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Old 08-04-2010, 12:50 PM   #1
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How would I go about making this seal better?


I am building a box that will go against my AC unit's condenser intake and I will be adding a hose so it takes air from outside, instead of inside.

How would I go about creating a better seal so when I put the box against the unit, it is fairly airtight? I was thinking maybe something like what fridge doors use, but is that something I can actually buy in a roll or something? Would also be hard to attach that to the edge of the thin plywood.

Any other ideas?
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Old 08-04-2010, 06:14 PM   #2
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How would I go about making this seal better?


you mean like a foam tape?any hardware store should be able to fix you up

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Old 08-04-2010, 10:02 PM   #3
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How would I go about making this seal better?


Hmm foam might work. Now that I think about it, maybe sponges that are cut to size. When the AC turns on it will basically suck the whole thing on anyway, so it does not need to be 100%, as long as there is some play and not just wood against plastic.
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Old 08-04-2010, 10:15 PM   #4
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How would I go about making this seal better?


Keep us posted. I'm curious now to see if that will make your unit cool more efficiently.
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Old 08-08-2010, 09:49 PM   #5
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How would I go about making this seal better?


I'm almost done. I am currently testing the concept now to see if my bright idea even works. Not exactly the best day to test since it's not super hot out. I can't believe the time it took me to make this, guess it's not that often I build stuff, so I still need practice. Most of my cuts were all crooked too.

Still not 100% sure what to do as far as a seal goes though. I still get a bit of indoor air that gets sucked into the cracks as I can still feel pressure when I go to close the door.

I'm thinking of using pieces of sponge and make a barrier around the plywood so when I push my contraption against, it squishes the sponge creating a seal. Same for where the metal duct enters the top. I don't want to tape it as I want to be able to easily remove it. Though, can air travel through a sponge? I suppose it's not really that significant though... I was also thinking of just using pieces of VB in a "U" as when the unit comes on it will just suck itself on. Any other ideas?
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Old 08-08-2010, 10:10 PM   #6
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How would I go about making this seal better?


closed cell backer rod

http://www.google.com/products?rlz=1...ed=0CDcQrQQwAg
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Old 08-08-2010, 10:13 PM   #7
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How would I go about making this seal better?


Hmm never thought of that, good idea. I believe they do sell it for pipes at the hardware store here. Since there's a slit to fit it on the pipe, I can just wrap it on both sides of the plywood pieces and give it some play so I can push against the AC unit. Think I will do just that. May as well buy a bunch and I can insulate my pipes too, since I've been wanting to do that anyway.
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Old 08-08-2010, 10:15 PM   #8
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How would I go about making this seal better?


So you're turning your single hose unit into a dual hose unit, huh? Good idea The single hose units are very counter productive.
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Old 08-08-2010, 10:32 PM   #9
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How would I go about making this seal better?


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So you're turning your single hose unit into a dual hose unit, huh? Good idea The single hose units are very counter productive.
Yep. I should have just bought a dual hose unit.... but I did not really know better at the time, did not even know they sold them. It only occurred to me after the fact how inefficient these are. I was scared I might be creating too much static pressure by doing this mod, but I think the blower can handle it just fine. When I take the pipe out of the window, I can suck pieces of paper with it and it gets sucked into the wood box. I made sure to add a screen so I don't suck bugs into my unit.

The pipe comes off at the bottom of the wood box, and also comes out at the window. I used a side takeoff ductpiece screwed to the wood, and the pipe just hooks on it. Originally my exhaust (white pipe) was where the new metal pipe is, but I switched it around. I wanted the exhaust on top as the hot air is more likely to rise up and not get sucked back in the system. If this was a more permanent setup, I'd separate them much more then that.

I had thoughts of making it permanent using dryer vent outlets going outside, and hooking up the unit to the furnace return, but was told this could cause the heat exchanger to condensate and rust out. The idea sounded great at the time, especially if I could set up the whole unit to be controlled via a relay, then hook it in with the thermostat as I already have the proper thermostat and wire in place for AC. But yeah, wont be trying that. I may hook it up to just the vent that goes to my office though, technically that would work, with some kind of Y A/B damper. Then it wont be as loud in here. Oh that's another thing, this setup makes it slightly quieter.
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Old 08-09-2010, 07:41 AM   #10
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How would I go about making this seal better?


I would think you plan will make you AC less efficient. When you are pulling in room air it is already conditioned and you are cooling it down further. When you are pulling in outside air, you are taking unconditioned air and trying to bring the temp down to your desired level of conditioning.

Think of an manual car AC unit. Has 2 setting: one recirculates the cabin air, the other pulls in outside air. The recirculating mode always is colder (and quicker) and more efficient.
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Old 08-09-2010, 08:56 AM   #11
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How would I go about making this seal better?


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I would think you plan will make you AC less efficient. When you are pulling in room air it is already conditioned and you are cooling it down further. When you are pulling in outside air, you are taking unconditioned air and trying to bring the temp down to your desired level of conditioning.
The air that he is pulling in is going thru the condensing unit and then right back outside thru the second hose, that air never enters the room.

The problem with single hose units is that they pull the room air in thru the condensing unit and then blow it outside, this does two very bad things: A) It uses the conditioned air that the unit itself is making, so it's working against itself and B) it is pulling in hot and humid outside air thru any crack in the house. Remember, if something is blowing air out (any type of exhaust) then it HAS to be pulling air in as well. So while that single hose room air conditioner is cooling off that room, it is making every other room hotter because the hot outside air is coming in where ever it can.

This is fixed by buying a dual hose unit (or converting like Red Squirrel).
Quote:
Think of an manual car AC unit. Has 2 setting: one recirculates the cabin air, the other pulls in outside air. The recirculating mode always is colder (and quicker) and more efficient.
You are talking about the air in the cabin of the car. This is much like the air in the house. You don't want the hot outside air to come in like I explained above.

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