In another of the “it happened to me” all-too-real stories, when we moved into our new 2-story home, we were disappointed in how the second floor rooms were uncomfortably cold heading into our first winter. The main floor was just right—perhaps even a bit on the warm side when we enjoyed the new see-through fireplace (which we did a lot!). As we rounded New Year’s, it finally occurred to me what the problem was—the thermostat.

Not that the thermostat wasn’t working right—it was operating exactly as designed. The problem was its location. The thermostat had been installed approximately 8 feet from the fireplace, in the great room. With the fireplace on, the room warmed up, telling the thermostat there was no need for the furnace to turn on.

We hired a contractor to relocate the thermostat to a more “neutral” location away from the great room and the fireplace. Problem solved. Expensive lesson learned.

Also, keep in mind thermostat placement in the following scenarios as these can sometimes "trick" the thermostat into thinking the house isn't warm or cool enough, thus triggering extended run times for your heating and/or cooling:

  • A large, open area that also includes a vaulted ceiling
  • A drafty area, such as in line with your front door/entry hall

Be sure to discuss thermostat placement with your builder or remodeler to determine the ideal placement. 

For more resources on thoughtful design and products:

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