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Using a Greenhouse for Heating and Cooling

  • Transcript

    LESLIE:  Robert in North Carolina needs some heating and cooling ideas.  How can we help?

    ROBERT:  Hey, guys.  I was just wondering about a greenhouse.

    TOM:  OK.

    ROBERT:  Using that for heating and cooling on the house itself.

    TOM:  So you have a greenhouse – as in a greenhouse for plants – attached to your house?  Is that what you’re saying?

    ROBERT:  Right, right.

    TOM:  Alright.

    ROBERT:  Actually, I don’t have it attached to the house yet.  I’m going to try it on my garage first and see how that works.

    TOM:  Oh, you want to build one.

    ROBERT:  Right, right.

    TOM:  OK.  And you’re concerned about the impact on heating and cooling?

    ROBERT:  Right, and the humidity that’s going to be going on with that.  Is that going to be a problem?

    TOM:  Well, you need to be separate.  It needs to be separated from the house, obviously.

    ROBERT:  Right.

    TOM:  I will say that it’s going to be a very hot, hot space unless you use a good-quality glass that has a low-e coating on it that will reflect the radiant heat out.  So if you adjoin it to the outside wall of your house, it’s going to be like having a heater attached to the house in the summer.  It will drive up your cooling bills.

    ROBERT:  Right, right.

    TOM:  OK?

    ROBERT:  Put vents on it on the outside.

    TOM:  Oh, certainly you could do vents but I’m just telling you it’s not going to – it’s going to make it – it’s going to make the outside wall warmer and raise your cooling cost unless you have the right kind of glass.  So if you’re going to do this, you may want to think about using one of the prefabricated ones that has insulated glass panels with low-e coating. 

    ROBERT:  OK, OK.  Well, thank you very kindly.

    TOM:  You’re welcome, Robert.  Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.

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