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Old 11-22-2013, 09:55 PM   #1
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


Long story short, I have a 1920s house with the original registers and boots, and recently had new ducts and a furnace installed. One register/boot was obscured by basement finishes and the asbestos abatement missed it, and the HVAC install couldn't connect to it. I did have the new HVAC install leave a capped Y-connection in the vicinity and size the supply duct accordingly for future hookup.

The duct placement creates a head clearance issue across a basement door (why it was cut and buried in the first place), and I don't want to put it back such anyway. It does run in the direction of the joists so could be put in the joist cavity, however the other boots all have large rigid 90-degree bends that extend beneath the ceiling drywall and connect to the ducts below the ceiling (in more convenient locations). As this had exposed asbestos when I found it, I bagged and taped it up, covered the drywall hole with plastic and cannot remember exactly the configuration - it was however originally disconnected and sheet-rocked over, so it is at least contained within the joist cavity now. I expect it needs a 90-bend added, which would then project below the ceiling like the others and interfere with the basement space.

I have 2 main options:
1) Have the asbestos abated (lots of money for tiny asbestos) and use/modify this with the existing Y-connection while figuring a way to conceal everything completely within the joist cavity.
Question:
- Is it possible to have a low-wall mounted register that transitions 90-down through the subfloor, then 90-horizontal into the 2x10 joist cavity without entering the room below? (The register is just above the baseboard, so pushing the 90-deg bend up into the wall doesn't work.)

2) Encapsulate the asbestos and remove/abandon this register and install a new register along the main central duct-run (like all the others). There is room in this location for additional ducts in the basement - it is where the rest of the ducts run and where the existing Y-connection is. HOWEVER, I believe there is a register directly on the other side of the 2x4 wall I want to put it in.
Questions:
- Can/should I do this? It seems like the better location anyway to make the basement functional, if I can install it in the exact right location for upstairs.
- Can I modify the existing register box by cutting in from behind to have it go into rooms on both sides of the wall?
- I believe another wall in my house has a two-headed register/boot, so I imagine if I'm willing to tear the whole thing out, it would be possible. Is this correct?

I've been unable to find a "two-headed register box/boot", what do I need to search for?

Thanks in advance.

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Old 11-23-2013, 08:05 AM   #2
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


Some people abate their own asbestos. Thats a decision you must make for yourself.

2x10 joist cavity is a bit small. but you can use wall stack for what you want.

http://hc-products.com/index.asp?cat=Wall

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Old 11-23-2013, 11:33 AM   #3
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


The wall stack isn't my problem. The register is about 3" from the floor and the boot is near flush with the basement ceiling below so there is not much duct in the wall. Unless you meant to use it in the joist cavity?

My question is more about how to turn the 90-degs from register to concealed duct within a 2x10 cavity. I have considered abating the asbestos myself since it is so little, though I not sure exactly what is needed - I believe it needs to be ground off with an angle grinder? That's what it looked like they did with he others.

Do they make boots that start at the register/subfloor and immediately begin to turn 90-degs and connect to round duct within 9.5" vertical inches?
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:36 AM   #4
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


The wall stack boot would be in the joist cavity. The wall stack/double head stack would be in the wall.

Without pics of what you have, not able to really tell what you need.
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Old 11-23-2013, 11:58 AM   #5
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


Sorry, I see now, there are other accessories on that page that seem like they would suit my purpose, thanks for posting the list. I was only looking at the 'wall stack' part. I'm not totally clear how they are listing the dimensions - I assume it is the opening sizes and not the overall dimensions? How can I figure out if this will fit within the 2x10s?

The Center/Right/Left End Stack Boot seems like it would be what I need to reuse the existing register (if I can abate/remove the existing boot itself and successfully attach this).

Otherwise, the Double Stackhead would suit option 2. Do you think I could cut a hole in the back of my existing register to create something similar without needing to tear it out of the wall?

I'll try to get some pictures of all of this to help with further discussion.
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Old 11-23-2013, 03:28 PM   #6
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


2 1/4" wide X 10" long x 5" round pipe opening.

The 10" in the above would mean the joist space needs to be 10 1/2" wide.

May or may not be able to out out the back of the existing stack head. It might come apart while trying to cut it.
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Old 12-20-2013, 10:11 AM   #7
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


So, I've decided to open the wall up behind the existing stack head and try to cut a hole/register into the back over the upcoming holiday week, and I've got a few initial questions.

First, my plan:
- Remove plaster and wood lath to the size of the new register grille.
- Drill/cut a hole into the center of the back side of the existing stack head
- Use snips to cut an "X" from corner to corner
- Fold each triangle-shaped piece 1/2-way out (45-degs), trying to form a nice clean fold (using a metal ruler to help?)
- Use snips to slice off most of the tip of the triangle, leaving almost enough to match the thickness of the plaster
- Finish the fold to 90-degs so the tabs I have created bring the duct through the plaster-thickness
- Figure out a way to attach sheet metal, use foil tape, or something to form a collar and close the open corners created by each tab that I have created/folded out

This is where my questions come is:
- First, does my plan sound reasonable?
- Can I just use lots of foil tape to close-off the open corners where the folded triangles meet as they pass through the plaster thickness?
- What is the best way to 'extend' the ducting through the wall thickness?
- What are the basic industry practice/code concerns with this aspect?
- Another existing register that I removed to paint around had the edges of the stack head all mangled and basically foil-taped to the edges of the plaster (not well), then the register grille was screwed into the plaster/lath (not into sheet metal). There isn't really a direct connection, just a loose fit, and it didn't seem like the sheet metal came through the wall thickness like I would have expected. Is this acceptable? (it is a old house)
- Can I buy another piece of sheet metal that is the right size, and trim out some chunks so it fits in/around/nests with my existing cut-open stack-head creating tabs that overlap in places, then tape & screw it in from the top/sides of the stack-head?
- I understand its all about creating a leak-free smooth path, and I understand the basic duct-connections, but this seems so unusual that I'm not quite sure what is necessary.

Any other thoughts or advice? Much appreciated!

Aaron
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Old 12-20-2013, 03:37 PM   #8
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


Quote:
Originally Posted by greenfrog5 View Post
So, I've decided to open the wall up behind the existing stack head and try to cut a hole/register into the back over the upcoming holiday week, and I've got a few initial questions.

First, my plan:
- Remove plaster and wood lath to the size of the new register grille.
- Drill/cut a hole into the center of the back side of the existing stack head
- Use snips to cut an "X" from corner to corner
- Fold each triangle-shaped piece 1/2-way out (45-degs), trying to form a nice clean fold (using a metal ruler to help?)
- Use snips to slice off most of the tip of the triangle, leaving almost enough to match the thickness of the plaster
- Finish the fold to 90-degs so the tabs I have created bring the duct through the plaster-thickness
- Figure out a way to attach sheet metal, use foil tape, or something to form a collar and close the open corners created by each tab that I have created/folded out

This is where my questions come is:
- First, does my plan sound reasonable?

For the most part yes.

- Can I just use lots of foil tape to close-off the open corners where the folded triangles meet as they pass through the plaster thickness?

Don't cut the metal so short that it doesn't extend past the plaster enough that you can't fold a 1/2" lip on the outside of the plaster. Then use caulk to fill any gaps.

- What is the best way to 'extend' the ducting through the wall thickness?

See above.

- What are the basic industry practice/code concerns with this aspect?

Sealed so as not to leak air.

- Another existing register that I removed to paint around had the edges of the stack head all mangled and basically foil-taped to the edges of the plaster (not well), then the register grille was screwed into the plaster/lath (not into sheet metal). There isn't really a direct connection, just a loose fit, and it didn't seem like the sheet metal came through the wall thickness like I would have expected. Is this acceptable? (it is a old house)

In the old days that was common. Seal that one's gaps up with caulk to stop the air leaks.

- Can I buy another piece of sheet metal that is the right size, and trim out some chunks so it fits in/around/nests with my existing cut-open stack-head creating tabs that overlap in places, then tape & screw it in from the top/sides of the stack-head?

No, they are made to be installed before drywall is hung. Nothing is made for once the drywall is hung. So your kind of stuck with what you have.

- I understand its all about creating a leak-free smooth path, and I understand the basic duct-connections, but this seems so unusual that I'm not quite sure what is necessary.

Any other thoughts or advice? Much appreciated!

Aaron
The better its air sealed, the more heat you will get into your house/rooms.
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Old 12-20-2013, 04:52 PM   #9
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


I understand, and am confident I can seal it well. I'm asking more about code/safety-wise. Is it standard practice for a retrofit like this to just "get it done however as airtight as possible"?

Probably not much safety concern at this point in the system (unlike plumbing or electrical), are there requirements for providing a sheet metal portion if the duct to screw the grille into?
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Old 12-20-2013, 05:44 PM   #10
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


Quote:
Originally Posted by greenfrog5 View Post
I understand, and am confident I can seal it well. I'm asking more about code/safety-wise.

No code issue, as your not adding duct work.

Is it standard practice for a retrofit like this to just "get it done however as airtight as possible"?

You will probably do a better job then most companies in your area would.

Probably not much safety concern at this point in the system (unlike plumbing or electrical), are there requirements for providing a sheet metal portion if the duct to screw the grille into?
No requirement. Just much easier to seal and to fasten the grille/register.
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Old 12-20-2013, 06:10 PM   #11
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Great, thanks so much, verly helpful!
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Old 06-08-2014, 02:15 PM   #12
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


I am getting back to this project after deferring it for a while and have a photo of the existing boot that was left concealed in the finished ceiling. It measures approx 4"x10" at the sub floor and extends to the bottom of the 2x10 joists.

I am considering getting this abated, and am wondering what the best way to go about reconnecting a duct fully concealed within the joist cavity to this location is. It seems the 'right end stack boot' would be the correct piece to replace with, but I'm unsure how exactly it will attach. How do I have them finish/cut the existing boot away? Will it leave a flange to attach to, and/or how should I expect the new piece to attach?

Thanks

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Old 06-08-2014, 02:31 PM   #13
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Help with old HVAC wall registers/boots and basement ceiling ducts


You get a boot the size of the opening. insert it in the hole, and then seal it with caulk or mastic.

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