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Beneath the floor radiators, need to rebuild the boxes they were in.... *pictures tonight*

adamfre
adamfre Member Posts: 122
Hi guys! I've got 3 'in floor' radiators in the front of my house, they are hung individually just beneath the floor joists, boxed in, with registers that opened into the room they were tasked with heating. They also have wooden ducts which went from the bottom of the boxes the radiator was boxed into, and terminated to a vent leading outside of the foundation to pull in outside air.
My question is, when I go to rebuild these boxes and ducts (they are rotted and falling apart), do I want to keep with the original design and rebuild the fresh air ducts which lead to outside air, or do I want to have them pull their fresh air from inside the house?

Thoughts?
Just want to stay warm in the winter. :D

Comments

  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,270
    Well now. That depends. On whether you want to bring in that outside air or not. Back in the day, fresh air was regarded very highly -- people slept with windows open and all that sort of thing. However. It also is not all that efficient! They will bring in fresh air, of that there is no doubt, but whether you regard this as desirable or a waste of fuel...

    If you do decide to eliminate the outside vents you might be very well advised to provide the underfloor radiators with ducts to return registers elsewhere in the room (they needn't be that far away -- a few feet away would be ample), or elsewhere in the house. What I would not do is box them in without provision for air circulation. They won't heat well under that condition (they will heat, but not anywhere near as efficiently). An even fancier option would be to provide the return air ducting I mention -- and the fresh air ducting, with dampers so that you can select one or the other as you please.
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
    adamfre
  • adamfre
    adamfre Member Posts: 122
    A little slow to get the pics, but here they are.





    Just want to stay warm in the winter. :D
  • Jamie Hall
    Jamie Hall Member Posts: 23,270
    You've got some work to do...
    Br. Jamie, osb
    Building superintendent/caretaker, 7200 sq. ft. historic house museum with dependencies in New England
  • adamfre
    adamfre Member Posts: 122
    This is the tip of the iceberg :).
    Just want to stay warm in the winter. :D
  • JUGHNE
    JUGHNE Member Posts: 11,057
    IIWM, I would go with return air grill in floor across the room and a 6" manual damper controlled outside air inlet connected to the ductwork.

    Often a home of this vintage has plenty of fresh air introduced by nature of the construction.
    adamfre
  • Firecontrol933
    Firecontrol933 Member Posts: 73
    Just when you thought you'd seen everything.

    Unless this is some sort of historical restoration that demands that everything be put back as it was...... there are a lot of alternatives to what you have that will basically do the same thing and be a lot more energy efficient doing it.

    I'm just curious as to whether this kind of construction/system was common or was it a one of a kind?