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Old 09-28-2010, 07:21 PM   #1
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recent a/c installation


Hi All,

I live in New England. I just recently added a York coil and condenser to my Hallmark warm air oil furnace in our basement. I just noticed some minor sweating near where the supply and return come together at the furnace. Did not notice the sweating anywhere else on the duct in the basement. The HVAC contractor told me he did not feel my basement was humid compared to others he has seen. He did say I may want to use a dehumidifier when running the a/c. Not a problem as I have one from when my basement used to flood. He did say he thought my supply duct did not need to be wrapped. He did caution me about setting the thermostat too low. I had my Honeywell set to keep the house at 71 as I have a low tolerance for the heat. Before that I had it set at 73 or 74. No sweating noticed when set at 73 or 74. My house was built in the late 50's or early 60's and has rectangular box style duct work. It is also right up against the main support beam. It might be hard to take down to wrap. I am considering having it wrapped if it comes to that. The coil itself also had to be put in on a custom shelf inside the furnace that the HVAC guy made. He could not use the insulated box the coil came in. From what I understand the box should have been able to slip right into my furnace for a perfect fit. Not. Either way I have no insulation on the walls surrounding the coil. Is that going to cause me any headaches down the road? I was planning on letting my heating guy take a look at it prior to the fall season.

Sorry for long e-mail. Looking for some good feedback. I hope you won;'t tell me to chase him down for a refund. The HVAC installer did seem to know what he was doing and was responsive to my concerns.

The A/C is cooling the house well, thankfully.

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Old 09-28-2010, 08:50 PM   #2
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recent a/c installation


Run the A/C. And feel around that area of the duct for air leaks. Seal any you find. And use your dehumidifier.

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Old 09-28-2010, 08:51 PM   #3
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you say he seemed to know what he was doing ?? The coil box, supply & return get insulated here. Uncalled for

Last edited by beenthere; 09-29-2010 at 05:56 AM. Reason: removed cynicism
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Old 09-29-2010, 05:31 AM   #4
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I joined this forum looking for some positive feeback. The first responder was nice. Thanks for the comments.

From all my research I have done the return usually does need to get wrapped. I knew I may had to wrap the supply if sweating did happen. I have never heard of the return being wrapped. The HVAC installer could not use the insulated box the coil came in. It was not going to fit into the furnace. He had to create a custom shelf for it to sit on.

Last edited by beenthere; 09-29-2010 at 05:36 AM. Reason: removed negative comment
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Old 09-29-2010, 05:53 AM   #5
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Many of us are members at more then one forum. And see threads of this general nature quite often. And sometimes. The original poster will have posted earlier how he saved a lot of money by using so and so contractor instead of "one of you high priced guy". And they get a little tired of reading such post, and it carries over to others, that tried to do all their due diligence in selecting a contractor.

Not an excuse for poor conduct, just what happens sometimes.


If (I know your wasn't) it was a new install that required new duct work. The code(if enforced in your area) would have required both the return and supply to be insulated. Since it wasn't a install that required new duct work, code doesn't require the installer to insulate the duct. And unfortunately, you ended up with this problem.

Sealing the air leaks should eliminate more then 50% of the sweating issue. Then insulating the supply, will take care of the rest.

The return won't need to be insulated to prevent sweating, since it generally is warmer then the basement air is(warm air from the upstairs). The sweat you see on your return is from cold air being blown on it from the supply.

Supply duct, and the plenum area where the coil is installed, pretty much needs to be air sealed before insulating. Or what can happen. Is the air will still find its way through the insulation. And then cause condensation on the insulation, and possibly in the insulation. Which can then create other problems.

Depending how tight against the main support beam the metal is. You may be able to pry the metal back far enough to use Refletix(its only " thick) between it and the beam, and then let the metal push back against the beam(be carefull not to pry to hard).
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Old 09-29-2010, 08:01 AM   #6
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My apologies... Tough day yesterday
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Old 09-29-2010, 09:47 AM   #7
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My apologies as well. I have a short fuse and the comments set me off.

I think for me getting central a/c has been a long time coming. For a while I was convinced it was not going to happen. My Murray electric panel was full. I had no gas line in to my home and all the big appliances were on it. I can't tell you how many electricians I had in for their opinion. Each had a different one. Larger panel and bump the service to 150. Larger panel and bump the service to 200. Add in a side panel. Use tandem (mini's) breakers. Finally I said if your interested in the work I want everything in the house turned on and I want the main line amped out. Some refused. Others wanted to charge me. I was willing to pay to have the service amped out. Finally I got a guy to do it and low and behold no need to do anything more than a panel re-organize with some mini's. That delay alone caused a problem in getting the a/c. Most of the HVAC contractors had the same opinion. I was warned about possibly needing the supply wrapped or additional vents to properly cool things.

Well my HVAC guy stood up to the plate and said he will fully or partially wrap the supply. We'll see how things go from here.
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Old 09-29-2010, 01:14 PM   #8
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Have him apply duct selant to to the seams b-4 insulating. The way it is here. If you replace , add to existing duct or current a/c system . It all has to be brought up to code.
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Old 10-07-2010, 05:42 AM   #9
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Just figured I would do a follow up. I am not sure but is it possible that the minor sweating took place due to a basement vent not working properly? This vent was on the supply duct. When you look at the pictures I am sure you will think its old. Either way the thing would never close properly most times. I had more air coming out of this thing than from other vents in my house. The contractor took it out and sealed the hole. He wrapped a section of the duct the best that he could. As I mentioned earlier the supply is right smack up against the main support beam for the house. He did take his time wrapping the section of the supply duct near where the removed vent was. Additional insulation wrapping may be needed down the road, but only the section where the sweating was done for now.

By the way and I just have to get this off my chest. Is it just me but is it wrong for the contractor to show up a half hour early, without warning? How about a call ahead? Is it not just as bad as showing up a half hour late? I told him a specific time and he started working at my home because my wife was there and let him in. I also told him to deal with me on one on one basis.
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Last edited by Briandr; 10-07-2010 at 08:12 AM.
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Old 10-07-2010, 05:02 PM   #10
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He should have called.
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Old 10-07-2010, 06:29 PM   #11
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Thank you and I am glad you agree. I would expect a certain level of respect be shown to a paying customer. I think he was frustrated on some level while he waited for me to sort out my issues with the electric panel. It just annoyed me that he could show up whenever he felt like it without any regard to how it might affect me.

I am not trying to stir the pot, but I was hoping someone (prefer electrician) would jump in and comment on my panel issues. For as long as I can remember I have had issues with electricians. 10 years after buying my home I have the same reliable plumber. Wish I could say the same about an electrician. Amp out the lines and put the issue to rest.

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Last edited by Briandr; 10-07-2010 at 06:34 PM.
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