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Old 10-22-2009, 10:29 PM   #1
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Returns and Re-Insulation?


Alright so i really don't know much about HVAC except the basics when it comes to the air handler and the compressor.

Anyways, my air handler is in the garage and my master bedroom is on the exact opposite side of the house. My thermostat is in the living room which is next to the garage.

Anyways, my house was built in the 1977 so the HVAC in the attic looks likes boxes, like that they make the box for the air handler with. And that runs to all the vents.

I do not have any return vents in the house

My bedroom seems to get hot a lot, the thermostat we set at 76 (i live in florida so the A/C runs pretty much all day long). In the living room it feels great but in the bedroom it feels like 80.

First question, what EXACTLY in laments terms are returns for? The returns i'm talking about are the ones i remember from when i was doing construction where they basically put a vent in the bedroom right by the door and another vent on the other side of the door in the hallway or living room area. What are those for? Should i install some of those between my bedroom and the hallway? I don't think it would be too difficult because i have plenty of attic space.

Next question, is there something i can "reinsulate" my a/c ducts with? Would it be worth it to just spend the money and redo all the duct work? I don't have a vent in the bathroom and i would like to so i was thinking about running a new one for there if i did replace it all.

Thanks for the help guys. If need be i can get some pictures of what i already have, let me know.

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Old 10-23-2009, 04:11 AM   #2
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Returns and Re-Insulation?


hello fellow floridian your house may be like mine and that is they built a platform (box) the air handler sits on and just cut a hole on the inside wall of the room next to the garage and pull air out of there. that would be your return. its a pretty ****ty of doing things but unbeliveably it passes code and my house is only 3 yrs old.
in my house they put grills back to back above the doorways to provide "return" flow to each bedroom. its the cheapest crappiest way of putting in a system and id imagine one person could do the entire system install from piping to ductwork in a 12 hr. day or 3 guys 4 hrs.
to answer your question return provides proper flow for the system and creates even heating and cooling temperatures throughout the houseif it were me i wouldnt put any money into your old system unless the equip is brand new. when it comes time for new equip plan on having the air handler moved to the attic and a proper duct system installed with metal trunk lines and returns in all the bedrooms its going to be costly probably in the 8 to 10 k range but well worth it in the long run
my house has a vaulted ceiling the seperates the bedrooms from the furnace so it would be a real pain in the butt for me to change it but if you dont thats the way to go also your probably due for your attic to be reinsulated as well good luck hope this helped

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Old 10-23-2009, 05:47 AM   #3
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Returns and Re-Insulation?


Returns are to provide a path for the air in your house to go back to the air handler. So that it may be cooled or heated, as the case requires.

Does the bedroom stay hot weather or not the bedroom door is open?
If it stays hot with the bedroom door open. Its not a return problem per say.
Is the bedroom door under cut? If so, how much.

If its not. And the room stays cool with the door open. Either under cutting the door, or installing the jump grille you asked about will take care of the problem(if the grilles are sized right).



Does the room cool off later at night, after the sun has been down for 5 or 6 hours? If so, adding insulation to the attic may take care of the problem.

The next common cause. is under sized duct work. As in. Its just not providing enough air to that room.

What type of duct system do you have?
Can you post pics of it.
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Old 10-23-2009, 08:41 AM   #4
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Returns and Re-Insulation?


Let me take some pictures for you guys when i get home, i'll be home around 2-3 EST and i'll take some pictures. I think that would give you a good idea of what i'm working with.

If my door is closed my room gets really hot, if i keep the door open it stays fairly cool. I've been putting the fan in the doorway and it blows nice and cool air into the room.
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Old 10-23-2009, 05:15 PM   #5
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Returns and Re-Insulation?





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Whenever im up in the attic if i put my hand around where the black stuff is, i can feel A/C coming through. Is there something i can use to patch up all the joints, etc?

It seems my return runs from the air handler to the living room and the dinning room. Should i come off the one in the living room and extend it to my bedroom? Should i just do one of those "door jumps" as a return? What do you guys suggest?

My bedroom is all the way at the end of the second picture, the first one shows the duct work going into the living room
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Old 10-23-2009, 05:28 PM   #6
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Returns and Re-Insulation?


If you run a return from your bedroom.
I would run it from the bedroom to the return duct as close to where it goes through the ceiling as possible.
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Old 10-26-2009, 06:24 AM   #7
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Returns and Re-Insulation?


your ducts are far better than mine my house they just did a spider type(one big box with multiple flex ducts)and a couple of triangle splitters real crap. you can try using metal duct tape 3 in wide to seal ductwork. probably have to get it at an a/c supply house.gently wipe the dust off the duct with a damp rag for proper adhesion. and dont lean on or step on the ducts as they are just compressed fiberglass (called ductboard) and will collapse easily

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