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AC and Heating Tip from AC Express

Uneven Indoor Temperatures

Uneven Indoor Temperatures

Happy Monday Austin! Air conditioning in Austin doesn’t always go as smoothly as planned. In an ideal world we’d never have to think or worry about the air conditioning we get; it would just always be there, working as perfectly as when it was first installed. But in the real world, sometimes things don’t work out like that. Sometimes things break down and need repairs. Sometimes there’s no failure but air conditioners lose their efficiency and start costing us more in our monthly electricity bills. Sometimes there are problems that aren’t catastrophic but are annoying enough to cause concern and warrant immediate attention.

One of such problems is uneven temperatures. It takes a lot of power to cool an entire house down, and sometimes the whole house just doesn’t quite get there. This tip will be all about the situation where the temperature of the air varies from room to room enough to be noticeable and a nuisance. Of course, naturally the air in the whole house won’t always be exactly the same temperature, especially in two story houses or houses with a lot of rooms and space. This isn’t really a problem if it’s barely noticeable. Really this only becomes a problem when you feel it is a problem. It’s subjective how much variance in temperature is acceptable to you. So, if you notice that some of the rooms in your home are hotter than others to an uncomfortable degree, read on to learn more about uneven indoor air temperatures, their causes, and potential solutions.

Common Causes

It’s not always realistic to expect the whole house to be the same temperature all the time. Air spreads as it comes out of the vents but it doesn’t do so immediately. It takes time for the air conditioner to cool the house and that means that sometimes there are going to be discrepancies in the temperatures throughout the house. But sometimes these discrepancies are more than just noticeable; they’re uncomfortable. If your whole house isn’t at a comfortable temperature that isn’t something to just shrug off. It’s an issue and it can be solved. How it’s solved will depend on the cause of the issue. Several of the most common causes of uneven indoor air temperatures will be listed here.

The first and easiest to fix cause of uneven temperatures is blocked vents. The air vents in your house both blow out the cool air into the home and accept the warm air that leaves. If either of these types of vents are blocked, but especially the ones that blow the cool air out, then it can cause a room to not get as cool as the others. So if you find one particular room in your house is inexplicably warmer than the others, check to see if you have inadvertently placed some furniture or a curtain or some other obstruction in front of one of the air vents. And don’t forget to make sure all the vents are open in the first place. If you do find a blocked or closed vent, then viola, just move the obstruction out of the way and when the air conditioner goes through its cooling cycle again the room should achieve the same temperature as the rest of the house.

Sometimes the problem isn’t in the vent itself but in the circulation of air throughout the ducts. Some rooms are going to be closer to the air conditioner than others as some ducts are going to run farther than others to reach the further corners of the house. If there is poor circulation through the vents then some of the more distant rooms in the house may end up warmer than others. The most common cause of poor air circulation is dirty air filters. If you find that some of the rooms in the same story of your house are warmer than others that are farther from the air conditioner, check the air filters. If they are old and/or dirty, that may very well be your culprit. Simply change the air filter out for a new one and you should see some improvement.

Another cause of poor circulation in your ducts is just blockages within those ducts. If there is some kind of obstruction in the ducts in our home then that will cause air to not flow properly all through your house and as a result the temperatures will be uneven.

An HVAC unit that is too small can also cause uneven temperatures. Different sized air conditioners will provide different amounts of cooling power and that will determine how much space they can cool. Often times people wind up with air conditioners that are too big for their home and that can cause problems too. But sometimes you’ll end up with an air conditioner that is too small and will cause it to be unable to properly cool your entire home down to the same temperature.

If the uneven temperatures in your home are split between the upstairs and downstairs, that is due to the simple fact that hot air rises and cool air falls. This is a very common problem. Many people find that their upstairs rooms are significantly warmer than their downstairs rooms and it’s due to physics. But that can be solved as well. It will require either getting a second air conditioner or getting a zoning system that will include dampers in the vents that control how much air goes to each zone in your home. Either way, you’re not doomed to experience uneven temperature in your home even if you’ve got more than one story.

DIY Fixes

Depending on the cause of your uneven indoor temperatures, there are things you can do to solve problem that don’t require calling a professional at all. Of course, it’s always handy to be able to call a professional to make sure the problem is dealt with correctly and that it isn’t indicative of a larger problem within your HVAC system. And it’s worth having a professional come check out your air conditioner even if the problem isn’t serious once a year anyway to perform routine preventative maintenance tasks. But we know it’s not always necessary or convenient to have a professional come by. Some of the solutions to uneven indoor air temperatures that you can solve yourself are listed here.

The easiest problem to solve that can cause uneven indoor air temperatures is blocked vents. As discussed in the previous section, if you notice one room is warmer than the others, check the air vents. If they are closed or something is blocking them, fix that and the room should soon cool down like the rest of the house. If one of the vents is excessively dirty, then it can be fixed by simply vacuuming out the dirt and dust. The return air vents at the tops of the walls in your home are especially prone to needing vacuuming. Every couple of months you should take your vacuum hose and brush attachment and clean off those dusty intake vents to help keep pollutants to a minimum and to open up the air pathways in your home.

You might also consider turning your thermostat from the auto setting to the on setting. Most people leave their thermostat on auto by default as this will cause the fan to blow only when cooling is being delivered. The on setting will cause the fan to blow continually. This isn’t quite as good for your energy efficiency but it will help your air circulate more which can be an easy solution to a chronic uneven air situation.

Professional Solutions

Sometimes there’s no way around it; a professional has to be called. There’s no better way to ensure that you’re getting the most you can out of your air conditioning than to call a trusted Austin air conditioning company to come check out your system and fix anything that needs fixing. There are a number of issues that can cause uneven indoor temperatures that only an experienced technician can handle.

If you have poor circulation in the ducts in your home then that can cause some rooms to be hotter than others. A professional HVAC technician can come by and check the ducts in your home for internal obstructions, leaks and openings, crushed segments of flexible ductwork, and other problems that could be causing your poor circulation issue. When there’s an air leak present within your duct system, the air meant for a specific destination escapes before it can arrive. These leaks, holes and tears in your ducts will definitely make your air conditioning system have to work harder to compensate for the missing air. That, in turn, can lead to even more problems such as higher energy bills. Have a professional inspect your ducts if you suspect that leaks are contributing to the uneven cooling around your home.

If you can’t diagnose the uneven indoor temperature problem in your home yourself, a professional technician will be able to do that for. An air flow audit will be done which will determine how efficiently air is moving throughout your house and any spots where insufficient air is being delivered. One conclusion a technician may be able to come to is if your air conditioner is improperly sized for your house. Both a too big and a too small air conditioner won’t be able to provide you with even temperatures and this can be discovered by a load calculation.

If the uneven temperatures in your home are divided between the upstairs and the downstairs, call a professional to solve the problem by adding a zoning system to your home. While a zoning system is a larger investment, it can be one of the most efficient ways to deal with uneven cooling. These systems allow you to directly control the temperature in individual areas or floors. This is much more efficient and effective than having one thermostat controlling cooling in the whole house. A zoning system is the most effective way to have complete control over the cooling in your house and is often the only way to truly achieve a consistent and even temperature throughout a two story home.

AC Repair in Austin and Consistent Temperatures

Uneven temperatures can be a real pain. The whole point of a central air conditioning system is control the air in your home and if the temperatures are uneven than is the air really being controlled? There are a number of causes of uneven temperatures, some of which you can solve by yourself. Many more will take the help of a trained professional though.

If you’re being plagued by uneven temperatures in your home call a trusted Austin AC repair company such as AC Express. AC Express has been doing air conditioning repair in Austin for over ten years and we are confident in our ability to provide with high quality repairs at low costs. Air conditioning in Austin with AC Express is a breeze. So for same day AC repair that can’t be beat, call today!


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