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Venting of portable aircon units

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Venting of portable aircon units

Old 25th Jun 2020, 13:22
  #21 (permalink)  
 
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If you haven't got an aircon unit:

Keep all curtains in the house - especially South and West facing ones - closed all day.

An hour or so before bed, open all the windows and curtains in the top of the house, and open the loft hatch, (mind your head).. As Spunky Monkey and VP959 say, warm air rises, so letting the hot air out will cool the bedroom down a bit. (keep lights off upstairs while the windows are open or you will get insects flying in).

A floor fan blowing across the bed is probably as good as an aircon unit. They both make a noise - the latter a lot of noise - you will be lucky to sleep properly anyway.

A good ceiling fan in the bedroom is a very good investment. A good quality one is very quiet on a low setting. We had ours going last night.
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Old 25th Jun 2020, 13:45
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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Simply connect the outlow pipe to the catflap...... Ohh I shouldn't
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 08:56
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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i just bought a 600 AEG portable unit rated at 12,000 BTU (3.5kw) - it seems to be able to cool our loft bedroom fairly well but its not powerful enough to affect the rest of the house. The quote I had to install a wall mounted unit was 2.4k.
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 11:58
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The Toshiba split unit I fitted last year has gone up a bit in price, but is still under 700 inc VAT: https://www.orionairsales.co.uk/tosh...ack-8575-p.asp. If someone is charging 2.4k to supply and install one of these then they are most definitely making a very fat profit on the job. If I could fit one, as a complete amateur, in a day, then it's hard to see how someone fitting them for a living could take longer. I had to run the pipes and cables through a walk in wardrobe, across the loft eaves space and out through the wall to the outside unit, so a fairly long pipe run (around 5m, IIRC) and through some awkward spaces. As far as installations go, I suspect ours was slighly more awkward, not least because I needed to fit the outdoor unit high up on the wall of the house, as there's a path right underneath.
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 12:01
  #25 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by VP959 View Post
The Toshiba split unit I fitted last year has gone up a bit in price, but is still under 700 inc VAT: https://www.orionairsales.co.uk/tosh...ack-8575-p.asp. If someone is charging 2.4k to supply and install one of these then they are most definitely making a very fat profit on the job. If I could fit one, as a complete amateur, in a day, then it's hard to see how someone fitting them for a living could take longer. I had to run the pipes and cables through a walk in wardrobe, across the loft eaves space and out through the wall to the outside unit, so a fairly long pipe run (around 5m, IIRC) and through some awkward spaces. As far as installations go, I suspect ours was slighly more awkward, not least because I needed to fit the outdoor unit high up on the wall of the house, as there's a path right underneath.
This in London where everything is pricey but yes, seems a bit excessive.
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 15:53
  #26 (permalink)  
 
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Many of the locals in the South of France prefer large ceiling fans to aircon, considering them unhealthy, and the cause of many viruses. I believe it is similar in Spain and Portugal.

I know people with multi-million pound properties who will not entertain an air con in the place. Portable or integrated.

IG
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 16:02
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Originally Posted by Imagegear View Post
Many of the locals in the South of France prefer large ceiling fans to aircon, considering them unhealthy, and the cause of many viruses. I believe it is similar in Spain and Portugal.

I know people with multi-million pound properties who will not entertain an air con in the place. Portable or integrated.

IG

Interesting the way some people's thought processes work. Given that a conventional split aircon unit is completely sealed from the outside air, and can only recirculate and cool (or heat) air within the house, it's clearly impossible for it to "cause viruses". Viruses arise by being shed from an infected person, either through expired droplets or via exchange of bodily fluids. Hard to see how that can happen with a system that is just recirculating air within a room, in much the same way as a fan, unless it causes more visitors to the house because of the cooler environment, and one or more of those visitors happens to be shedding viral particles.
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 16:40
  #28 (permalink)  
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VP, how did you get over the suppliers condition (copy from your link)?
Please note if you do not select our installation service we will not ship the unit until we have obtained evidence from you that you will have the unit installed by an F-Gas qualified engineer.
Did you get the vacuum pump and test guages from the same place or are they readily available elsewhere? I note their advert says it comes with 15m of piping but is pre-charged for 10 metres - was that the case with yours?


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Old 26th Jun 2020, 17:04
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Originally Posted by UniFoxOs View Post
VP, how did you get over the suppliers condition (copy from your link)?


Did you get the vacuum pump and test guages from the same place or are they readily available elsewhere? I note their advert says it comes with 15m of piping but is pre-charged for 10 metres - was that the case with yours?
At the time I ordered it there was no restriction being applied, it was just like buying anything else online. Might be worth looking around to see if there are other suppliers that aren't being so restrictive with their sales, perhaps. I ordered the piping kit separately, I think it cost around 50 for a pair of pipes, pre-swaged and insulated ready to install. My pipe run is about 5m, so well within the pre-charge limit. The only slight issue I had was with one pipe joint that wasn't quite gas tight, and which showed up when I did the first vacuum test. Nipping the pipe unions up bit fixed that, and I left it pumped down for a fair time, which we had lunch, just to be sure it was really gas tight.

I bought a vacuum pump and gauge set from eBay, which worked fine. I've just checked, and last June I paid 42.99 for the 2.5CFM vacuum pump and 25 for the set of gauges, pipes, valves, although it seems that the same pump is now being sold for 74.99, not sure why the price has been hiked up so much. Expensive for something that would only be used once, but still a great deal cheaper than paying the massive premium that seems to be normal from many supply and install companies. It's a pretty easy one person installation if the external unit is being mounted near ground level, on a concrete pad, but a bit more challenging if the external unit needs to be fitted high up on a wall, as ours did. I jury rigged a hoist tied to a second ladder, so I could haul the thing up, then slide it over and bolt it to the wall bracket, but this would have been a lot easier with two people.
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 17:20
  #30 (permalink)  
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OK, thanks for that. I will be fitting it at about 6 feet, but I can put up a scaffold tower to work off, and I'll have an assistant so I'm hoping it will be a piece of cake.
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Old 26th Jun 2020, 17:30
  #31 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by VP959 View Post
Interesting the way some people's thought processes work. Given that a conventional split aircon unit is completely sealed from the outside air, and can only recirculate and cool (or heat) air within the house, it's clearly impossible for it to "cause viruses". Viruses arise by being shed from an infected person, either through expired droplets or via exchange of bodily fluids. Hard to see how that can happen with a system that is just recirculating air within a room, in much the same way as a fan, unless it causes more visitors to the house because of the cooler environment, and one or more of those visitors happens to be shedding viral particles.
The only thing I can think of is that with an aircon unit the house tends to remain buttoned up for long periods. With fans the house is typically opened up in the evening or even left open during the day depending on outside conditions so a lot more air changes/hour.

This can obviously be done with aircon as well but tends not to be, our central air goes on the first really hot day of spring and tends to stay that way through summer. Hand managing/predicting when to open up is non trivial, combined with increased noise due to open windows it all ads up, at least in my wife's mind. I have a spare air handler in attic that I have been meaning to install as a whole house fan, flushing the heat from attic helps a lot.
Dehumidification is also a bonus for aircon, depends on your climate how significant that can be.



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Old 26th Jun 2020, 18:30
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by MurphyWasRight View Post
The only thing I can think of is that with an aircon unit the house tends to remain buttoned up for long periods. With fans the house is typically opened up in the evening or even left open during the day depending on outside conditions so a lot more air changes/hour.

This can obviously be done with aircon as well but tends not to be, our central air goes on the first really hot day of spring and tends to stay that way through summer. Hand managing/predicting when to open up is non trivial, combined with increased noise due to open windows it all ads up, at least in my wife's mind. I have a spare air handler in attic that I have been meaning to install as a whole house fan, flushing the heat from attic helps a lot.
Dehumidification is also a bonus for aircon, depends on your climate how significant that can be.

You're right, I'm thinking from the perspective of living in a passive house, that's airtight, but has filtered fresh air supplied to every habitable room, with humid, potentially smelly air being extracted from the kitchen, utility, toilets and bathrooms (with the waste heat/"coolth" being recovered). The air in our house is completely changed every couple of hours or so, so it's pretty well ventilated, at least by UK standards.
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Old 27th Jun 2020, 16:01
  #33 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Imagegear View Post
Many of the locals in the South of France prefer large ceiling fans to aircon, considering them unhealthy, and the cause of many viruses. I believe it is similar in Spain and Portugal.

I know people with multi-million pound properties who will not entertain an air con in the place. Portable or integrated.

IG
I lived in New York nearly 30 years ago for two full summers and was impressed by articles highlighting the fact that a decent ceiling fan delivers around 90% of the effect of full air-conditioning at about 10% of the capital and running costs. In NY I was living in a modern apartment with air conditioning installed as part of the build. I was very thankful that I was able to expense the electricity bills resulting from my aircon usage during the summer!
When I got home one of the first things I did was install ceiling fans in the bedroom and living room. I (still) live in a 1960s block of flats and installing any kind of air conditioning would be impossible. I'm sitting under one of those fans now, and it has been keeping everything very comfortable in the hottest summers since I installed it.
Obviously, full aircon may make more sense in a modern super-insulated and sealed building with a heat-recovery ventilation system.
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Old 27th Jun 2020, 23:05
  #34 (permalink)  
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I'm getting dj vu writing this, but since I've started . . . Mostly what VP said but with the vacuum issue, I'd sneak a bit of gas into a system, vac it out again, a couple of times. Mostly with cars.

The thing about an AC house is the dryness. I love it. Clothes in the wash, and then the dryer is breathing in dry air. No one wears raincoats, they just seem to accept getting caught in showers but drying instantly upon entering home or shops.

My son's university is painfully cold. Profligate Americans. 110f outside and 60 in the theatres. Frozen by the time I'd watched our grand daughter in her play.

Good AC is very rare. One of my neighbours was clearly very wealthy. We went to his office to meed with lawyers and title folk. It was a vast building and as soon as one walked in there was an obvious difference to the real, or even regular, world. Silence. Cleeeeeeeeeeeeeeen air. Not one degree too hot, or too cold - in every corner. Erm, breathtakingly nice. :-)

When I'd enquired about a silent system for my bungalow (brick veneer) it was very expensive. ~twice the price of an ordinary system. Mine was old and ailing, so I got one from a lovely house that was being demolished to make room for several houses. Shame. I carried parts of it out with bricks raining around me. When I got home, the Rivetess did one of her annoying out-thinking me things and pointed out the outside unit had four wires. "Isn't that one of the three wire supply types." Yep, it was three phase because the bungalow had been very big. Pants. However, my tame braser and gasser found me a replacement pump and saved the day.

The days of topping up one's own AC had long gone. I got the gauges but the law was pretty solid, and I didn't want to annoy my host country. My guess is that my friendly engineer got over regulations by vanishing over the Mexican border if challenged.

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Old 29th Jun 2020, 14:03
  #35 (permalink)  
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Given that a conventional split aircon unit is completely sealed from the outside air
you might check the inside of the ductwork. The duct cleaning service is probably based on over-hype, but then again dusty air running through ducts for twenty plus years has to leave some deposits

I have central air (it's Texas after all) and I don't particularly care for it, but then again I care even less when it breaks. The condenser (outside unit) is particularly noisy, though it's 20 years old, so the HVAC guy is coming to give me a quote for a replacement tomorrow

If I were to build a hose, I 'd just put mini-splits everywhere. I have one in my office and it's really quite, really efficient (28 SEER), and works as a heat pump in Winter. I love it. Only about $1000 to buy and I installed it myself. I had to get the HVAC guy to draw the vacuum as that was a warranty requirement, but I think in future I'd spend that money on a good pump and just do it all myself
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Old 30th Jun 2020, 02:22
  #36 (permalink)  
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It's just that with DIY you can't readily put gas in and suck it out a few times. Not totally, just 60% or so. You can vac it until you're blue in the face and nowt will happen. (Yes, Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaagh! does know what I'm saying)

Reintroducing gas gets the final mix a lot . . . gassier. Purer.
The trouble now is where to put the old gas? The friendly gasser will draw off the wasted and reconstitute it. Well, so they say. I think my man breathed it.

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Old 30th Jun 2020, 06:41
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Originally Posted by Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaargh! View Post
you might check the inside of the ductwork. The duct cleaning service is probably based on over-hype, but then again dusty air running through ducts for twenty plus years has to leave some deposits

I have central air (it's Texas after all) and I don't particularly care for it, but then again I care even less when it breaks. The condenser (outside unit) is particularly noisy, though it's 20 years old, so the HVAC guy is coming to give me a quote for a replacement tomorrow

If I were to build a hose, I 'd just put mini-splits everywhere. I have one in my office and it's really quite, really efficient (28 SEER), and works as a heat pump in Winter. I love it. Only about $1000 to buy and I installed it myself. I had to get the HVAC guy to draw the vacuum as that was a warranty requirement, but I think in future I'd spend that money on a good pump and just do it all myself
The fresh air supply ducts we have stay very clean, as there is an F7 pollen filter on the outside air intake to the heat exchanger, so nothing much bigger than about a gets through. We just have to change the filter about every 6 months. We do get some dust in the extract room terminals and ducts, as the extract filter is also next to the exhaust air plate heat exchanger, and is there really just to keep the heat exchanger clean (it's a coarser G4 filter). Luckily all the duct runs are smooth, with no joints, as it's all semi-rigid round ducting, so it's easy enough to clean them by just pulling through a home made "pig". In true Blue Peter style, I made up some wool pom poms, that are a tight fit in the ducts, and it's easy enough to disconnect them at the manifold to gain access, as they all fit with bayonet-type fittings. A vacuum cleaner on blow works fine to blow a bit of string down each duct, and this can then be used to pull a "pig" through a couple of times to clean them. I've done this once so far, and found that the extract ducts weren't very dusty, most of the dust seems to collect on the room terminals for some reason. They just unclip and can be put in the dishwasher to clean them.

I agree about mini-splits. Wish I'd fitted ours when we built the house, as it would have been a lot easier than trying to retrofit afterwards.
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Old 30th Jun 2020, 15:01
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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You'd be better off with a simple window unit, they aren't that expensive and you don't need to keep emptying the water tank all the time like you have to do with a portable. Split systems are even better, and more flexible as to where they can be sited. In the UK I would go for reverse cycle which gives you heating in winter as well, and as Britain isn't subject to extremes of heat or humidity the running costs shouldn't be too bad.

My first aircon was a portable which was expensive to buy, didn't perform all that well, was a nuisance with having to empty the water tank every few hours and didn't last very long.
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Old 1st Jul 2020, 01:59
  #39 (permalink)  
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I used to collect distilled water from mine but in Texas it was difficult to know what to do with it all. Last wash on a car to stop it getting streaky was one.
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