As the summer sun blazes in Central New York, you wouldn’t be alone if you find yourself grappling with a common household dilemma: why is your second floor always so hot? It’s a question that comes up often here at Energy Savers, and the answer lies in a combination of factors ranging from insulation lapses to sneaky air leaks. In this blog, we’ll delve into the reasons why your home is uncomfortable and provide actionable solutions to transform your hot second floor into an easy-to-condition respite from the hot and humid New York summer.
The Culprits: Unraveling the Heat Mysteries
A major contributor to the problem of a hot second floor is often the lack of insulation in the attic. Insulation acts as a barrier against outside temperature infiltration, preventing heat from seeping into your living space through the materials that make up the roof and ceiling. Without adequate insulation in the attic, the summer heat will infiltrate through the roof, making your upper floors unbearably hot.
The other way hot air will make its way into your second floor is through hidden air holes, gaps, and leaks. Air leaks allow warm outdoor air to freely enter while precious cooler indoor air escapes. This hot outside also brings with it more humidity, particles, allergens, and contaminants, reducing the overall quality of your indoor air.
Insulation Affects Air Conditioner Efficiency
A scorching hot attic can play a significant role in the inefficiency of your air conditioning system. When your attic lacks insulation, it acts like a heat reservoir, absorbing and radiating heat into your living spaces. This means your air conditioner will need to work much harder and longer to maintain a comfortable indoor temperature, leading to higher energy costs.
Year-Round Implications: Summer to Winter
If you experience sweltering heat on your second floor during the summer months, chances are that you are experiencing heating issues in the winter as well. The same issues that cause your home to overheat in the summer can also lead to chilly, uncomfortable winters. A leaky or underinsulated home allows cold drafts to seep in and warm air to escape, making it a year-round concern.
Solutions for a Cooler, More Comfortable Second Floor
- Schedule an Energy Audit: This professional assessment will identify problem areas in your home’s insulation, air sealing, and overall energy efficiency. Diagnostics are taken using infrared imaging and a leakage test called a blower door test. The results help determine which upgrades you need and where.
- Upgraded Attic Insulation: High-quality insulation materials like spray foam or blown-in cellulose can create a thermal barrier, preventing heat transfer from the roof to your living spaces.
- Air Sealing: Professional air sealing seals gaps, cracks, and holes that allow outdoor air to infiltrate your home. By preventing these air leaks, you can maintain a consistent indoor temperature and minimize the strain on your air conditioning system.
- Window Replacement: While window replacement isn’t usually the most impactful upgrade on its own, expert installation of replacement windows can improve the airtight barrier between indoor and outdoor environments, improving the effectiveness of insulation and air sealing upgrades.
Call Energy Savers
Armed with the knowledge of these issues and their solutions, you can take proactive steps to create a cooler, more comfortable living environment. So take the first step, and call Energy Savers to discuss your home comfort and energy efficiency issues, and come up with a plan to assess and improve your home in Central New York.