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Mountainview Home Owner Manual

 

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Heating and Ventilation

The heating system is designed to be capable of maintaining an indoor air temperature of 21o Celsius in living areas and unfinished basements.

The heating equipment can be maintained at maximum efficiency through regular inspections according to manufacturers instructions.

If the furnace will not come on, the following steps must be taken prior to calling for service: A) ensure the thermostat is set to the “Heat” position, not “Cool” or “Off”. B) turn up the thermostat setting a few degrees above the thermometer and see if the furnace will start. C) check the furnace circuit breaker at the electrical panel, it may need to be reset by switching it off and then on again. D) ensure the furnace power switch (similar to a light switch) located near the furnace is in the on position. E) check that the furnace filter is clean and replace if required. F) make sure the furnace panel doors are latched closed correctly. G) make sure the furnace vent outside is not blocked by ice, snow, leaves or other debris (do not install screens on these vents as they will obstruct the air flow). H) attempt to reboot the furnace by turning the power off for 10 seconds then on again at the switch connected to the furnace and waiting 2 minutes for the electronics to reset. I) open the furnace cover to find the fault code document and determine the code by observing the sequence of flashing lights being displayed at the bottom of the furnace. The code may indicate an easy solution to the furnace problem and will allow a service technician to bring the proper parts for a quick repair if needed.

Air filters should be changed weekly during the first 2 months of furnace use. After the initial 2 months filters should be changed monthly. Some filters may be of the washable type, which can be rinsed in the laundry tub.

If areas such as rooms over the garage feel warmer or cooler than the remainder of the house, check the furnace filter to ensure there is proper air flow to the ductwork.

The gas meter should be kept clear of snow and ice. A broom can be used to clear snow, not hard objects.

Exterior vent terminations must be clear of obstructions. Keep shrubs, landscaping, and garden hoses clear from the ends of any vent pipes.

All furnaces create moisture from combustion which is drained through a tube to either a floor drain or a condensate drain. If these lines become dislodged they may drain water onto the basement floor.

Ductwork may make noise as it expands and contracts during heating and cooling cycles. This is considered normal.

During the winter months high humidity levels in your home can lead to condensation on cold surfaces. Ventilation must be used to control the humidity levels and provide healthy clean air with the least risk of mold.

If your home was built with a Plusaire unit in the basement, the damper needs to be set to the winter position, and the dehumidistat which is located next to the thermostat can be set to 35%.

If your home was built with a Heat Recovery Ventilator (HRV) in the basement, the dehumidistat which is located next to your thermostat should have the power light turned on, the dehumidistat light set to the 30% or winter position (40% if it feels too dry - higher settings increase the risk of mold), and the speed light set to low unless you want to temporarily run the fan at high speed for increased ventilation. A flashing dehumidistat light indicates the fan is running at high speed to meet the desired humidity level. A continuous dehumidistat light indicates the humidity level is lower or equal to the setting. The furnace fan will run at low speed when the HRV power light is on to evenly distribute fresh air through the home. This will provide the most even temperature and moisture levels through the home, will provide the cleanest air (by continually moving it past the furnace filter), and the least amount of condensation on windows (as the constant air movement can slightly raise the glass temperature).

Room temperature air will feel slightly cooler when exiting floor registers for two reasons. Air that is cooler than the body steals heat from the body as it passes and carries that heat away. As the air passes it also evaporates moisture on the skin which absorbs heat in the process making the skin feel cooler.

The use of furnace humidifiers in tight newly built homes could lead to a large scale mold outbreak if not used properly. Ventilation is required in tight newly built homes to provide a way to remove moisture from the air. Moisture is created by people, pets, plants, showers, cooking, etc... In older homes, moisture (and warm air) escaped easily through the leaky building envelope. In new homes this is no longer the case and moisture gets trapped in the home. In older homes, furnace humidifiers were needed to get humidity levels above 30% in the winter time. In newer homes, the challenge is to get humidity levels down to 30% using ventilation. The only time a furnace humidifier should be used in a newly built home is when the humidity level never goes above 20%, even if the desired humidity level with the HRV is set to 30 or 40%. In the rare case where this may happen, we would still recommend turning off the HRV fan on occasion to let the humidity levels rise before installing a furnace humidifier. Watch the video at the following link for an explanation of humidity and ventilation by one of Canada’s lead building scientists - you won’t be disappointed ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vsh21YkN_XQ ).

During the summer months you will control the humidity in your home by using an air conditioner or by opening the windows.

If your home was built with a Plusaire unit in the basement, the damper needs to be set to the summer position, and the dehumidistat which is located next to your thermostat can be set to the 100% or off position. This will stop the bathroom fan from drawing in humid air from outside when the air conditioner is running.

If your home was built with a Heat Recovery Ventilator (HRV) in the basement, the dehumidistat which is located next to your thermostat should have the fan light turned on, the dehumidistat light set to the 80% or summer position, and the speed light off. The fan light should be left on when the house is being cooled with air conditioning to provide ventilation and clean air. The fan light may be turned off if windows are being left open continually as a means of cooling the house and providing fresh air. If the HRV is a Lifebreath unit, the dehumidistat light can be left at the 30% or winter position as the unit will automatically remain at the low speed setting when the temperature outside is above 15 degrees Celsius.

HRVs require regular maintenance. We recommend that you do the following every two months. Clean your filters with tap water, rinse out the aluminum core with a garden hose (do not use a pressure washer or dishwasher), blow out the drain tube, and pop off the air intake cap on the exterior wall so you can brush off the intake. We recommend that you do the following every year. Have the input and output air flows balanced by a certified contractor.

2GIG NOTES: For houses with the 2GIG system, the alarm control panel should be used to change the temperature in the house. Never change the settings directly on the thermostat.

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