Below are some helpful hints to consider when configuring floors in Cool Calc.
Floors over conditioned spaces do not effect load calculations and should not be accounted for. ACCA Manual J only requires floors separating conditioned and unconditioned spaces to be added. For example, a floor over an unheated garage, or a floor over a crawlspace.
Finished Basements - If the home has a finished basement that is conditioned, then "Basement Floor" should be selected as the Floor Type. Do not select this option if the basement is not heated or cooled.
Concrete Slab on Grade - There are two options in this section that tend to give users issues ("Soil Condition Below Slab" and "Slab Insulation Arrangement". These are tricky, because they are difficult to verify. Good news, Cool Calc automatically adds or omits slab insulation and also determined soil conditions based on the year that the house was built and the location. If you do not know what to enter for these values, we recommend accepting the defaults.
Radiant Flooring - If the home has radiant heating under the floors make sure to select "Radiant Floor Heat" = TRUE. Cool Calc will automatically make the necessary adjustments to the heating temperature difference across the floor since the HTD values for a radiant floor are considerably higher than a standard HTD.
Cool Calc will also omit the radiant floor load from the duct load calculations since duct load is calculated as a percentage of the load subtotal.
My first story floor is currently insulated, over a n unfinished basement, and I am exploring options to insulate the basement walls.
But I can't select insulated floors for this area.
Specifying floors over an unconditioned garage is not obvious. I have two bedrooms on the 2nd floor built over the garage and I don't have confidence that the Load Calc is properly configured. I don't see any difference between these 2 bedrooms & the other 2nd story rooms; so it is not clear to me if ALL rooms have been computed as if over an unconditioned space or if NO rooms have. I would work on making the configuration more obvious. At the moment, I'm not comfortable with the results.
Thank you for the feedback. We are improving this portion of the UI in our next release. By default the program excludes ceilings/floors between conditioned floors unless you tell it otherwise. For example, in your project you have a conditioned basement, first floor, and second floor, so the program will default to the following:
Basement = Has floor load, but no ceiling load
First Floor = Has no floor load and no ceiling load
Second Floor = Has no floor load, but has ceiling load
If you have an exception (like your bedrooms over a garage), you need to manually specify that. If you answered "Yes" to the question "Does the home have a conditioned space over a garage such as a bonus room?" on the dwelling info screen then the program auto-created a "Floor over garage" construction feature for you. Now you just have to tell the program which room it applies to.
To assign that "Bonus Room" floor that was auto-generated to your bedrooms go to the dimensions screen, select the first floor level, and select one of your bedrooms. Then go to the "Floors" tab and add a floor to that room and assign it the "Bonus Room" construction feature. Then do the same for the other bedroom.