speed coupled with a variable TXV system that would allow the evap coil to go from one output to another. Two coils would probably be the way to go with both in operation for full flow conditions and dropping to a single for slower speed operation. It works but the cost of the equipment is going to be up there.
                      Not sure about a residential variable TXV but I have been having good luck using 2 speed condensers and variable speed evaps

                      That way I can knock the capacity waaaaaay back as the zones satisify.

                      Okie

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                        Originally posted by FINER9998 View Post
                        BOD D....which episode did you see this on? while i understand the short comings ofthe application, i'd like to watch the episode to see what the TOH expert has to say. thanks.
                        It aired on 4/4/09. The title of the episode is "Heating & Cooling System Controller; Re-Grout Tile Floor". Sometimes the re-run episodes a few weeks later. It might also be available on their website.

                        As a number of people have commented the bladder in the duct seems problematic. I've worked on duct systems with pneumatically operated dampers before, but never seem something like this. And as I stated in my original post these are only available in 6 states out west, so they are not in use here on the East coast so no exposure to them here for me.
                        ---------------
                        Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                        ---------------
                        “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                        ---------
                        "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                        ---------
                        sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                          Originally posted by BrandonG View Post
                          Maybe try http://www.arzelzoning.com/Arzel_Comfort_House.swf Its a cool way to add zoning to an existing system uses Air to Open and close dampers Powered by a 24V Fish tank pump but its a neat idea WWW.Arzelzoning.com

                          I've used these systems a lot, for retrofit applications they work great. Bypass is not necessary except to cure noise complaints - you will raise static pressure in the duct and force more airflow out of whatever zones are calling. With that said, it is NOT meant to be a room by room deal, no matter what the static pressure, to use a previous example: you sure won't get 1200 CFM out of one or two 6 inch runs.

                          Very useful when someone does not want to buy variable speed blowers and multistage condensers - both of which are better choices, but Arzel works great when set up properly.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                            Originally posted by Glowmunkey View Post
                            I've used these systems a lot, for retrofit applications they work great. Bypass is not necessary except to cure noise complaints - you will raise static pressure in the duct and force more airflow out of whatever zones are calling. With that said, it is NOT meant to be a room by room deal, no matter what the static pressure, to use a previous example: you sure won't get 1200 CFM out of one or two 6 inch runs.

                            Very useful when someone does not want to buy variable speed blowers and multistage condensers - both of which are better choices, but Arzel works great when set up properly.


                            Like I said? Oh wait I didn't use all the fancy terms......

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Zoning of ducted Comfort Heat and AC

                              Originally posted by BrandonG View Post
                              Like I said? Oh wait I didn't use all the fancy terms......
                              I was trying to support your idea... Did not realize anything I said would be considered "fancy".

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