The Spacepak System- After a long hiatus

View-of-ceiling-with-ventSo back in 2007 I got a Spacepak system for my house when I had it renovated down to the bricks and beams. And sometime around 2016? it died. Blah-blah something about leaking coolant, which was expensive (the kind we needed) and the whole thing, we were told, needed to be replaced. I did not understand what that meant. What I did understand was the $12K estimate. That’s too dang much. To be fair, $3,000 of that was for a permit and rental of a crane to put part of the unit on the roof.

So we decided that for that price, it would be cheaper to buy portable a/c units and that was okay. But bringing up units up and down every year is a PITA. That and we knew we’d be departing and wanted to get the house ready for sale or rent, so this winter we got a new Spacepak. This meant a new outside unit on the roof, which the workmen managed to get up there with ropes and ladders, and another interior unit that was squeezed into our crawlspace. The tubes and what not remained.

So lately the weather warmed up enough to justify turning it on. This week was warm enough to test it. Normally, it’s kept at 80F in the day (normally, we are not home) and around 77F in the evening. Not much of a stretch. So when it was sitting at 77F I decided to try to get it down to 72F. I should note that our house’s walls are well insulated. The back has the foam insulation and the front has the pink stuff. It took a while but the thermostat did make it to 72F.

A noticeable difference from the system of the past and now is that it is quieter and the air doesn’t flow as hard. The crawlspace unit is right above our bed, so I noticed that difference when it turns on. The air flow is not as hard because when I overheat, standing under a vent isn’t as satisfying as it once was. Meh.

The replacement cost $9K, when rounding up. This was just for air conditioning. We have a radiator heating system that I luuuuv, bathrobes that have been sitting on a hot radiator is a special luxury you have to experience.  Part of me likes having two separate systems so when one goes kaput the other is fine.

Straw Meet Camel or Buy this house

messylivingroomThis is one of my favorite views of my home. From the stairs, looking down at the bookcase and the floor. This house, what I’ve called a crumbly pile of bricks, has been a joy. But I’ve been pondering a move out of the city for various reasons. The main one was for career reasons that I won’t get into here. Second, I’d like my husband to have an awesome car-less commute. Third, is the kid and that relates to a piece of straw.

A couple of days ago NBC Channel 4 reported on some leaked information about plans for DC schools, including PreK-K. That ticked me off, so much so, I’ve been in contact with Realtors. Maybe it was the thing I needed to finally stop delaying and start moving on. I’d been so looking forward to Pre-K3, getting ready for it. But it looks like Pre-K 2020-21 is gonna be a bust, with alternative schedules and partial in person instruction. I won’t be able to depend on the schools for adequate childcare coverage. This is the straw that broke the camel’s back.

I had thought of offering to sell (by owner) as-is so I can sell it for a lower, more affordable price so a new owner could build some of their own equity. Because staging, hiring painters, landscapers, all that winds up getting paid by the buyer in the form of a higher price. I was toying with that idea for November of this year. But now, probably not, but I’m willing to be persuaded.

If you’ve read this blog, or managed to follow it since the early days, you know I’ve left the house better than when I bought it. I’ve renovated it (with a contractor) several times, going down to the brick and beams. The basement/celler got finished and has 3 french drains. A couple years back I put on an addition in the rear. Last year, got a new fence and now we could theoretically park in the rear. I’ve been constantly improving it and making it my own. But now, it’s time to let go and let someone else make of it what they will.