I love seeing smart remodeling, but in this house the "New laundry space in the furnace room!" added unintended problems.
Another feature was added to the list: "New washer and dryer!"
The laundry room on the upstairs bedroom level was closed off and the space was used to add to the master bathroom, increasing the size of the shower and adding a linen closet. It looked great!
What's the problem?
There are a couple really.
First, the dryer is too close to the heat pump to be able to work on the unit, or replace it if needed.
Second, and very important, the dryer is too close to the heat pump to remove the filter!
This heat pump has been in the house since 2006. It is fine, was installed well and is in good condition.
The homeowners chose to install a large media filter with their new system. It is fine, was installed well and is in good condition.
But the new laundry room makes it impossible to get the filter out! In that photo the filter is pulled out as far as it can be, and there are still 9" or so to go! It can't be removed.
Looking underneath the filter it is very dirty. It has been a while since it was replaced! Media filters all have their replacement requirements, every 2 or 3 months is usually recommended.
How long has it been since this filter was replaced? Perhaps since the installation of the new washer and dryer in the new laundry room?
My recommendation: all furnace manufacturers have requirement as to working space in front of their units. They have those requirements for a reason! In the unit above even a regular filter could not have been inserted or removed, without bending it severely that is. And bending filters is not good. It damages the filter structure and can cause weakening and gaps. But this media filter cannot be bent at all! Remodeling is great. Unintended consequences are not.
Jay Markanich Real Estate Inspections, LLC
Based in Bristow, serving all of Northern Virginia.
Office (703) 330-6388 Cell (703) 585-7560