If there is one fact most Canadians can agree on, it is this: there are never enough warm summer days in Canada to enjoy each year. However, summer is less enjoyable in some households than in others. The reason for this is simple: uneven cooling.
It is easy to tell if your home is not cooling evenly and equally in each room: Look to see which room everyone crowds into on extra-hot days.
In this post, learn 6 tips to fix your home's uneven cooling issues before the short, intense Canadian summer arrives in earnest!
Tip #1: Check that your HVAC unit's thermostat is set to "on"
For most air conditioning units today, there are two options on the thermostat for using the inbuilt fan.
Auto. The auto setting will cycle on the unit's fan when the thermostat detects a need to cool the air. Once the air reaches the right temperature, the cooling and fan will power off again.
On. The on setting will leave the fan on constantly, both when the air is being cooled and when it is not.
The "on" setting is better for overall home air circulation. It can remedy minor issues with uneven cooling, especially if you live in a split-level house.
NOTE: Be aware that using the fan more frequently may add a few dollars to your energy bill.
Tip #2: Clean and maintain your air ducts
If you just recently bought a home with an air duct system or you've owned your home for some time but can't recall ever doing air duct maintenance, now is a good time to start!
Over time, air ducts can get clogged with dirt, dust, debris, and other matter. The worse the buildup becomes inside the ducts, the harder your air conditioner has to work to push cool air through. If air vents get blocked by built-up debris, a common side effect is hotter rooms in some areas of your house.
If this is the case in your home, there are two key maintenance tasks that can help:
Cleaning out your air duct system. With this service, all of that built-up debris is removed, along with particulate matter and allergens that can cause respiratory irritation. You’ll have fresher and cleaner indoor air and a home that cools more evenly from room to room.
Sealing and insulating your air ducts. Sealing up air leaks and placing extra insulation around your air ducts can keep more of the cool air in and all of that hot air out. For rooms with major leak issues, this could potentially be a total fix for uneven cooling in your home.
Tip #3: Install a zone system that links to your A/C
With a zone system, temperature sensors are installed in different areas, or zones, of your home. This permits you to more precisely control the air temperature in each of those zones.
So for instance, if your bathroom is always freezing and you boil in your bedroom, a zone system can adjust the temperature settings for each of those areas so the cooling is more comfortable and even.
And if you have a split-level home and notice the upstairs rooms becoming hotter as the warm air rises in summer, you can use a zone system to even out the ambient air temperature for each level of your home.
NOTE: While a zone system can represent an additional cost investment to implement, the potential cost savings can more than offset the investment you make.
Tip #4: Get an A/C unit that suits your house size
You may find that the air conditioning unit that was installed originally has become unable to handle the cooling tasks required of it. This is a frequent issue when homeowners decide to add onto an existing property.
As well, older model HVAC units lack the inbuilt energy efficiency features of their newer Energy Star-certified cousins. If your A/C unit is more than a decade old, lacks a programmable thermostat, is coping with an add-on to your existing home, or simply isn't cutting it for some other reason, you may find you can actually save funds by upgrading to an Energy Star-certified unit.
NOTE: Energy Star monthly efficiency savings are estimated to range upwards of 15 to 20 percent per month (or around $115 per year).
Tip #5 Tweak the placement of your air vents
When was the last time you checked out your air vents in each room? The air vents are the openings (often placed on the ceilings or walls in each room) that allow the air ducts to deliver temperature-controlled air to that room.
If someone has partially or completely closed the air vent in a certain room, or if it has become covered by dust or blocked by furnishings, cleaning and re-opening that vent may be all that is needed to even out air flow to that room!
Tip #6: Change out your air filters
While this may not remedy uneven air flow throughout your home, it can certainly help, particularly if you have multiple air filters for your HVAC unit.
When the air filter gets filled up with debris, you can know two things for sure:
The air filter is doing its job well.
Your A/C unit is working harder than it should to cool your home.
Experts recommend changing the air filter(s) every 30 days for the best air circulation and most even cooling in the home.
Questions? Need Help?
Contact Gravenhurst Plumbing by phone at 705.687.3402 or online here. Our experts can help diagnose and repair any cooling issues you might be experiencing. If you are looking for for help in the Sudbury Region please contact Campeau Heating for repair and cooling issues.