Your entire residence should be a retreat that’s warm and comfy in the winter season and cool and comfortable in the summer. However, owners of some homes with multiple levels find the upper floor is stubbornly hotter or colder than the first floor.
This could just be due to the fact most thermostats in a house are on the first floor, which is where people spend the most time—in the living room, kitchen, etc.—so as a result they tend to set the temperature according to how it feels on the first floor.
However, temperature discrepancies between the upstairs and downstairs could also be due to problems with your HVAC system. Some of these issues can be sorted out fairly quickly while others might call for more extensive and costly fixes. Here, the team at B & G HVAC will help you solve 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 becoming hotter than the downstairs can be chalked up to several factors. First, heat rises, so it’s normal for the second floor of a home to get hotter than the first floor. Lack of insulation in the attic or roof can exacerbate this issue by permitting heat transfer from the roof into the upstairs rooms.
Another common reason is that the HVAC system is not powerful enough to cool the entire home, causing it to fight to cool the upstairs properly.
To address these issues, homeowners could put in extra insulation in the attic and make sure their home has sufficient ventilation. If there’s a question of whether the AC is the proper size for the home, call an experienced HVAC company like B & G HVAC inspect the unit. A qualified professional also can help find a unit that's better suited for your home if you want air conditioning installation or replacement.
Why Is My Upstairs So Cold/Not Heating?
When the downstairs of your home is warm, but it’s extremely chilly upstairs, that can cause a frosty night for anyone whose bedrooms are on the upper floor. The most prevalent causes of an upstairs not heating like it should 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, resulting in colder temperatures upstairs. It’s crucial to make sure your home has a deep, level layer of insulation in the attic and proper insulation in the walls to keep the cold out and the heat inside.
The ductwork in a home plays a critical role in distributing conditioned air throughout different rooms of the building. However, troubles with the ductwork can contribute to the upstairs being colder than the main level. A typical explanation for this is improper airflow balance. The ducts may not be the right size or configuration, causing an uneven distribution of air between the floors. This can cause more warm air to flow downstairs, causing insufficient airflow—which is the heated air—on the upper level.
Another factor with ductwork is the placement of the supply and return vents. If there are fewer vents on the upper level or they aren't well located, it can reduce air circulation and cause inadequate heating or cooling. In addition, leaks or gaps in the ductwork can allow air loss, lowering 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 checked by skilled HVAC pros like the team at B & G HVAC to identify any imbalances, leaks or inadequacies. Sealing leaks and adding new vents or adjusting existing ones can help enhance airflow and ensure a more consistent 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 house, an HVAC zoning system could be a highly effective solution.
An HVAC zoning system divides the home 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 very useful in scenarios where the upstairs of a multi-story home is quite hot or too cold while the main floor is comfortable. By setting up a zoning system, homeowners can control the temperature independently in each zone, enabling them to address specific hot or cold spots effortlessly.
To discover more about an HVAC zoning system in Marshalltown, call B & G HVAC. We’ve developed 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 challenge in multi-floor homes is when the upstairs is more humid than the first floor.
A common explanation for excess upper floor humidity is inadequate ventilation on the upper floor, which can produce greater humidity levels. As is often the case with temperature differences between floors, inadequate insulation or sealing in the attic or walls may permit warm, humid air from outside the house infiltrate the upstairs rooms. And, if there are any leaks or plumbing concerns on the upper floor, that can also lead to extra moisture in that level of a home.
To manage humidity problems, homeowners can increase ventilation by getting fans or opening windows to promote airflow. Adding more insulation in the attic and better sealing the attic and walls can help protect against external moisture from entering the upstairs. Locating and repairing any leaks or plumbing issues is also extremely important.
Depending on the levels of moisture found in the home, a whole-home dehumidifier could be another helpful tool to control humidity in the residence.