We're restoring/renovating a c.1890s house in an historic district in
San Antonio Texas.
We're just starting to look at heating and cooling systems (it has
neither, tho does have gas lines which were used for wall heaters).
I've called a few places who will come out to give us estimates, but we
have no idea where to really start with what *type* of systems are
available. Google searches yield 1000s of sites, but I thought I'd ask
here for some advice.
Any particularly good websites which describe systems and compare?
We'd like to get the most energy effecient systems possible (1600 SF
house on pier and beam foundation). Suggestions for the best?
We're doing *everything* to this house: repairing foundation and roof,
re-wiring, re-plumbing, installing insulation, gutting the entire
interior....etc. So if you have any suggestions on other aspects for
such a house, all are welcome!
I don't have one, but I like the looks of Durham (www.durham.com)
Duo-rad hydronic system. (Which is a radiator and fan combination
through which you pipe either hot or cold water, depending on the
good luck, I lived as a child though one of these remodels. 1900's farm
house in Iowa, did not even have toilets when we moved in.
this will help you play what if
Interesting site, thanks. That's useful for comparisons.
Quite honestly, Idoubt we'll ever use the a/c except when guests are
over. We're mainly installing it for eventual re-sale, and because we
do need to install the heating system, it's easier to do it all at once
before we move in. We're planning to do Energy Star on everything
I would take a look at the 'Space Pak' air conditioning system ; it
utilizes a blower unit which is tucked away usual in the attic then
small 3" dia. high velocity insulated ducts are ran to the corner
(usually) of each room . There are round very unobtrusive looking
ceiling outlets which are flush with the ceiling for a very clean
looking appearance. The system is quiet and it is very popular in
multistory homes or homes where its very important to keep its original
look inside. Not sure if heating comes with this system or, if its just
straight cooling. But you should check into it. Ive seen a couple and
the owners were very pleased .
Dang..How can you possibly live in San Antonio and NOT use the AC?
I live in Bastrop (Austin area) and can't imagine not using the AC in the
hot humid summers.
Heating is what I would expect not to use much here..
I know, everyone tells us one can not survive w/o a/c, but we managed
just fine since 2002 in a house w/o a/c. Fortunately both of us prefer
it like that - the one thing I really hate about Texas in the summer is
that you have to carry a bloody jacket or fleece with you everywhere
you go thanks to the a/c. I've lived in much hotter climes in the
tropics, so it's normal for me (and I grew up in east LA w/o a/c - not
as humid, but much hotter). Oddly enough, DH is from Switzerland but
also prefers the lack of a/c.
That the house was built pre-central a/c days, it is well situated with
high ceilings, pier/beam foundation, lots of shade trees, windows in
appropriate places, etc.
We're installing it due to aforementioned people who swear one can not
survive w/o it. Since those will likely be the potential buyers in 5+
If you are looking for the most efficient system look at a Geothermal
system. Climatemaster and Florida Heatpump are two. They arent real
cheap to install but you said you wanted efficient and didnt give a
whole lot of other info. You will need room to add the regular
If you dont have the room, a high velocity system cuts down on the
amount of ducting you need but if you look at the match-ups of
equipment, that system kills your efficiency and actual BTU's.
Your best bet would be to go into detail with the HVAC companies that
I'd spend a few dollars and have a mechanical engineer do heat
loss/gain calculaions, size the ducts, locate the supply & return
grilles, choose the equipment.
In an existing house that is being gutted, you have a chance to do a
really nice job.
No one here can see the arrangement of rooms, exposure of the building
and so on.
Thanks to all for the advice.
We're having a couple of people come out this weekend to work up
estimates. I just wanted to have an idea of where to start. The volume
of info is overwhelming. It's useful to learn about ductless,
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