Please help me heat and cool my upgraded makeshift studio -- PROJECT CANCELLED

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Cut a hole in the wall and plug it in.
It won't be quite that easy but it still might be the best bet. I would have to take out a set of jalousie windows and replace it with framing that would hold the window unit. (Or rather my handyman would have to do that. If I did it, the results would be a disaster.)

On the other hand, if I use a mini-split system, it would be easy to mount it on the wall without having to do anything serious to the wall. Then there would be the complication of installing the outside condenser and connecting the two devices.
 
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On the other hand, if I use a mini-split system, it would be easy to mount it on the wall without having to do anything serious to the wall. Then there would be the complication of installing the outside condenser and connecting the two devices.
[/QUOTE]

What is the roof like in this area?
Can the outside condenser be mounted on the roof?
Don't necessarily need to run the lines through the roof if you can run them through a wall and then route it to the roof from the outside. That way you wouldn't need to worry about leaks in the roof.
 
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Can the outside condenser be mounted on the roof?
This roof is a flat, membrane roof. I have no idea if the local code allows the condenser to be mounted on the roof. I've only seen condensers and compressors mounted on a concrete pad on the ground.

My guess is that it could cost $1000 to get the concrete pad made and for the mini-split system to be installed by a certified technician. Naturally, I'd like to avoid that expense if the window-mounted system would heat and cool just as well.
 
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I see that pre-made pads made of synthetic material are available for about $50. I wonder if the local code allows using them instead of a concrete pad.

Regardless, the window unit seems the most appealing right now because it's just one unit that has to be installed. The total cost is surely considerably less expensive. The window unit is probably more noisy but I don't care.
 
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The mini split systems work great. We actually have 5 of them throughout the house. Especially at night, the rest of the house can go warm/cold and the bedrooms are individually controlled. You do have to drill a couple of holes in the mounting wall, for the refrigerant lines and the compressor is distant.
The through the wall “window” systems are cheaper but have their own limitations. Has to be mounted on an outside wall, not a problem here. They are louder, also not a problem here. Cosmetically less attractive, also not likely an issue here.
One issue with the split systems. Do not lose the remote. Makes the system almost unuseable, you can get a ladder and pull the front off to find a single button. Will turn it on to 75degrees, but no other control. Replacement remotes are shipped on a slow boat from china, takes months. Do not always work.
I turned my garage into a studio about 2 years ago. I did insulate the entire space. I went with a “window” unit through the wall for that space. It works very well. It is 20x24’. I wish it was bigger.
Gary
 
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The through the wall “window” systems are cheaper
Based on the little research I've done, the difference in price between window units and mini-split systems that both heat and cool is not much. I'm assuming the cost of replacing the jalousie windows with a framed section of the wall that is ready to receive the window unit will be less expensive than pouring a concrete pad and hiring a certified technician to install the mini-split system.
 
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Actually has happened twice. Grandkids visiting 2yrs ago. A bunch of 2 year olds running around. Never did find it. 5 weeks later new remote shows up.
Recently, one remote just quit working. Worked one day, stopped the next. Ordered replacement weeks ago. Lucky on this one, as one of the other remotes will run it.
Gary
 
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It is 20'x24’. I wish it was bigger.
Nothing is ever good enough for studio photographers, whether we do tabletop photography or other kinds of studio work. We always want something better but compromise with whatever is practical. There is never enough space, we never have enough flash units, yada yada yada. Indeed, it's tough pleasing us.

Once my temporary space is up and running, I'll permanently store everything except my tabletop stand in the storage area currently being used as my makeshift studio. That storage area is about 10' x 12', though at least half of that is used for storing household items not related to photography including my wine refrigerator containing 75 bottles. The storage area and the upcoming temporary studio combined will be about 12' x 20'.

Compared to the tiny work area I have now, it will be a luxury to have a 10' x 12' area devoted exclusively to doing tabletop photography. That's possible because all of the photography paraphernalia not needed for the photo session in progress at the time will be in the adjacent storage room. The temporary area will be about 125% larger than what I currently have, which will be a huge improvement.
 
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Mike, as always you seem to have this well thought out. I am fortunate to have a great AC guy, that over the years has actually become a friend. He has seen that/ been there on almost all my odd questions. If you can find a good private AC guy, it would be worth it to get his thoughts. They can accurately calculate your needed btu and adjust for your area. He has probably done this before and knows what works. It is far easier to do this once than try to add on mid stream.

Most of my “studio” space is actually used for printing. 3 printers, up to 44”. A 4x8’ table to work with large prints. A couple of smaller tables for tabletop work and whatever. I have a whitewall setup along the rear wall, if I push crap out of the way it is a great spot to do high key portraits. Space works fine, but I have to shuffle stuff around each time I change what I am doing. You are right though, stuff expands to fill all available space.
Gary
 
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find a good private AC guy...[to] accurately calculate your needed btu
My next-door neighbor's son sold and installed my central air conditioning unit and compressor for me years ago. He is no longer doing that kind of work but would probably be able to tell me the required BTU.
 
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Mike, he would be perfect. It works best for me if I just ask an open ended question of how he would build/heat/cool the space. My guy has come up with ideas I would have never thought of that have worked perfectly for years, and saved me a lot of money.

Gary
 
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The fact that you have three brick walls, at least one with a window, makes this project seem much more feasible. I think a window unit which both heats and cools is your best bet.

In my younger days I did install a central A/C unit in our first house, doing all the work myself except the final 220V electrical connection. Even mixed and poured the external concrete pad for the compressor/evaporator unit. This was in Newark, DE, in 1967. My next-door neighbor was Bob Gore of GoreTex fame (before he invented it) and he convinced me I could do it after he had done it in his house.

I certainly wouldn't attempt a project like that now.
 
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That's impressive! Did you also install the ducts?
No, thankfully that was already there courtesy of the natural gas central heating system. I just had to drill a hole in the outside wall to pass the refrigerant lines through, make a cutout in the sheet metal gas furnace plenum to mount the refrigerant coil, and run the wiring through three levels of attic to the circuit breaker in the garage in the other end of the house.

The last step was to connect the 220V line to the circuit breaker in the garage, and I was daunted by that. Fortunately, I had a colleague in the Navy who had worked in his father's electrical contracting business, and he agreed to do it for a steak dinner. So after consuming the steak and about three bottles of beer, he "hot-wired" it without turning off the power main. :eek:
 
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Mike, with regard to the mini-split system, there are preformed pads available that eliminate the pouring of concrete. Some of these are plastic or composite materiel that can easily be placed by one person. They're inexpensive as well.
 
This roof is a flat, membrane roof. I have no idea if the local code allows the condenser to be mounted on the roof. I've only seen condensers and compressors mounted on a concrete pad on the ground.

My guess is that it could cost $1000 to get the concrete pad made and for the mini-split system to be installed by a certified technician. Naturally, I'd like to avoid that expense if the window-mounted system would heat and cool just as well.
Actually, yes, based on the experience I have with my condo apartment buildings, the external part of a heat pump (condenser? Compressor?) CAN be on a roof. My building has fourteen units and outside each building on the ground there is a small shed-like building which has a concrete pad and houses several of the external heat pumps associated with the units. Each unit, of course, has interior components as well, the air handler unit, and of course the part connected to the thermostat. The remainder of the external part of the heat pumps, the ones associated with the units on the higher levels of the building, are on the roof. It's a right royal pain for HVAC repairmen to have to come to do any sort of inspection or repair work, they have to have a long ladder with them, and every time one of us has to get a new heat pump, the company installing it has to rent a crane to remove the old heat pump from the roof and then set the new one in place.

That said, of course, this is a different situation from someone putting an external heat pump unit on top of a car port or garage. At the time our buildings were constructed, the area for the heat pumps was planned and part of the structure of the building. The units are not visible on the roof, and they are somewhat protected from the elements.
 
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