Does your home heating unit (forced air oil heater) control/work with your central air conditioner?
We’re having some problems cooling our house. My husband says it’s because we need a new heater unit (forced air oil heater) and it’s not blowing the air. I say it’s becuase we need to reposition ducts that were covered or disconnected when we redid the kitchen and the house is so hot because the sun beats in the sliding glass doors all afternoon and the only working vent comes out behind the stove and then the hot air goes all through the house and the remaining working vents (3) can’t keep the house cool (it’s a small house, but there should be 6-10 working vents). He says air should be blowing quite rapidly out the vents. I’ve never experienced a central air system where air came flying out the vents, it usually slowly flows out. I know we need to replace our heater by winter, but I think a set of blinds for the window and fixing the ducts and vents is the answer for now (and cheaper, too!). Can anyone give me an opinion from a heating/air conditioning professional standpoint?
James Conley answers:
FIx the duct work!!!! I am a HVAC instructor. Wihout proper airflow you are wasting money and your time. Fan speed has nothing to do with it, if the ductwork is not properly sized or hooked up. Different areas of the country use different fan speeds. In hotter climates, the fan is on high speed. Air conditioning does two things 1. Remove heat from the house 2. Remove humidity from the house. Fixing the ductwork and putting up shades on your windows is the best route to take.
All rooms should have operating vents- period!!!! If you do not remove the heat from the room, it will travel to the next room & then the next room and so on. If you do not have operable vents in all room, do not even use the A/C until you do- you are just wasting time and money. Think of you house like a steamship. You want to keep you ballist tanks (rooms in your house) balanced. If you do that the ship will float (house will be cool). If one tank is too full (room too hot) then the ship strugles to keep up steam (higher electric bills). If too many of these tanks fill up (rooms too hot) then the ship will sink TITANIC ( your house). Make sense?
You need to ask yourself a couple qestions before you replace your units & fix your ductwork.
1. Did you add square footage to the house when you remodeled? If you did – a big increase in the square footage could mean that your current system may be too small to keep your home comfortable. .
2. Did the system cool the house before the remodel? If it did then you have a duct problem or leakage problem. Have the ducts repaired and sealed, clean you ducts if possible ( construction dust, attic dirt & bug droppings could be in your ducts now, that means your are breathing it), have your coil cleaned also (if the coil is dirty then you are losing the efficency of you cooling & the unit is working harder to provide less cooling).
3. Are your vents near the outside walls? If they are great, you want to develop an envelope around the house, so as heat comes in it is betten back by the cool air. If not – get high velocity type registers to blow the air out to the outside walls, once again you want to push the heat back before it gets too far into the house.
4. Before you change your unit – Do you need to?
Have several different companies examine your system before you consider changing it. All companies must do a Manual J on you house. What this is a load calculation of your house – which direction is it facing, window sizes & thickness, insullation, people in house, electonics, etc. All this is put into a program and it properly szes the unit for your home – the days of rule of thumb are GONE!!!!
Your problem is not too uncommon, just fix it correctly before you spend alot of money in a new system. Look at the symptom to fix the problem! Don’t chase ghosts – that is expensive and it does not fix the problem.
Why wont my car start when its cold?
I have an old Ford Capri from 1986, 2 Litre engine, petrol.
Basically, its been in storage for a while in a garage, although its just as cold in the garage as it is outside because we get frost or ice on the inside of the garage window.
I just need to get the car started because I need to sell it very soon. It has a fully charged battery, plenty of fuel and it tries to start and turn over but just wont fire up.
Can anybody help me please?
Thanks in advance.
James Conley answers:
First off you have to be clear. There is a difference between “tries to start” and “turns over”. They are 2 different functions.
If you were to pull all the spark plugs out – (or pull off all the spark plug wires) there is no way in heaven, that the car will ever start.
>but it will turn over forever and a day provided that you have a good battery and super starter. Because the function of the starter motor(which is electric>needing the battery for electrical power< for it to do its job of turning the motor over.<until the fuel does the job of turning the motor over faster so the starter stops functioning.
Turning the motor( or cranking it) is the first necessary function.
If you don't have any cranking it is either a weak battery or a problem in the starter.
Once it is cranking over, a timed spark is supplied to the individual cylinders when they come up with their fuel mixture on compression stroke. If everything is functioning 100%, the spark happens at the precise time and the resulting explosion in that cylinder drives the piston down(which in turn drives the next one up to compression and spark/explosion -etc.
A car trying to start….will crank over erratically (faster and slower with possible popping noises coming out of the tailpipe or carburetor.
At this point you know that the car is getting gas into the cylinders, though not very evenly as it should. So now the problem focus is changed to spark plug wires, spark plugs, distributor, and possibly carburator(but the only problem with the carb is that there is no fuel in the carb as it has evaporated over extended periods of storage. 2 months or longer. Electrical is fairly stable especially if it has not been used during this time period as everything just sits waiting for electrical power(the key turning the ignition being that missing link.)
I don't care if you have a fuel tank full of fuel. The fuel will remain in the tank until the motor is needing it.
Carbed or fuel injection, they both require that the fuel mix be rich when starting a cold engine and that is accomplished by a "choke plate" which cuts off the majority of the air going into the engine relative to the fuel – so that it is fuel rich. If the choke plate does not flip over to cover the air intake, then the choke is not set and needs to be for cold engine starting.
What I would do, is go to the local library and pick up a repair manual on Capri to work from it. The year does not have to be exact as they basically are about the same for 3 or 5 years so close to the year will be good enough. Getting a general idea of what the parts look like and what you have to do will help no matter what engine it is.
Set up the choke right, and it should be better in starting. Thing is, if a car has been sitting for a couple of months (more than 2) fuel evaporates from the carb and fuel drains back from the carb to the fuel pump. It will take more cranking than normal to get it going again. For that "its been awhile". But it will start – you may have to pump on the gas pedal at the same time you are cranking to get the gas up into the engine. No worries about flooding as you need fuel in the carb to flood the engine (the fuel is not there)so you are pumping air.
Once it does start to run slow down on the rapid pumping of the gas pedal and hold the gas pedal more steadily until the engine runs evenly.
NOTE: Never crank the starter over for longer than 20 seconds otherwise you will burn the starter out.(also the battery). As the wires in the starter glow like the kitchen electric stove element which it is not suppose to do. Stop and wait till it cools(like 2 minutes before recranking the motor for another 20 if needed). Once it is running, let it idle for a good while (15 min) to charge the battery up again(because that is what it is doing) if you don't plan to drive it.
This is normal.
It is not a matter of old gas….I have had gas in vehicles for 4 years and still started them right off. On motorcycles – on the second or third kick.(instead of the first-second with fresh gas). Just to give you an idea. And no fuel stabilizer was ever added at any time. .
Either you know how to do it or go to the library and get a repair manual for Capri and follow the instructions. Clymer or Chilton are good publications and deal with cars that have been sitting.
What to pack for a girls camping trip?
Me and bout 6 of my girlfriends are going camping soon. We are all 16-17 and we will be going for 3 days. We are bringing a big truck so we don’t have to worry about not having enough room in a vehicle, and we are planning on using tents. Some of us have been camping before, and some of us haven’t. I already have some things on the list to pack, but I’m not sure if I’m missing anything. Also if you have any ideas of fun things to do let me know!
James Conley answers:
This is the most detailed list i have ever created, its actually not so much stuff when u read through it…
Stuff To Pack (Group):
-Sleeping bags/ Air mattresses
-Repair kit for tent/Air mattress
-pump for air mattress
-headlamps and flashlights (spare batteries)
-lanterns (with bags)
-Lighter and matches
-Stove top Utensils (pans, spatula, etc.)
-table cloth and clips
-marsh mellow sticks
-food containers (leftovers)
-cups, plates, bowls, utensils
-Alcohol or antiseptic wipes
-Toothbrush, toiletry kit
-Extension cord/Power strip
*First Aid Kit*
-Antiseptic wipes (BZK-based wipes preferred; alcohol-based OK)
-Antibacterial ointment (e.g., bacitracin)
-Tincture of benzoin (bandage adhesive)
-Assorted adhesive bandages (fabric preferred)
-Butterfly bandages/adhesive wound-closure strips
-Gauze pads (various sizes)
-Nonstick sterile pads
-Medical adhesive tape (10-yd. Roll, min. 1″ width)
-Blister treatment (e.g., Moleskin, 2nd Skin, Glacier Gel)
-Ibuprofen/other pain-relief medication
-Insect-sting relief treatment (e.g., AfterBite)
-Antihistamine to treat allergic reactions
-Splinter (fine-point) tweezers
-Comprehensive first-aid manual or information cards
-Aloe vera gel
-Poison ivy/poison oak treatment
-Knife (or multi-tool with knife)
Stuff To Pack (Individual):
-Long-sleeve shirts (for sun, bugs)
-Bandannas or buffs
-Boots or shoes suited to terrain
-Socks (synthetic or wool)
-Insulating jacket or vest
-Gloves or mittens
-Rainwear (jacket and pants)
-Clothesline with clips
-In-camp sandals or booties
-Bathroom/Shower bag or kit
-MP3 Player w/ Headphones & Charger
-Cell Phone w/ Charger
-Deck of cards
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