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Posts: 5
Reply with quote  #1 
I have about 24" of height to play with and 96" long. In order to maximize efficiency and keep costs low, I would like to go with a double layer screen.

However, I only have 1 basement window on the southside of the house so I need to go out and back. Do I install a little wall running the length to split the input and output since they will be above each other?

And then do I tilt the screens so they both go from coldest to warmest air? And nothing in the plenum? 




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Posts: 2,448
Reply with quote  #2 

There are a few ways for you to not only configure your collector, but the ducting in and out of the window. You do not have to have your collector ducts at the same end as you can route the ducts behind the collector box to the window as long as space allows behind the collector. So a down and back collector is not a requirement. If you do decide on a down and back configuration, a wall or separator would be placed between the incoming air and the outgoing air. The key is to prevent the air from passing over the divider. 

As far as the screens, if you go with the down and back design, each side of the divider wall would have tilted screens. Alternatively, you could use a ZeroPass screen configuration where the air passes between two layers of screen. The advantage being that there is less airflow resistance and the air is heated the entire time the air is between the screens, not just when the air passes through the screen layers.

Greg in MN[wave]

Posts: 565
Reply with quote  #3 
My 4x8 screen collector is U-shaped (down and back).  As Greg said air can pass over the divider.  When I built it I thought that the twinwall glazing would stay tight against the divider, but pressure differences between the inside and outside, along with winds can cause the twinwall glazing would cause it to bow out sometimes.  I had to run a wire across to press a 1x2 board against the divider to hold it down.  Since yours is only 2 feet wide it won't bow out as much, but still do something to keep it tight against the divider.  What type of glazing are you using?

The turnaround area is where the much of the resistance will be.  Make sure the opening is not too small.  In a U-shape collector the parallel screen of the ZeroPass is probably better than the traditional slanted double screen.  The slanted screen will work, but it will need a bit stronger fan since you are effectively going through 4 screen layers (2 down / 2 back).  If the turnaround is glazed, then you can put screen there also to maximize heating.

In another thread you asked about connecting the collector to the ductwork.  At only 2x8 I would recommend just running it into the basement window to see how that goes first.

Kevin H

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