3 tips to get your room temperature right

Uneven temperatures throughout your home can be frustrating. What can you do to fix it? A reputable HVAC company can help you solve your problems and get the ideal temperature you’re longing for.

Information Text:

Angie Hicks, Angie’s List founder: “If you find yourself having problems with temperature on different levels of your house, talk to a reputable heating and cooling company because they can give you suggestions for how to best manage for that. Whether it be settings on your existing system or whether you need to add additional equipment.”

Dave Mejean, B&W Plumbing Heating and Air Conditioning Co. Inc.: “Most two story homes have a pretty good temperature difference between the second floor and the first floor. The main reason for that is your thermostat in your house. Your thermostat is typically located on the first floor of your house; so that is what is reading all the temperatures. So, when it gets cool enough or warm enough in there; that’s what shuts the unit off; so it doesn’t really pay attention to what the temperature is upstairs.

On your thermostat, there is a switch on there for your fan for “on” and “auto,” so you want to switch that to “on” and what that will do is run your fan continuously. What that does in your house is that keeps the rooms a little more even-temperatured because you are continuously circulating the air throughout the house so it’s mixing all the air between the upstairs and the downstairs. What the electronic zone system has in it - it’s pretty much we are adding another thermostat to the second floor and we are putting automatic dampers in it. So when the second floor calls for heating or cooling, all the registers there get all the air and the downstairs turn off. So you are forcing all the air up to the second floor. It’s almost like having another system in your house. And when the downstairs calls for heating or cooling, all those dampers open up and all the air blows down there and it shuts the air off upstairs so you are getting good control of the air between upstairs and downstairs.

To add a zone system to an existing home, you might be looking at the $3,000 area, but again, every home is different. Sizes and costs come into play.”

Angie’s List Tips:

Possible solutions

Keep fan set to “ON” & make sure registers are clear for max. air circulation

Try a zone system

What’s new? Thermostat controlled by Wi-Fi & smartphone 



I have a new house With full basement and heat pump Our thermostat is a cheap digital I'm interested in add dampers at wifi controlled unit Our basement maintains temp well from a low of 50 last winter to high of 75 with 30 days of outside temps in the 110 range

I am a state certified contractor. When adding a damper to control your air flow from up stairs to downstairs. It is important to make sure your duct system is designed to handle the extra air flow you are introducing. If not important to add back flow damper to allow pressure to escape rather than cause you duct system to come apart of causing a mold problem if you are in a humid climate. Thermostat needs to be with in 6 feet from return air.

I read recently that leaving a fan setting 'on' could cause additional moisture and possibly mold in your home because the chamber where coils are located may have moisture after the cooling or heating cycle is complete. With the 'on' fan setting, this could cause moist air from the chamber to be blown throughout the home. An interesting contrast to what is recommended above.

I was having this problem, and followed the advise to keep the fan on all the time -it worked wonderfully, until I got the next electric bill. Needless to say, the fan is no longer left on all the time. We live with the difference in the temperature, or try to keep doors open and use other methods to move the air around the house.

I am a home inspector with 42 years of building systems experience. Theoretically, if the duct system of a heating-cooling system has been designed & installed correctly temperatures should be within a couple degrees in all rooms. This is frankly too often NOT the case & replacing or modifying duct work is commonly difficult to impossible without opening up walls, ceilings. I've found that keeping bedroom doors closed on the 2nd floor, prevents or slows the cool air brought in during AC season from flowing out the rooms & down the stairs. It also helps keep those rooms from overheating in the winter. This is simple advice & can be applied to any home, no matter the system. I am often asked what brand of equipment to purchase. I respond by saying the most important thing is having a competent HVAC technician determine the proper size or capacity of the equipment, then develop a good design for the duct system & then installing it according to the design. Getting all 3 of these done is rare. It is sometimes nearly impossible to get conditioned air in proper volume & velocity to rooms farthest from the furnace in multilevel & complex shaped homes without additional fans, dampers & thermostats, etc. That's money & both builders & buyers often nix this forcing the HVAC guy to put "Cinderella's shoe on her sister's foot". Not surprisingly comfort is compromised!

Cutting off three quarters of an inch on the bottom of all doors going to the return will also adjust air flow.

The front of my home is warm and comfortable, however, my bedrooms & baths are really cold. We have an attic fan and cold air was coming in around the baffles so my husband covered it. We just had our air vents cleaned a week ago. Do you have any ideas what might be causing this problem?

Our master bedroom is hot in summer and is separated from the other bedrooms by the den and the thermostat is on that end. I'm considering putting an auxiliary pusher fan in the ductwork to kick on when the A.C kicks on to even out cooling. Another option is to put an auxiliary unit in the top of the wall

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Rachel Hardy

Angie’s List videographer Rachel Hardy produces videos focused on home improvement tips and trends, health care issues, and pet services.

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