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247 posts

Master Geek


  #2478445 7-May-2020 09:22
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jonherries: We had a similar lack of space under the house and as part of our reno removed TONNES of soil from under house and put down plastic sheeting (on my belly with a scraper, hand trowel and flatish container). That made a massive difference to our house in terms of damp/smell of “old house”.

Jon

 

Out of interest, how long did this actually take you? and what's the floor area? Might be another project for later..


2000 posts

Uber Geek

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  #2479583 9-May-2020 03:02
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Double glazing is worth it. Ours is a lifesaver, without it we would be woken up nice and early when a rooster down the road starts up.

 

There are wall mount heat pumps now that share a single outdoor unit, no need for them to be back to back. Bit noisy if you run them overnight in bedrooms but really nice in summer.





Qualified in business, certified in fibre, stuck in copper, have to keep going  ^_^

 
 
 
 


22 posts

Geek


  #2514403 29-Jun-2020 13:54
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Long time reader first time poster! Similar boat as the OP, looking for some advice.

We've got a fireplace and a reasonably well insulated home, we get condensation issues. We like using the fireplace and will continue to do so but if we had no boundaries a ducted heat pump system would be the dream. For a few reasons; ease, heat distribution and air purification (?).

Question is, in a house which isn't big (120m2) and the use of a fireplace would it be a waste and getting one/two heat pumps or a small ducted system be a better choice?

Or just get an HRV style system and one heat pump and continue using column heaters in bedrooms when required?

Thanks!



247 posts

Master Geek


  #2514471 29-Jun-2020 14:28
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As you're still  keen on using your fire place, have you thought about a heat transfer kit? From my understanding, they're best suited for a high heat sources like a fire place and have heard stories they work well. That should get the other rooms warm, but it's probably unlikely to fix your condensation issues? Do you know the likely source of moisture in your house? Do you have a house like mine with poor ground clearance so no chance of getting a moisture barrier/under floor insulation?

 

The thing with HRV and other similar ventilation systems  I've seen- is that they either take 'dry' air from your roof space or from the outside.. During winter it's practically redundant or used sparingly.. that's the main reason I've been put off them for my house. A heat exchange kit might ease the pain a bit. Could be wrong and happy to be corrected.

 

For my place we have two dehumidifiers on both ends of the house. The one by the bedrooms/bathroom pretty much runs constantly and we have no condensation issues on that side of the house, although the rooms do have the 'cheap' plastic inserts acting as double glazing. The other side of the house is more problematic with condensation - only single glazed windows with large french doors that have gaps that let the heat out.. i think our next move will be to get double glazing for the house - this is in part due to the fact that some of our window frames are rotten or have other issues..


22 posts

Geek


  #2514484 29-Jun-2020 14:45
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Thanks, that's interesting about the HRV system, sounds like more of a gimmick?

TBH the moisture isn't too bad, it's only really in one or two rooms that someone is sleeping in at night. Good curtains will probably assist mostly there and making sure extraction fans are good/being used.

Heat transfer sounds good for the fireplace and maybe we only need one central heat pump to cover the other times and pre-fire heat.



247 posts

Master Geek


  #2514497 29-Jun-2020 15:05
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Can't really comment on the HRV/ventilation systems as I don't have one myself, but I guess there must be a reason why they're so popular/successful.. For me personally, I can't see the attraction of them when you can't use them when you want to (i.e. during winter and also a bit of the shoulder seasons in between). Although after having a think about it, I guess another added use for them is during the summer to warm your house up in the afternoon/evenings? or even cool it (if using air from the outside - provided it's cooler than inside) as well if required? I'm not sure if  that's what people use it for though.

 

 

 

 


76 posts

Master Geek


  #2514509 29-Jun-2020 15:11
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I ran a positive pressure system in my previous house 24/7. Yeah it cooled the house down in winter, but we had heatpumps to counter that. The sole reason I installed it (literally just a fan hanging in the roofspace with two filters in it, ducted into my hallway) was to solve the moisture problem. It did that. 

 

If you have a wood burner, a heat transfer kit would be a good starting place. I didn't have one otherwise i'd have done that. That said, it probably won't solve the moisture problems, but will at least take the chill off the bedrooms. Run alongside a positive pressure ventilation system could work. Plenty of ventilation systems around, don't pay silly money for a "HRV" one when cheaper options are available. I got mine from Smoothair.


 
 
 
 


16107 posts

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  #2514511 29-Jun-2020 15:13
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AklBen: Thanks, that's interesting about the HRV system, sounds like more of a gimmick?

TBH the moisture isn't too bad, it's only really in one or two rooms that someone is sleeping in at night. Good curtains will probably assist mostly there and making sure extraction fans are good/being used.

Heat transfer sounds good for the fireplace and maybe we only need one central heat pump to cover the other times and pre-fire heat.

 

The part about "heating your home" might be. I changed my system to bring clean fresh air in from outside, run it through a HEPA and charcoal filter, and it only runs 4 hours a day in winter during the day. Summer it runs morning and evening to bring fresh air in. It works well to push out stale / damp air and replace it with fresh drier air.


22 posts

Geek


  #2514518 29-Jun-2020 15:22
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timmmay: I changed my system to bring clean fresh air in from outside, run it through a HEPA and charcoal filter, and it only runs 4 hours a day in winter during the day. Summer it runs morning and evening to bring fresh air in. It works well to push out stale / damp air and replace it with fresh drier air.



What system do you have?

Heat transfer from fireplace incorporated with HRV style system to improve crying windows and move some air around might be a good start...

16107 posts

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  #2514534 29-Jun-2020 15:52
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AklBen:
timmmay: I changed my system to bring clean fresh air in from outside, run it through a HEPA and charcoal filter, and it only runs 4 hours a day in winter during the day. Summer it runs morning and evening to bring fresh air in. It works well to push out stale / damp air and replace it with fresh drier air.


What system do you have?

Heat transfer from fireplace incorporated with HRV style system to improve crying windows and move some air around might be a good start...

 

Custom. A motor from one brand, a filter from another, a Kasa WiFi controlled timer.

 

With a fireplace it can be useful to distribute the heat around at winter, fires put out heaps of heat. I took my fireplace out because while it worked well when it was going, it's also a big hole in the roof around the chimney that lets a lot of cold air in otherwise. The house got HEAPS warmer with it out, and with two heat pumps is way more comfortable now.


318 posts

Ultimate Geek


  #2514629 29-Jun-2020 16:35
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HRV definitely a moisture thing. Last house I lived in had one, definitely made things drier inside (less mould, condesation, etc) but definitely colder and draughtier.

 

 

 

@Blurtie out of interest what are the 'cheap' plastic inserts for DG you mention? Not the 3M window film kits that look like Glad Wrap you stick to the windows?





Ant  Reformed geek | Referral links: Electric Kiwi  Sharesies  Stake


22 posts

Geek


  #2514649 29-Jun-2020 17:12
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Have you seen many recommendations for the smartvent style system has does heat transfer from fireplaces and also fresh air exchange?

122 posts

Master Geek


  #2514680 29-Jun-2020 17:54
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AklBen:

We've got a fireplace and a reasonably well insulated home, we get condensation issue.... Or just get an HRV style system and one heat pump and continue using column heaters in bedrooms when required?

Thanks!

 

My buddy just replaced his broken DVS system by himself.  He got a fairly quiet fan from a commercial ventilation shop in Penrose Auckland with 200mm inlets/outlets, hung it from straps in his ceiling and connected up the existing ducting and filter to it.  He got a sparky in to rewire the 3 prong plug into a circuit that he can control from his hall, simple ON/OFF option that they turn off at night.

 

Condensation disappeared overnight.

 

Overall cost was $350 for the fan and close to $100 for the sparky.  The ducting and outlets were already in place, but that would only have been a few hundred extra (you can get them cheaper on trademe if you buy someones broken system they want taken away).  Sparky could have installed a thermostat as well, but he didn't bother as he knew he was turning it off each night.

 

So the point is that you can DIY a system for not too much money if you want to take a punt on giving it a go.


22 posts

Geek


  #2514757 29-Jun-2020 21:40
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Thanks everyone. We'll probably start with the heat transfer and see how it goes. Floor vent ducted heat pump system at some point when there are more reasons/people to heat the entire house.



247 posts

Master Geek


  #2514914 30-Jun-2020 09:44
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antonknee:

 

HRV definitely a moisture thing. Last house I lived in had one, definitely made things drier inside (less mould, condesation, etc) but definitely colder and draughtier.

 

 

 

@Blurtie out of interest what are the 'cheap' plastic inserts for DG you mention? Not the 3M window film kits that look like Glad Wrap you stick to the windows?

 

 

No, not the 3M window film kits - but it's the same idea/concept. It's a piece of plastic that's about 1 cm thick that's the size of each glass pane. Recently found out that it's attached using magnetic tape so i can actually them off - but the previous owners screwed in the window latches/hardware through it! It doesn't look very nice- which is what I meant by 'cheap', not actually sure how cheap it is.. 

 

 


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