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Attached garage into living room?


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#1 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 08:21 PM

I have a small house for the 4 of us. 1300sq ft. Living room is small...only can fit a couch and TV.

So this week I've been off on vacation and looking around. We have a 24x20 attached two stall garage that is almost useless for vehicles. I had this brain storm of turning it into a living space.

I don't care about the loss of the garage as my wife told me I could build another building if I wanted a garage. So win win there.

Some problems.

The garage sits 2 foot lower than the house. If I built the floor up to meet the house the ceiling would be too low. So I'd have to walk down into the area.

The HVAC doesn't extend to the garage area. Which would be a pain to run if I didn't put the duct work under the floor. Or maybe not. Any one have some insight? I'd love to put a pellet stove insert in there and heat it with that. But I don't want to have that as my only heat.

The garage floor is cement but cracked and uneven. So I'd have to tear it up and repour or I'd have to do it in wood.

Framing in the garage doors would be easy.

Anyone ever done this? Been tossing around ideas. But it always seems like there is more to the story when you start.

Drywall insulation framing material wiring outlets lights few windows ect wouldnt be all that expensive. I figure I could this for under 2 grand to 3 grand

House needs new siding. Currently wood and we want to do viynl.

Don't worry. I don't need permits or inspections. All clear there.

Edited by toomanytoys84, July 21, 2015 - 08:28 PM.

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#2 David Brown OFFLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 08:41 PM

Compromise? Wood floor just high enough to run some duct work and insulation. You still have a step down but that's not necessarily a bad thing.
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#3 chieffan ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 08:57 PM

First off, is your present heating/cooling system big enough to handle an additional 500 square feet?  Rather than put the extra load on your present system take a look at electric heat. 

 

Is the floor in the garage a slab poured on top of the ground or does it have anchor footings around the outside?  (When I worked construction here in Iowa we would drill a post hole down 3' every 6 feet around the outside of the floor as anchor footings.)  If the floor is not solid and level around the outside your probably going to get into more than you want trying to use that old garage. 

 

Why is your 24 X 30 garage useless ?  I would use that garage as a garage and build a living room on another direction or along side.


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#4 hamman ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 09:00 PM

DB is right. When we were contemplating doing this I was going to put in a 2' X 4"  wood floor over Styrofoam insulation ( this would leave you with about 7 1/2 ' of ceiling) and run my heating duct in the cavity. Judging by the size of your garage and figuring a 8' ceiling depending on how many windows and the insulation R value I would think you could get away with two maybe three registers in the floor. If you don't put a door back up you could pull return air from the part of the house next to the garage. This is depending on if you have a basement and the duct work ( hot and return) are in the basement.You could run it all in 6" metal pipe with a few fittings and boots for the registers. If you have a return duct in the basement you could run 8" flex out thru the bond in the garage to pull return from that garage / new living room. Sounds like a lot but if you are going to do it do it right. The Styrofoam would act as a vapor barrier which you would need. We decided not to do this but I still have a plan if the wife ever decides it needs to be done.

Good luck.                                                                                                                                                                       Roger


Edited by hamman, July 21, 2015 - 09:00 PM.

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#5 larrybl ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 09:00 PM

Add a low wood floor and a window A/C, Steps and be done.


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#6 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 09:32 PM

It's 24 wide 20 deep. My truck fits but the passengers can get out but they have to squeeze around the vehicles to get to the door. Wife wont park in there because its tight and she can't get the baby in or out. We have never parked in the garage. My regular cab ranger is in there and I parked it in there when i drove it daily as its a short vehicle. It is ground poured.

The ceiling is 9, right now so you are exactly right about having 7.5' ceiling and having one step down. I was worried about a wood sub floor over concrete. I've never done this. Do you lay Styrofoam on the cement? Then use normal insulation in the sub floor?

The concrete floor looks like it was done in several different pours. The oldest date written in the concrete is 1966 newest is 1974.

HVAC system is all new. And it was sized with a possible addition in mind. I'd have to cut a hole and do some work but I could extend from the main trunk to get air into the room. The return would be slightly more difficult. As its still not an ideal setup.

I would revamp the laundry room into a hall way with the washer and dryer behind sliding doors that hide them away. Leave it open.

I need to sit down with a pad and paper. My ideal solution is the remove the front door where it is currently extend the porch roof over across the garage and build one long porch across the entire front and out the entry door in the garage/living room. Turn the current living room into a dining room. 50 yards away from the house I want to put a pole barn up and use that for my garage.

As for adding an additional to the current living room would be fantastic but a lot more cash than I want to spend and that's beyond my ability. I am a jack of all trades nail putter inner. I can do some nice work but I am not capable of building that large scale of an addition.

Thanks for the advice. Giving me some ideas of what's possible.

Edited by toomanytoys84, July 21, 2015 - 09:36 PM.

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#7 MH81 ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 09:38 PM

I hate to sound negative, but don't let anyone around you know what you're up to.
Leave the overhead doors, but seal them in and frame over them... If you don't, you're looking at inspectors, 'experts', and a lot of people trying to protect you from yourself.

Just my $0.02
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#8 toomanytoys84 ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 10:13 PM

I can always use some protecting from myself lol
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#9 hamman ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 10:22 PM

A builder friend of mine told me to put the Styrofoam down first and tape it and then build the wood floor on top of it. Not sure if that would pass inspection there or not. Depends on return air location close to garage. If the return air duct is close to the existing wall in the hall way you could open up a double return for drawing from the new room. You could run a supply duct out under the floor but that would make it harder. Actually depends on which way the floor joist run in the new room. Lots to think about and plan for. Let us know how it works out.                                                                                                                               Roger


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#10 MH81 ONLINE  

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Posted July 21, 2015 - 10:40 PM

Air return in the front of the step?
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#11 hamman ONLINE  

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Posted July 22, 2015 - 07:01 AM

Air return in the front of the step?

I've seen that done also. There is a lot of ways to pull return air from a room. Good idea.                                                                                             Roger


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#12 New.Canadian.DB.Owner OFFLINE  

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Posted July 22, 2015 - 07:32 AM

Or you could use Dricore on the floor.


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#13 TAHOE OFFLINE  

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Posted July 22, 2015 - 07:53 AM

I just did the exact thing last fall as when we moved in with my mom, we needed an extra bedroom, my son has his "teenager cave" now. I know it's probably not to code, but I had to do what I had to do.

 

I had almost exact same issues as you, house was about 3 steps higher, low ceiling if I raised it, no heat, etc. I guess I never updated my home project thread with the build. I will try to find my pictures, but I am at work at the moment, most all are on my home PC.

If you do use most of garage, I would still leave some footage as open garage by big door mayeb with an exit door in the room and garage door button by it. My old neighbor did this, he left about 4' of space, he hangs all his yard hand tools on the wall and has exit door. They did not so a subfloor and that floor gets really cold in the winter.

 

My situation was a 24x24 garge with pre-existing mudroom and a side door. I also needed to keep some garage so we only used some of garage.  I also wanted to move washer/dryer upstairs so I extended mudroom over 8 feet and then added bedroom. My son has to go through laundry room, but he doesn't care.

Oh found a couple pics. sorry for blurry pics, my old phone was about done.

I will try to upload some more this evening if I get a few mins.

 

 

garage in 2.JPG

 

Here is a pic with paint work of kind of my original idea of extended laundrry room, ceiling is only 7' in there so we have to deal with that in that little room. I am the tallest at 5'6" so we are good haha.

 

garage in 3.JPG

 

I built the room 9x14 with a 5x5 closet also. I had to tear out all of old drywall and redo everything. The concrete floor was pretty level, but I used treated 2x4's to lift floor some and insulated between each one and laid plastic barrier over that before adding laminate on top. I added some piping for the heat, but it's so far away from furace, even with a booster fan, we get very little heat, you can see vent in stair riser. not having a return doesn't help either. Mom had an extra Eden pure so we added that, but in very cold winter temps it was hard to keep 62-65*. My son joked it was like he was camping. I had 2-6" layers of insulation above, walls insulated and plastic over then, but I still have to drywall outside of walls and there is missing drywall on ceilings in garage, those would probably help. To do over, I would have spent the money and added some type of floor heating or maybe electric baseboard or would have went with 6 or 8" subfloor and added more insulation.  

 

Here is only a couple pics I have of drywall work. I had to box in the garage door opener on the outside wall.

 

Steps going out of room up into laundry room into mudroom/hall.

 

drews room mud 1.jpg

 

standing in closet looking into room.

 

drews room mud 3.jpg

 

Looking into room from laundry

 

drews room mud.jpg

 

Here is the sliding barn door I made to close off laundry room. It's a collage, but you can see we had folding doors for original hall closet so I made it a slider. We have that door and I made a swinging barn door for my son's room.

 

sliding door.jpg

 

 


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#14 Arti ONLINE  

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Posted July 22, 2015 - 07:55 AM

Pellet heat is very nice, Inserts give the look of a fireplace however are harder to maintain and clean than a freestanding pellet stove.

As far as heat I'd put a Mini Split Heat Pump in in. Something in the 18,000 btu range would work well. You can over size them some because of the ability to run at variable output. BTW 12,000 btu would easily cool an area of this size but I would upsize it for the heating use.

 

Advantages of a separate hvac system is that  you have control of the area as a separate zone, backup in case the main unit fails and a high efficiency source of heating and cooling.

 

If you decide to use the existing hvac then close attention is needed because when you have a Sunken floor the cold air migrates to the lower level leaving you with a cold floor and cold feet, in the winter. The ac is usually easier to deal with in this situation however it usually ends up being farther away from the main unit and not as efficient as it should be , also you are dependent on the thermostat which is located in the center of the home so without remote sensing it doesn't offer a good sense of the temp in the new family room.

Also you might consider a Half Bath?


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#15 TAHOE OFFLINE  

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Posted July 22, 2015 - 08:10 PM

Ok, few more pics.

 

Hard to get distance pics as things were still in garage and my phone at the time had messed up camera, but you get idea. 

 

2014-09-02_19-05-42_671.jpg

2014-09-02_19-06-09_476.jpg

 

Framing started 

 

2014-09-24_20-36-22_321.jpg

2014-09-24_20-36-58_833.jpg

2014-09-24_20-38-02_362.jpg

2014-09-24_20-37-15_270.jpg

 

subfloor 

 

2014-10-13_19-15-22_611.jpg

2014-10-13_21-01-11_797.jpg

2014-10-13_21-01-36_843.jpg

 

room painted 

 

CAM00158.jpg

CAM00159.jpg

CAM00160.jpg

 

Flooring 

 

CAM00174.jpg

CAM00181.jpg

CAM00182.jpg

 

Better pic of the hall sliding barn door and son's barn door 

 

20150219_190554.jpg

20150331_181922.jpg

 

 

 


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