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Community and Q&A

How did you connect the heat pump to the ventilation system?

nrcs | Posted in PassivHaus on

I am building my own home in central Maine using a double studded wall with 8″ of Thermax between the studs. My heating contractor says I can’t connect the heat pump to the ventilation system.

– art

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  1. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #1

    There are several types of air-source heat pumps used for space heating. One type is called a ductless minisplit. Another type is a central unit connected to an air handler and forced-air ductwork.

    If you are installing a ductless minisplit, your contractor is right. Such a heating system can't be connected to a ventilation system.

    If you have an air handler and a distribution system consisting of forced-air ductwork, it is possible to use the ductwork to distribute ventilation air -- but it's usually not a very good idea. To learn more about ventilation systems, see Designing a Good Ventilation System.

  2. nrcs | | #2

    Martin - Thanks for the response. In Steve Baczek's Passive House article, page 53 he says "a 1-ton minisplit provides supplemental heating and cooling, which is distributed by a recovery ventilator that also provides fresh air". How is he doing this?

    - art

  3. GBA Editor
    Martin Holladay | | #3

    There are three possibilities:

    1. Steve Baczek has rigged up a system that allows him to connect a ductless minisplit to an HRV.

    2. Steve Baczek is unclear about what type of HVAC equipment was installed in the house he designed, and is describing it wrong.

    3. A Fine Homebuilding editor is confused, and changed Steve Baczek's words, making the description inaccurate.

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