Periodic Blower (Fan only) Cycle

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    Matt Broda

    To add another thought to the above: I would love to see a feature that allows me to configure each Flair Vent with the maximum percentage open setting.  This way the vent is either closed, or when opened it is opened to the maximum setting.  This allows for compensating for the shorter air duct runs closer to the furnace that notoriously get hotter air when heating and colder air when cooling and it is coming at a higher velocity due to the proximity to the furnace.

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    Chris Traeger

    I'm not sure what the problem is here.  This thread is 2 years old and still no fix for this.  Seems like such an easy fix that can also be built upon with relative ease...

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    Sal

    +1 for some sort of fan only operation mode. 
    Using Nest + Flair.

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    Buy account

    Actually this feature would be beneficial in Summer for basement:

    Right now, we do not support this custom mode due to the way our backend integration works with ecobee. We do have a mode that we're testing where your Smart Vent can look at the air temperature coming from the fan and measure this against the temperature seen in the room, but that doesn't seem like something you're looking for with ventilation.

    Because of AC in summer month my Flair vents in the basement are completely closed 100% of the time because the rooms are always under the set point, however when the system is in fan mode, the air in the duct is warmer than the basement temperature, and this could help prevent air in the basement from becoming stale and also push more of the cold basement air to be redistributed within the house...

     

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    Matt Broda

    Actually - the above functionality that compares the temperature of air at the vent and the temperature of the room would likely work for my case.  If the room is below setpoint and the air coming into the vent is warmer, Flair should open the vent; if the room is above the setpoint and the air coming into the vent is colder, Flair should open the vent.  Otherwise the vent should remain closed.

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    Sal

    I agree, but want to make sure a key point isn't overlooked:
    "Otherwise the vent should remain closed."

    Keeping the vent closed would prevent cold air from falling back down through the vents into the basement. Good suggestions Matt!

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    Chris Traeger

    I mean ideally it would work off of the ecobee sensors/pucks.  For example:

    Set temp 72

    Room 1: 71

    Room 2: 65

    Room 3: 78

    Room 4: 73

    Room 5: 72

    room 6: 62

    Room 7: 79

     

    In this sense the average is approx 71.5 which will not initiate a call to ecobee, however, if flair was able to see that the rooms with largest delta to open and start the fan it could balance them out.  In this example it would be room 2,3,6,7.  Ecobee could just turn on the fan and redistribute the air to these rooms.  This seems like a simple coding exercise.  Does Flair have anyting like this in the works?

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    Ken Schnautz

    2 years ago we got a reply from @... that read:

    Most, if not all, of our customers look for temperature-based automation, but I've passed this on to our engineering team to consider with respect to ventilation-based automation.

    I think the customer base has spoken -- we believe this feature request to be significant. We've had many users suggest methods by which they'd like to see venting options implemented. I wanted to take a moment to summarize, since I see several use-cases that would need to act differently. 

    In short, there's a handful of unique features being requested. The first is to recognize and respond to a thermostat-driven fan-only cycle by opening some or all vents. The second is to prevent or allow natural venting. Third is to generate a fan-only cycle requested by Flair. None are mutually exclusive, and all can be used differently together.

    RECIRCULATION MODES: determines how vents act during a fan-only cycle.

    • OPTION 1 - RECIRCULATE ALL: During a fan-only cycle, open all vents.
    • OPTION 2 - RECIRCULATE EXTREMA: During a fan-only cycle, open only vents that exceed a given temperature delta. [Requires user to input a threshold for room variance that will trigger this mode.]

    DEFAULT VENT POSITION: allows Flair to change vent positions when not in use.

    • OPTION 1 - DEFAULT TO CLOSED: All vents remain closed if no equipment is running. This will prevent rooms from naturally venting when not heating, cooling, or recirculating.
    • OPTION 2 - DEFAULT TO OPEN: All vents remain open when no equipment is running. This allows air to naturally vent while no equipment runs, facilitating usage of additional devices such as a humidifier or dehumidifier that do not interface with the thermostat.
    • OPTION 3 - NO DEFAULT: Vents neither open nor close when no equipment is running. They retain their last state.

    FAN-ONLY RECIRCULATION REQUEST BY FLAIR: allows Flair to request a fan-only cycle.

    • OPTION 1 - ENABLED: When a high variance occurs in room temperatures, but the average room temperature doesn't justify heating or cooling, utilize a fan-only cycle to circulate air. Flair will request a fan-only cycle, during which time your RECIRCULATION MODE setting applies. [Requires user to input a threshold for room variance that will trigger this mode.]
    • OPTION 2 - DISABLED: Flair will not request any fan cycles to mix air. Your thermostat can still initiate its own periodic or manual fan cycle, during which time your RECIRCULATION MODE setting applies.

    Hopefully I've summarized and captured everyone's ideas well!

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    Matt

    As you contemplate those options, please also consider how Flair knows if a fan-only cycle or in-use/not in-use is currently happening.

    • When Flair controls everything, it's obvious is Flair is calling for fan or something else or nothing.
    • When Ecobee (or another connected thermostat) is controlling, the integration can determine what is going on.
    • When some other thermostat with no integration is controlling equipment, it's obviously more difficult.

    Something like a duct temperature delta combined with the settings above might be enough.  A heat or cool cycle both produce a much larger duct temperature difference that just the fan running.  Using that combined with the settings above could achieve similar result.

     

    In my current setup without a connected thermostat and Flair set to Mode Auto Heat/Cool, when a fan only cycle runs, the Flair system seems to assume the house is heating.  This opens up the cold basement vents, as the vent air is slightly warmer than the room.  It keeps the few upstairs vents closed, as those rooms don't need heating.  But, it's not entirely clear why Fair assumes the house is in heating mode.  It would be more accurate to assume it's in a fan mode and neither heating nor cooling and then take action based on that.

    I have 3 pucks.  With 1 in the cold basement and 2 upstairs.  But, 7 vents in the cold basement and 2 upstairs.  The vent temp is above all the room temps, but only by a few degrees.  When an actual heating or cooling cycle runs, the vent temp is significantly more than 15, probably more then 20 degrees different from the room temps, larger difference when heating but still substantial for cooling.

     

    This unconnected configuration does mean my cold basement vents open and allow air exchange with the warmer upstairs rooms when the fan only cycle runs.  At least for the upstairs rooms that don't have Flair vents.  I replaced exactly 1/3 of my vents with Flair, so they can all close if needed.

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    Matt Broda

    There may be two distinct scenarios based on Flair capability to make call for heat / cooling / fan.  Assuming that Flair is in passive mode - it can detect whether thermostat calls for heat / cooling / fan, but cannot request it, the setup when Flair compares the air temperature at the vent with room temperature and decides to open the vent if the delta moves the room temperature towards the setpoint may be the safest option.  If Flair can actively request heating or cooling from the thermostat this opens additional possibilities for setups (like mine) where there furnace fan is in always-on mode recirculating air and in auto mode heating or cooling depending on the need; in this scenario Flair could actively even out temperature by calling for heat with only the vents in cold places open or calling for cooling with only vents in the warm room opened.

    Note, that in my observation Flair switches from heat to cool mode depending on the last call from the thermostat.  This means that after a heat or cooling call the vents that were closed remain closed and the ones that were open remain open.  However, the furnace keeps circulating air afterwards and this arrangement misses the opportunity to even out the temperature across the house.

    I would love to test the experimental feature mentioned above: "we're testing where your Smart Vent can look at the air temperature coming from the fan and measure this against the temperature seen in the room".  It sounds like it would take care of my issues around equalizing the temperature across the house.  If the trigger points are implemented the right way the system should be able to open the vents for ventilation when the temperature has equalized.

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    Buy account

    I have 14 Flair vents installed out of 18 registers. Still my basement is consistently 3 degrees colder than the rest of the house because of stratification (and probably an insufficient air return in the basement?) I appreciate that I am now not freezing in my office while my partner is sweltering in his (he gets the sun in the morning). But if the basements vents opened when the air is recirculating I think this would help curb the stratification, and possibly save on energy by forcing more cold air to be recirculated through the house.

    Flair can and should be smarter (and greener)

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    David Elkin-Bram

    Another EcoBee example here.

    Our bedrooms are configured with Flair vents and pucks.

    Last year we changed out the old heat only system for a full heat pump based HVAC.  The system has UV and ozone filtration.

    We have the blower configured to be on 50 to 55 out of 60 minutes.  This is great for the rest of the house, but the bedrooms are more often than not, failing to circulate air thanks to remaining closed.  This recirculation concept seems like something that would be fairly important to address with a feature update.

    Finding this thread is more than 2 years old, does not inspire confidence.  Taking recent pandemic delays into account…  it's still overdue guys.

    Folks here, have taken the time to detail this pretty thoroughly, and I'm a bit surprised there's no (apparent) impetus to move on this important efficiency update.  The system is essentially defeating the health benefits of the filtration system for these rooms.

    Our installer recommended removing the vents, since they do not seem to support the recirculation recommended by the HVAC manufacturer.  We kept them, but now that we've had about a year with the HVAC changes, I'm leaning towards removal and would not recommend.  This is solely based on the missing fan only recirculation feature discussed here.  If this were to be implemented, this would again be a "complete solution."  As it is, it has only really been helpful for us when we had an overpowered heat only system.

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    Daniel Myers

    Hello All,

    Just wanted to let you know we slotted this in to the engineering queue.  We have one time sensitive project ahead of this for a utility partner but then will be working on this.

    Cheers,
    Dan

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    Matt Broda

    Any updates on the beta rollout for this feature?

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    Ryandevans

    Also just popping in to see if any updates?

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    Matthew Gleed

    Due to NDA I can't talk about anything specific but the message 4 months ago calling for Beta testers can be taken at face value.

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    Matt Broda

    I am confused then.  I did sign up for the beta - if there is ongoing beta for this would someone from Flair staff please DM me?

    Also, for some reason I can no longer access this forum from Safari - I get a message to enable Cookies but no obvious way to do it.

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    Chris Traeger

    Hi, 

    this is great news that the new option is done however, I am having trouble seeing the option in both the iphone app and online.  Is this update live?  I am running the latest version of the software.

     

    Thanks,

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    Flair Customer Support

    Hi Chris Traeger,

    Thanks for reporting. This has been fixed and should be working now.

    All the best,

    Finn

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    Matt Broda

    I have been running the Enhanced Circulation Mode for a couple of weeks now and am happy to report that the temperature delta between the extremities of the house has dropped from ~2-2.5C to 1-1.5C, which is same or better than what we have been experiencing with manually balanced vents before installing Flair.  I found the "Enable for All Vents" to be the most effective mode.  Unfortunately testing this with AC will have to wait until the next season.

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