05:11AM | 03/27/02
Member Since: 03/21/02
20 lifetime posts
I am the proud (?) owner of two Consolidated Industries furnaces, which were not a subject of the safety recall, but are known to have a lot of problems with heat exchanger cracking. (For those of you who don't know, Consolidated produced a lot of furnaces under several names before they went bankrupt). Since the water-pressure test for the heat exchangers is about $150 (per furnace) and the CO sniffer test is not 100% accurate, I was thinking about replacement of both units. Plus, my existing furnace is about 70% eficient.

I am a very handy guy and have done most everything there is to do in building a house, but I have never replaced or installed a furnace. How tough is this? It's a gas, heat-only system.

How do you get the things in the attic/crawl space?

I live in San Diego, and thus, although the house is large and poorly insulated, the 75,000 BTu units never run more than about 10 minutes at a time, even on the coldest days. I am assuming that this means they are sized about right.

The existing furnaces are set on a 4 x 4 (the crawlspace) and OSB board (the attic). Wouldn't it be a good idea to set the one in the attic on cement board?

Will I save money doing the install myself? I know I will need a building permit. I promise to check the gas connections with soapy water and hook up the vent properly.



09:30AM | 03/27/02
Member Since: 03/21/02
20 lifetime posts
Good advice, HK, thank you very much! It may well be that my recollection is inaccurate...but the yearly low here is probably 25 degrees, and that at night, so we do not have a real severe heating load. So even for my 3300 square foot house, which is moderately leaky and has single-pane windows, I think that the two 75,000 BTu units are probably on the large side.

The original builder did not put in any furnace return air filters or dampers, and put return air grills on some of the heat registers (no control over air flow), so I guess he probably didn't do any heat loss calculations, either.

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