If you have been living in a one story home, there is a good chance that it is has been relatively easy to keep your home cool in the summer and warm in the winter. Not only that, but there is a good chance that it has been easy to keep the energy bills down. When you add a new story, however, things get a little more complicated. Not only do you have to expend more energy to keep your home’s climate regulated, but you may have to completely upgrade your HVAC system to compensate for the extra square footage. Luckily, there are a number of excellent options to heat and cool your two story home. Here are some two story addition heating and cooling options.
- Switch to a central HVAC system. If you didn’t have a central air conditioning system before, you may want to install one now that you have two stories. Oftentimes, you are forced to use your ground system on full blast, which can be inefficient and can put stress on your current unit. With a central system, however, you can use tools – like WiFi thermostats - to control the climate in your home.
- Keep your old system and re-route the ductwork. If you already have a central HVAC system, you may want to simply reroute the ductwork so that you get vent registers in the rooms on your second story. If you go for this option, you need to make sure that your contractor or architect makes room for new ductwork in the plans – otherwise you won’t be able to reroute.
- Use zoned heating and cooling. Another option is to use a zoned heating and cooling system. This system offers you the opportunity to control the climate in different quadrants of your home. For instance, if you place the master bedroom in the new second story, you can place a heating and cooling zone in that room. This is usually an upgrade to a split system or a central HVAC system, so you may want to consider your options because it could be beyond your budget limit.
- Install a separate system for the second story. If you are on a budget and you don’t want to upgrade to a central HVAC system, you may want to install a split unit for your second story. A split unit doesn’t require ductwork – it requires installing an outdoor unit that is connected to an indoor unit. The indoor unit uses a fan to spread cool air or warm air throughout your home. Having a split system on your ground floor and second floor will offer some amazing cost-savings benefits.
- Keep your current heating and air conditioning system and don’t do anything. Another option is to simply not do anything at all. If adding the second story wiped out your current budget, you may want to keep your current system and see how it fares. You may have to adjust, but there is a good chance that the warm and cool air will easily reach your second story. If you decide later that you want to upgrade – and you have the budget – you can always upgrade.
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