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Old 06-17-2009, 08:15 PM   #1
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


I know the basic rule of heat rises.. but how much hotter should upstairs be then downstairs? its like a difference of 15 degrees.. (about 5 steps; split level house) i have tried to close vents down stairs to force more cold air up stairs, doesnt seem to work... could this be an issue with insulation in my attic? Or is this just normal...

could be a dumb question but just wondering... thanks!

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Old 06-17-2009, 08:47 PM   #2
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


Could be insulation problems.

Also good chance its duct work related.

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Old 06-18-2009, 12:39 PM   #3
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


The study book for the Mech. Eng. PE exam said 1.5F per vertical foot is a good rule of thumb for the stack effect. You seem to be over this.
Or was it 1.5' per degree F?
http://arch.ced.berkeley.edu/vitalsi.../sgl_stak.html

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Old 06-18-2009, 12:47 PM   #4
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


so what do i do???? lol...
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Old 06-18-2009, 01:00 PM   #5
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


If you can (or ask someone else), go up in your attic and measure how much insulation is there.

If it's not enough, the heat from the attic will make your upper floor very warm. Even with the AC on.

That's what was happening to my house. Even with a new furnace/central air and closing the vents in the lower level of the house, it was still hot upstairs and way to cold down stairs. This is a split level too. Turning the ceiling fan on over the stairway didn't help and when there was a cold-air return down there, it made no difference.

Check your insulation and look around to see if the attic is properly sealed. Also check the ventilation in your attic. I have soffits, but the existing batts of insulation were blocking any air from making its way up into the attic.
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Old 06-18-2009, 01:32 PM   #6
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


As above.

Check insulation in attic.
Also check that sofit vents are unobstructed.
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Old 06-18-2009, 02:13 PM   #7
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upstairs hotter then downstairs..


Hi,

1. Closing the vents in the lower level will make the lower level even cooler then upstairs. In winter if you leave them closed, the difference will be large. Leave them open.
2. Heat does not rise. Air that is warmed, and thus lighter then cooler air, is what rises.

Solutions to your problem:

1. As stated, you may have in sufficient insulation in the attic
2. You may have incorrectly sized vents
3. The vents may be leaking - thus not delivering sufficient air either downstairs or upstairs
4. You may need more insulation at the lower level
5. The insulation in your walls is failing
6. You may need more insulation around the lower level walls.

What to do?
You may want to consider an energy audit. That will tell you what is really going on.

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