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Builing an addition and upgrading oil burner

bilc16 Member Posts: 5
Hi all,

I'm raising my roof and adding a full second story on my 1 story ranch.  I currently have hot water radiators in my home, and the furnace is vented out of a chimney located almost right in the center of my house.  The oil burner is 60 years old and needs to be replaced.  I also have an old central air system that is going to be replaced if it's in the budget.  I was told that I can direct vent a new high efficiency burner out of the wall eliminating the need of my chimney (I don't have fireplaces).  The guy who told me that also said I should put forced air heating in the second floor because I can use the same air handler as the a/c and it's more efficient than radiators. 

Can you guys please help me with my options and what equipment will need to be purchased?  Do I go radiators for heat and a separate A/C unit or should/can I add all forced air in the addition (heat and cool)?



  • STEVEusaPA
    STEVEusaPA Member Posts: 6,505

    Depends on what is going into the addition (M Bath?)

    Depending on budget, I would run pipes up to the second floor and use radiant heat/baseboard, etc.

    You can vent thru the wall...

    '...more efficient?...maybe, maybe not. But hydronic heat, especially radiant is much more comfortable then forced air.

    For A/C, you could go with conventional a/c (I would do a heat pump and have back up, or use in huge shoulder seasons), or mini splits.

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  • chapchap70
    chapchap70 Member Posts: 139
    More efficient?

    When comparing ducts (air) with pipes, (water) pipes are more efficient.  Average heat loss through ducts for heating is about 25% compared with 6% through pipes.  Forced air (furnace) is cheaper to install than hydronic with radiators/baseboard/radiant. (boiler) 

    One reason the mini-split A/C is more efficient than conventional is because the mini-splits do not have ducts that leak.

    From what you stated about using the same air handler for heating and cooling, I gather that your friend was talking about installing a boiler and running pipes to the heating air handler coil.  With not seeing the job, I would use baseboard/radiator/radiant and mini-splits instead of using ducts if I had the $$$.  This is more expensive to install but cheaper to operate.

    If you use through the wall venting, make sure you have proper distance from openings and the vent terminates above the snow line.  Sometimes this is easier said than done.