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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2018
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    Question Air Handler vs. Furnace questions... (installing central air after the fact)

    Hi,

    Homeowner from Colorado here. Have a question about the appropriate system(s) for my situation.

    I live in a house built in the mid 70s - it was built without any A/C at the time.

    The heat is a gas-powered hot water boiler/furnace -- e.g. hydronic baseboard heat. Very happy with that, but of course that leaves us without any ducting.

    I have recently had a couple estimates on adding central cooling and I'd appreciate some clarification on what I am hearing.

    One guy came out and told me not to even bother with anything but a mini-split. (Wanted $$ for the system.... ouch)

    I had another guy who came out and I told him off the bat I didn't want a mini-split if I could help it, due to the cost.

    So he starts talking about adding a unit to the attic and putting some ductwork up there.... but he is saying he'd put in a gas furnace in the attic and we would be able to continue to use the baseboard heat "for the basement"... that sound like overkill, no? (The price he quoted me was only $200 cheaper than what the other guy wanted for the mini-split).

    Is that really necessary? Couldn't I just put an air handler (as opposed to a whole furnace) in the attic, and use that for A/C and continue to use baseboard heat in winter? And would that significantly impact the cost? Any drawbacks?
    Last edited by beenthere; 06-27-2018 at 04:32 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    PA
    Posts
    78,514
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    Yes you can, and no real draw backs.
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