How to Prevent Uneven Heating and Cooling in a Multi-Level Home

by Editor on June 29, 2013


Have you ever been in a home where you climb the stairs and it is a sweltering 20 degrees warmer than the first floor? This is what HVAC specialists call uneven heating and cooling, which is extremely common in multi-level homes. In fact, if this problem is occurring in your home it could be that each room has a different temperature. Find the source of uneven temperatures throughout the home and fixing them could be as simple as opening the vents in some rooms or finding a leak. Although, sometimes the problem doesn’t have such an easy solution. You could need a new air conditioning system altogether. how long do air conditioners last? – Typically about 12 years. Here are a few ways you can prevent uneven heating and cooling in a multi-level home.

First, perform a full inspection of your entire home to see what rooms are hotter or colder than others. You can perform this inspection by going from room to room, taking notes and even bringing in a digital thermometer. In order to finding out where the problem is coming from you need to find the rooms with the biggest temperature variations. If you notice that two rooms next to each other have a similar temperature, but that temperature is different than the rest of the house it might be that there is a leak in the ducts above those rooms.

It is also important to find out where all the vent gates are. The vent gates, or air registers as they are called in the HVAC industry, are those little grill-like windows where the air comes out. They might be on the floor of a room, on the wall or on the ceiling. Not only should you make sure that they are all open and that air is flowing out of them, but also that they aren’t covered with large furniture, fabric or even wallpaper. It might be surprising to find where all your vent gates are hiding.

Next, one way to fix the uneven air flow problem in your home – without having to make any costly repairs – is to partially close certain vent gates in different rooms to help regulate airflow. Sometimes you can manually adjust the temperature in different rooms by manipulating these vent gates. Most vent gates have a little lever that you push up and down that opens and closes them, which prevents air from coming through.

Lastly, it might be that your air ducts need to be cleaned, repaired, or sections of them need to be replaced. Sometimes the air ducts in our home can become blocked with debris and maybe even a raccoon or too. You can remove any detritus or debris yourself or you can hire an HVAC specialist to come in an clean it for you. No matter what, though, cleaning out your air ducts will not only solve your uneven heating and cooling problem, but it will make your whole system run more efficiently and cleanly too.

photo by: nyuhuhuu

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