According to an article in the Sac Bee, our governor has remodeling on his mind these days.1 It sounds like the Governor’s Mansion–an historic building that’s as much public office as it is private residence–is getting a remodel done right. We’re glad to see that kind of thinking from Governor Brown because as HVAC contractors we love when people remodel the right way.
The Exciting Remodeling Process
The remodeling process is exhilarating; you work with a contractor to draw up plans and then you watch as those plans come to fruition in your own home! Every day you see your home come closer to your vision, and you develop a close bond with your contractor as well as the other people working in your house. We love getting to know our clients, and remodels are one of the best ways to do that.
Any remodel can involve a lot of different trades. You could have framers, finish carpenters, sheetrockers, tile guys, plumbers, electricians, HVAC contractors, and painters all on one job. Some of those trades will be in and out in a day; some may be there for the duration of the project. A lot of remodeling contractors will do many of these trades themselves, instead of hiring another company to do the work (in the industry, we call those outside companies subcontractors because they’re hired by your contractor to do some of the specialized work).
It’s been our experience that having an HVAC subcontractor (like Bell Brothers) will save you time, money, and headache on your remodel. HVAC work isn’t something everyone can do, and it’s not just the work–a good HVAC company can help with the design process as well, looking ahead to prevent problems down the road.
Consulting an Expert
Ideally, your general contractor will consult an HVAC contractor and have them perform any remodel work that needs to happen on the system. For example, if you’re adding a new bathroom fan or replacing an old one, you’ll want to have an HVAC contractor do that work as well as any duct replacement. We’ve mentioned situations in the past that caused difficulty for the remodeling homeowner, like the vent hood that needed a larger exhaust duct than the one in the house.
That’s a good example of what can get left out of a set of plans if an HVAC contractor isn’t involved in the design process early on. It was an easy thing to overlook, but a tricky thing to fix (although fix it we did, and that vent hood works great). Another example would be plans that don’t take duct position into account, especially when removing walls or soffits. We’ve seen that happen, and often ducts will need to be re-routed to make the plans work as drawn. If an HVAC contractor is consulted before construction starts, they can catch those sort of things before they become problematic, and work with the design team to make your remodel go smooth as possible.
This is especially important if your remodel includes an addition to your home. Those kinds of jobs are more technical to pull off than a simpler bathroom or kitchen remodel. HVAC will be a key part of every room that gets added, and it’s very important to consult a contractor like Bell Brothers early on in the design process with additions. Those new rooms need to be vented and zoned correctly to ensure your comfort and the efficient use of your HVAC system with the new space.
With the right mindset, a remodel is the perfect time to do any HVAC work you’ve needed done. Repair and maintenance can be a little disruptive at times, and we understand that. But if you’re remodeling, a certain level of disruption is expected; what better time to bring in the HVAC guys than when the house is already humming with activity?
It’s definitely the best time to replace your current AC/heater–just one more piece of equipment that’s getting upgraded with the remodel. This is especially true if you are adding space onto the home and your HVAC system is older–even if the system can provide enough AC/heat for the additional space, it’s working harder than ever to meet the demand. There’s a reason we do a lot repair work on older HVAC units after a home addition.
If there’s new technology you want to install, like a heat pump, a remodel can take that technology into account as part of the design process–just one more reason to get an HVAC contractor in on your remodel in the planning stage. We get enthused for remodel work, because we know our clients are enthused as well–new space, new technology, and hopefully few headaches. And here at Bell Brothers we’ll do all we can to ensure your remodel HVAC needs are met, with No Surprises.
- http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article40279878.html ↩