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Old 04-28-2009, 08:31 AM   #1
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adding central air

My wife and I are house shopping, and what house that we both like lacks one of the big desires for a new home - central air.

To make matters worse, it's oil / hot water radiator heating.

Someone that I know who knows (or seems to) more about home improvement than I do mentioned he's seen a central air retrofit system that uses flexible hosing and small nozzles instead of duct work to cool the rooms. He said it's a lot less expensive to install because it's a couple 4" holes per room instead of cutting out big sections of plaster and lathe to get ducts in.

Does this exist? Does it cool well?

The house we're looking at is a 3 story 1900's era english tudor - plaster lathe walls, beautiful wood work etc. First floor is kitchen, dining room, foyer and living room - 2nd floor is landing and 4 bedrooms.

Can someone estimate a very very rough ballpark price to add central air to the first 2 floors? Are we in the $10-$15K range or $25K and up? We really have no idea of what range we'd even be looking at.

And also - what is the price range to convert the burner from oil to natural gas? The hot water heater is gas, so there's a feed coming in.

Thanks - I know they're general questions, but even rough rough rough rough ballpark estimates should give us an idea.


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Old 04-28-2009, 09:25 AM   #2
I have gas!
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I think what you're referring to is high velocity air-conditioning. I don't know if it's cheaper to install but the air-handler and flexible ductwork is very expensive.
On a different note, my neighbor just installed standard ac to his ~1500^2 ft house. He paid $10k in the Boston, MA area; that included new duct work.


I tear things down and build them up.
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Old 04-28-2009, 09:45 AM   #3
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Your refering to a High Velocity system.

They are not cheaper to install. They are more expensive to install.

No way to know price without seeing how hard it is to install the system.

Although conversion burners are made. They are inefficienct.

Better offgetting a new gas boiler then just converting the old one.
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Old 04-28-2009, 09:58 AM   #4
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Any other options besides central air?
What's your Cooling Degree Days and max temp/humidity?

Last edited by Yoyizit; 04-28-2009 at 10:08 AM.
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add central air , convert burner , oil heat

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