High ceilings make a big difference in a home. No matter what the square footage, it always feels much roomier when there’s extra headroom. But, that space can throw off the heating and cooling.
We explained this to a homeowner in Boise, ID who called us about her second-floor loft space. She had what was technically a one-story home.
But, since the ceilings were very high, she had some extra living space in a second-floor loft area. The only problem was the ductwork and vents didn’t quite reach that area.
As a result, the loft wasn’t a year-round room. It would get way too cold in the winter and way too hot in the summer. Could we help?
We sure could! After checking out the space, we told our homeowner about ductless heating and cooling. After doing some more research and asking us some questions, she decided it was the way to go.
In this case study, we’ll go over:
- Challenges Of Heating And Cooling A Loft
- How A Ductless System Solves The Problem
- More Benefits Of Ductless Heating And Cooling
- Ductless Mini Split Installation In A Boise, ID Loft
And, if anything we discuss here sounds familiar in your Boise, ID home, call or email us here at Snowflake Air for a free consultation! We’ll help you decide if a system like this is the right choice for you.
Problem: A second-floor loft bonus room in a Boise, ID home did not get enough service from the existing ductwork. As a result, it was freezing in the winter and sweltering in the summer.
Solution: Installed a one-zone ductless mini split in the room. Now, the loft has heating and cooling for year-round comfort. The installation was quick and easy, and the system doesn’t take a lot of room.
- 1 Challenges Of Heating And Cooling A Loft
- 2 How A Ductless System Solves The Problem
- 3 More Benefits Of Ductless Heating And Cooling
- 4 Ductless Mini Split Installation In A Boise, ID Loft
Challenges Of Heating And Cooling A Loft
Forced-air heating and cooling works great in any conventional home layout. But, it shows its limitations when it comes to layouts with high ceilings or unusual spaces like lofts.
The problem is that you can only get so much pressure out of one system. And, the more vents you add, the less pressure you have overall.
Then, you have heat naturally rising. It collects near the ceiling in the summer because more heat is beating down on the roof from outside.
In the winter, the heat rises and then escapes through any crack, opening, or draft it can find. That’s why our homeowner was getting those extreme temperature differences in the loft.
Like most homes, this Boise, ID house had one HVAC system with only one thermostat. So, it was a one-size-fits-all solution for a home with different temperatures.
How A Ductless System Solves The Problem
We recommended a ductless mini split heating and air conditioning system because:
- It Can Treat A Single Problem Area
- It Does A Great Job Circulating Air
- It’s Quick And Easy To Install
How Ductless Mini Split Systems Work
We go over how these HVAC setups work in greater detail in other articles, and you can find one in the link below. For now, here’s a quick primer:
You have an air handler inside that circulates air. Then, there’s an outside heat pump moving heat in and out of the house. A lineset running refrigerant liquid connects the two.
Treating A Single Problem Area
The air handler has a built-in thermostat. This way, we can now measure the temperature in the exact problem spot we’re dealing with. In this case, it’s the loft area.
Now, our homeowner sets the temperature she wants for the loft only using a remote control. Then, the indoor unit heat and cools accordingly. And, it works independently from the existing ductwork.
A Great Job Circulating Air
Next, the indoor unit does the job really, really well. For starters, it doesn’t just take one temperature measurement and work based on that.
Instead, it can detect hot and cold spots within the space it’s treating. Then, it can direct the treated air over to those spots. This way, it creates more consistent, even heating and air conditioning across that space.
Fast, Easy Installation
The indoor and outdoor ductless units don’t take up much room. And, the lineset that connects them is very narrow — much smaller than ducts. It’s also flexible, which gives us more options when it comes to placement.
More Benefits Of Ductless Heating And Cooling
Once we went over all this with our homeowner, she realized that this was a great solution to her problem. Then, she found out about a few more benefits.
In particular, the ductless system is whisper-quiet and energy-efficient.
Since the indoor unit doesn’t use forced air, it doesn’t produce anywhere near the same noise as air rushing through the vents.
In fact, there’s barely any sound at all. Unless the house is silent and it’s on full blast, our homeowner doesn’t hear a thing. This feature comes in handy here since the loft is a small area in the house.
After the cost of installation, our homeowner barely pays anything at all! These systems are Energy Star certified, which means they use much less power than other HVAC systems.
Ductless Mini Split Installation In A Boise, ID Loft
All told, our homeowner had her new system up and running in no time at all!
Once she decided it was the way to go, we spent an hour or so going over different options and pricing. Then, we looked over the space again to decide where to place everything.
The best spot was on a half-wall that made for a little nook in the room. This way, the treated air would reach the main area as well as the cozy space behind it.
That spot was close to the window and exterior wall. We drilled a small hole behind the air handler and ran the lines through the wall out to the heat pump. This way, all our homeowner sees inside the house is the air handler on the wall.
Outside, there’s some piping leading to the heat pump. It’s pretty small and almost looks like a gutter.
And, that’s it! The ductless mini split installation only takes a day for a single-zone setup like this. Now, our homeowner is set for years to come.