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Water based temperature balancing

jkbff Member Posts: 2
Hello all, I was directed here from an appliance forum that I am on. I am going to copy the post I made there.

I've moved into a 4 bed 3 bath unit with two upper levels and a tuck under garage. The unit is half of a duplex.

I am buying it from the owner, and am trying to figure out heating and cooling.

When the builder built the units, he ran out of money and didn't have central heat/cooling installed. The ducts are partially ran, but no equipment aside from baseboard electric heat. The unit was built in 2014/2015. Part of the failed oil-boom real estate crap.

Anyways, I am going to have a hood installed in the kitchen and an attic fan put in, but keep thinking about a water system.

What I am thinking is putting a fan-driven water to air heat exchange in each room built into the closets.

I am not looking for refrigeration as much as I'd be looking for temperature balance. The place has black steel roofing, and I've installed 12k 240v wall-mount ge ac's in each room. I built mounts for the windows so this is all temporary until I get everything figured out. I am trying to decide if I want to install mini-splits, or a trane XC95m/XV20i package. If I did the trane package, I wouldn't need this, but then the issue would be how to zone out the unit.

So the thought was to have three channels. One set runs outside, one set is internal and one set would go to a water heater. There would be three pumps, one for the outside coils, one for the water heater and one to circulate an internal channel.

What I am wanting to do is pull heat from inside to the outside on cooler nights. Have radiators or something outside with water circulating through, bringing the above ambient temps out, running the cooler water back in and circulating air through the coil inside. In the winter time, I figured I could have a GE 50 gallon GeoSpring water heater on the second channel and could circulate hot water through the exchange coils. The third channel would link all of the coils together, so I could do temp balancing. The idea behind the balancing would be that currently, I can only be in one room at a time and I live alone. There are 9 rooms I can be in (kitchen, bathrooms, garage and laundry room). If I am cooking in the kitchen, I could pull the heat out of the kitchen and pump it into the other rooms, or the garage or something...

The biggest reason behind this is my condensing miele dryer... Dear lord does it get hot in the laundry room without central air or a window....

But anyways, each room would have three pex lines ran and hidden in the crown molding. A feed, a return and a drain line. I would probably put two 24" exchange units in each room, some form of low-power consumption blower and a small pump to drain any condensate (if that would even happen). I don't expect the temps to go above 110 for the water, so I could probably use irrigation valves to do all of the switching. Each feed would have three valves merging to the one line and the same for the return. I'd use an automotive coolant to circulate, and keep the system sealed or at least have an air bleed off the water heater. I'd use a set of automotive radiators and cooling fans outside.

Ideally I'd pull the cool night temps in, get rid of the heat, and have it all accomplished with a series of low voltage pumps and fans. In the winter, I'd be able to have the outside channel pulling frigid temps in to cool the kitchen, or pull the heat from the kitchen and put it in the un-occupied rooms, have the hybrid water heater heating the coolant mixture and bringing a gentle heat into the rooms that call for heat.

I am not sure if I am explaining it properly, I'll have to upload my drawings...

And I know this is coming, why not open the windows? Well, the rooms that have ac have the windows blocked by the ac, and the house is in the middle of nowhere with train tracks less than half a football field from the front and a valley behind it. My allergies go haywire when I open the windows.

If anything, would a system made of various exchange coils and low-cost automotive radiators accomplish anything close to what I am looking for?


  • jkbff
    jkbff Member Posts: 2
    I guess I am not sure if I posted this in the right spot or not... When I made my choice, it seemed the most relevant...
  • Zman
    Zman Member Posts: 6,714
    Any plan should begin with a room by room heat loss calculation. There are dozens of free calculators on line.

    There are countless products available that are designed for heating and cooling systems. Don't use irrigation or automotive products for heating.

    Keep in mind, products like heatspring water heaters take heat from the space they are in and transfer it to the water. This makes them pretty counterproductive for space heating.

    What climate are you in? How is the house insulated?
    "If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough"
    Albert Einstein