How can we make this ugly central AC system look better?


We’re turning our spare room into a bedroom. There’s central AC unit with duct overhead in the room. Of course we can’t remove it. At least if possible I’d like to wrap something over the duct. Something to make it look nicer. What do you suggest?

q ugly central ac system in room

Ugly AC system in bedroom

  6 answers
  • Arlinda Duncan Rollins Arlinda Duncan Rollins on Jun 17, 2019

    There are a couple of things that come to mind. Building a bulkhead around it is an obvious choice, but it looks like the ductwork comes down pretty low right over the door. You may be able to wrap it in decorative fabric. You could just pin it in place on the side that doesn't show. That way it would be easy to remove for washing. Good luck with your project!

  • Kelli L. Milligan Kelli L. Milligan on Jun 17, 2019

    You can box in the unit itself with a louvered door for access. Then just paint the duct work the wall color. I would insulate the framed in space, it will be noisey when it runs. Check you building codes for the requirements of space needed for the furnace. Realize if this is in basement it may not be to code if it doesn't have a full egress window. If something happens while someone is sleeping it could effect your insurance.

    • Amy Amy on Jun 19, 2019

      Wow. I called my insurance and they said it was ok. Thank you.

  • William William on Jun 17, 2019

    WOW! I agree. Painting the ductwork is the only solution possible with what you have. I also agree with Kelli to check your local building codes. You would need two ways of entry and exit for living quarters. And it's possible the AC unit may not be allowed in living quarters. Your homeowners insurance can also be cancelled.

  • Jody Jody on Jun 18, 2019

    I saw a basement once where they painted the entire ceiling with duct-work in place a matte black. It was stunning! It made everything cohesive, didn't lower the ceiling by boxing in the duct-work, and made it all sort of "disappear. Maybe you don't want black for a bedroom, but you could try a very dark blue, very dark green, etc. It has to be very dark and matte to work. If you don't like the results you can always go to a dropped ceiling. Good luck!

    • Amy Amy on Jun 19, 2019

      Yeah! Great idea! I’ll paint the ceiling and some wall hunter green. You said matte? As in flat?

  • Sandy Sandy on Jun 18, 2019

    Painting the ceiling dark is my suggestion too and then decorate the room in the industrial look.

  • Amy Amy on Jun 19, 2019

    Thank y’all!

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