Section M1602 Return Air
- Openings shall not be located less than 10 feet (3048 mm) measured in any direction from an open combustion chamber or draft hood of another appliance located in the same room or space.
- The amount of return air taken from any room or space shall be not greater than the flow rate of supply air delivered to such room or space.
- Return and transfer openings shall be sized in accordance with the appliance or equipment manufacturers' installation instructions, Manual D or the design of the registered design professional.
- Taking return air from a kitchen is not prohibited where such return air openings serve the kitchen only, and are located not less than 10 feet (3048 mm) from the cooking appliances.
- Dedicated forced-air systems serving only the garage shall not be prohibited from obtaining return air from the garage.
- Taking return air from an unconditioned crawl space shall not be accomplished through a direct connection to the return side of a forced-air furnace. Transfer openings in the crawl space enclosure shall not be prohibited.
- Return air from one dwelling unit shall not be discharged into another dwelling unit.
Restricted return air occurs in buildings when returns are located in central zones and closed interior doors impede air flow to the return grill or when ceiling spaces are used as return plenums and fire walls restrict air movement from one portion of the return plenum to another. Provisions shall be made in both residential and commercial buildings to avoid unbalanced air flows and pressure differentials caused by restricted return air. Pressure differentials across closed doors where returns are centrally located shall be limited to 0.01 inch WC (2.5 pascals) or less. Pressure differentials across fire walls in ceiling space plenums shall be limited to 0.01 inch WC (2.5 pascals) by providing air duct pathways or air transfer pathways from the high pressure zone to the low zone.
- Transfer ducts may achieve this by increasing the return transfer 11/2 times the cross sectional area (square inches) of the supply duct entering the room or space it is serving and the door having at least an unrestricted 1-inch undercut to achieve proper return air balance.
- Transfer grilles shall use 50 square inches (of grille area) to 100 cfm (of supply air) for sizing throughthe-wall transfer grilles and using an unrestricted 1- inch undercutting of doors to achieve proper return air balance.
- Habitable rooms only shall be required to meet these requirements for proper balanced return air excluding bathrooms, closets, storage rooms and laundry rooms, except that all supply air into the master suite shall be included.