Heat Pump Beneath Deck

saltidawgMay 8, 2010

In ten days my new Carrier Heat Pump and oil furnace is to be installed. The outside unit is going to have to be moved from the old unit's location.

Our first choice for location is just under a large deck with a screened in porch. Carrier's Installation Manual specifies various amounts of clearance on all four sides and specifies 48" clearance above the unit. There is 58" of vertical clearance available.

We never use that porch during the heat of summer, and only rarely use the porch in the spring and fall.

Our contractor points out that there will be noise heard on the porch and also (extra) heat on the porch during the cooling season.

The unit will be beneath the outer perimeter of the deck, just underneath. We prefer this location because it will require no re-landscaping, it will be out of sight, and the unit will be protected from snow accumulation.

Does anyone see a problem with this approach?


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Very poor idea to put the unit under the porch. the air will
blow up and hit the floor of the porch and a lot of that hot air will bounce back down and be reticulated through the unit.
later Paulbm

    Bookmark   May 8, 2010 at 8:05PM
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It will also make it difficult to service--may need to resurrect Groucho Marx.


    Bookmark   May 8, 2010 at 8:28PM
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Clearance on the side will not be restrictive. This is like a 20' X 20" screened porch deck. Over 8' off the ground.


While Carrier says I need 48" clearance above and I've got over 58", I have nagging doubts that paralel your comments.

Both of the Carrier bidders and the Trane bidder were OK with it as it met the Carrier "Specs." (I think the Trane had a solid deflector on top anyway.) I am settled on Carrier.

Does any one have actual experience with mounting an outside unit under a deck? Results?


    Bookmark   May 8, 2010 at 9:16PM
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Bad idea, paulbm is right. And what the manufacter will not tell you is if there is a problem with your unit they can choose not to warranty any parts in the futher. I did have a warranty issue on a unit with 8' of clearance under a deck. Had to relocate and replace compressor motor on three year old unit.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 2:29AM
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Thanks for that info. You installed the unit with the clearance specified as required by the manufacturer and they refused to honor the warranty?

Which manufacturer? I would not deal with them.

Sounds as if I will not install the unit where I wanted.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 8:23AM
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Hey there Saltidawg,

I have to agree with the other guys here. Even if you meet the minimum clearances, you will not get optimum performance. I can assure you, on those hot, humid, very still Rockville days and nights, the unit will recycle warmer condenser air that will accumulate under the deck and end up running hotter and longer. Shade is great but unimpeded and un-deflected overhead clearance will save you money and wear and tear in the long run.

You may have seen the utilities are already asking for rate hikes. You want to squeeze as much out of that thing as you can.

    Bookmark   May 9, 2010 at 9:46PM
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maryland irisman is correct on all counts. you are inviting trouble/problems if you proceeed.plain and simple, this is jusy a bad idea.


    Bookmark   May 10, 2010 at 7:45AM
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I've decided to follow the collective wisdom of you pros and not put the outside unit under the deck. My wife and I worked this weekend to level a space behind the raised porch such that there will be zero vertical overhang and allow for the required horizontal clearances.

I'm disappointed that Carrier specifies an allowed vertical clearance (48") and yet it seems that experience says that this would likely result in problems.

I am so glad that I came here for advice!

    Bookmark   May 10, 2010 at 10:46AM
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