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Cold upstairs

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Posted by: from Brampton
2/10/2011 at 10:08:08 PM

My total upstairs is always so cold ..The walls floors the whole rooms is very .I had enebridge in numerous times they said its just upstairs not a problelm with the heating.If the heat is set to 72 downstairs its 63 upstairs and drops lower then that at times. Its making it very difficult to sleep .

Sorry about the last post it does help if i can type.

REPLIES (20)
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Date/Time2/10/2011 at 10:20:07 PM

This might not solve your problem, but if you cover your vents in the basement, it will force more air upward to your top floor. You could even cover one or two vents on the main floor if it is warm enough.

As a flooring guy, this is all I can think of and thought I would share it with you. Good luck!

DandJ Hardwood

416 873-6975

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/10/2011 at 10:24:28 PM

I have all the vents closed in basement and most of the first floor. All that seems to do is make it cooler down there .

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Mission Valley Home Renovations Ltd. in Mission
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 12:15:09 AM

This is a typical problem and could be expensice to cure, in many cases all it is, is the ducting from the furnace is not sealed, all these joints have to be taped with real duct tape. all the hot air is escaping into the floor joists instead of up the registers. Hope this helps

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Date/Time2/11/2011 at 2:17:41 AM

As you have had the heating company in to check the system, the next logical step is to inquire about hte state of your windows: are they single pane or better? Poor windows allow a lot of air (heated in this case) to escape. An expensive fix is to replace the windows. A less aesthetic and costly alternative is to hair dry on some film over the windows to improve their R rating. The next logical step is to check the insulation in the attic: what type and how much do you have? You could probably add on a layer at a reasonable cost and improve your ambient air temperature upstairs. But do be careful: I recommend you bag a sample for inspection by a reputable environmental testing company before you pursue the matter. Good luck.

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 10:14:38 AM

I have put the cheap plastic on the windows .The stuff you blow dry it helps a small amount but the temperatures and the very cool rooms are with the plastic on all the windows.I dont even feel much heat coming up out of the vents .Yet enebridge says its fine,The furnace i just bought a year and half ago.So its not old either

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 10:23:56 AM

My hubby believes that Insulation in the attic is about 15 inches deep around R50 and is fiberglass.The windows are old although siting near them i feel hardly no draft

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 10:31:05 AM

If the heat is escaping into the floors wouldnt the floors at least be warm not cold?

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Date/Time2/11/2011 at 1:43:52 PM

Hi Karen

As you can see there is no simple answer to your question. It is likely a combination of things.

When the furnace was installed, did they balance the system? If you remove the duct registers are there dampers inside the ducting? If so, there is a method to balancing the system by adjusting the dampers. However, you must be carefull not to restrict too much airflow as you could raise the temperature too much inside the plenum. Cold air returns are neccesary to ensure proper air circulation. Are there any in the bedrooms? Also, as mentioed in previous posts, three is significant heat loss in the ducts if they are not sealed or if they run along exterior walls (which should be wrapped).

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 1:57:27 PM

They did not balance the system (that I know of).? There are dampers under the registers and they are wide open. There are no cold air returns in the bedrooms only in the hallway. ?The ducts run up the exterior walls

How do i find out for sure then whats going on.I was convinced i needed a furnace then a duct cleaning im not wasting anymore money on con jobs.I would just really want to know who and how i find out and how much it would cost to fix. :)

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Date/Time2/11/2011 at 4:33:08 PM

You mentioned that you had the furnace replaced and I assume that the supplier undertook a heat loss review and the furnace and ducting are appropriate. Also assuming there is minimal loss in the ducting servicing the bedrroms you can try to balance the system by adjusting the dampers which you can undertake yourself if you wish. It appears you have the ability to take the temperature in the bedroom. Start by restricting air flow (closing the dampers) in the rooms that are the warmest and ensuring that the dampers in the bedroom are fully open to see if you can begin to raise the temperature in the bedroom. This will take a number of days. If your basement is unfinished, begin to tape all seams etc to eliminate heat loss. If you wish we can ascertain the feasibility of adding cold air returns to the bedrooms and sealing the ducting.

Kingsway Construction Inc.

Glenn Rosborough

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Metro Ontario Contractors inc in Maple
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 8:38:55 PM

hi karen what type of house is it .because if its a 11/2storey.even if you close all vents in basement,it will not help.even if you change windows it will not help.you best bet would be to add more room vents and a moterised roof vend. l have encountered this problem before.hope this helps.also try using fans in duct work to blow more air upstairs.also do you have air condition.if so is it warmer upstairs.feel free to call us if this helps. sam 1-416-873-3463

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 8:43:58 PM

The house is a two storey detached .There is a new air conditioner put on as well.In the summer its hot upstairs .

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 8:45:35 PM

The furnace air conditioner was bought from enebridge(direct energy) and put in by them.

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/11/2011 at 8:48:11 PM

Right now i have the heat on 72 in living room with all vents closed it seems like the bathrooms are the only place that actually blows up some heat. The bedroom i sleep in is 61 right now there is two vents in that room plus one in my bathroom in that room. There is one vent in each of the other two bedrooms.

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Doug Millott from jnd's Contracting in Gardiner Mines
Date/Time2/12/2011 at 7:28:24 AM

Karen your problem is system balance.Pick one of the local people and get them to check the air flow to and from each room. the problem with a forced air system is that it heats from a central location usually th basement,if it is not properly balanced with proper returns it cannot equilly heat each room. Also if the pipes are loosing heat for any reason the further from the source the cooler the air.

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Bill from Bill Carr Renovations in Baltimore
Date/Time2/12/2011 at 8:02:22 AM

Hi Karen- sounds like a system balance is required. The cold air should drop, so something is impeding this from happening. The furnace pushes warm air up, but as the cold air has nowhere to go- it gets chilly. I don't know the layout of your home, but do anything you can to increase air flow- I have put wall grates(8"x10") just above baseboards going from the hall where the cold air return is into the bedrooms- as the warm air enters the room it forces the cold down where it will find the grates and work its way into the cold air return. Try leaving doors open also as anything that helps move air will be an improvement.

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Thomas (Ted) from Barlow Insulation Inc. in Hamilton
Date/Time2/12/2011 at 11:20:53 AM

The problem might be that the heat runs are in the exterior walls and not properly insulated losing all the heat before it gets upstairs.

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Date/Time2/14/2011 at 1:37:14 PM

Hi karen from the sounds of things if you have the furance guys in and they said its not your system. And your husband says you have 15 in of insulationin your attic. my best bet is your windows and walls if you have missed insualtion in your wall or even an old batt made a void then you would feel a huge diffenece in temp. also if its an old home sometimes the insulation is just not enough so check that and let me know what you find out.

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Karen in Brampton
Date/Time2/14/2011 at 2:08:44 PM

If by some chance the whole upstairs needs insulation how much would that approx cost.

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Ron from Jaykob Isaak Inc in London
Date/Time2/14/2011 at 7:09:38 PM

Hi Karen

The only way to know for sure is to have someone come out and have a look at your house .

You have already had a furnace guy come out for a service call and had your ducts cleaned to solve this problem, we have had some unusually cold days the last week but now that your thinking about insulation and replacing windows. I think you need a Professional to come out and look at your situation all the guessing in the world can't replace a half hour looking at what's going on.

Don't get a free quote spend the $75 the free inspection is designed to sell you something, if you are paying for someone to look they don't need to sell you something a review of your heating system and a thermal scan will pinpoint your problem exactly and 9 out of 10 times it turns into a very simple fix a blockage or adjustment or faulty component impossible to find by guessing from afar.

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