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kalaniwavo 12-14-2012 02:40 AM

Icebox downstairs/Sauna Upstairs
So we just recently moved into a 2 story house. All 3 bedrooms and 2 baths are upstairs. L-room kitchen downstairs. Here's the problem... It gets AFRICA hot upstairs and stays cold downstairs. I'm talking way beyond what should be expected in a 2-story house. I've lived in a few and never had this problem.

The thermostat located downstairs will read 63-ish and the upstairs will be uncomfortably hot. It's a balancing act trying to keep the temp even. At night it's worse because the thermostat is located downstairs so it doesn't really read the upstairs temp accurately... it will get cooler.. cooler.. cooler.. then wham cut on and bake us..waking everyone up until someone goes down and turns it off.

Anyway, I was considering climbing up in the attic and re-routing the upstairs ducting into the ducting that runs downstairs. Basically pumping all the heat downstairs to keep everything a little more even. At night the thermostat turns on and off more evenly (instead of going from freezing to hell) and the hot air rises through the centrally located stairwell and reasonably heats the upstairs. Any thoughts, other ideas, or suggestions? I can't imagine turning the upstairs into a sauna just to take the chill off downstairs is very good for my power bill either. Let me know what you guys think!


Also... All the vents are CLOSED upstairs and all are OPEN downstairs

COLDIRON 12-14-2012 07:23 AM

Sounds like you need balancing valves or zone valves to either cut down on the upstairs flow or send hot water through when needed.

gregzoll 12-14-2012 07:27 AM

Poor returns. Any changes that you can notice that may have been done to this place? Post your location in your profile, so we can better help you out with this.

kalaniwavo 12-14-2012 12:39 PM

We live in Auburn, CA (norcal) and we also rent this place so inexpensive mods are key. The thermostat is located downstairs and the downstairs living area is only about 1/2 to 2/3rds the size of the upstairs. There are 2 returns one in the stairwell and one upstairs in the hallway area. Both are clean and the house is only 8 years old.

jagans 12-14-2012 02:09 PM

You said ducting right? Forced Hot Air? Turn the fan on, and let it run continuously so it circulates the air. Keep the filters clean. This helps keep the air clean too.

kalaniwavo 12-18-2012 09:59 AM

thanks for the help! just turning the fan on and letting it run all day has made a BIG difference!

bobinphx 12-18-2012 11:11 AM

ahhh... but wait till you get the electrical bill for running that fan all the time!!! Since that is helping, you might want to look into a thermostat that will vary the amount of time that your fan is on. Mine has the option to run the fan in "circulation" mode for a percentage of an hour, not including time the system is on.

so lets say you have it set for 10 percent of an hour and that your hvac system runs 4 times an hour for 10 mins. The total time that your fan would be on is 46 minutes, rather then the 60 minutes you are running now. Might save some money. Plus mine is wireless and can be controled by computer or ipad or whatever IP based devices you have. so I keep my ipod next to the bed and if I get cold at night, I just change the temp from bed!!!!

COLDIRON 12-18-2012 04:58 PM

Sorry thought it was a hot water system must have had to many cuts of the hot stuff when reading and replying.

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