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Old House With Several Challenges - Suggestions?
I've bought a century home that is in amazing and well kept condition. That being said it's old and I'd like to tackle the heating challenge I'll describe here, but WHERE TO START? Suggestions welcome.
About the home: The original house sits on a solid granite block foundation over a shallow crawlspace. By shallow I mean I can't crawl around under it, they didn't need ducting or pipes 125 years ago. In the 1950's the owner commisioned a massive addition to the house that is about as big as the original house was. This two storey addition essentially extended the house frontwards and doubled the house's footprint.
The new addition sits above a full basement and stone(granite block) foundation. So basically the front half of the house has easy access underneath the main floor but the rear does not, at all.
Heating Sources(and challenge).
- Front is heated with an oil furnace through vents, but the vents are ONLY in the front of the house.
- Rear of the house is heated with a wood stove on the main floor, the floor above is on the cold side in winter.
- A rear mudroom required an electric baseboard heater as it was not heated otherwise.
SO - It currently has THREE sources of heat and needs them all in winter to heat each section. It's a challenge to keep the house balanced, especially when out to work for 8 hours and not home to stoke the wood stove. This causes the oil furnace to work harder than it should and it's not doing the job of keeping the back warm(wasn't designed to, no vents, can't put any in on the main floor, no room).
I'm trying to step back and just ask what I would do if this house had no heat at all. It has two beautiful chimneys, the rear works for wood burning and the front is lined for oil furnace, that I'd like to keep.
What would be the most efficient way to get whole house heating into a home like this? Rewiring for electric presents issues in the read, the solid 100+ year old wood floors are not replaceable. No access below....
What would you suggest?