Handling cooling in historic home with high velocity air conditioning –

When my husband Paul and I were house-hunting, we found a gorgeous property in the historic district of the city.  The house is nearly two hundred years old with a wide front porch, stained glass windows and high ceilings. Much of the original woodwork, windows, plaster and moldings has been preserved.  While Paul and I are thrilled with the charming features of the house, we have been making some upgrades. We certainly don’t want to do anything to negatively impact the historic integrity of the home, but we needed air conditioning.  There is a boiler in the basement, which links to radiators in each of the rooms, and handles heating for the winter. Because there is no duct system, figuring out a cooling system was a challenge. The studs in many of the walls have been turned sideways to maximize living space.  The thinner walls don’t allow for standard ductwork. We also didn’t want to tear any of the original walls down for the sake of air conditioning installation. Paul and I consulted with a local HVAC contractor, who recommended high velocity air conditioning. This type of cooling system relies on flexible, narrow ductwork which is more easily retrofitted into existing structure.  The smaller diameter of the ductwork allows for smaller vents and registers as well. Installation of the high velocity air conditioning required no major tear down or mess, and yet it provides cooling throughout the entire house. The system is extremely powerful, cooling down room temperature very quickly and efficiently. Paul and I were happy to have found a way to handle the summer heat and humidity without destroying the beauty of the house.