Every floor in your home should be a retreat that’s warm and comfy in the winter season and cool and comfortable in the summer. However, families who live in some two-story homes 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 main floor, which is where people spend the most time—in the living room, kitchen, etc.—so they set the temperature according to how it feels on the first floor.
However, temperature discrepancies between the upstairs and downstairs could also be caused by issues with your HVAC system. Some of these challenges can be solved fairly quickly while others might call for more extensive and costly fixes. Here, the team at Durable Service will help you figure out 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 attributed to several factors. First, heat rises, so it’s natural for the second floor of a home to get hotter than the main floor. Insufficient insulation in the attic or roof can make this worse by letting 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 have difficulty cooling the upstairs effectively.
To tackle these issues, homeowners could install extra insulation in the attic and make sure their home has sufficient ventilation. If there’s concern the AC is the correct size for the home, call an experienced HVAC company like Durable Service inspect the unit. A knowledgeable professional also can help find a unit that's better suited for your home if you require air conditioning installation or replacement.
Why Is My Upstairs So Cold/Not Heating?
When the downstairs of your home is warm, but it’s freezing upstairs, that can cause an ice-cold night for anyone whose bedrooms are on the upper floor. The most prevalent causes of an upstairs not heating like it ought to are the insulation levels and the ductwork.
Inadequate insulation permits cold air to filter through the home’s attic or walls and contribute to heat loss, resulting in colder temperatures on the upper levels. It’s important to make sure your home has a thick, 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 fundamental role in distributing conditioned air throughout different locations of the building. However, issues with the ductwork can contribute to the upstairs being colder than the downstairs. A frequently reported cause for this is improper airflow balance. The ducts may not be the right size or design, causing an uneven distribution of air between the floors. This can cause more warm air to be directed to the downstairs, leaving insufficient airflow—which is the heated air—on the higher floors.
Another possible issue with the ductwork is the layout of the supply and return vents. If there are fewer vents on the upper level or they are not correctly placed, it can limit air circulation and cause inadequate heating or cooling. Additionally, leaks or gaps in the ductwork can allow air loss, lowering the overall efficiency of the HVAC system and making the temperature difference more pronounced.
To figure out why the upstairs is colder than the downstairs, homeowners should hve their ductwork checked by experienced experts like the team at Durable Service to identify any imbalances, leaks or inadequacies. Sealing leaks and adding more vents or adjusting existing ones can help increase airflow and ensure a better 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 breaks the home into distinct zones, which each have their own thermostat and damper system so the homeowner can modify the heating or cooling of each zone.
This system can be especially beneficial in situations where the upstairs of a multi-story home is very hot or extremely cold while the main floor is comfortable. By installing a zoning system, homeowners can manage the temperature independently in each zone, making it possible for them to address specific hot or cold spots easily.
To find out more about an HVAC zoning system in Holdrege, call Durable Service. We’ve designed and installed customized home comfort plans for many community members and are happy to show how an HVAC zoning system could enhance the comfort in 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 weak ventilation on the upper floor, which can cause increased 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 infiltrate the upstairs rooms. And, if there are any leaks or plumbing problems on the upper floor, that can also create unwanted moisture in that level of a home.
To fix humidity problems, homeowners can improve ventilation by using fans or opening windows to promote airflow. Adding more insulation in the attic and better sealing the attic and walls can help stop 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 useful tool to control humidity on the upper and lower floors.