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[Video] This Should've Been EASY


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47 Comments

  1. I work in building automation for Commercial HVAC. I would worry about having all those dampers closed and the fan on. Might want to think about a safety that knows where at least some of those dampers positioned before turning on that fan or you are in for a lot of blown duct work.

  2. Wire the dampers normally open since that is the "safer" fail situation. If your damper controller goes out with the dampers all shut, you'll have to manually open everything before you can use your AC. Plus you don't want to over pressurize the system and 1) burn up your fan or 2) blow out your ductwork (less likely but possible). You'll also want to make sure that there is a call for cooling to at least 80% of your home before turning on your central AC because you will have the same 2 problems mentioned earlier or you can freeze up your evaporator coil because there isn't' enough airflow. If you need a truely variable system, you'll need to have a variable speed fan that controls based on static pressure (this is what commercial systems do) and a variable speed compressor that controls based on evaporator discharge air temperature (again what commercial systems do). Good luck finding a residential unit that will do it.

  3. The title should be "This Shouldn't be EASY" You are tackling one of HVAC's most insidious, long-standing issues. "Zone conditioning" has probably plagued the HVAC industry since it's inception. Ask any building engineer what their biggest headache is and most will probably say that is has something to do with differential temperature control – John who sits in a full windowed south-facing is sweating while Rosemary has to wear mittens and a hat to keep warm because she in an interior office space with no windows somewhere maybe with a busted VAV that is belching 25% cold air to the space.

  4. "We could hire a few Linuses"
    Meanwhile back at the Linus Factory
    "Multiple Carbon Copies of Linus is being made at this factory and ready for hiring, Order your Linus Today!"

  5. The idea in your video is decent, but I would highly recommend going away from wifi, I had so many issues over time with wifi randomly when I set up my home system. I use Delta between occupied rooms with temp sensors in each room that I just poked through the ceiling of each room. I tried using occupancy sensors but had too many issues with false detection, so I went simpler and just assigned rooms manually and then have schedules that predict which rooms are occupied via time of day. So for example during the day when I am home working based on my work schedule, it predicts I will be in the office during those hours, so it reduces the delta between target temperature set for that room as a priority, but after work hours it shifts to the living room and kitchen and such. Then to add automation for prevention of overheating in my office during off-peak hours like if I am gaming or something, there is a predetermined peak delta allowed, before it overrides and cools the room down.

  6. I agree that this is a very ingenious solution, but you're going to destroy that ancient ac unit. With 10 zones, the unit will either run constantly, or worse, constantly be shutting off and turning back on. I had basically that same unit, and it broke so often just running as intended, I had the repair guy on speed dial.

  7. Why not use EcoJay smart zone controllers? Can put a smart thermostat (Nest) in every room and it'll controll a central heat/air setup. X4 can do up to 20 zones.

  8. I tried using an ecobee lite for my home with only 2 wires to a boiler but it would often reset because it wasn’t getting enough power so I had to run a line to an outlet for it to work. Just curious if anyone knows why Linus didn’t run into this problem. Does his boiler just output more power?

  9. We did the damper system on our house and it's awesome! Our setup is way less complicated and easier to fix if something goes down. Simple board to communicate to the dampers and not connected to the interweb in any way.

  10. I would also try and get the ESP32 modules that are wired, one other benefit of the ESP32 module is that they usually have BLE which can be used to also detect if someone is in the room from any number of their smart devices. This would come in handy when you are sleeping and want the AC working in summer times.

    Ruckus have an integration as well so there is some additional tracking from that as well.

  11. LMAO, Using a thermostat to make your own thermostat because thermostat.

    I love it and also laugh at it all when systems like Crestron exist for literally everything Linus is trying to do in this house.

    But really, the information sharing and opportunities to educate people on how some everyday things really work is a great education tool. Kudos!

  12. People on the other side of the house from the thermostat for COOLING need to sit by a fire place to warm them up because the AC can't cool them off? What?

  13. Old floor heating gives me the creeps. Also installing a newer heatpump instead of a simple AC and a modern Hvac HRV would be awsome.

  14. Seeing as how you haven’t shown the air handler I’m going to assume it’s the same age as everything else in the home. You need to just replace the cooling system, it’s well past life expectancy and is woefully inefficient compared to modern HVAC equipment and control options available. Your control “upgrades” won’t improve your current systems efficiency, and it is likely going to cause massive problems. IMO start fresh buddy, and consult an HVAC technician or a different one than you have been, yeesh

  15. "this should have been easy"
    "We want [the damper] to be closed when this is off because that just makes more sense as a brain thing"

    So, what you're saying is that you want the damper to fail closed? Like, if the damper fails, during the time period of however long it takes you to do diagnostics and figure out what's wrong, you want the default behavior to be "no cooling goes down this branch?"

    This is one of many examples in this video of why HVAC engineering and Controls Engineering are whole other fields. It turns out that knowing how to code isn't a replacement for training in those fields.

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