Your entire residence should be a refuge that’s warm and comfy in the winter season and cool and comfortable in the summer. However, owners of some multi-level residences find the upper floor is stubbornly hotter or colder than the rooms on ground level.
This could merely be because most thermostats in a house are on the ground floor, which is where people spend the greatest amount of time—in the living room, kitchen, etc.—so it makes sense to set the temperature according to how it feels on the first floor.
However, temperature variations between the upstairs and downstairs could also be caused by issues with your HVAC system. Some of these challenges can be solved relatively quickly while others might require more extensive and costly fixes. Here, the team at Titan Heating & Air Conditioning will help you determine why the upstairs of your home is hotter than downstairs, or vice versa.
Why Is My Upstairs So Hot?
The phenomenon of the upstairs of a two-story home feeling hotter than the downstairs can be traced to several factors. Number one, heat rises, so it’s normal for the second floor of a home to get hotter than the main floor. Not enough insulation in the attic or roof can exacerbate this issue by letting heat transfer from the roof into the upstairs rooms.
Another common reason is that the HVAC system is not strong enough to cool the entire home, causing it to fight to cool the upstairs sufficiently.
To tackle these issues, homeowners could install extra insulation in the attic and make sure their home has proper ventilation. If there’s a question of whether the AC is the ideal size for the home, call an experienced HVAC company like Titan Heating & Air Conditioning inspect the unit. A skilled professional also can help find a unit that's better suited for your home if you need air conditioning installation or replacement.
Why Is My Upstairs So Cold/Not Heating?
When the downstairs of your home is warm, but it’s very cold upstairs, that can cause a frosty night for anyone whose bedrooms are on the upper floor. The most frequent reasons an upstairs not heating like it is supposed to are the insulation levels and the ductwork.
Inadequate insulation lets cold air to seep through the home’s attic or walls and contribute to heat loss, creating colder temperatures upstairs. It’s important to make sure your home has a deep, level layer of insulation in the attic and appropriate insulation in the walls to keep the cold out and the heat inside.
The ductwork in a home plays a critical role in disseminating conditioned air throughout different rooms of the building. However, troubles with the ductwork can cause the upstairs being colder than the downstairs. A typical cause for this is improper airflow balance. The ducts may not be the right size or design, which results in an uneven distribution of air between the floors. This can cause more warm air to go downstairs, causing insufficient airflow—which is the heated air—on the upper story.
Another possible issue with the ductwork is the location of the supply and return vents. If there are fewer vents on the upper level or they are not correctly positioned, it can reduce air circulation and cause substandard heating or cooling. Additionally, leaks or gaps in the ductwork can lead to air loss, reducing the overall efficiency of the HVAC system and exacerbating the temperature difference.
To determine why the upstairs is colder than the downstairs, homeowners should hve their ductwork examined by experienced HVAC pros like the team at Titan Heating & Air Conditioning to identify any imbalances, leaks or inadequacies. Sealing leaks and installing more vents or adjusting existing ones can help improve airflow and ensure a more even temperature balance between the upstairs and downstairs.
How You Can Fix a Hot or Cold Upstairs?
If your upstairs is hotter or colder than the lower floors of your residence, an HVAC zoning system could be a highly effective solution.
An HVAC zoning system divides the residence into different zones, which each have their own thermostat and damper system so the homeowner can control the heating or cooling of each zone.
This system can be especially useful in scenarios where the upstairs of a multi-story home is very hot or really cold while the main floor is comfortable. By setting up a zoning system, homeowners can manage the temperature independently in each zone, enabling them to address specific hot or cold spots easily.
To learn more about an HVAC zoning system in Central Point, call Titan Heating & Air Conditioning. We’ve created and installed customized home comfort plans for many community members and are happy to show how an HVAC zoning system could benefit your home.
Why Is My Upstairs So Humid?
In addition to the upper story being hotter or colder than the rest of the house, another problem in multi-floor homes is when the higher levels are more humid than the lower level.
A frequent cause for excess upper floor humidity is weak ventilation on the upper floor, which can cause higher humidity levels. As is often the case with temperature differences between floors, poor insulation or sealing in the attic or walls may let warm, humid air from outdoors infiltrate the upstairs rooms. Plus, if there are any leaks or plumbing problems on the upper floor, that can also create excess moisture in that level of a home.
To address humidity problems, homeowners can increase ventilation by using fans or opening windows to promote airflow. Appropriate levels of insulation in the attic and better sealing the attic and walls can help protect against external moisture from entering the upstairs. Identifying and repairing any leaks or plumbing issues is also critical.
Depending on the levels of moisture found in the home, a whole-home dehumidifier could be another worthwhile tool to manage humidity in your home.