How to Keep Your Multi-Story Home Comfortable This Fall and Winter

This summer, we discussed the best ways to heat and cool your multi-story home. If you happened to miss that article, click here. Or, since you're already here, let's discuss how you can keep your multi-story home comfortable this fall and winter.

Even if you don't know much about HVAC systems, you likely know that heat rises, which is why the first level of your home is often a different temperature than the second (and subsequent levels) level of your home. During the summer, that warm air will rise up into your attic and through the roof. Meanwhile, cold air is heavier than warm air. As such, cold air will push down from the higher levels of your home down to the lower levels of your home; which is why your basement is often a little chillier than the main levels of your home.

All that said, most of us desire to keep our home one consistent temperature regardless of whether it's hot or cold outside and if your HVAC system isn't already providing that level of comfort, there are a few things you can do.

1. Leave Your Furnace Fan "ON"

We don't always recommend that you leave your HVAC fan running all the time. However, if you're finding that the temperature is fluctuating from one room to another, you may want to give this a try.

When you leave the fan in automatic mode, the furnace is only running long enough to achieve a certain temperature. However, when you turn it "ON," that air will blow continuously, which will circulate the air - be it hot or cold. This effect will create a movement that will force cold air up and warm air down. As such, you should be able to feel more consistency throughout your home.

2. Use a Ceiling Fan

You may or may not realize that your fan can circulate the air in your home such that cool air is moved up and warm air is forced down (in much the way we just described above). There's a little switch right on the base of your fan that you can adjust depending on the season. So, in the warm months, make sure that it's switched so that cold air moves up. Then, in the winter, switch your ceiling fans into reverse so that it recirculates the warm air to go down.

3. Make Sure Your Vents are OPEN

There's a long-standing idea that if you keep the vents closed in unused rooms of your house that more air will circulate to the rooms that you do use. Well, that's just not true. So, if your dear Aunt Peggy recently stayed with you or you live with ghosts who like to cause a little drama, you may want to take a walk around your house to make sure all of your vents are open. Provided that your ductwork was installed correctly, those vents are absolutely necessary for making sure that you are receiving good airflow throughout your home.

4. Check the Size of Your HVAC

If you've tried everything else, you may want to check the size of your furnace and air conditioner. HVAC systems were never designed to be "one size fits all," and if you've made any recent home improvements, it's possible that your system is either too big or too small for your home's needs.

If you've added onto your home, your system may now be too small. Your current system is likely trying its best and working really hard to provide conditioned air to your home, but it's expending a lot of energy playing catch up. Meanwhile, if you've made some energy improvement modifications around the house, your system may now be too big. While this may not seem like a problem, if your HVAC is too big, it'll cycle too quickly which can leave hot or cold spots throughout your home.

Whatever the case, if you're uncomfortable, give Choice HVAC a call at 919-435-2711. We’ll ensure everything is operating as it should, keep you warm, safe, and happy all season through.

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