Like many homeowners who invested in an HVAC system, the ease of control over your whole house might have been a deciding factor: the “set it and forget it” bonus. While a properly maintained HVAC system should be able to handle the whole gamut of temperatures, no matter the season, people often find themselves wandering about their house wondering why certain rooms are warmer or cooler than others. You shouldn’t have to pack a jacket for your midnight snack mission, so here are some clues as to what might be going on in your home if you experience temperature shifts rooms to room:
Losing Heat from Your Ducts
If your air conditioning and heating unit is the heart of your home temperature control system, then the ducts are the arteries: nothing can work properly without well maintained and regularly cleaned ducts. When it comes to noticing a drastic temperature difference in between rooms, the ducts are often the culprit. If you suspect your ducts might not be functioning properly, it is always a good idea to have them professionally inspected. It may just be a simple case of dusty vents clogging fans. However, some other factors include issues with insulation, allowing for heat to flow through the vent wall to the outside. Room to room temperature differences shouldn’t normally exceed 10%; if it is much above this (and you’re sure all the windows are closed!) you might have a duct heat leak.
Issues with the Building
If you have had your ducts inspected and your HVAC system has been properly maintained over the years, the issue might be the insulation of your home itself. In Canada, with such a wide difference between hottest and coldest of weather, it is especially important to be sure of your insulation. Before you make that call however, it’s best to have your system checked over. If it turns out to be a more general insulation issue, you can start with sealing your windows in the winter, and using light coloured curtains in the summer. Still, a strong HVAC system will be able to combat slight heat leaks from insufficient insulation.
One final solution to the mystery of unevenly heated rooms is often the easiest to deal with. If you have a lot of gadget and appliances running in any one room, that can drastically affect the temperature in that room. Whether you use incandescent bulbs or more energy efficient LEDS, or if you have a large television set, are all things that can add heat to a room. Even fridges—things specifically designed to be cold—add a massive amount of heat. Mini-fridges are fun and convenient, but if you’re finding your office a bit stuffy, that might be the issue.