Did you know that about 6% of electricity produced in the United States is from air conditioners? As a result, homeowners spend $29 billion annually.
With all of the money that goes into HVAC systems, homeowners don’t want to see their electricity bills increase. One reason you may run into an increased bill is uneven cooling.
Most times, uneven cooling of the central air conditioning system is an easy fix. Read on to learn about the causes and solutions of this problem.
What’s Causing Uneven Cooling in My Home?
Uneven cooling of the central air conditioning system could be tricky to handle because there are many different causes. You may be dealing with one or more issues at a time.
The troubles causing uneven cooling could be any of the following:
Leaky Air Ducts
For your HVAC system to work efficiently, the ventilation system ductwork needs to stay airtight. If cool air escapes from the ducts, it can drop the air pressure. This leads to cool air going away from a room and making it hotter.
Old HVAC System
Uneven home cooling is often caused by an old HVAC system. In fact, uneven cooling is a warning sign that you should replace your system right away.
When the system loses the ability to cool, the rooms furthest away from the system will get hotter. If you aren’t sure if your system is old enough to cause this problem, a certified technician can tell you if it is aged past the point where repairs are ineffective.
A system older than 15 years often needs replacement, not repairs.
Short cycling refers to when the air conditioner compressor starts and stops before a full cooling cycle is complete. You can listen to your central air conditioning system to see if this is the cause of uneven room cooling.
Generally, the compressor should run for more than 10 minutes at a time. A compressor running for less time won’t allow air to reach every room.
Solving uneven cooling in the home when short cycling is the cause should be done right away. This issue can damage your system and lead to higher utility bills.
Zone Control Issues
A home with zone controls lets you turn off airflow in specific rooms. If you are having an issue with your home’s zone control, it could be because of thermostat sensors or problems with duct dampers.
Clogged Air Filter
A clogged air filter leads to poor airflow in certain parts of the home. When a filter is clogged with debris and dust, airflow may get blocked completely.
Filters should get replaced every three months at least. You’ll want to switch out filters more often during the summertime.
Solving Uneven Cooling in the Home
Uneven cooling often has simple solutions. You may be able to fix the problem without reaching out to an HVAC company.
Try these simple remedies when you are having trouble with your air conditioning system:
Control and Redirect the Air
First, you should check for dirty or clogged air vents in the home. Make sure furniture is not blocking any of your vents because it can contribute to uneven cooling.
To loosen the dust and debris in a dirty air vent, vacuum them out. This will help you control the air that comes through them.
If your vents are dirty enough, you may need to hire an air duct cleaning service or replace them altogether. You can do this on your own by purchasing new vents from your local HVAC company.
You can also redirect the air in your home by partially closing vents in areas that are cooler than others. This helps air redirect to the areas of the home that are receiving less cool air.
Be sure not to close air vents all the way. You don’t want pressure building up in the ducts.
Check Your Thermostat
Sometimes all you need to do to fix the issue of uneven cooling is turn the fan from “auto” to “on.” In the “on” setting, the fan stays on and continues to circulate air when the system cooling cycle goes off.
In the “auto” position, the fan turns on when cooling is necessary. By switching your thermostat to the “on” position, you are evening out temperatures in the home.
Check Air Ducts for Leaks
We’ve discussed how leaky air ducts can cause cooling problems within the home. Although you can try to check an air duct for leaks on your own, this is something you’ll want to call the professionals for.
If you suspect a leak in the air ducts, an HVAC company can run a duct inspection. Get this done right away to avoid running into other problems down the line.
Add More Insulation
If you have an attic in your home, you may need more insulation to keep your home cooler. Without the right amount of insulation, you won’t get enough cool air where you need it.
Insulation in your attic must have the right R-Value for the region your home is in. If you are unfamiliar with these values, an HVAC expert in your area will know the ins and outs.
Try the Zoning System
If you don’t already use the zoning system in your home, you should invest in it. You’ll have the luxury of controlling temperatures in specific parts of the house instead of having a thermostat that controls everything.
To implement this system in your home, you’ll need the help of an HVAC contractor. They will set up your preferred configurations to get rid of your uneven cooling problem.
Still Struggling With Uneven Cooling From Your Central Air Conditioning System?
If you read this guide and use the techniques provided on your own time but are still struggling with uneven cooling from your central air conditioning system, it’s time to call the professionals.
Uneven cooling can lead to discomfort, higher utility bills, and other air conditioning problems. Don’t let your HVAC system cause more trouble than it is worth.
Contact us today to get your California home cool the way you like it!