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Old 07-26-2018, 12:45 PM   #1
Baldicon
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Furnace Register On Stairs

My understanding is that the furnace registers on the bedroom stairs should be blocked during the summer since they just open up to the basement and underbelly. Just wondering how you guys (and girls) blocked yours? To do something from the back side you have to remove the basement wall.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 07-26-2018, 12:54 PM   #2
WeBeFulltime
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The wooden "grills" will remove from the inside by removing 4 screws each. I put luan on the inside of them with small screws. Don't forget to remove before using furnace.
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Old 07-26-2018, 01:56 PM   #3
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I just bought some 3/4'' styrofoam insulation and i plan to cut it snug enough to place in the opening to block the heat. I may remove the grill that's there and paint the styrofoam brown to match the interior. You can get a 2x2 piece from Home Depot for 5.98 .
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Old 07-26-2018, 02:32 PM   #4
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The wooden "grills" will remove from the inside by removing 4 screws each. I put luan on the inside of them with small screws. Don't forget to remove before using furnace.
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Old 07-26-2018, 02:53 PM   #5
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Those are not registers they are cold air returns.

"Ever wonder why some rooms of your home don’t heat or cool as well as others? The answer may be your return air grills- also known as “cold air returns”. These are the vents that are usually on the wall and they do not have a control mechanism to open or shut their flow. Their purpose is to allow air to return to the furnace to be heated or cooled. It is an air inlet. If your home has returns in most rooms this is the best setup, allowing for the best circulation and air flow. But sometimes we see that people cover/close them up because they don’t realize their importance. Some homes have one or two large return grills centrally located. In that case, simply closing the doors to the bedrooms can essentially close those rooms off from the whole house air circulation the heating/cooling system is designed to provide. So while the supply vents blow out heated and cooled air, the return grills are just as important to your overall comfort and proper system functions. Never block your return grills! Leave those returns unobstructed by furniture or other coverings and you will help ensure that your system gives maximum comfort, consistent temperatures, and doesn’t waste energy by running too long due to poor air circulation thru the home."
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Old 07-26-2018, 02:55 PM   #6
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I just used black foam board cut slightly bigger than the opening and then screwed the grates back in to hold it.
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Old 07-26-2018, 02:59 PM   #7
richfaa
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We for the most part stay in moderate temps year round the furnace seldom runs.The fireplace does the job when needed.
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Old 07-26-2018, 04:41 PM   #8
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For summer, I use plexiglass, cut to size.
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Old 07-26-2018, 05:20 PM   #9
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I used black poster board to close them off year round. If you have ever removed the wall between the basement and the area where the furnace is you know that there is plenty of warm air there. Well at least on my 3582RL.

Yes I know these are there for a reason. Just like the AC returns that collapsed requiring PVC to be inserted in them.
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Old 07-27-2018, 11:46 PM   #10
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We bought Styrofoam insulation sheet ( maybe 2” thick?) from Home Depot and cut 2 pieces that fit snugly against the step registers. Then my wife covered them with some heavy dark brown material so the aren’t noticeable. We have them in place whenever AC is running.
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Old 07-28-2018, 05:33 AM   #11
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I removed our stairs completely and rebuilt them with wood treads that and hinged to open for storage. I also created 3 steps instead of 2 to lessen the rise so they are easier to climb. These campers are so leaky there are many other places to pull return air from. Besides, we don't use the propane heat much anyway. If we camp in cold weather we make sure we have electric hook ups so we can use ceramic heaters.
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Old 07-28-2018, 06:25 AM   #12
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Yep, on #80.
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Old 08-01-2018, 02:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Baldicon View Post
My understanding is that the furnace registers on the bedroom stairs should be blocked during the summer since they just open up to the basement and underbelly. Just wondering how you guys (and girls) blocked yours? To do something from the back side you have to remove the basement wall.

Thanks in advance.
Just playing devil's advocate here, what is the benefit of covering up the furnace cold air return during the summer?
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Old 08-01-2018, 02:27 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by walterc2 View Post
Just playing devil's advocate here, what is the benefit of covering up the furnace cold air return during the summer?
Cold air can escape into the basement, especially if you leave a basement door open. If you are already having cooling problems, it just adds to it. Kind of like leaving a window open.
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Old 08-01-2018, 03:17 PM   #15
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I closed the openings under the stairs permanently. Then I sealed the area where the furnace is located in the bottom of the pantry and put in a return air that pulls air from the living area. Made a huge difference in heating and cooling.
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Old 08-01-2018, 04:45 PM   #16
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The basement is really poorly insulated and sealed. in the winter massive drafts from under the stairs when the furnace isn't on. I am planning on either ducting the return air as per Ddubya (above), or boxing in the area immediately under the stairs and putting in a barometric damper that stays closed, but automatically opens when the furnace kicks on.
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Old 08-01-2018, 05:29 PM   #17
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You're correct in everything you stated, but the single return at the steps in Montanas can be blocked for summertime since its only the cold air return for the furnace. It has nothing to do with the roof-mounted ACs. I can feel warmth when I use the steps. I don't know how effective it is to block the return, but I can't believe it would hurt anything unless one forgets to unblock it during furnace use.
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Old 08-02-2018, 06:47 PM   #18
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We winter in North GA where it still gets a bit chilly. We use heat more than a/c. Last winter was our first with this rig and I noticed masses of cold air coming from that return vent so I blocked it off. When we finally got a real cold night and all my plumbing froze in the basement I discovered a huge gap in the insulation to the outer wall. Once I filled that gap the pipes stopped freezing and the draft disappeared.
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Old 08-03-2018, 08:03 AM   #19
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So on a 2015 HC 318RE This area would be below the Fridg. to the left of the stairs?? I just traded in the Winnebago for this unit two weeks ago and was looking through the wood grill at the space below the Fridg. thinking about blocking that area off as when i opened up the cargo area one day last week it felt very cool down there as if it had a A/C Vent down there.... That must be how the cold air was getting into the basement then....
I just wanted to confirm what i was thinking
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Old 08-03-2018, 10:06 AM   #20
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Hi

Pickup some Velcro from home depot and some heavy cardboard like a brown box big enough to cover the lovers and you will have a very usable way to open and close those holes under the steps.

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Attached Images
File Type: jpg Steps-1.jpg (128.8 KB, 8 views)
File Type: jpg Steps-2.jpg (89.5 KB, 169 views)
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