I just relocated to San Francisco and we bought a small house (whew! everything is so expensive in SF!).. This old house that we got has a downstairs in-law units which has VERY LOW ceiling mainly due to the huge furnace pipes and therefore we are only using the whole area for washer/dryer. I'm really thinking of converting this area into a computer room, but we have to do some remodeling or upgrades for the furnace (at least the huge pipes) I guess. I have shot some photos with my digital camera and the photos could be found at here:
Could someone please post some advices about what I could/should do with this huge and old furnace system?? I know very little about this type of furnace system (not even sure whether it is gas, water, or electrical).. I think it is still working, but it seems that it only works for upstairs units but not the downstairs in-law units. Few more questions here:
(1) Generally speaking, is it possible to have two seperate switches for the heater for both upstairs unit and downstairs unit??
(2) For this kind of old furnace system, should I remodel/upgrade it right now? If not, how should I "maintain" this kind of old furnace system?
(3) Could anyone please estimate how much it might cost for remodel/upgrade this furnace/heater system??
by the way, I found that the downstairs unit is very humid even in winter, and one of the walls (newly painted 6 months ago) that is facing the garden, is starting to get some "wrinkles" on the surface, which looks really ugly and I believe that it was caused by either the humidity or the wet garden soil outside of the wall. Is there anything I could do about this?? Here is a photo of how the wall looks like (the last photo): http://www.picturetrail.com/hotister /