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Old 04-16-2012, 05:05 PM   #1
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


After going down to the basement to bring the portable fans up to our 2nd floor apartment, I noticed how nice and cool, almost chilly it was down there. I started thinking- could there be away to use the furnace ducts to bring that air up in the summer, the same way that central air generally works? There is one intake vent for the whole apartment, lots of old giant windows, and it gets NASTY up here in August.

I can't do any real modifications since we're renting, but if all it would take is blowing a strong fan down into the intake vent, I could do something simple like that.

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Old 04-16-2012, 05:24 PM   #2
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


You could see if there is a summer fan switch on the furnace.

Taking the fan door off the furnace can more actively spread that cooler basement air throughout the building but can also spead CO from any other gas fired appliances (like hot water tanks) that share that same basement.

The basement reservoir of cool air is good for about 40 Minutes max before the temp differences through out the building equalize. Usually more trouble than it's worth since those in the cooler apartments are unlikely to be enthusiastic about getting warmed up by your hot air so that you can be temporarily cooled down using their cooler air..

There are much easier and safer ways of cooling your place down.


Last edited by how; 04-16-2012 at 05:36 PM.
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Old 04-16-2012, 07:51 PM   #3
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


Its not worth the time and labor to do correctly.
Window air units are safer and the big boxes i.e. Home Depot ,Lowes and WalMart and KMart are practicly giving them awat this time of year.
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Old 04-16-2012, 08:46 PM   #4
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


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Its not worth the time and labor to do correctly.
That is funny, due to it is done all of the time. It is called installing Air Conditioning or a Heat Pump unit, that is a all-in-one unit, or if this is just a standard furnace with Oil burners, a A-Coil can be installed, which can be done, and is usually a one day job at most.
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Old 04-16-2012, 09:54 PM   #5
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


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Originally Posted by Anthon Galati View Post
After going down to the basement to bring the portable fans up to our 2nd floor apartment, I noticed how nice and cool, almost chilly it was down there. I started thinking- could there be away to use the furnace ducts to bring that air up in the summer, the same way that central air generally works? There is one intake vent for the whole apartment, lots of old giant windows, and it gets NASTY up here in August.

I can't do any real modifications since we're renting, but if all it would take is blowing a strong fan down into the intake vent, I could do something simple like that.
sure bring up the cold air..... how long will it last when you draw hot air in to replace the cold air you moved...... where i come from its called air conditioning...... i would buy one
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Old 04-17-2012, 05:10 AM   #6
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


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That is funny, due to it is done all of the time. It is called installing Air Conditioning or a Heat Pump unit, that is a all-in-one unit, or if this is just a standard furnace with Oil burners, a A-Coil can be installed, which can be done, and is usually a one day job at most.
Usually not worth a tenants time of money to install a central A/C in the landlords property.
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Old 04-17-2012, 08:52 AM   #7
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


it may be cool when you walk into it but the smells must be considered.installing an actual fan sextion onto the riser duct would cycle the air but as said hot air is going to be sucked in.slide a block of ice in front of the duct will cool you off or a wet towel with cold water trickling down it will pull the heat out of the entering air..
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Old 04-23-2012, 02:15 PM   #8
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


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Originally Posted by how View Post
You could see if there is a summer fan switch on the furnace.

Taking the fan door off the furnace can more actively spread that cooler basement air throughout the building but can also spead CO from any other gas fired appliances (like hot water tanks) that share that same basement.

The basement reservoir of cool air is good for about 40 Minutes max before the temp differences through out the building equalize. Usually more trouble than it's worth since those in the cooler apartments are unlikely to be enthusiastic about getting warmed up by your hot air so that you can be temporarily cooled down using their cooler air..

There are much easier and safer ways of cooling your place down.
I will find out about the summer fan switch on the furnace- I didn't know there was such a thing. This place is pretty old though, so I'm guessing something fancy like that may be a long shot. The landlord had said that he took all of the gas out of the building years ago, and the apartment below us has been empty for two years, so neither of those things should be a problem. Even if it only lasts 40 minutes, that could make a difference. If it doesn't, we can just stick to the A/Cs. Thanks for the help.
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Old 04-23-2012, 02:18 PM   #9
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


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sure bring up the cold air..... how long will it last when you draw hot air in to replace the cold air you moved...... where i come from its called air conditioning...... i would buy one
We do have air conditioners, but try not to run them unless it's really necessary because we are on a tight budget. There is a huge difference in the cost of running a fan vs. an air conditioner. Not to mention how environmental one is compared to the other.
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Old 04-23-2012, 02:36 PM   #10
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Can I use oil furnace ducts to cool in summer?


The older the furnace, the more likely it is that it will have a summer fan switch. (It's old school) Usually located inside the furnace as part of the fan/limit control or externally on the side of the furnace.
For safety sake, I'd leave the fan door in place and just let the cool basement ducting and the empty lower appartment cool down the circulating air. The drop in duct temp will not be as dramatic but it will last much longer.

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