It took a bull ranch, two old buses, and some serious blow torching to convert two 30-year-old derelict vehicles into a modern, comfortable hangout space. On this episode of “You Can’t Turn That into a House,” the team gets schooled on how to best turn two rusty yellow school buses into a restful retreat for a family of busy ranch hands. It’s a teachable moment as these castoff vehicles are transformed into a modern, livable structure, comfortable enough to host 20-person gatherings.


Transforming two old, run-down school buses formerly used to store hay (and shelter the occasional critter) by merging them together and installing all the comforts of home in just eight days may seem like an insurmountable challenge. But most demanding of all — how to make the space comfortable, cool, and restful for hardworking Texas ranchers so that at the end of each long day, the buses truly feel like home.


With thin metal, lots of windows, and very little insulation, the bus conversion became a lesson on the difference a great heating and cooling solution can make. Friedrich provided a multi-zone ductless system for the project, including two wall-mounted units delivering 9,000 Btu. That was especially important in the bus’s bedroom, where a good night’s sleep meant making sure consistent, comfortable temperatures could be achieved.


“The bus conversion essentially created two wings and a long, open floor plan,” said Chris Magee, Friedrich product expert who worked with the “You Can’t Turn That Into a House” crew during each of the show’s 13 projects. “Our ductless system was a perfect option because it offers great flexibility. By being able to locate the two wall-mounted units at either end of the buses where they were needed the most, it helped ensure overall comfort throughout the entire space.” 

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Publication date: 8/21/2017

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