Winter temperatures can leave you feeling chilled but here’s how to avoid hot and cold spots in your house.
Check your insulation
Whether the home is brand new or decades old, if insulation is thin or missing in areas of the home, the home will have hot and cold spots. Missing insulation in the attic allows heat to slip right through the roof. And missing areas of insulation under the house allows cold air to draft up and into the connected rooms. Improving insulation can save you anywhere from 10% to 50% in the cost of your energy bills. Having insulation inspected and applied to missing areas, if necessary, is a worthwhile investment for years to come.
Air duct inspection
Central HVAC systems use air duct vents to deliver heat and cooling to each room in the house. The ducts also cycle air from your home back into the HVAC system through an air return. If the vents are blocked, the air is not able enter the room or regulate temperatures.
To start, inspect the vents in the room that is cold. The vents could be located on the ceiling, wall or floor. Make sure the vents are open and allowing air to flow through. If the vent is closed, it can be opened by adjusting the lever on the side. If it is blocked by furniture, a rug or something else, it may be necessary to restructure the room to allow air flow to permeate the room.
Beyond a visual inspection of the vents, you or a hired professional, can also inspect the air ducts under your home and in your attic to ensure there is not damage, holes or disconnection of an air duct, allowing warm air to be lost. According to Energy.gov, leaky air ducts can not only cause cold spots in the home, but they can also be responsible for 20-30% loss of energy.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, air duct cleaning is not recommended unless there is a specific concern such as vermin contamination, substantial visible mold growth, or unusual unexplained symptoms such as allergies or respiratory illnesses. If a service provider does clean the air ducts and does not follow specific protocols, there is an increased risk of indoor air quality issues that weren’t there before.
Replace the HVAC air filter
This is one easy solution, but it is most often overlooked in resolving hot and cold spots. When an HVAC air filter is clogged with dust and debris, it keeps the system from moving air freely. By replacing the air filter regularly, you can reduce allergens in the home and keep air flow from slowing in the system.
Most HVAC air filters should be replaced every three months to six months. Check your system for manufacturer’s instructions for your system. Set a calendar reminder to replace it as often as specified to keep your HVAC system running smoothly.
If you have tried to remedy these common causes of hot and cold spots in the home and are still experiencing temperature differentials, contact us to have a professional inspection by Three Rivers Heating and Cooling