Thinking About Refinishing Your Basement? Is Your HVAC System Ready?

by Chris Long - January 4, 2018

Messy basement ready to be remodled

What are you doing with your basement in Bucks County?

Is it just the place where you store old Christmas decorations? Or is it a space where you and your family can hang out and entertain guests?

If you’re thinking of turning the former into the latter, you also need to think about your HVAC system. Think about whether it can accommodate the added space, and how you can keep heating and cooling components accessible during renovation.

Do You Need a New HVAC System for Your Basement?

Ductwork in the ceiling joists.The answer to this question will hinge on a few factors. Chief among them, the ability of your HVAC system to heat and cool the basement in addition to the sections of your home it’s already servicing. A visit from a heating and cooling professional can determine whether your system can handle this job.

Assuming you don’t need a new HVAC system, the next step will involve extending ductwork into your new basement living space. This step is simplest when dealing with a basement that’s in the early stages of renovation, or is still unfinished.

Ductwork extensions and registers can be attached to return ducts, and new ductwork is easily hidden between ceiling joists or within new closets.

Heating and Cooling Your Basement

Even if you have a finished basement with inaccessible ductwork, that doesn’t mean you automatically need to spring for a new HVAC system.

You still have other heating and cooling options to choose from, including:

  • Electric resistance heaters, which use a heating element like the ones found in space heaters
  • Baseboard heaters, a popular option in cooler climates. These heaters have a limited range, so you may need to have at least one per room.
  • Radiant heat systems, which use heating cables installed into the floor
  • Ductless mini-split systems, which are used to heat and cool rooms.

Ductless Mini-splitDuctless mini-split systems are basically small heat pumps that use an outdoor compressor and an indoor air hander, connected with tubes that hold refrigerant.

While a mini-split system can be costly to install, you’ll save money on your energy bill by choosing a system that uses less power than a forced air system. It also lets you create zones around your home, keeping you from needing to cool rooms that aren’t in use.

These systems are easy to install, and can reduce your carbon footprint. And while a window-mounted air conditioner would be unfeasible for most basements, a mini-split system mounts on the wall and requires only a small hole to connect the outdoor and indoor components.

Finally, because these systems are ductless, you won’t need to worry about losing heat or cool air through faulty ductwork.

If you’re ready to install a ductless mini-split system in your basement, All Seasons Comfort Control can help. We install systems from Mitsubishi Electric, designed to make your home more comfortable while improving energy efficiency.

And if you’re about to embark on a basement redesign and want a professional opinion on your HVAC system, we can help with that too. Contact us today to find out how our team can make your basement a place where you’ll want to spend time.

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