Keeping your Cheshire home warm can be difficult during the winter. This is especially true if you have areas in your home that are cooler than others. Keeping your house at a consistent temperature can help reduce your utility bills and help everyone in your family stay comfortable.
How do you get to the point where every room’s temperature is largely the same, though? While it might take some work to get to a point of even heating throughout your home, the results will be well worth the effort involved. These tips from the pros at F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling can help make the process a little easier.
What Not to Do
If you’re struggling with uneven heating around your home, your first instinct might be to close vents in rooms with higher temperatures. However, taking this action can actually cause more problems.
Closing vents can cause extra air pressure to build up in your system’s vents and on the heat exchanger. Over time, this can cause the heat exchanger to crack, which can be a very expensive repair to have done. F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling recommends that you keep all your vents open at all times and instead use some of the other suggestions in this article to deal with uneven heating in your home.
Inspect and Insulate Ducts
One common cause of uneven heating is when heated air from the furnace isn’t arriving where it’s needed. This is most often caused by a problem with the ducts. If your ducts have holes or gaps in them, they will release warm air into your attic, basement, and other unfinished areas of your home. Meanwhile, your home’s living areas will be too cold to be comfortable.
Another potential issue with ducts arises when your ducts aren’t properly insulated. Even if there aren’t any holes for the ducts to lose heated air through, they can still lose heat energy to the surrounding air if there is no insulation to keep that heat energy inside the ducts. Fortunately, you can solve these problems by having your ducts repaired and adding insulation to exposed areas.
Add Attic Insulation
A home that’s suffering from uneven heating can almost always benefit from adding insulation in the attic. If your attic only has a couple of inches of insulation, every room in your home will quickly lose heat as it rises through the ceiling. With poor insulation, you’ll find that your home’s interior rooms tend to stay warmer since they aren’t touching a cold exterior wall.
Unless you live exclusively in these rooms, you’ll want to have F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling upgrade the insulation in your attic. The first step in insulating an attic is to fill any holes in the ceiling and the roof sill so that cold air can’t easily enter your living spaces. Next, either blown-in or spray-foam insulation is used to create a barrier that slows down the process of heat escaping from your home. This process helps to keep your home warmer and allows your furnace to run less often.
Replace Your System’s Air Filter
Although uneven heating in your home can sometimes be a complex problem, it often comes with a simple solution. By simply replacing your HVAC system’s air filter, you might find that your heating issues resolve themselves. A dirty air filter will reduce the amount of air that your system can take in.
This also reduces the amount of heated air that it can put out. If you have long duct runs in your home, this will limit your system’s ability to send warm air to the rooms that are furthest from the furnace or heat pump. That’s why F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling recommends inspecting your air filter once a month. If you find that the air filter is dirty, you’ll want to replace it with a new air filter of the same size.
Another consideration when it comes to air filters is the MERV rating. This rating measures the size of particulates that a filter can capture. While it’s good to be able to capture small particulates to keep your air clean, you don’t want to opt for a filter that’s so tightly wound that your system’s airflow is restricted. Hospital-grade air filters are only for hospital-grade HVAC systems.
Upgrade Weatherproofing Around Windows and Doors
The windows and doors in the various rooms in your home could be contributing to your home’s heating issues. If these fixtures aren’t properly sealed, they can lose massive amounts of heated air to the outside. F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling can perform an energy audit that uses a thermal camera to determine if any of your doors or windows are leaking warm air.
Assuming the windows and doors themselves are in good shape, you’ll need to use caulk to seal around the outside and inside of each door and window frame. There are also various types of weatherstripping you can put around doors to help prevent drafts and maintain an even temperature in your home. Remember, too, that both caulk and weatherstripping do eventually wear out, so you’ll need to replace these protective materials to continue to prevent heat loss as the years go by.
Consider a Space Heater
If you’re in a pinch and the room you’re in is too cold, a space heater can make a good option to help maintain comfort. However, F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling recommends this only as a temporary solution. If you decide to use a space heater, there are some important safety tips to keep in mind.
First, never plug a space heater into an extension cord or power strip. Most space heaters draw at least 12 amps, which is far more than most extension cords and power strips can provide without overheating. Second, make sure that any flammable materials are kept away from the space heater so that they can’t ignite. Finally, don’t run a space heater when you’re not in the room. If there is a problem with the heater, you need to be able to react instantly.
On cool days during the winter, it’s important to utilize every tool you can to help keep your house warm. One great way to warm up cold rooms is to let the sun do some of the work. By opening curtains in rooms facing the sun, you can easily increase the temperature of the room by 5 or 10 degrees. This will significantly reduce the amount that you have to run your furnace. If you have rooms that don’t get much sun throughout the day, it’s a good idea to install heavy curtains in those rooms. Heavy curtains can help prevent heat loss by preventing heat transfer through the windows.
Your Home Heating Experts
At F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling, we take pride in keeping our customers comfortable in their homes throughout the year. That’s why we offer furnace repair, air conditioner replacement, heat pump water heater installation, fuel oil delivery, and much more. We’ve served the area for over 150 years, and you can be sure that we’ll deliver great results every time you give us a call. Our dedication to quality is why we’re rated A+ by the Better Business Bureau and why we continually receive five-star customer reviews. To learn more about improving your home’s heating, contact us at F.F. Hitchcock Plumbing, Heating & Cooling today.