Home & Garden

Ask me anything about HVAC heating air conditioning air quality control

  • Last Updated:
  • Aug 17th, 2016 12:59 pm
Tags:
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
1058 posts
107 upvotes
Markham

Ask me anything about HVAC heating air conditioning air quality control

Hello all,

I am a new member but long time lurker of this forum and i just thought I could be of some help opening a thread where people can ask me anything about the heating (HVAC) industry. Feel free to ask away.

I am a licenced contractor, from your area who does everything from furnace cleaning, to gas piping, to HRV, electronic air cleaners and so on.

I do free in home estimates on all of my services.

Feel free to ask anything about this industry and I will do my best to answer all of them.

Thanks for looking
Brian
Brooklin heating and air
7364 replies
Deal Addict
User avatar
Feb 15, 2005
4522 posts
475 upvotes
So, what's the best way to keep the air quality inside a new home clean and as dust free as possible? I've looked at a Lifebreath TFP coupled with an HRV but the combo costs about $4500 and costs $40/month to run.

What about UV lights? Are they effective or waste of electricity?
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
1058 posts
107 upvotes
Markham
UV light paired with a good filter is a great addition to any home or business. The UV works well to kill bacteria from your airstream. They are quite expensive now to get installed as they are still newer technology.

Does anyone in the house have bad allergies, or are you just interested in having the cleanest air availible to you?

The HRV is a great unit to add to bring fresh air into your house and release older stale air. I feel that your pricing is quite high for the hrv and purifier, and if you shop around, maybe with some of the smaller shops in your area you can get a much better price.

Your health isn't something that you can really put a price on. I think that $40/month is a very high estimate on monthly expense, I would estimate more like $25 for both units.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jun 11, 2001
7690 posts
318 upvotes
Got a few,

What do you think of the York Affinity series of ACs?

Which is better, standalone humidifiers in rooms or a central one (mist vs others?)

Thanks!
...zzz...zzz...zzz...

www.heatware.com
Deal Fanatic
Feb 1, 2006
9099 posts
214 upvotes
$40 is definitely high. My ERV added about $10-15/month to my energy costs.

I'd add that with an HRV or ERV, you likely don't need a purifier unless there is an allergy issue.

I have a question for Brian, one that I can never get a straight answer on...what are your thoughts on furnace filters? Are the expensive ultrafine filters worth the money in terms of better air? Will they strain your furnace motor, as I've heard rumours of?
Deal Addict
Nov 30, 2003
3178 posts
38 upvotes
Mississauga
Here's an odd one. My wife can't stand cooking smells, and she has the nose of a bloodhound, so she insists on opening all of the windows for a good 10-15 minutes every evening to air out the house. I can't stand watching the temp go down to 60-62F (yes our thermostat is in Fahrenheit), then she cranks it back up to 73F right afterward. She doesn't seem to realize how much that really costs us, and doesn't seem to care. Is there some way we can upgrade the ventilation system in our kitchen (it's wide open with the living/dining area) that would help out? What kind of expense would we be looking at?

Thanks.
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Jun 11, 2001
7690 posts
318 upvotes
easy solution, make her pay the gas bills :) j/k

just another question; do those air~purifiers really work? The ones that attache to the furnace not the Sharp Plasmathingys ones. -sg
Topher wrote:
Jan 31st, 2008 9:25 am
Here's an odd one. My wife can't stand cooking smells, and she has the nose of a bloodhound, so she insists on opening all of the windows for a good 10-15 minutes every evening to air out the house. I can't stand watching the temp go down to 60-62F (yes our thermostat is in Fahrenheit), then she cranks it back up to 73F right afterward. She doesn't seem to realize how much that really costs us, and doesn't seem to care. Is there some way we can upgrade the ventilation system in our kitchen (it's wide open with the living/dining area) that would help out? What kind of expense would we be looking at?

Thanks.
...zzz...zzz...zzz...

www.heatware.com
Deal Fanatic
Dec 11, 2003
7708 posts
243 upvotes
How much heating cost can you save with a HRV?
October 2015 for sale, PM for details!
PS3 EA Sports Active 2 $20
195-65-15 Winter tire with alloy wheel $500
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
1058 posts
107 upvotes
Markham
To start, what you have herd about the air filters is true. Using a 3m or "high quality" filter is a bad idea. It limits the amount of air flow into the furnace, therefore not giving the furnace enough air to properly function and suffocating it. If you find that your filters get dirty quick, the replace them ever 1-3 months instead of the mandatory 6 months. These "Basic" filters are much cheaper and work just as well, but over time they need to get replaced.

Central humids. are much better than stand alone. Your house(s) is engineered so the air circulates through your entire room. The stand alone units tend to have a strong air stream coming out of them, therefore neglecting quite a few areas in the room. A central unit would be more expensive, but it does the whole house and you save the hassel of running wires, and moving a unit to a different part of the house, and having a big ugly box taking up expensive real estate in your house.

The system air purifiers definately make a great deal of change. There are several different types and price points availible. I find that the electrical ones are they best option and value. They work by electricaly "shocking" the particals in the air. They do however require constant maintnance and cleaning, but well worth the small hassle.
[OP]
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
1058 posts
107 upvotes
Markham
For smells in the kitchen, my best suggestion would be to upgrade your range hood. A higher CFM rating on the fan will suck more "smell" out of the room without losing as much heat from opening the windows. You can also increase the size of the pipe leading to the outside of your house.

It is very hard to guess how much money would be saved on heating with and HRV. an HRV is more to bring better fresher air into the house while extracting stale air. An ERV however recycles the air, therefore saving on heating costs.
Deal Fanatic
Feb 1, 2006
9099 posts
214 upvotes
An HRV or ERV won't save you money on heating. In fact, it will cost you slightly more, as they aren't 100% efficient (more like 80-85%).

Brian - what do you mean by an ERV 'recycling' air and saving on heating? The only difference that I know of between an HRV and an ERV is that the ERV has a moisture exchanger as well, so it's also good for the summer. An HRV you might as well just unplug in summer.

More info here for those who want to read;

http://www.toolbase.org/Technology-Inve ... entilators
Member
User avatar
Oct 24, 2007
283 posts
2 upvotes
I have one room that is freezing in the winter and too hot in the summer. I know it likely has to do with distance from the furnace/AC, but are there any suggestions to help at all? I had one contractor talk about a heat vent cover that has a fan but I have never seen one, nor does it sound like it will work?!
Newbie
Nov 7, 2004
8 posts
2 upvotes
Hi,

I bought a new construction house in September, and noted that the fresh air intake is not plumbed into the "intake" PVC pipe of the furnace. This causes a fair bit of a draft from the furnace room into the finished basement (no fence, field in the back, quite a bit of wind hitting the vent).

Is there anything i can do about this? The hose coming from the fresh air intake is a corrugated plastic type hose wrapped in insulation, with a rolled sheetmetal end. The pipe on the furnace is PVC. How can I attach them together, and is this a smart thing to do?

Thanks,
Ross
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Nov 13, 2005
5669 posts
161 upvotes
GTA
bririp wrote:
Jan 31st, 2008 12:53 pm
To start, what you have herd about the air filters is true. Using a 3m or "high quality" filter is a bad idea. It limits the amount of air flow into the furnace, therefore not giving the furnace enough air to properly function and suffocating it. If you find that your filters get dirty quick, the replace them ever 1-3 months instead of the mandatory 6 months. These "Basic" filters are much cheaper and work just as well, but over time they need to get replaced.

Central humids. are much better than stand alone. Your house(s) is engineered so the air circulates through your entire room. The stand alone units tend to have a strong air stream coming out of them, therefore neglecting quite a few areas in the room. A central unit would be more expensive, but it does the whole house and you save the hassel of running wires, and moving a unit to a different part of the house, and having a big ugly box taking up expensive real estate in your house.

The system air purifiers definately make a great deal of change. There are several different types and price points availible. I find that the electrical ones are they best option and value. They work by electricaly "shocking" the particals in the air. They do however require constant maintnance and cleaning, but well worth the small hassle.
I personally use the low end 3M pleated filter that cost about $6 at Rona and I change it every month. I once used to use the $30 ones and changed it every 3 months until I noticed that the house wasn't heating much and the furnace would stay on for longer periods of time!!!!

sk
Deal Addict
Dec 4, 2004
1979 posts
7 upvotes
Kingston
Here's a question, more out of curiosity than anything.
I live in a 26 year old home, with the original furnace. I hear ungodly things about how inefficient it must be. I know the motor was replaced about 7 years ago, and all the bearings last year. (this probably has no effect on efficiency, but thought i'd toss it in there)
We're in a two storey, about 1500 square feet, and keep our heat at about 21C.
Question is this: we only pay $111.00 for our heat a month, equal billing. We've been here 3 years, and it's been fairly even the entire three years.
If i actually spent a **** and replaced my furnace, will i realistically see a bill of 40 - 50 percent less, like every salesman tells me?
A gas bill for a family of 4 at 60 or 70 bucks a month just seems inconceivable to me-is it?
× < >

Top