Over time, you may notice that certain rooms of your home tend to remain colder than others. There are many different causes of this uneven heating throughout your home that all homeowners should be aware of.
Aging Heating System
If uneven heating has gradually developed over a period of time, it’s an indication that your HVAC system may be reaching the end of its lifespan. Most furnaces are constructed to last between 15 and 20 years. If your heating system is reaching the end of its lifespan, it’s going to produce less heat than you’re used to. You’ll likely find that the rooms that come along first in your ducting are going to be warmer than the rooms that are last in your ducting.
If you’re experiencing uneven heating similar to the scenario above, but your heating system isn’t anywhere near the end of its lifespan, it could be that your ductwork is leaking. It’s common for ductwork to be damaged over time and for the joints and molding to come loose. This can create unwanted gaps that allow warm air inside of your ductwork to escape into your wall and floor cavities. You should consider having a professional seal up your ductwork so that none of that warm air from your furnace is wasted.
Undersized Heating System
If this is your first winter in your new home, your uneven heating issue could be due to an undersized heating system. When your heating system isn’t putting out enough heat to meet the demands of your home, the rooms most that are the farthest away from your furnace are going to remain colder than the rooms closest to it.
The easiest way to determine if your heating system is undersized for your home is to compare its heating output to what your home’s heating needs are. You should be able to see what the heating output of your furnace is by simply looking at its access panel. This number will be written in BTUs. To determine what your household’s demand is, you simply need to multiply the total square footage of your San Bernardino home by 40 BTUs. If the BTU output of your furnace is below what you determined your household’s needs are, it’s time to purchase a bigger HVAC unit.
Dirty Air Filter
Your furnace has an air filter that is meant to collect dust and other particles that are in the air before they enter your furnace. Whenever this filter starts to become dirty, it creates a barrier of debris that causes your furnace to work harder to push the air through it. This can lead to your furnace constantly running and not being able to produce enough hot air for your entire home to be comfortable. To fix this problem, all you need to do is replace the dirty air filter with a new one. You should be checking your filter once a month to see if it needs to be replaced.
Poor Home Design
It can be easy to get carried away by all the unique features that you can include inside of your home. Unfortunately, some of these features can make it more difficult for your heating system to work effectively. Some of the most common features that can create heating issues include having a wall of windows and a multi-level home. When it comes to a multi-level home, you’re going to experience the upstairs becoming much warmer than the downstairs. This is just the natural process of heat rising. Fixing these issues takes the knowledge and expertise of an HVAC technician.
Each room throughout your home should have a couple of vents. One of these vents supplies air to the room, and one of them pulls air out of the room. Whenever any of these vents become obstructed, it can reduce the efficiency of your ducting.
For example, let’s say that you rearrange your living room and accidentally put your couch in front of your supply vent. Because the supply vent is blocked, hot air from your furnace isn’t going to be able to enter your living room. This can make it feel much colder than it needs to be. Fortunately, fixing this issue is fairly simple. You want to walk around your home and check all the vents to ensure that there are no obstructions. Additionally, check that the vent grates are fully open.
System Short Cycling
All furnaces are designed to run a full heating cycle when they kick on. When there is an issue with your furnace, it can create an issue known as “short cycling.” This is defined as the system kicking on and turning off before it can run through a complete heating cycle. Put simply, your furnace isn’t going to be producing enough heat to adequately make it to all the rooms of your home before it shuts off. It’s best to call one of our heating professionals to assess your short cycling issue and fix it.
One of the most common reasons that you may experience some rooms being colder than others is that there are drafts present in the colder rooms. Air drafts commonly develop near windows and doors. Take a few moments and run your hand around your window frame and your door frame. If you feel cold air, then you have air drafts that need to be taken care of. You’ll want to use weather stripping, a door sweep, or something similar to help keep the cold air out of that room. By sealing up the air drafts, your furnace won’t have to contend with the constant cold air in those rooms.
Heating System Needs Service
When your heating system is not working optimally, it can be difficult for it to adequately heat each room in your home. If you haven’t gotten your furnace serviced on an annual basis, it may just be the culprit of your uneven heating issue. It’s best to call in one of our experienced heating professionals to service your heating system and examine it for any operating malfunctions.
Add More Insulation
Another culprit of uneven household heating is that certain rooms of your home lack adequate insulation. Without an adequate barrier to keep the cold weather out, it will easily turn your comfortably warm room into a chilly one. Take a look at the amount of attic insulation you have above rooms that tend to be colder than others. You may just need to add some insulation to those areas to create a thicker barrier to keep the cold air out. It’s a good rule of thumb to always meet or exceed the recommended R-value for your area.
Trustworthy Heating Services
4 Points A/C & Heating offers trustworthy heating services for the San Bernardino, CA area. We’re also available for all of your cooling installation, repair, and maintenance needs. Contact our office today to schedule your next appointment.