In this article we'll discuss HHO, or Heated Glass, Heaters, and the benefits they can bring to your home. The first thing to know about HHO is that it's made from 2.5 times as much gas as conventional gas-fired furnaces, and uses less energy than the average furnace. You can safely replace your existing electric baseboards with new hydronic based baseboard heat exchangers. With a hydronic furnace, you could use two separate fans with a single thermostat to control both ends of a room (like a garage or shop) at the same time.
The most common types of HHO heat exchangers are called "regenerative" or "incremental" type units. Regenerative types work by creating a continual stream of hot air (room-wise heat) from a single vent, which heats one side of the room. If you look at one end of a room, the air flow starts right where you see the fan blade and finishes where the air leaves the heat exchanger (the part on the outside of the exchanger that absorbs the heat). This allows for a continuous room-wise flow of heat, even if the room isn't changing temperature at all!
With an "incremental" heat exchanger, the incoming air has to go through 30 tubes inside of the heat exchanger core (which are also called "registers"). When the air hits the "registers", it's compressed (which creates high pressure). Then, it's sent down into the lower chamber (the bottom part of the heat exchanger) where it's compressed yet again. Finally, the "outlet" (which is the top part of the heat exchanger) sends the "compressed" gas back up to the top of the heat exchanger core where it's cooled (hence the term "air" flow.)
Obviously, the entire process is much more complex than this simple picture. That's why most "green" residential builders (those who use technologies to reduce overall building energy consumption) typically only use "regenerative" type heat exchangers. A "incremental" unit will work fine for most applications. If your situation isn't too complicated, then you're probably best off with the "imoto" or "wedge" units that have the best efficiency rating.
Other things you'll want to consider when selecting a hanging heat exchanger include: * Is the area in which you'll be installing the exchanger large enough to accommodate the unit? This factor is important, as a too small unit may not provide adequate cooling. * Will you be using the air conditioning system in conjunction with the heat pump? Air conditioning systems often rely on hot air from an inlet vent to be moved through a series of tubes to a heat exchanger. If the duct doesn't have the required length, the flow won't be efficient.
* How much cooling power do you need? This is the key question that will determine the size of the heat exchanger you need. If you only need a small amount of cooling, then you'll probably want to go with a smaller, less expensive unit. On the other hand, if you're getting a lot of cooling power, then you'll want a larger unit that will keep the whole house comfortable.
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