Boost the Heat in a Cold Bedroom

June 2nd, 2020 by admin Leave a reply »

Homeowners know when they’re cold and they know where their cold. They may not know how to light a pilot light, or air seal an attic floor, or balance a home heating system, but they know when they are cold. Bedrooms are often the coldest room in the house and most often people just live with it. Stick the kid in the cool bedroom, throw a couple extra blankets on the bed and tell them to finish their homework.

Dealing with a cool bedroom is frustrating. If you turn up the heat to warm the room, the rest of the house gets too warm. Shut all the heating registers except the bedroom and it puts too much back pressure on the furnace. Too often I see a household try to adjust the temperature of one room by closing heating registers in other rooms and soon they have half the registers in the house closed and the home heating system working overtime to satisfy the heating request at the thermostat.

Usually, the home heating system is designed by a professional Heating Contractor that went to HVAC school for several hours a week for a number of years. A Heating contractor must pass an apprentice program before he or she can even take the test for their journeyman license.

HVAC Education

During the educational phase of the heating and cooling training, they are taught how to do a heating load calculation on a home. They take the heating load and develop a designed heating system that includes furnace size, fan capacity, duct size, air flows, and register size. In other words, heating systems are designed to heat all rooms evenly and to work as a system with all registers open.

If you have one bedroom that is cooler than the rest of the house, one of two things has happened:

The heating system was designed by a contractor that barely passed the test, or
the heating system is broken.

Recently, I had a homeowner complain that they got very little air flow out of the heating register in their dining room. The dining room was cooler than other parts of the house. With a flow hood, I registered a 75% decrease of air flow at the register as compared to the register in the living room. I removed the register grill, took a flashlight and mirror and looked down the inside of the heating duct.

With the mirror to see around the initial elbow, I could see that a flow damper valve was installed in the heating duct. Further inspection showed that all the heating ducts in the home had a flow damper installed near the registers. The damper in the dining room was the only one that was closed most of the way. The homeowner was not aware that flow dampers were a part of the homes heating system.

Heating Duct Damper

Flow dampers are a bit unusual in my neck-of-the-woods, I don’t see them very often. Flow dampers are added to a heating system to allow manual adjustment of the flow of air to the registers. With dampers, the flow of conditioned air can be balanced so warm and cool areas of the home can be eliminated. To keep from putting increased pressure on the furnace fan motor, when one damper is closed down another damper should be opened up.

Sometimes, I believe a heating contractor may throw in a bunch of flow dampers when he looses his pencil and can’t be sure of how big to make the heating ducts or how many registers need to be in a room.

6 Ways to Boost the Heat in a Cold Bedroom.

Repair Heating Duct:
There is always the possibility that the duct system has a problem that can be fixed. Ducts can become partially or totally disconnected and flexible ducts can become pinched off or collapsed. This is the first and most important fix considering the cold bedroom. This fix will not only warm the bedroom, but also increase energy efficiency and energy savings.

The first step is the inspection of the duct leading from the plenum to the register to be sure it is securely connected. Also, look for holes, crimping, or collapsed areas. Heating ducts damaged by animals is also a possibility that you should be looking for.

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