Is it possible that using a solar-powered attic fan would be appropriate in my situation?
Is it possible that using a solar-powered attic fan would be appropriate in my situation? Would using "Reflectix BP24025 24-Inch by 25-Feet Bubble Pack" be a good choice?
I am a southern Californian living in a home built in 1955 facing an AC and Ducting Nightmare.
I read MARTIN HOLLADAY article posted oct 26 2012.... Musings of an Energy Nerd
Title: "Fans in the Attic: Do They Help or Do They Hurt?"
"Homeowners in hot climates need to understand the difference between whole-house fans and powered attic ventilators"
When I bought my home in 1979 I never even considered that one day I would want central air conditioning. Up until that time the only air conditioning I had was a whole house fan which I used in the manner that you discused in your article. The home had a heater installed in the attic with the ducting running in the attic also.
In 2002 I decided that I was tired of being hot throughout the summer and fall. I contacted a contractor that specialized in Central air conditioning. The question of where to install it was never even considered. They installed the central air conditioning system where the heater used to be, in the attic.
Twelve years later I learned by reading Martin's article that the attic is no place for a central air conditioner.
There is not room in the house to install it in any other place.
A month ago I came home and found that the AC unit could not keep the house cool and concluded that I needed to check the unit and ducting out. What I found upon examination was that the installers did a horrible job sealing the ducting and air handler. The cold air was being blown out into the attic and was hidden from being seen because it was wrapped with fiberglass insulation.
I managed to seal the ducting connections with a high quality tape. I had to remove the fiberglass insulation around the air handler and found that it was bent. It had a 1/2" gap that the installers attempted to patch with tape and that tape had failed badly. Cold air was being blown out at an alarming rate. I managed to seal it with the same tape as I had used with the ducting connections.
My fear is that the tape will not hold up for very long and I still need to re-insulate everything but am unsure of what product to use.
I found a product called "Reflectix BP24025 24-Inch by 25-Feet Bubble Pack" I have been considering using it to insulate the air handler and ducting connections in place of the fiberglass insulation that was previously used.
Would this material be a good choice?
After reading the aforementioned article I learned that using any powered attic fan is not
advisable for several good reasons.
I am stuck and do not know what to do. It seems to me that using some means of keeping the attic cooler would be beneficial. Is it possible that using a solar powered attic fan would be appropriate in my situation? I do have plenty of vents in the attic roof and gables on both ends of the house. The roofing that is on the house has venting feature built into it also.
Posted Sep 4, 2014 6:27 AM ET
Edited Sep 4, 2014 9:20 AM ET
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