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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    41
    I have a theoretical question.

    Facts: 2,600 sq ft house in NE Oklahoma (2,300 down, 300 upstairs game room), two separate heating and cooling units, the upstairs is connected to downstairs via a closed-sided stairway with a doorway at the bottom of the stairs (no door or open railing).

    Assumption: In the winter season, heated downstairs air will rise up the stairway, creating a heat loss to the downstairs.

    Keep in mind that I am most interested in climate control downstairs and am wondering how the furnace usage upstairs will affect the downstairs temperature.

    The question is: If the upstairs heater was run sparingly (keeping the upstairs cooler), A) would the downstairs heat loss be less because cool air would fall down the stairs and suppress the heated air trying to rise up the stairs OR B) would the falling cool air overpower the rising heated air causing the downstairs to cool off, which would make the downstairs heater run more OR C) would heat from downstairs rise up the stairway (and be lost to the downstairs) no matter how cool it is upstairs?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    burlington county n.j.
    Posts
    9,642
    i say c

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    9,548
    I would say the downstairs would have a heat loss increase from keeping the upstairs cooler, although a door might help some. Theoretically speaking.
    If everything was always done "by the book"....the book would never change.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    midwest
    Posts
    2,868
    Think about this, if the upstairs is kept cooler and the cooler air falls down the stairs what do you think is going to replace that cool air that just came from the upstairs.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    66,764
    The cold air will come down the stairs, and warm air will follow the stairway ceiling an d go upstairs, and if they didn't insulate the ceiling of the downstairs under the game room, your heat loos throught the ceiling will increase.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    PDX
    Posts
    42

    True

    What beenthere said
    Heat seeks out cold and visa versa. Is the upstairs floor over game room insulated?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    41
    Thanks for the information. The game room has bat insulation below its floor and around the walls, and there is blown-in insulation on top of the room. When we're not planning to use the room for a particular time, I like to set the thermostat back to save on gas. I'll adjust the setting slightly and observe the temperature changes, both upstairs and down.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    66,764
    Might want to have a door hung for that room, could save alot on fuel if you don't use the room often.
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Posts
    3,112
    What size furnace are you using in the 300 sqft space?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Posts
    41
    This is actually new construction. We have not yet moved in. I'm just trying to educate myself on air movement and wondering how I should set the upstairs thermostat vs the downstairs.

    Our builder uses Carrier equipment. We upgraded both AC's and furnaces to Carrier's Performance series. The upstairs heater is the smallest Performance model and is 45,000 BTUH, #58CTA045. I'm sure it will be more than adequate.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    178
    I would not put a furnace upstairs. Enough heat will rise. Do a load sizing on both floors, add them and put that size downstairs.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Northern Indiana
    Posts
    31
    being a new constuction and well insulated it wont matter, you dont have a door in doorway. once the heat rises and cooler air drops and is equaled out, the upper room will be a little warmer but not a problem,the upper heating system may not run at all, unless all heat is off for a long time.also if theres adiquit cold air return upstairs you shouldnt have much stratification anyway. cooling the room in summer will run upper a/c more than the lower system ,i dont see heating bill being a factor, the cooling yes . you could add a door and isolate but i dont believe its needed. congrats on new home and good luck.
    Just when I thought i knew something,I came to this site and realized , I KNOW NOTHING....

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Lancaster PA
    Posts
    66,764
    Too late now, but for 300 sq ft, a heat pump might have been a better choice.

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