Hi all, we have a 1 car garage and live in South Texas, the garage is not air conditioned and the heat and humidity are unbearable for at least 9 months of the year so we have been discussing getting air conditioning.
We have a problem that stops us from just buying a ductless a/c and installing it. The problem is with the wind certificate on file with Texas. This cert has to be paid for and approved when any work is done on the house and that includes the installation of air conditioning. The last certificate on the house was for 2012 when we purchased the home and a new roof was added, so we aren't interested in starting over just for air conditioning.
I think I have found the solution to our problem and wanted to run it by you all.
1. We need to add a/c to the garage so that we can use it during the spring, summer and fall.
2. We cannot cut holes in our siding to add a ductless a/c without paying for a new windstorm certificate.
My solution is two fold.
1. Purchase a Vent-A-Garage Air Exchange System, it comes in a two car garage setup and ours is only one car.
I plan to use both the exit fans on the single garage door to vent out the high heat we have during the hot humid times. That should provide plenty of air movement.
I was thinking that if we installed the two air inlet vents on the wall between the laundry room and the garage, it would allow for some of the cooler air from the the house to enter the garage allowing for less humidity to enter the garage.
We would need to cover those inlet vents when cutting wood on the panel saw but otherwise, all other cutting is done outside. We do have a mini cyclone to help out with the air borne dust as well.
Here is the link to the Vent-A-Garage Air Exchange System, there are a couple of videos on installation and how it works.
2. We purchase a portable air conditioner with a hose venting outside using a Garage Door Exhaust Port. We would need to unplug the venting system while using the air conditioner but it would be worth it to have a/c when working in the garage.
Here is the link to the Garage Door Exhaust Ports and some lock for security when not in use.
What do you think of my plan? Do you think it would work and we could have some relief from the hot humid air in the hotter months? Am I truly crazy with impossible ideas on the solution to our problem?
I feel for you, heat plus humidity is no fun to work in. It has been my experience the easiest thing you can do to raise the comfort level is create air movement. My workshop is in a double garage located in a suburb of Phoenix, AZ. To create air movement I use a ceiling fan two box fans and a portable swamp cooler. The cooler would prove useless with your high humidity, as it does during the late summer monsoon season here in the desert. I seem to get the most benefit by strategically placing the box fans so I am working in the stream of moving air. Btw, I keep the fans on stands so the air movement is not at floor level rather waist to face high.
I do not think you would be happy with the garage air exchange system listed. That system is designed to vent closed garages and the air movement provided is minimal. I think if you partially opened the garage door (I'm assuming it is a roll up segmented door) placed two box fans venting to the outside with a piece of plywood between them effectively sealing the opening, then opened the laundry room door you would draw much more cool air into the garage for a lot less money.
A portable air conditioner, one that vents the hot air outside via an exhaust hose would help cool the garage, but here you have to consider the amperage draw of the unit and available power for it and your shop tools. Namely could you run both of them simultaneously.
Lastly, and this may be a reach can you gain access to the attic and run an air conditioning vent and a return line from the garage to your existing home air conditioning system? This would make the garage like another room and since all the work is inside the attic, no holes are being made and no hurricane cert should be required.
Hope these ideas help, once again I don't envy you with the heat/humidity combination, we spent a couple of weeks at South Padre Island with the fifth wheel a few years ago. You could shower, dry off and feel like you needed another shower right away.
I have seen some ductless portable a/c units that I have been tempted to buy. they are pricey, like $600 or so, but as you say, the Texas summers are hot, esp. in the garage. We live in the Houston area, so would be anxious to see what you do and how well you like it.
I feel for you. It's -31 F where I live LOL ENJOY the heat!
where the heck do you live, Leana. that is no where I want to be now for sure keep warm
Canada....on the shores of Lake Superior. 3 hours north of Duluth Superior
Scotty baldwin said:
where the heck do you live, Leana. that is no where I want to be now for sure keep warm
If you have a fan blowing directly on you it cools you a ton. I run a repair shop in Central Texas and the guys move the box fans we have at the shop to blow directly on them and it cools a incredible amount. I setup a fan to blow directly on me in my wood shop and I am able to stay out in my shop in August & September with no issues. Just make sure you drink plenty of fluids.
Thanks everyone for your input, I have been very busy working on the house and apologize for not responding sooner.
Don, thanks for the laugh about taking a shower and needing another one as soon as you step out. I experience that every single day all day long during the high heat and humidity.
I showed my husband the garage venting system and he wants to try it. I think having air moving in there even if it is small should make it a bit more comfortable during the day when just walking through or needing to get something out of there. We wouldn't be working in there when it is hot without some kind of air, we just want some relief from the high heat and humidity in there.
A portable air conditioner or a dehumidifier is probably the best way for us to get comfortable in there because it's illegal to tap into the house system. I already asked the a/c company when we first bought the house and it was a resounding no from both techs that were here. They said it's the exhaust fumes from the garage that would enter the house and its illegal here. I explained we don't have exhaust in the garage but they wouldn't budge. I guess they couldn't see that there is no parking cars in the garage unless it's a midget, lol.
Scotty, I feel for you, the humidity and heat combined is killer here. I'll definitely let you know what we decide on doing and let you know the outcome of those decisions.
Leana, -31 degrees? No thanks, the heat is just as unbearable, lol. I feel for you too!
Bullet, we have fans to run but cannot when we are painting or using polyurethane in there because we don't want dust flying around the air. We do open the garage door for that and during the summer it will be extremely difficult to paint outdoors. We are hoping to have a clean air system in there as well, but we are running out of space in that small garage.
The only cutting we do in the garage is on the panel saw and we use a cyclone with the shop vac. We also clean up as soon as we are finished cutting as well. This has helped keep the garage air clean but there is always some we cannot get that is behind the panel saw. My husband just added a plexiglass cover to the side of the saw blade in the hopes of catching more sawdust with the hose. We are hoping it will draw the dust that went downward at the bottom of the blade and didn't make it to the top where the dust port is. I'll let you know how that works out.
Suzy, do you have windows in the garage? If so, put in a window air conditioner(s) if even to take the edge off the temperature.
No Michael there are no windows, only a single garage door.
You might want to consider installing a window, on the opp end or one side, of the garage, so as to allow for "thru ventilation".
Install the window on the shaded side of the building.
A fan could be placed in the window to get air movement thru your shop.
Hi Ken, unfortunately if I install a window I have to get a new windstorm certificate and the only wall to put an a/c on is full sun 1:00 to nightfall. Yeah, think I am stuck, lol.
When placed on the sunny side, install an "awning" over the window or AC unit,
so as to shield it from direct sunlight.
If you're stuck with the structure you have, and can't install a window, I'd suggest at least using a 20" fan, that moves volumes of air, a type with large fan blades, and have the inside hot air, expel out the open door.
The fan will perform better is it's elevated above the floor---approx mid-way, floor to ceiling.
In this elevation, it'll pull out some of hot air from the ceiling area.
A 20" with large fan blades, suspended or on a pedestal base.
This style is made by Air King. Described as a "pedestal fan".
This style is less expensive---
offered by Comfort Zone.
It's an 18" 1100 CFM
wind speed of 25 F/S
3 speed oscillating
head pivots for airflow in any direction
Self standing, about about 26" high
There are a few of these styles offered on today's market.
Larger fan blades moving at lower RPM will be more effective, during continuous use.
BTW---when you first enter the shop and it's HOT, run the fan on HIGH for several minutes to get rid of the HOT air quickly---
you want to get rid of the HOT air rapidly,
then set to to a lower RPM setting.