When planning a second-floor addition to your Wichita-area home, keep in mind that several options exist for heating and cooling two-story additions. Factors to consider include the size, age and efficiency of your existing HVAC system, as well as the dimensions and location of the addition. Here are you main options:
Upgrading your HVAC system – It’s important to have your home properly sized by your HVAC contractor, factoring in the additional square footage of the addition. From there, the contractor can help you determine if the existing system is adequate or if you need heating and cooling equipment with a higher capacity. If your existing system is large enough but more than 10-15 years old, you may want to consider upgrading to new, high-efficiency equipment to save energy and money over the long term.
Extending your existing system – If your existing system is large enough to accommodate the addition, and working relatively well, your best option may be to extend your ductwork to the new space. Consider configuring this as a separate zone, with its own programmable thermostat to control dampers within the ductwork. This is an energy-efficient strategy, as it allows for the delivery of conditioned air only when needed.
Installing an independent system – A system’s capacity for heating and cooling a second-floor addition is significantly reduced if the distance between the addition and the main trunk of the ducting are too far apart. In this scenario, installing an independent system is the way to go. One option is to install a small, efficient, traditional furnace and A/C or heat pump. Other options include:
Ductless mini-split – These energy-efficient heat pump systems don’t use ducts to do their work, which means no energy losses from leaky ducts. With one or more indoor air handlers, they also allow for zoned temperature control.
Hydronic equipment – Hidden within the floor (heating) or the ceiling (cooling), this system uses temperature controlled water to heat or cool the space.
For more information about heating and cooling a second-floor addition, call the experts at Comfort Systems. Our fully licensed and bonded technicians are proud to serve residents of the Wichita area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Wichita, Kansas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about heating and cooling a second-floor addition and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.