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Thread: heat strips

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Daniel Island, SC.
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    Default heat strips

    When inspecting a heat pump, do you check to make sure the heat strips are working in the summer? If not why and if yes, is there is cut off with temperature where you should not check them.

    Also, isn't it required to have a walk way and service area installed next to a air handler in the attic?

    Thanks,

    Jim Murphy

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Spring Hill (Nashville), TN
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    Default Re: heat strips

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM MURPHY View Post
    When inspecting a heat pump, do you check to make sure the heat strips are working in the summer? If not why and if yes, is there is cut off with temperature where you should not check them.

    Also, isn't it required to have a walk way and service area installed next to a air handler in the attic?

    Thanks,

    Jim Murphy
    I always turn the Emergency or Supplemental heat on and I find that about 25% of the time it is not working.

    In the attic mechanical equipment should 10' or less from an entrance. Walk boards are not required(some local AHJ's require them) but a platform around the unit is required for servicing.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Daniel Island, SC.
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    Default Re: heat strips

    Thanks Scott, I assume when they do not work you write them up. I have a realtor that says that they will not work if the temperature is over 90 degrees.

    I knew you had to have the platform but I thought you also had to have the walkway.

    Jim Murphy


  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Default Re: heat strips

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM MURPHY View Post
    Thanks Scott, I assume when they do not work you write them up. I have a realtor that says that they will not work if the temperature is over 90 degrees.

    I knew you had to have the platform but I thought you also had to have the walkway.

    Jim Murphy
    The outside temp has nothing to do with the heat strips. When a HP is in the emergency heat mode it is essentially a conventional electric furnace. I have a HP at my home but the emergency heat is natural gas.

    Scott Patterson, ACI
    Spring Hill, TN
    www.traceinspections.com

  5. #5
    David Bell's Avatar
    David Bell Guest

    Default Re: heat strips

    You can check operation of the strips by turning them on and checking the amp draw at the panel. Providing they are labled. As for a walkway, I thought I read something about a 24" walkway from the opening to the equipment.


  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Ormond Beach, Florida
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    26,252

    Default Re: heat strips

    Quote Originally Posted by Scott Patterson View Post
    Walk boards are not required(some local AHJ's require them) but a platform around the unit is required for servicing.
    Quote Originally Posted by JIM MURPHY View Post
    I knew you had to have the platform but I thought you also had to have the walkway.

    You are required to have both a walkway to the unit and service platform in front of the unit's service access side.

    In Florida the equipment must be within 6 feet of the attic entrance, the IRC allows for a much greater distance - to 50 feet of walkway.

    (bold and underlining are mine)
    - M1305.1.3 Appliances in attics. Attics containing appliances requiring access shall have with an opening and a clear and unobstructed passageway large enough to allow removal of the largest appliance, but not less than 30 inches (762 mm) high and 22 inches (559 mm) wide and not more than 20 feet (6096 mm) long when measured along the centerline of the passageway from the opening to the appliance. The passageway shall have continuous solid flooring in accordance with Chapter 5 not less than 24 inches (610 mm) wide. A level service space at least 30 inches (762 mm) deep and 30 inches (762 mm) wide shall be present along all sides of the appliance where access is required. The clear access opening dimensions shall be a minimum of 20 inches by 30 inches (508 mm) by 762 mm), where such dimensions are large enough to allow removal of the largest appliance.
    - - Exceptions:
    - - - 1. The passageway and level service space are not required where the appliance can be serviced and removed through the required opening.
    - - - 2. Where the passageway is unobstructed and not less than 6 feet (1829 mm) high and 22 inches (559 mm) wide for its entire length, the passageway shall be not more than 50 feet (15 250 mm) long.

    Note, though, that the 30" deep in front of the service access area only applies to fuel fired, non-electrically powered in-any-way appliances as electrically powered appliances are electrical equipment and require 36" deep in front of the service access area.


    Jerry Peck, Construction / Litigation Consultant
    Construction Litigation Consultants, LLC ( www.ConstructionLitigationConsultants.com )
    www.AskCodeMan.com

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