air conditioning and heating systems.

What kind do you have in your house? I’ve got a Honeywell, with a digital thermostat in the living room, ceiling-mount vents in each room, a duct in the hall, an indoor unit in the garage, and an outdoor unit on the side of the house.

20 year old Peerless No.2 Heating Oil-fired hot water boiler, and a SuperStor Ultra 40 gallon storage tank. The heating system is a circulated hot water system. It’s controlled by a Honeywell programmable thermostat for the house heating system and by a bimetallic thermostat installed in the hot water tank for the house’s hot water.
The tank and the furnace can be seen in many of my system tests, it’s right by the annunciator.

We have an air conditioner but it spends most of the time in the attic… we only install it during the summer–and only if they are predicting a hot day (over 90 degrees).

OK, get ready for a long rant…

Don’t really know the maker, but it’s a central A/C and heating (natural gas) system and to be frank, the whole thing’s a POS. The whole house is on one zone with the thermostat in the livingroom. Upstairs get considerably hotter in the summer than the downstairs and thus, while the thermostat is set for 74 in the summer, and while it is 74 in the livingroom, it’s 80 upstairs, but because it’s at an OK level in the livingroom, the HVAC won’t kick on to relieve upstairs. To attempt to keep the A/C on longer and cool down the upstairs, we shut all the vents on the first floor and leave the vents open on the second. Anotehr issue is that the airflow from the vents isn’t very good upstairs as it is downstairs. Also, the return vents aren’t well designed either. There is one in my room, which I believe is connected to the HVAC system because when it’s on, you can BARELY feel air moving through it. My parent’s room has a return vent cover, but we’ve discovered that all it does is cover a hole in the wall that leads to the attic, which of course gets VERY hot in the summer and very cold in winter. The main return vent is on the first floor, which has a very powerful airflow to it.

As for our basement, when we bought the house, it was completely unfinished. We finished it ourselves, but being unfinished when we bought it, it had no need for HVAC vents down there. When we finished it, all we did was cut a hole in one of the supply vents to help keep it relatively warm down there in the winter, but it really doesn’t do much. Though to be honest, it stays about 60 degrees year-round.

Our house windows are also very drafty, which only adds frustration to the whole situation. My whole house was built totally wrong and would probably require a decent amount of money to make everything a better, but I don’t see that happening anytime soon, unfortunately…

We have a Comfortmaker natural gas furnace and central A.C. which are both controlled by a Honeywell programmable thermostat and were installed in 2001. The Comfortmaker furnace was put in after the old furnace from the 80s died the day we moved in (after six months of renovations and the house being empty for over a year). In the 60s and 70s (this was my grandparents’ house), the house was equipped with some kind of oil-burning furnace and before that, it had a coal-burning furnace (we still had the coal storage room and ample coal residue on the ceiling in the basement before it was finished in 2010). A few rooms still have big baseboard-mounted cast iron registers (probably originally intended for a gravity-fed system) and my room has a huge floor-mounted return vent with a grille that measures about 24 inches diagonally. The other intake and output registers have typical smaller, modern grilles installed in 2001.

My mother’s house has an Amada furnace (mid 90s) controlled by a White-Rodgers thermostat, replacing an older Honeywell controller. She also has an old Aprilaire humidity controller from when the house was built (1961).

My father’s house (1946) has a Heil furnace (mid 90s) controlled by a Honeywell thermostat. This furnace actually used to scare me when I was younger. It’s loud enough that the rumbling can be heard from my bedroom on the second floor.