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A condensing boiler and indirect domestic hot water
A direct-vent sealed-combustion fireplace takes its combustion air directly from outside through a dedicated air inlet and vents combustion products directly outside
A direct-vent sealed-combustion furnace has dedicated pipes for combustion air and exhaust
A high-efficiency (95 AFUE) wall-hung gas-fired boiler heats water for the hydro-coil space heating system and also provides a back-up for the solar hot water system.
A nylon draw band and tensioning tool are used to secure the inner coil of the pre-insulated flexible duct
A nylon draw band and tensioning tool are used to secure the inner liner of the pre-insulated flexible duct
A properly sized high-efficiency heat pump is located in conditioned space in a closet inside the home.
A technician conducts a duct blaster test
After securing the inner coil, cover the draw band and the seam with a generous amount of mastic
Air handler platforms used as return air plenums can draw air from vented attics and crawlspaces through other connected framing cavities
An oil-fired boiler with direct combustion air and exhaust venting
Assembled section of fiber board duct
Because flue temperatures are cool, intake and exhaust ducts on a Category 4 direct-vent sealed-combustion condensing furnace can be made of PVC
Collars that are specifically made for flexible duct have a raised bead to prevent the duct from slipping off
Cool air flow is produced when the cooling cycle is energized (set thermostat to “cool”)
Cut fiber board with a red V-groove tool and a gray shiplap tool to create mitered corners and a shiplapped edge for duct sections
Direct vent appliance installed
Direct-vent condensing gas furnace with fresh air intake
Outdoor unit for a mini split (ductless) heat pump.
Ducts should not be located in exterior wall cavities
Fiber board sheets are available with pre-cut shiplapped ends
Fiberglass duct board typically comes in sheets 4 foot wide by 10 foot long
Floor joist cavities can make acceptable duct chases
Floor joist cavities can make acceptable duct chases
For fireplaces that are not mechanically drafted or direct-vented to outdoors, total net rated exhaust flow of the two largest exhaust fans is .15 CFM per 100 sq. ft. of occupiable space when at full capacity
Furnaces, boilers, and water heaters located within the home’s pressure boundary are mechanically drafted or direct-vented
Hand tools for cutting fiber board sheets include a knife, straight edge, and color-coded edge-cutting tools
High-Efficiency Gas Furnace
If HVAC duct must be installed in an exterior wall, separate it from the exterior with at least R-6 of continuous rigid insulation
If wall registers are desired, install HVAC ducts in interior wall cavities
Indoor unit installation of a mini split (ductless) heat pump.
Install supply registers in floors or ceilings to avoid routing ducts through exterior walls
National Fuel Gas Code (NFPA 2012) identifies four categories for combustion furnaces and water heaters based on combustion type (sealed or unsealed) and vent pipe temperature
Naturally drafted heater installed. Requires combustion safety testing
Naturally drafted water heater installed. Requires combustion safety testing
Open floor trusses used as return air plenums can draw air from any place connected to that floor
Power vented water heater installed
Pull the insulation and outer liner of the flex duct over the collar to come in full contact with the liner and insulation of the trunk line or fitting and tape in place
Seal all joints and seams in the metal ductwork with mastic before installing insulation
Seal seams in fiber board ducts with out-clinching staples, UL-181A-approved tape, and mastic
Some builders create pan joists by attaching a solid sheet good to the bottom of a floor joist to create a return air pathway
The AC unit has a drip pan and automatic shutoff in case the condensate drain gets clogged.
The air handler for this geothermal heat pump is located in conditioned space.
The air handler of the air-to-water heat pump is equipped with a very high efficiency air filter and a damper-controlled fresh air intake.
The basement is half in and half out of the ground with only 4 feet below grade, which allows for full 36-inch-tall windows that are completely above grade.
The duct tester and blower door are set up to measure leakage to the outdoors
The geothermal heat pump provides hot water for radiant floor heating, domestic hot water, and the air handler for space conditioning upstairs.
The grille in the photo on the left brings air into a return air plenum under an air handler platform. As shown in the infrared image on the right, the plenum is not air sealed so hot attic air is being pulled into the air handler closet.
The high-efficiency air-to-air heat pump is set in an overflow pan with an emergency shut off sensor in case the condensate tube were to clog and cause condensate to fill up the pan.
The home’s ground source heat pump preheats water for the air source heat pump water heater.
The natural draft and induced draft furnace are both Category I appliances that receive combustion air from the combustion appliance zone
The precast insulated concrete walls of the basement provide a conditioned space for the high-efficiency (18 SEER, 9.5 HSPF) air-source heat pump, with its variable-speed fan, five-stage compressor, and MERV 11 filter.
The raised hood at the base of the vent stack on this water heater shows that it is an atmospheric vented gas water heater
The sealed conditioned crawlspace provides a clean, dry, and temperate environment for the home’s supplemental dehumidifier.
The tape is covered with mastic to ensure an airtight seal between the duct and the fitting
The very high efficiency (4.7 COP) ground-source heat pump provides hot water to a tank for radiant floor heat and domestic hot water.

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