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Old 04-21-2012, 12:45 PM   #1
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


People,

Got a new house, and the lower level ("1st floor", walk out/finished base floor, half underground) is at least 10 deg F cooler than up. Only one zone thermostat in upstairs control for gas heat and ac. I found this in web:

http://www.therustyfirebox.com/cold_...ating_air.html

and wondering it there is a better less $$$ way. Any tips advice appreciated from fellow members!

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Old 04-21-2012, 12:47 PM   #2
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


Insulation on the second floor would be the first concern. Second would be is there a proper air return up there down to the furnace.

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Old 04-21-2012, 01:17 PM   #3
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


Greg,

the "furnace" is in the attic. Air handler as well. Its in S Cal (cool nights/warm days- good for growing olives/grapes!). I havnt inspected in great detail yet, but gueess there is a return downstairs, thing is, with heat ON, the down doesnt get as warm as up, and when up reached say, 68 deg F, system shuts off, but down is only about say, 55-58.

Not sure if that answers your question.
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Old 04-21-2012, 02:04 PM   #4
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


What is downstairs? Family Room, Bed Rooms?

If it is a family room, maybe a small electric fireplace or some type of space heater is probably your easiest fix.

It sounds like a simple convection problem classic to two story residences, Heat always rises and cold falls to the bottom. Maybe turn your air handler onto just fan so when it is not suppling heat it is moving it arouund.
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Old 04-21-2012, 03:16 PM   #5
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


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Originally Posted by bcgfdc3 View Post
What is downstairs? Family Room, Bed Rooms?

If it is a family room, maybe a small electric fireplace or some type of space heater is probably your easiest fix.

It sounds like a simple convection problem classic to two story residences, Heat always rises and cold falls to the bottom. Maybe turn your air handler onto just fan so when it is not suppling heat it is moving it arouund.
Good tip, BC. Yes, its mostly a larger family room. We did think of a space heater. Its worth a try before chopping up the walls to add ducts etc, maybe. Why do they engineer HVAC's like this?
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Old 04-21-2012, 03:24 PM   #6
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


I am not an HVAC guy and maybe they can answer better. There is the option of adding dampers to the upper floors (either register or in the duct) but you have to watch you don't strangle the air handler or may need to add vents to the lower floors.
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Old 04-21-2012, 04:18 PM   #7
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


if you can't breath in the attic in the summer then vent i out get that load off the 2nd floor ceilings...relocate the stat down to the bottom of the stairs from upstairs do one at a time not both.... where is the return grill under the exsisting stat...upstairs?
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Old 04-21-2012, 07:22 PM   #8
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


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if you can't breath in the attic in the summer then vent i out get that load off the 2nd floor ceilings...relocate the stat down to the bottom of the stairs from upstairs do one at a time not both.... where is the return grill under the exsisting stat...upstairs?
Biggles,

the stat is up stairs. Putting it downstairs I think is a fake out- you fool the stat/furnace to run longer to accomodate the down stairs at the expense of getting the upstairs way too warm (for heating in winter). One can accomplish that simmply by exxagerating the upstairs temp to run longer, right? same thing.

I thought of that but it wont work, unles Im missing something......but your idea of venting the atic is a good one.
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Old 04-21-2012, 07:26 PM   #9
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


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I am not an HVAC guy and maybe they can answer better. There is the option of adding dampers to the upper floors (either register or in the duct) but you have to watch you don't strangle the air handler or may need to add vents to the lower floors.
right- I read articles on this- it could work. dampers are the way for this idea. Just where do I put them? do dampers cone with convenient levers that one could turn on/off? isnt that kinda impractical? or would the dampers stay "damped" the whole season (more logical)?
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Old 04-21-2012, 08:59 PM   #10
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


you can manually adjust the dampers on the register vents but once set you can tweek tehm until you get your desired results then just leave them until seasons change.
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Old 04-21-2012, 09:46 PM   #11
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Practical way to even out temperatures on 1st and 2nd floor


I have a 2 story home, 2800 sq. ft. with a similar problem. Always cooler downstairs, which is great in the summer. In the winter when the house is heated to 69, the lower level, also a walkout can stay between 60 and 64. It's also a family room and library on the lower level. I installed a small gas fireplace and it took care of that instantly. And the heat naturally rises so the upstairs benefits from it as well allowing the heat pump to rest a bit more. If the upstairs is conditioned to your liking then supplemental heat may just be the way to go, it was for me. And if it's too cool down there in the summer (rarely do I think it's too cool in the summer) I just open a few windows or the patio door.

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