Your furnace is responsible for keeping your home warm, but it is the job of the rest of your home’s ventilation features to keep the warm air inside. If you own a multi-story home, you may have trouble maintaining warmth because of the ‘stack effect’

The stack effect explained

The stack effect is a condition where the entire house acts like a giant chimney, pushing warm air upwards until it eventually leaves the structure. It occurs because of the difference between indoor and outdoor temperatures. Cold air is denser than warm air, so when cold air enters the home from the first floor, warm air is displaced to the top. This airflow actually pulls more cold air in, worsening the stress on your home’s heating system.

When the stack effect becomes a problem

If the airflow is strong, thus puts undue pressure on cracks, deteriorated masonry, cracked weather stripping, and other vulnerable areas. With constant pressure, these leak sources can become larger, intensifying the airflow and worsening your energy loss problem.

The good news is that stopping the stack effect is easy—all you need is to seal all possible sources of air leak in your home. Once you do, you’ll have a more comfortable home interior, as well as lower energy bills. Your Spruce Grove and Edmonton heating professionals share some valuable tips to help you achieve this.

Where to start

To stop warm air from leaking out, you need to seal all air leaks at possible entry points. Since cold air enters from the bottom, start with the first floor of your home, then work your way up. Use caulk for small cracks, and expanding foam for larger ones. Look for cracks around recessed lights, exhaust fan vents, stove vents, plumbing vents, and electrical outlets. Replace any cracked weather stripping.

If you have a basement, check the area where the first floor rests on the foundation. This part of your home is called the rim joist, and it is often a culprit of air leaks. Be sure to seal around it.

If you would like to have your home insulated, or if you have any other HVAC-related concerns, get in touch an Edmonton and Spruce Grove heating company, such as Capital Plumbing and Heating Ltd.