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Old 02-21-10, 08:18 AM   #1
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Default DIY ventilation heat exchanger

I am thinking more and more about our upcoming renovation, a part of which will hopefully be redoing our ventilation system. One of the things that would greatly increase the efficiency of the new setup is an air-air heat exchanger (recuperator). The ones I've seen here cost the equivalent of US$2000-2500, which seems a lot. Does anyone know how easy it would be to build one at home?

I found a local forum (in Polish) where someone was planning to make one. The plan was for a 120cm long countercurrent heat exchanger, with 200mm or 250mm diameter input/output and 25m^2 of exchange area. The calculations for the number of sheets of thin steel (later copper or aluminum) needed came to a cost of 60%-70% of a factory-made unit, plus random parts, machinery, at least a whole week of time, etc. The whole thread was 60 pages long, with 50 posts/page, and a change in design every 5 posts, so I gave up after the second page and have no idea if the project ever got off the ground. No pictures in that thread (or only for registered users).

Any ideas on how to go about making a more or less efficient (60+%) heat exchanger? Pictures/drawings of the insides of different types would be nice, as would a cost vs. efficiency comparison.

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