We are building a 2 story home with a legal basement suite for in laws in basement. 2 furnace (air and Heating) for each separate living space. Builder put ductwork in middle of each room. They now say cant be changed. Looking for solutions now and not being given any suggestions. Any ideas?? Help. We had left space above the cupboards specifically for bulkheads but that space was not utilized at all.
For clarity, I am not an HVAC guy so I cannot offer any practicable solutions. What I will offer is finding out if the install is code compliant and if your suggestion was / is code compliant.
Upon that, if your suggested routing is not compliant, there is not much recourse. If both are code compliant, then unless it was stipulated in the contract the routing I would say this would be a change order with an additional fee.
If the routing that you suggested is code compliant and was stipulated in the contract then the HVAC guy should make the changes as he is not in compliance with the contract.
Datawise Solutions Inc
It's only a matter of cost unfortunately. I would ask why the builder either have plans or read the plans as HVAC plans and layout on mechanical drawings are pretty straight forward.
The simple answer however is this; open your ceilings if boarded and re-route the ducting if it was just missed by the builder. Remember however that ducting runs go with the joist other wise you're dropping your ceiling height.
As a side note; if the plans show that the ducting was in bulkheads and the registers are in other spots and you issued the builder the IFC's and he missed this then it's on him or his sub-trade that did the work. We contract out over a million a year in HVAC and a good builder/sheet metal company knows how to read plans.
If the builder says cant be changed it's likely true. Keep in mind you need a lot of bulkheads to meet Code because you can't have a combined return; probably more than what can be hidden above cupboards. Aside from a Code compliant HVAC ductwork there is also the issue of headroom that needs to satisfy Code.
Incidentally, there's a difference between an 'in-law suite' and a 'secondary suite' and you've used both terminology in your question.
Depending which warranty program you are with there may be some help in your problems through your warranty provider.
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