Should You Use Your Central Heating System in Your Home Addition?

Have you recently constructed a structural addition in your home? One important issue to address is whether to use your current central heating system for the extra space. Reliable heating is particularly important if you wish to use the addition as a living space. Should you use your existing unit or invest in a new heating and air conditioning unit? Here are a few questions to guide your decision.

How Old Is the System?

How old is your central heating system? Is it due for an upgrade or have you recently installed it? Extending an old heating system to a structural addition can present various issues. First, the system components may already be worn and inefficient. Thus, they may not adequately warm your new space. 

If your central heating system is too old, it may no longer be on the market. This will present challenges when looking for compatible components for the structural addition. For old systems, consider installing a separate heating system for the addition. You can opt for affordable options such as ductless mini-split systems as you plan for an upgrade of your central heating system.

Can the System Handle the Load?

Sometimes, the age of your central heating system isn't the problem. Can the system handle the extra heating load without suffering inefficiencies? A rule of thumb when buying HVAC equipment is sizing it to your current needs. Thus, you conduct a heating audit and buy a heating system that is neither too big nor too small for your home. Such a system may not be able to serve the extra rooms in your addition.

Before connecting your central heating system to a structural addition, seek advice from an HVAC contractor. They can determine your current heating load against the size of the existing system. If the unit isn't big enough to heat the addition, don't use it. Instead, invest in a separate unit for the extra space. This way, you will protect the central unit from premature wear, overheating, and heating inefficiencies.

What's Your Installation Budget?

How much is the installation budget for your structural addition? If you decide to use your central heating system, you need to invest in additional ductwork or water piping, depending on the heater you have. You may also require additional HVAC equipment and a new electrical panel to manage the extra load. If you opt for a new system, you can buy a ductless split system to heat and cool the new space. Compare the costs of both installations to determine the most affordable one.

The choice between extending your central heating system and investing in a new unit for your addition depends on these factors. Consult a heating service for professional input.