Have you recently purchased an older home with central air conditioning and found out that the cold air mostly stays on the ground floor? The cause of the cooling disparity is likely a problem with either an improperly sized or poorly designed duct system. Replacing or repairing those ducts might be the only way to truly solve your cooling problem, but that also comes with a high price tag and the possibility of causing damage to your walls.
Here are a few of the cooling options if you have a warm upstairs and a cold downstairs and don't want to replace the ducts.
Window Air Conditioners
The quickest and likely cheapest route involves purchasing window air conditioners for the most used rooms upstairs. Make sure the unit you purchase is adequate for the square footage of the room. The product details on the box will tell you the maximum square footage allowed for the unit.
Make sure the unit is installed correctly for maximum efficiency. Call an air conditioning installation company for assistance.
Help the window air conditioners cool better by reducing the area the unit has to cool. This involves keeping bedroom and closet doors closed. You can also hang room curtains to separate off large, open rooms to prioritize a cooling area.
If one of the hot rooms doesn't have the right kind of window for a window unit, you can purchase a portable air conditioner for that room. A portable unit has a vent hose that still needs to go out a window, but the unit itself can sit on the floor or on a small table.
Ductless Mini-Split Air Conditioner
Ductless mini-split air conditioning units can be the lone cooling system in your home or can tie into an existing central air conditioning system to expand its cooling potential.
With a ductless mini-split addition, you can add cooling units to the upstairs of your home without needing to add or modify any ductwork. Your upstairs can become its own temperature zone with its own thermostat. Or you can split the upstairs up into multiple zones if there is a lot of space or an odd layout that wouldn't allow cool air to spread easily between rooms.
A ductless mini-split system is a good choice as a quickfix for the ductwork problems causing the uneven heating. If your budget permits, you might want to replace your existing central air system with a multi-zone ductless mini-split system.
Contact a reputable air conditioning services company like Long Beach Heating & Air Conditioning Inc to discuss options for cooling your upstairs without working on the ductwork. A technician can help you determine what the best options are for your particular house layout and cooling needs.