Your unfinished basement will give you room for expansion for your growing family. However, working on a basement ceiling with exposed ductwork in a house can be challenging. You’ll need some creative ways to hide basement ductwork without blowing your budget. Keep reading for inspiration! These ideas can also work in renovating an industrial space into a residential loft or commercial space!
Simple and Creative Ways to Hide Ductwork
An exposed ductwork ceiling reduces the home’s aesthetics and limits the renovations you can do on the ceiling. Luckily, there are creative ways to hide ductwork in your home. From making a tray ceiling or other materials to cover the unattractive ductwork, to installing false cabinets over ductwork to reduce exposure.
Before you get started covering the exposed ductwork, ensure you change the filters and check for any HVAC ductwork openings, as explained in this post. Dirty ductwork is a major contributor to allergies, respiratory problems, and increase dust in the home. After the HVAC ductwork is clean, you’re ready to get started.
Choosing one of these twelve ideas depends on a few things. First, your budget; what can you afford to put into hiding the exposed ductwork? Secondly, how much ceiling height do you have? Basements don’t usually have high ceilings, whereas a loft or retail may have very high ceilings. And third, what is decorating style? If you like an industrial design, leaving some exposed ductwork fits well, whereas if you like a more traditional style, you might lean toward covering the home’s mechanics.
Some of the creative ways to hide ductwork are:
1. Make a Tray Ceiling
Ask your constructor to frame a border around the ceiling, creating a tray at the center that will be a focal point for the room. However, you should consider the furniture placement in the room when creating the tray ceiling. Improve the area’s curb appeal by painting the place a different color from that of the ceiling. Alternatively, you can paint the tray ceiling the same color for uniformity.
This works well if you have enough ceiling height giving the room a traditional, sophisticated look. You often see tray ceilings in master bedrooms, living rooms, or dining rooms. It look nice in an entertainment room or over a pool table, too.
2. Use the Wall Chases
This is one of the most creative ways to hide vertical ductwork in your home. If your duct installer fixed the system on the wall, it could be more challenging to hide than those on the ceiling. However, wall chases minimize the duct’s impact on the room. Frame the vents with wood boards, then cover them with drywall and paint matching the wall color.
3. Apply False Beams
If you live in a rustic or country home, false beams are a suitable way to hide your ducts. The false beams are easily found and cheap to buy. You can also choose from various false beams, depending on your taste. The beams are used to frame around the duct work while at the same time adding a tasteful addition to the ceilings.
4. Hide Behind Panels and Crown Molding
Sometimes installing false cabinets is hard, and you also could lack a high enough ceiling to add a drop one. However, you can stylishly hide the ductwork. The process costs less and saves on time.
Some homeowners paint the ductwork the same color as their cabinet, ending with crown molding. The panels give an illusion of added dimension to the room, increasing its visual appeal, hence a higher value of your house.
5. Create Faux Rafters
Surprisingly, you can create faux rafters without ductwork. Make the rafters by creating long, evenly spaced sections to resemble them. This technique is less challenging when trimmed without molding than lowering the entire ceiling. Rafters can either cover ac ducts or cover unsightly joists to make the ceiling look more finished.
6. Use Truss Joist I- Beams
Truss joist I- beams add value to your ductwork and design your ductwork element. It can also transform it into a design component instead of hiding it. This installation works best for homeowners who love industrial or steampunk interiors.
7. Use Soffits and Columns
Soffits and columns are the least creative and effective way of concealing the ductwork but are worth recognizing. If you want to spend less to hide the ductwork in your home, the soffits and columns are worth considering.
8. Install a Drop Ceiling
A drop ceiling around ductwork is a secondary ceiling installed below the central roof. If you live in a house with a high ceiling, a drop ceiling helps improve the air circulation in the room. Therefore, there is less stuffing, and your home is more comfortable. When designed and installed well, a drop ceiling with exposed ductwork is a great way to hide away an unsightly ceiling.
9. Paint the Ducts
If your pipes and beams are still visible, consider painting ductwork with bright colors. Making the ducts less visible increases the aesthetics and makes your system last longer. Painting just the pipes looks especially interesting in a commercial space or your kid’s playroom.
10. Paint the Entire Ceiling
You won’t always get hidden ducts to suit your style. Furthermore, a lot of remodeling may be too costly. However, you can use a paint sprayer to cover all ceiling contents with a solid color that creates a unique modern feel and reduces the labor and materials needed. Painting it all white adds brightness and gives the illusion of height to the room. Whereas a dark or black color adds a moody vibe and helps make the objects on the ceiling disappear.
11. Use Fabric
Panels of fabric spread across the ceiling like a canopy are possible by attaching the fabric to floor joists. You could also large panels like sail shades. Use it to soften a corner in the room for a reading nook or over the bed in a basement bedroom to make it feel cozier.
12. Install False Cabinets
False cabinets are among the best and most stylish ways to hide the ductwork in your kitchen. Fortunately, this method works on almost all kinds of ductwork. Some people install the false cabinet on top of the upper cabinets to conceal ceiling ductwork.
If the ductwork runs along a wall, consider installing a tower unit. A false cabinet can give your kitchen a sophisticated look since your cabinet’s finish could match your existing cabinetry. It will increase the visual value of your home.
Should You Insulate Or Leave Your Exposed Ductwork?
Most times, the ductwork is constructed with thin material which can tear and wear when hit by direct sun rays. Insulating the exposed ductwork with creative ways to hide ductwork will minimize the air escaping and maintain the system at the correct temperatures. Insulation also helps in the prevention of heat loss.
When air passes through your cooling system, it condenses into the duct system. Over time, moisture accumulates, forming mold and mildew growth. To avoid condensation, you can use high-quality insulation, which lowers energy costs.
Remodeling an unfinished basement has two great rewards. You will have increased living space for you and your family. Now you have space for that extra bedroom, home office, or family room. And by increasing the living space your home’s value goes up. It’s a win-win! Add more value to your home with these tips: 5 Proven Ways to Elevate the Value of Your Home.