Some of the biggest decisions homeowners face also seem the simplest on face value: where to put an important appliance, for example. In some cases, there are plenty of options — you can arrange a sitting room however you like, for example. When it comes to your heating and cooling systems, though, there aren’t as many choices left on the table. Homes with basements, if they exist in the region, may opt to place them in such an underground space. Other units occupy garages or live in special utility closets. Others choose to locate their HVAC system in the attic.
Is that a good idea? It can be, depending on your home. In fact, there are five benefits that homeowners can enjoy from such a placement. One important thing to note: these benefits assume that your attic is not an unconditioned space, that is, outside of the “thermal envelope” of the home. Systems exposed to the ambient outdoor temperature will be much more inefficient, costing up to 20% more regarding energy consumption. Before making final decisions on an attic installation, consult a heating and cooling expert first. If your attic is well-insulated and inside the envelope, you can enjoy the following perks.
- Quieter Operation for a More Peaceful Home
Do you ever tire of hearing your air conditioner or furnace turn on, filling nearby spaces with a persistent noise until the cycle finishes? Though it may not happen frequently, some air handler units are still loud enough to disrupt those who prefer the quiet. In this case, putting the HVAC system in the attic is a perfect choice. Isolated from the rest of the home, you may never have to hear it again, which will provide you with the peace you want. Just don’t forget about it entirely. Even though it may be quieter after moving it to the attic, you’ll still need to tend to regular maintenance needs, such as filter changes.
- Putting an HVAC System in the Attic Saves Space
When living space is at a premium, every little bit of extra space counts. Though the HVAC equipment placed inside your home may not always be large, it still requires a dedicated space, such as a closet. Larger homes, of course, will also feature larger units which can require consuming even more “livable space.” By moving HVAC systems to attic space, you can reclaim valuable floor space. For example, if your utility closet was placed near a bathroom, you could gain space to expand the bathroom into during a renovation. Meanwhile, though you might lose a bit of attic storage space, the trade-off is worthwhile.
- Attic Installations Are Typically Less Expensive
Running ducting through an attic, especially one that spans the entire length of the house, is very easy compared to other HVAC jobs. That alone often contributes to a lower overall labor cost when installing HVAC equipment in your attic. While this is not always the case as homes do vary, the reduced installation cost is indeed another benefit to consider. For a clear picture of whether it’s genuinely the more budget-friendly option, request a quote from a trusted local provider of heating and cooling service.
- Attics Are a Fine Place to Install a Heat Pump
While attics are not recommended for high-efficiency furnaces, they can support a heat pump-style furnace with no issues, because heat pumps are, in essence, a backwards air conditioner — so much of the equipment is the same. In fact, you could even place a combination air conditioner and heater in your attic if you choose to rely on a heat pump. This configuration ensures that you can not only enjoy warm air in the winter when you need it, but you can do so while also tapping into the other benefits of attic placement.
- You Can Reach Every Room of the House with Ease
Remember how we mentioned that part of the easy installation is the ability to run ducting throughout the attic itself? That also means it’s easy to supply every room in the house with hot or cold air as needed. Instead of ending up with zones in your house where it just never seems to cool off or warm up, you can ensure an evener climate throughout your space.
Getting the Most Out of Your HVAC System
So, should you decide to move everything up to the attic? That will depend on your individual situation. If you already have an HVAC system in your attic, improving the space could offer options for improving efficiency and your overall satisfaction with the system’s performance. The best solution for determining the right choice for your home is to consult the professionals. With help on your side, you can tap into the system that will truly be most beneficial now and in the future.
Valley Comfort conducts HVAC system installation and repair services in the following communities: Santa Rosa, Napa, Rohnert Park, Healdsburg, St Helena, Calistoga and Windsor.