What Causes Hot And Cold Spots In Your Home, And What You Can Do About It

What Causes Hot And Cold Spots In Your Home, And What You Can Do About It

Many homes have rooms or areas within them that are warmer or cooler than the rest of the house. Do you have rooms that require adding or shedding layers when you enter? The air temperature should be consistent throughout your home. Temperature discrepancies from room to room may be indicative of significant issues with your heating and air conditioning system.

What Causes Temperature Discrepancies in Your Home?

Your HVAC system exists to maintain the comfort of your home. If there are rooms or areas of your home that are uncomfortable, your system is not doing its job (excluding attics and unconditioned spaces). North Carolina state code requirement allows for a 4 degree temperature variance. Your system should capable of maintaining consistent temperatures throughout your home. That means that the conditioned spaces of your house should be within four degrees of each other. Read our Change Out Decision Guide to learn more.

Seven Common Causes

Are you finding you need to throw on an extra blanket just to feel comfortable in certain spots of your home? There are several factors that could be contributing to your home’s temperature discrepancies. Below we have identified seven common causes:

1. Closed or Obstructed Vents: Your system is designed to maximize airflow. When vents are closed or obstructed, it can cause discrepancies in temperature, as well as reduce the efficiency and lifespan of your HVAC unit.

2. Leaking or Poorly Installed Ductwork: If your vents are open and operational, but there is still a significant temperature difference in parts of your home, it could be due to poorly installed or malfunctioning ductwork.

3. Improperly Sized HVAC Unit: When your heating and air conditioning was installed, the technician should have performed a load calculation test to determine what size unit your home required. If this test was performed incorrectly, or additions have increased the heating and air conditioning footprint of your home, your unit may be too large or too small for your needs.

4. Ineffective Insulation: We recommend rigid exterior insulation and spray foam interior insulation. If your insulation is weak or was improperly installed, your home may experience temperature discrepancies.

5. Poorly Located Thermostat: If your thermostat is located in direct sunlight, near a television or computer, or near a supply/return vent, it could be reading the temperature of your home incorrectly.

6. Malfunctioning or Aging Heating or Air Conditioning System: A failing or malfunctioning HVAC system may be unable to meet the demands of your home’s heating and air conditioning needs.

7. HVAC Unit Requires Maintenance or Repair: Your heating and air conditioning system requires routine maintenance that includes:

  • Regularly changing air filters
  • Periodically cleaning the outdoor fan
  • Clearing leaves, grass, and other debris
  • Maintaining two-feet of clearance between the unit and shrubbery, fencing, etc.
  • Checking for leaks, shorted wiring, and other damage

What Can You Do to Restore Consistent Temperatures Throughout Your Home?

If you have corrected the supply and return vents, and performed routine maintenance, yet your home retains hot or cold spots, what should you do? To restore temperature consistency throughout your home, you should contact a professional, HVAC technician.

Your home’s systems work together to maintain your home’s comfort level. A home’s construction, ductwork, insulation, dehumidification, etc., all contribute to the effectiveness and efficiency of your heating and air conditioning unit. We have installed 100’s of systems that maintain room temperatures within ½ to 1 degree of each other. We would be happy to help you learn how you can maintain room comfort while maximizing your home’s energy efficiency.