Your entire residence should be a refuge that’s warm and cozy in the winter and cool and comfortable in the summer. However, owners of some homes with multiple levels find the upper floor is stubbornly hotter or colder than the first floor.

This could simply be due to the fact most thermostats in a house are on the main floor, which is where people spend the greatest amount of time—in the living room, kitchen, etc.—so it makes sense to set the temperature according to how it feels on the first floor.

However, temperature variations between the upstairs and downstairs could also be because of issues with your HVAC system. Some of these issues can be fixed somewhat quickly while others might necessitate more extensive and costly fixes. Here, the specialists at Fal-Ken Heating & Cooling Corporation will help you solve why the upstairs of your home is hotter than downstairs, or vice versa.

Why Is It Hot Upstairs?

The phenomenon of the upstairs of a two-story home becoming hotter than the downstairs can be traced to several factors. First, heat rises, so it’s natural for the second floor of a home to get hotter than the first floor. Insufficient insulation in the attic or roof can make this worse by letting heat transfer from the roof into the upstairs rooms.

Another common reason is that the HVAC system is not strong enough to cool the entire home, causing it to have difficulty cooling the upstairs adequately.

To tackle these issues, homeowners could install additional insulation in the attic and make sure their home has proper ventilation. If there’s concern the air conditioner is the right size for the home, call an experienced HVAC company like Fal-Ken Heating & Cooling Corporation inspect the unit. A knowledgeable professional also can help find a unit that's better suited for your home if you want air conditioning installation or replacement.

Why Is My Upstairs Colder/Not Heating?

When the downstairs of your home is warm, but it’s very cold upstairs, that makes for a very chilly night for anyone whose bedrooms are on the upper floor. The most common causes of an upstairs not heating like it should are the insulation levels and the ductwork.

Inadequate insulation permits cold air to seep through the home’s attic or walls and contribute to heat loss, resulting in colder temperatures on higher floors. It’s crucial to make sure your home has a deep, level layer of insulation in the attic and appropriate insulation in the walls to keep the cold out and the heat inside.

The ductwork in a home plays a critical role in disseminating conditioned air throughout different locations of the building. However, troubles with the ductwork can cause the upstairs being colder than the downstairs. A typical reason for this is improper airflow balance. The ducts may not be the proper size or configuration, which results in an uneven distribution of air between the floors. This can cause more warm air to be directed to the downstairs, which creates insufficient airflow—which is the heated air—on the upper level.

Another potential problem area in the ductwork is the layout of the supply and return vents. If there are fewer vents on the upper story or they are poorly installed, it can restrict air circulation and cause inferior heating or cooling. Also, leaks or gaps in the ductwork can lead to air loss, decreasing the overall efficiency of the HVAC system and actually making the temperature difference worse.

To understand why the upstairs is colder than the downstairs, homeowners should hve their ductwork checked by trusted professionals like the team at Fal-Ken Heating & Cooling Corporation to identify any imbalances, leaks or inadequacies. Sealing leaks and adding new vents or adjusting existing ones can help increase airflow and ensure a better temperature balance between the upstairs and downstairs.

What Do I Do to Fix a Hot/Cold Upstairs?

If your upstairs is hotter or colder than the lower floors of your house, an HVAC zoning system could be a highly effective solution.

An HVAC zoning system divides the residence into different zones, which each have their own thermostat and damper system so the homeowner can control the heating or cooling of each zone.

This system can be very helpful in instances where the upstairs of a multi-story home is too hot or extremely cold while the main floor is comfortable. By investing in a  zoning system, homeowners can regulate the temperature independently in each zone, enabling them to address specific hot or cold spots effortlessly.

To discover more about an HVAC zoning system in Holbrook, call Fal-Ken Heating & Cooling Corporation. We’ve created and installed customized home comfort plans for many community members and are happy to show how an HVAC zoning system could enhance the comfort in your home.

Why Is My Upstairs So Humid?

In addition to the upper story being hotter or colder than the rest of the house, another challenge in multi-floor homes is when the upstairs is more humid than the first floor.

A frequent cause for excess upper floor humidity is inadequate ventilation on the upper floor, which can cause higher humidity levels. As is often the case with temperature differences between floors, poor insulation or sealing in the attic or walls may permit warm, humid air from outdoors infiltrate the upstairs rooms. In addition, if there are any leaks or plumbing problems on the upper floor, that can also cause excessive moisture in that area of a home.

To deal with humidity problems, homeowners can increase ventilation by installing fans or opening windows to promote airflow. Adding more insulation  in the attic and better sealing the attic and walls can help stop external moisture from entering the upstairs. Finding and repairing any leaks or plumbing issues is also imperative.

Depending on the levels of moisture found in the home, a whole-home dehumidifier could be another worthwhile tool to manage humidity in the residence.