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brtims 02-01-2007 02:57 PM

Air ducts
I want to install a return duct on my first floor house. I have a heat pump and my return on the first floor is on the celing leaving the floor cold. To get a return low I need to fish it through a wall. To do this I have to cut through the top sill plate from the floor above and fish it down through the wall to keep me from having to cut through celing.
Is it ok to cut out a top plate on a wall to allow me to run ductowrk from a close above? I want to make sure I do not do structural damage.

troubleseeker 02-05-2007 08:30 PM

Completely removing a section of the top wall plate would be a no no. You may get away with it or you may create some serious structural issues, just depends on the exact framing situation. But even so, a stud cavity is only going to give you a 3 1/2" x 14 1/2" cavity to run a return duct down. Even if you could utilize every inch of the space, you would have less than 16 sq. inches of return, not nearly enough, as it sounds like this is serving an entire level of your home.

Brik 02-06-2007 07:52 AM

What he said ^^^^^

Could you give up part of a closet to make a return duct chase?

brtims 02-12-2007 07:29 PM

the closet is the asy part. I am doing that from thw attic through the closet. The next step is where the question comes from. Once in the closet how do I get to the floor level of the room below without opening up the ceiling?? I want it to run through the wall down to the floor wil I have a retrune vent in the wall. From thje closet down the only way to the floor in the room below is through the op of the framing. The upstairs closet does not line up with any closets in the level below. I alrady have one return in the celing on the first floor (through closet) but for heat I need a return low on the first floor. Right now my floor is freezing as I feel the heat get sucked up via the ceeiling.

Brik 02-13-2007 10:27 AM

When I said closet I mean 1st floor closet. If you cant do a 1st floor closet maybe you could come down the corner of a room or even along the wall then box around the duct with sheetrock. That will depend on how much space you have, and are willing to give up, in the area of the first floor.

AllGoNoShow 02-15-2007 12:32 PM

Why not just put it in the floor? Thats how it was done for 50 years or more!


Jeekinz 02-22-2007 10:23 AM

You can also use the cavity between the studs from an un-insulated wall. If you make the opening towards the floor, just cap off the top with a 2x4 between the studs.

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