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Author Topic: X10 And Home Environmental Control - No. 2 of 4  (Read 13193 times)

Oldtimer

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X10 And Home Environmental Control - No. 2 of 4
« on: October 15, 2006, 09:18:06 PM »

Here's the second in the series.  Not quite as complex as the first one though. Hope you enjoy it.

All feedback good or bad is welcome, including messages.


HOW THE BOILER ROOM INSTALLATION WORKS AND WHY
November 15, 2005

Oldtimer
A Supplement To The Household FAQ Book

  • Section "VIII"-Oil Burner & Thermostats
  • Section "IX"-Electrical System & X-10 Controls
  • Section "XIII"-Seasonal Maintenance
[/b]

The write up HOW THE DOWNSTAIRS BATHROOM WORKS AND WHY describes the saga of keeping that bathroom warm in the winter.  What we really wished we could have done ever since we moved in was to suck the waste heat from the boiler room, or hot room (HR), as Helen prefers to call it,  into the bathroom, but the need for unsightly duct work and other complications made that impractical.  However, in the fall of 2005 Helen suggested we should, in the light of skyrocketing heating costs, at least try to get the excess HR heat out into the kitchen area where it would do all of us some good, not just one of our cats, who liked to sleep on top of the clothes washer in cold weather.

We installed vents at the top and bottom of the HR door when we moved in to circulate at least a little of the 80-95 degree heat from the HR room outside but they were never that effective.

What I finally did was to install a large computer fan behind the upper door vent to force more of the waste heat out.  As a practical matter the HR/K fan pumps warm air into the North end of the kitchen and the K/BR fan pumps warm air from the North end of the kitchen into the downstairs bathroom so we finally are actually getting the warm air from HR into the BR with no duct work.

The components involved in this installation are as follows.

The power is supplied from an X-10 appliance module, modified so it only works by remote control not by the fan thermostat if it actuates when the module is OFF (local control defeated).  This mod is the same as I used in the bathroom installation.  It is also set to F1 and is therefore controlled by the same program macros and X-10 switches as the K/BR fan. When it's not the heating season (5/1 to 9/30) the X-10 computer doesn't turn ON the HR fan and it also is turned off by the X-10 computer from 10:30pm to 8:30am to match the computer controlled thermostat for the kitchen area which is set back to 60 degrees from 10:30pm to 8:15am.

For safety the fan housing and all the exposed metal of the heat sink are grounded and both thermostats and the resistors are in the grounded side of the line. The hot lead goes directly to the fan.  The plug should be inserted in the X-10 module so the "POL" on the plug is on the same side as the "POL" on the module so that this safe configuration will be maintained.

There are two electrical boxes inside the HR near the ceiling next to the door.  The left hand one has a one amp fuse inside to prevent a fire in case the wiring shorts.

The left hand box also has two 10 watt 100 ohm wire wound resisters clamped between two metal plates, as a heat sink, that reduce the voltage to the fan to slow it down to make it quieter.

The right hand box has a thermostat that is set to about 80 deg.  If the temperature goes below that the fan is turned off since there isn't enough heat in the HR to heat up the North end of the kitchen area.

Outside the HR, near the ceiling over the coat rack there is a thermostat that turns on the fan when the temperature gets below about 75.  Even when the fan has been running for some time the temperature inside the HR doesn't get below about 80 very often so as of this writing the system seems to be working.

See the paragraph starting "Manual control  " and the paragraph following  in HOW THE DOWNSTAIRS BATHROOM WORKS AND WHY for a discussion of how to control the HR fan manually.

If I'm not around to maintain the X-10 program and no one else can or wants to, you can do the following after you turn it OFF but leave the CM-15A installed (see IX):

The upper button on the switch inside the cupboard door over the microwave will still operate the HR/K  fan, but you'll have to manually turn it off at night.

If you sell the house you'll need to do the following, to bring the house up to code:

Even though the wiring for it is protected by a one ampere fuse the wire from the inside boxes to the outside thermostat is in no way up to code so it will have to be removed.  The inside wiring might be allowed to stay so the fan could be operated manually with the switch on the right side of either thermostat and/or by using an X-10 controller.



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« Last Edit: August 25, 2007, 09:57:52 PM by Oldtimer »
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TakeTheActive

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Re: X10 And Home Environmental Control - No. 2 of 3
« Reply #1 on: October 15, 2006, 09:32:44 PM »

Another GREAT ARTICLE Oldtimer! THANKS!!!
No competition (for the possible small reward / module) so far! ;)
« Last Edit: October 15, 2006, 09:55:14 PM by TakeTheActive »
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