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How to Deal with Hot Spots in Your House

As the temperatures rise here in Los Angeles, you may notice that there are areas in your home that are hotter than others. In the HVAC world, we call these areas in your house hot spots. Hot spots are a frustrating phenomenon because other rooms can feel perfectly comfortable or even cold!

But you don’t have to live with this! Hot spots are a totally sensible reason for calling in an HVAC expert. We have noticed many LA homeowners suffer with a sweltering room for years and years, thinking it doesn’t warrant a phone call to us. These are jobs we handle all the time! If you’re dealing with a room that’s unreasonably warm, don’t hesitate to call.

To solve any hot spot problem, we first need to know what’s causing it.

What Causes Hot Spots in my Los Angeles Home?

In most cases, hot spots are not caused by a broken air conditioner. The most common reasons for a room that’s hotter than all the others are:

  • Blocked Return Vents – Return grilles need to be free of obstruction to allow air to flow through your space. You might think that by blocking the return air vent you’re helping to contain the cool air in the space, but this is a myth. The cool air absorbs the heat in the space from windows, equipment, and people. So when the return air grille is blocked, the now-warm air is trapped inside. An unobstructed return grille ensures free-flowing air in your spaces.  Make sure your furniture and other items are not covering or blocking any air vents.
  • Blocked Supply Vents – This may seem obvious, but the same rule for return vents applies to supply vents. You want that chilly air coming into your space! Make sure it’s not blocked by any objects. And if you’re having trouble with cooling, now is an excellent time to check that the register is fully open. Most air vents have a handle which allows you to adjust how much air you get in the space. Some homeowners adjust this to change the direction of the air and inadvertently reduce the amount of airflow to the space. So, make sure that the vent is fully open!
  • Renovated Spaces – Have you renovated your home recently? Or changed how you use a space? The impact to your HVAC can be dramatic. If you have added conditioned spaces to your home, like a refinished attic or turned a garage into a living space, your air conditioner may not be the adequate size to cool the new addition. Adding a wall, or removing one, could have the same effect. Even changing a space from a bedroom to a home gym (complete with heat-producing treadmill and TV screens) can cause a space to feel much hotter than before. In these cases, it will be best for one of our NATE-certified technicians to visit your home and re-calculate your home’s cooling needs according to ACCA Manual J.
  • Ductwork Problems – This issue can be sneaky because your air ducts are likely the last thing you think about being the source of your problems. During our normal HVAC maintenance visits, we will always do a visual inspection of your ductwork. It’s possible that the seal or insulation on your ductwork has deteriorated, causing that nice cool air to escape to… your attic. Another possibility is that there are too many twists and turns in your ductwork, which makes them less effective. We’ve also seen physical obstructions, like the family’s Christmas tree laying on top of a main duct run. Aeris Air can help with any ductwork problem, from insulation to sealing.

Hot Spot Solutions

Aeris Air has many solutions to fix hot spots. There is no quick fix; our knowledgeable technician will need to visit your home to track down the source of the problem. It could be any one of the items listed above, or something else entirely. We won’t know until we check it out.

Depending on the cause of your hot spot in your house, the solution could be as simple as rearranging furniture or adjusting air vents. Your ductwork may contain dampers inside, which we can adjust to promote better airflow to your warm areas. Our team may recommend ductwork repair services or the addition of a ductless mini-split to tackle that hot spot. And if your air conditioner is on the older side, we can provide options for replacement – ensuring the perfect size and type for your home.

We’ve been fixing hot spots in LA houses since 1963 – it’s time for us to fix yours!

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