A/C questions for rental home

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Old 07-18-16, 09:41 AM
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A/C questions for rental home

Hey guys,

I have a problem and I'm a little concerned. My girlfriend is in the process of moving from an apartment to a rental home. The AC unit looks extremely old (quite disgusting actually) but seems to run decent, as far as cooling is concerned. My problem is this, the only filter for the unit is in the door to the "room" the AC is housed in. Once you open the door, the unit is on a shelf about 2-3ft off the ground but the area underneath the AC is filthy. I'm positive the air coming through the filter is infinitely cleaner than the air being sucked up from below the AC unit.

So here's my question, is it normal for a filter to be so far from the actual AC unit?

Wouldn't you want the filter to be as close as possible to the actual intake of the AC?

Since the homeowner/property management won't replace the AC, are there options for cleaning things like this or is it simply a case of "go buy some cleaning supplies and start scrubbing"?

Thanks in advance for any help.

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Last edited by bobo777; 07-18-16 at 11:13 AM. Reason: Added picture
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Old 07-18-16, 09:45 AM
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One of the ac pros should be along shortly. Have to say I don't think I've ever seen a setup like that. Any chance of posting some pictures? That can be really helpful.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 09:47 AM
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And not unusual for there to be some distance involved but AFAIK, generally at the end of a closed duct-work.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 10:01 AM
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Pictures would definitely help but usually the filter is on the unit or at the end of a duct.
http://www.doityourself.com/forum/el...-pictures.html

Unfortunately in a rental home you'll be limited to what you can do or change.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 10:05 AM
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Yes, usually the filter is either held in an opening in the supply duct (return from house), or it may fit into the door to the furnace/air handler room (assuming that the furnace/air handler is in a separate room). The idea is that you want all the air that is coming through the system to pass through the filter and not be able to bypass it.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 10:45 AM
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Is this a window or wall AC unit? Saying it's sitting on a shelf is as confusing to me as trying to figure out why it's set up this way.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 11:14 AM
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I just added a pic to the original post. Hopefully that makes more sense now.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 12:32 PM
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The way I have seen this done in another house was place the filter in the hallway wall and seal the area under the AC in the closet. Of course you would need the landlord's permission.

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Old 07-18-16, 12:39 PM
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I don't see a problem with filter. I've seen it done like this before.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 02:01 PM
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Wouldn't there be unfiltered air sucked around the door jamb and floor? Or would you just have to put some good weather seal to seal it off?
 
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Old 07-18-16, 03:09 PM
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If the filter is the correct size for the furnace then very little air from the door jamb and floor will get to the furnace.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 03:26 PM
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Hmmmm..... you could also put the filter where Ray shows it being blocked off and then just put a grill in the door.

Is that a dirt floor under the unit ?

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Old 07-18-16, 03:38 PM
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I really appreciate the feedback everyone. I guess what I'm having trouble with is, most AC units I've seen have a filter that either slides into the unit or are mere inches from the intake. With this unit, even if the air being pulled through the filter is the cleanest in the world, isn't it also pulling "junk" from the space below the unit; dust, gunk, mold (if any), etc?

Again, I could be completely overreacting on this. Just doesn't seem like the correct setup.

PJmax, it's the concrete foundation.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 03:49 PM
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You're correct, most filters are closer to the blower. However, I don't think that any dirt in the space underneath the unit will cause much problem. I would expect that the airflow should be pretty direct from the filter in the door to the air intake on the unit. I don't think that much dirt will be picked up from the area underneath the unit. However, if you're concerned about it, you could take a piece of plywood and cover the "hole".
 
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Old 07-18-16, 05:13 PM
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Just curious,if you look under that shelf into the bottom of that AC unit ,is there an opening into the AC?
 
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Old 07-18-16, 06:32 PM
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is there an opening into the AC?
I think that is the premise of this thread. When I have seen them installed that way there is.
 
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Old 07-18-16, 07:03 PM
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Yep.... the open bottom is the return airflow.

You could install a frame directly below the air handler and slide a filter in. Then change from filter to a grill on the door.
 
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Old 07-19-16, 07:22 PM
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I think that's what I'll probably end up doing. Are there frames I can buy off the shelf or will I need to improvise?
 
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