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Old 07-08-2012, 08:59 PM   #16
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Why aren't foundation wall duct openings wider?!


to answer your question, as far as I know there is no code requirement (your state may be different) for a minimum size opening because there is no code requirement for air conditioning.

if this is a new home check with you builder and designer and find out if they can enlarge the size of the opening. this would require removing the duct work and enlarging the opening, then reinstalling the duct work. I would not think it would be a big issue.

good luck!

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Old 07-09-2012, 06:55 PM   #17
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Why aren't foundation wall duct openings wider?!


Is there some minimum width that the home builder has to make the opening in the cinder block foundation wall be? (The opening that the supply and return air ducts pass through.)


Or does he just say "Ok this opening is going to be two cinder blocks wide (32 inches) because that's what I feel like today."


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Old 07-09-2012, 07:48 PM   #18
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Why aren't foundation wall duct openings wider?!


what did your plans state as the minimum opening in the cinderblock wall for the supply and return lines? builders typically build according to the approved drawings. if there is nothing on the plans to indicate the size opening they are to provide then they will usually do what they have done on similar projects. If no opening was shown on the drawings they at least knew one would be required, but may not have know the proper size since it was not on your drawings.

it is not the builder's responsibility to size HVAC system and their requirements, unless it is spelled out in their contract with you to build the home. a 32" opening is typically two cinderblocks in width.

The real question should be why did the HVAC contractor not let someone know that the opening was not large enough prior to installing his duct work. A simple call would have had the builder back to size this opening to the dimensions needed for the ducts. Have you questioned them to see what the issue is with forcing the flex duct through a narrower opening? Have you asked the building department?

Building codes do not require that air conditioning be installed, therefore there are no code requirements for openings. This is something that should have been shown either in the plans for your home (HVAC system installation is not required to be shown on drawings in Massachusetts) or should have been determined by the HVAC contractor.

Good luck!
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Old 08-03-2012, 08:37 PM   #19
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Why aren't foundation wall duct openings wider?!


I took these this week after the rain hood was removed. The opening in the foundation wall is not wide enough for the HVAC unit.
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Old 08-04-2012, 09:33 PM   #20
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Why aren't foundation wall duct openings wider?!


did they enlarge the opening or leave it as is?
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Old 08-04-2012, 10:01 PM   #21
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Why aren't foundation wall duct openings wider?!


We had a new HVAC unit installed because the old one broke, and the installers had to make hand-made transitions out of metal because the opening in the foundation wall wasn't wide enough for the new unit either. They left the opening in the wall the same size because the existing lintel wasn't wide enough to allow the opening to be enlarged.

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