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Old 09-07-2010, 12:22 PM   #1
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


New to the forum. Made it through last winter barely, need help!
(Before I go any further I would like to point out I am a first time home owner)

Ok, I own a small 100+ year old house in the midwest. The furnace in the basement is a YORK (model and other #'s unknown at the moment) gas, forced air with a YORK central air unit.

Sooooooo, before last winter I had a new roof put on the house. (The house was purchased dirt cheap due to hail damage on the roof and other issues)

We were having problems with condensation coming out of the top of the chimney in the attic and sitting in a bend in the ventilation pipe that went through the roof. The contractor at the time (which is a family friend), suggested to eliminate the roof vent, and just vent directly out of the basement. Asked around to other contractors, and no one saw a problem with venting through the basement wall. (Did not contact any HVAC companies)

So the contractor eliminates the roof vent, and I proceed under his instructions to run 4" PVC through the base beam on the outside of my house which I am guessing is between a 8"x8" and a 12"x12". So after I kill one drill, and a day later, I run the ridiculous looking vent out the side of the house.

For the first few runs of the furnace it worked fine, and all the water coming out of the exhaust of the furnace was now exiting the house, and dripping out the exhaust on the ground outside.

As soon as the first cold streak hit, the furnace was running non-stop and actually melted the 4" PVC piping that I had between the furnace and the base beam of the house. Luckily (sort of) I had a friend who had a section of 4" galvanized exhaust ductwork that he was not using. So I replaced the melted section of PVC with the ductwork and crossed my fingers. The ductwork held through the winter.

After this ordeal, I contacted two HVAC companies. One told me they would have to run a low lying 6" heating duct to a basement window nearby and would call me with a estimate. The estimate never came, and the phone was never answered after 3 calls (These were people I knew on a personal basis). After that I contacted another company that said they could put a power vent in for over $1000.


Well, winter is coming......... WHAT SHOULD I DO!!!!!!!

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Old 09-07-2010, 12:40 PM   #2
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Please post the model number of the furnace. I'm concerned that this may not be a high efficiency condensing furnace if you are getting that much condensation out of the flue pipe. If this is the case it cannot be vented using PVC.

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Old 09-07-2010, 12:42 PM   #3
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


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Originally Posted by fabrk8r View Post
Please post the model number of the furnace. I'm concerned that this may not be a high efficiency condensing furnace if you are getting that much condensation out of the flue pipe. If this is the case it cannot be vented using PVC.
Yeah, I highly doubt its supposed to be vented with PVC judging from the fact that it melted it.

I will try to get the #'s off the furnace over lunch.

Thanks for the quick response!
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Old 09-07-2010, 12:56 PM   #4
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Guessing from what you wrote the furnace is a 80% AFUE model and requires double wall metal pipe for a flue. Side wall termination,if it's even allowed on that model, will require a power vent. The ones that have not called you back are afraid to touch the project because they don't know what they're doing. Darn good thing you didn't burn the house down hooking up PVC like that!
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:28 PM   #5
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Model#: GY8S100B12UH11B
Serial#: WDM5388091
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Old 09-07-2010, 02:29 PM   #6
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


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Originally Posted by Marty S. View Post
Guessing from what you wrote the furnace is a 80% AFUE model and requires double wall metal pipe for a flue. Side wall termination,if it's even allowed on that model, will require a power vent. The ones that have not called you back are afraid to touch the project because they don't know what they're doing. Darn good thing you didn't burn the house down hooking up PVC like that!
So if that is the case, would you recommend a new high efficiency? And would I be able to sell mine to someone who needs like a garage furnace or something?


If you knew the town I moved into you'd understand. Its all about "I know a guy", not "I know a respectable HVAC company who is insured.
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Old 09-07-2010, 03:14 PM   #7
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


HD, yes, Marty was correct...that is an 80% AFUE model built in April of 2003.

I can't find an installation manual for that model, so I don't know if it can be vented through a sidewall with a power vent. If you are lucky enough to have the installation manual it will tell you what is allowed for venting.

It should still have about 18 years of life left in it, but if you can't run a B-vent up through the roof it probably won't do you much good (unless it is allowed to be vented through the sidewall).

You might be able to sell it, but I doubt if you'd get more than a couple hundred for it due to it being 80% AFUE.
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Old 09-07-2010, 03:20 PM   #8
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HD, just for reference, I work at an HVAC /Plumbing buisness...I just bought a used furnace for a temporary heat project. It was removed for an upgrade change-out. It's a Luxaire, 94.3% AFUE, about the same age as your furnace. I paid $100.00 for it.

You may be able to do the same thing if you have any furnace shops in your area at all. Check around, it can't hurt to ask.
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Old 09-07-2010, 03:38 PM   #9
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Thanks for the info.

The house I own was a rental property who rented out to Illinois Section 8 Housing (state aide) and everything I have worked on so far has been rigged together and the cheapest possible.

This goes back to when I bought the house and they said the chimney was supposed to have a rubber lining in it, which it never had.

At a 1200ft2 house, one story, what is the sizing required for a forced air Natural Gas furnace??
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Old 09-07-2010, 04:09 PM   #10
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


You could guess and hope to be comfortable, but I recommend finding an installer you trust and have them perform a heat loss calculation for your home. They may even do a "manual-D" to make sure your duct is sized correctly.

Some installers will deduct the cost of these services if you choose to have them provide the equipment and installation. A benefit of this is the labor warranty.

If you want to DIY there is load calculation software available online...here's one: http://www.hvaccomputer.com/main.asp
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Old 09-07-2010, 04:43 PM   #11
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


A new high efficiency furnace that vents thru the wall is probably your BEST bet. Power venting is extremely tricky and can create further problems down the road with pressure switch tripping. It also HAS to be done by someone VERY experienced with setting it up PROPERLY or it may be unsafe. Sounds like that may be a bit of a problem where you are.
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Old 09-07-2010, 06:48 PM   #12
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Thats an 80% furnace. It needs to have a power vent installed to be side vented. And it can't be vented with PVC.

Who ever told you to vent it like that. Well, I won't finish that statement. Maybe he didn't know it was an 80% furnace.

Get a 95% efficient furnace. And save your self a lot of head aches. Power venters are not always quiet.
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Old 09-08-2010, 10:58 AM   #13
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Thanks again for all the help guys.
This was a very positive first experience on this forum!
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Old 09-08-2010, 11:29 AM   #14
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


Question is, if they vented that furnace through PVC, what else did they do?
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Old 09-08-2010, 02:58 PM   #15
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HVAC!! Furnace venting issues!!!!! HELP!


PVC on an 80%er????

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