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Posted by JackD on April 25th, 2001 03:07 PM
In reply to whole house fan by Cory C on April 24th, 2001 03:01 PM [Go to top of thread]

Cory, maybe I'm reading your post wrong or maybe you used the wrong word. Did you say you cut a hole in the CEILING? Bad idea! You want to keep the hot air out of the house and any attic you have will be hotter than the interior of the house in the summer. Yes, a whole house attic fan will give you some relief during all but the hottest parts of the summer, if you're not running the A/C. You have to close or regulate all windows on the second floor and regulate the openings on the bottom floor to insure that you have air flow throughout the house. Kinda like the old swamp coolers. Whole house attic fans operate by sucking the air throughtout the house, not blowing. And they are not normally the quitest form of cooling. Your main problem, and this is only a guess based on experience, is that your discharge ducts and return air ducts probably were not engineered for the heat loads in the rooms. They are probably 8" ducts running to every room but the bathrooms. Probably 90% of the air conditioners are not operating at peak efficiency due to undersized return air systems and improperly sized ducts. Ceiling fans in the upstairs rooms might give you some relief when the A/C is running. Adjusting the discharge vents downstairs to force more air upstairs might help and might hurt. I have found return air ducts on second floors with dirty filters numerous times when customers complained of insufficient cooling upstairs. You might want to have the A/C serviced and cleaned. Dirty evaporator coils inhibit air flow and reduce cooling. Low charges cause insufficient cooling as do various other things. Check temperature coming out of the ducts upstairs, you're looking for 15-20 degrees cooler than the temperature of the room. Check air flow from ducts upstairs and see if it's about the same as downstairs. And follow all other suggestions that have already been made and I think you'll find that the whole house attic fan isn't you're "last resort". Good luck and happy hunting.


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