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One of my hvac dampers is stuck open

Damper that controls upstairs air flow is stuck open. is a honeywell system installed in 1993. 2-zone system.

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RJ Systems (Retired)

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Zoned forced air systems that use multiple thermostats that can start a single heating and cooling unit from each stat and condition just that space that called it, are conditioned by the auto damper you are referring to. These dampers are normally spring closed and driven open using a small 24 volt motor (Called an Actuator or Operator) connected to the stat that operates the damper motor with a relay. Disconnect the damper crank arm and linkage between the damper and its motor and see if the damper rotates closed. See if the damper will move freely. Power and remove power from the motor to see if it works. Doing these things will probably find the problem. Good Luck. Roger

Posted on Apr 27, 2014

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If you need further help, reach me via phone at https://www.6ya.com/expert/thomas_092728000e6acb79

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To help understand the operation of a zone system, say you have 2 zone system and zone 1 thermostat initiates a heat or cool demand. Zone 2 valves energizes and shuts and zone 1 stays open and allow air to heat/ cool zone 1. If zone 2 thermostat simultaniously initiates the same heat/cool demand, the zone 2 valve opens and both zone heat/cool. When either thermostat is satisfied the opposite zone valve closes and when both thermostat are satisfied both zone valves open.
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If you look at the end of most dampers, there is a line on the end of the shaft. this line when it is in line with the duct it is open, and when it is 90 degrees to duct it is closed. for most damper and motor, when it rotates clockwise it goes to open. and counterclockwise it shuts. default position on zone systems is open, most damper motor spring return to open. There is a allen set screw that anchors the motor to the shaft. to set up the motor and shaft, turn power off, unset set screw and rotate damper ccw and reanchor the set screw, repeat for all damper and associated motors.
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You need to have someone evaluate the ductwork for the home. With all zones calling, there should be an even balance of airflow. And when only one zone is calling, there should not be the tornado effect you describe.

The dampers feeding each zone may be of the wrong size. It also sounds as though you are also having a problem with your bypass damper. This damper is designed to bypass excess air when only one zone is calling. It is operated typically off the airflow alone.

Have it check out. You definitely have a problem. I would recommend getting it looked at by a company other than the installing company to remove any bias judgment or diagnosis.
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If you have 6 inch ducts get a 6 inch damper. But be sure to do everything at the beginning on the duct as to divert air to other ducts.

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When the unit first initiates a heating cycle, that duct is going to be full of cool air, and the duct itself will be cool. So the furnace has to run long enough to push the cool air out, as well as warm the duct up, before your going to feel warm air at the registers downstairs.

Keep in mind, heat rises. And, your thermostat only monitors the immediate area where it's located. In your case, upstairs.
Two story houses are problematic because of this. And one way around it is to have a damper system installed that distributes the air upstairs or downstairs based on a thermostat located in those spaces. There would be 2 dampers, and 2 thermostats (one upstairs, one downstairs). Each stat would control a damper, and the call for heat or cooling.

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