Why is my room so hot?

We have a two-story house with central air conditioning. The downstairs area is always very cool (we keep the thermostat at somewhere between 72 and 75 in the summer). Both my office room and the spouse’s are upstairs, and their windows face the same way. We both spend quite a bit of time in them, playing World of Warcraft, and we both keep our doors closed because otherwise some combination of our 5 cats will come in and be disruptive while we’re trying to play. His room and mine are about the same size, though mine is a bit longer and narrower than his (his is more square). Both AC vents are near the doors. Both vents are open and blowing cold air (I checked by getting up on a stepstool and holding my hand under them).

For some reason, his room stays comfortably cool (albeit warmer than downstairs). Mine gets hot and stuffy. I end up having to run a fan and eventually open a window just to keep the place tolerable.

For awhile, I thought it might be because my computer setup was under a loft bed, and the mattress was blocking the cold air from getting to me. I removed the mattress (leaving just the latticework above, so there’s full airflow now) and that helped some, but not a lot.

Any idea what the problem might be, and what I can do to fix it? It’s mystifying me why all the conditions in the two rooms are basically identical, but mine gets hot and his doesn’t.

It’s just you baby.

How is the room if the door is open? I’m guessing your house is like mine and there’s no individual return vents in the rooms, so if the door is closed, there will be no airflow.

Have you compared the airflow in the two rooms? Maybe the ductwork is set to send you less air-volume. Hanging a piece of paper a foot or two in front of the flows, and checking the deviation from vertical will give you a better comparison than just feeling for flow.
Have you peeked into the attic? They get hot in the summer, and some old houses have very spottily placed insulation. If your room is also colder in the winter, there might be a problem up there.

Do you have a super cool gaming rig and he has just a normal computer? Computers do a really good job of heating a room up. Might want to turn the computer off some night when you’re not using it and see if the room stays cool.

There’s no return vent in the room, and the situation is marginally better with the door open. The problem is, if I leave it open, the cats get in. I’m halfway considering installing a screen door on the darn thing, but I’m not sure if that would be possible.

That’s a good thought–I’ll try it. I wonder, if I find a discrepancy, is there any way to fix it?

We don’t really have an attic, just a crawlspace that’s full of pipes and ductwork and such. Getting up there would be a major undertaking.

We are getting a new roof in a couple of weeks, though, and they’re going to put plywood under the tile (we didn’t have that before) so that might help somewhat. We’ll see. Maybe I’ll ask the roof guys if they can take a look at the insulation while they’ve got it off.

I have a Mac Pro tower, and it does get pretty warm, but not that hot. He has a 24" iMac. There is definitely a temperature difference between the two. That might contribute to the problem, but I don’t think it’s the only cause.

Though both of your windows face the same way, is your room by any chance on the south side of the house, while his is on the north side, and you both have eastward facing windows? If your room is situated such that it receives the majority of the afternoon and evening sun, it will naturally get warmer there than in your spouse’s room.

Instead of a screen door have you considered putting a simple vent in the door itself? You can get one at any home store, just a rectangle with some slats in it that you put into a hole you cut in the door.

At my old house we had just floor vents and one single air return for the entire house. If you closed your bedroom door in the winter, you’d freeze. If you close it in the summer, you’d melt. One bedroom, the one closest to the air return in the hallway, was not as bad as the other two.

In my new house I have returns in every room and I don’t have that problem at all.

Putting a vent in the door will keep the kitties out and let the air flow in.

I suppose most cats are jumpers but we keep our dogs out of certain parts of the house using those pressure baby gates that are about 3’ tall. You could even put one on top of the other if needed.

I think the solution is to kick the cats out of the house or make them behave, so you can have proper airflow throughout the upstairs. :stuck_out_tongue:

ooh, also, does your room have a south-facing wall? The afternoon sun really heats up the south side of a house.

You know, I haven’t the foggiest idea! I’m terrible with directions of the “north-south-east-west” variety and always have been. It’s a thought, though–I’ll see if the spouse knows.

That’s a really good idea. Don’t know if I’m handy enough (or the spouse, either) to punch an acceptable hole in the door, but it’s definitely something to keep in mind.

Another good thought, and maybe more feasible than poking a hole in the door. One on top of the other might just do the trick! I’m not sure they can jump that high (or even if they’d try). I thought about using a baby gate, but dismissed it because the cats would jump over it like it wasn’t there. I’ll admit that the thought never occurred to me to stack them! Thanks! :slight_smile:

That’s not an option, unfortunately. They kind of run the house, and attempting to train them would be…an exercise in futility. :slight_smile:

Don’t need a screen door. Just get a door stop. Open the door just enough so the cats can’t get in and wedge a door stop under it, then put something between the door and the jamb to keep it from closing.

Tried that. Didn’t work. Not sure why, but it didn’t. Plus, our cats are very persistent and defeated both the door stop and a 25-pound weight stuck behind the door. (The cat in question weighs about 7 pounds and is cuter than a cute thing dipped in cute juice. Seeing her little face looking up at me from under my desk when I didn’t realize she was in the room was quite the surprise.) :slight_smile:

It didn’t work as in the cat still got in, or it didn’t work as in it didn’t help with the airflow issue. If it was the cat getting in, I would suggest a rubber door stop not a weight. If it was an air flow issue, maybe a fan blowing air out to help create some circulation.

Both, actually. If it had worked better for keeping the room cooler, I’d just have put a heavier weight down to keep the cat out. But it didn’t work so well for keeping cool.

The real fix for this is to have return air ducts in the upstairs, preferably one in each room. (Old houses often didn’t have them; they aren’t as important for heating (hot air rises) as for air conditioning.)

When you have the roof off and can easily get at the attic area is an ideal time to install whatever return air ducts you can. Much easier (and cheaper) than doing it at some other time. You should call a HVAC person to come and look at the house now, and see about doing this when the roof is replaced.

Do trees shade his room? That can make a huge difference - in my house I have trees in the back and not in the front, and you can definately tell.

When I was looking for example of a door vent for you (actually, I guess it’s called a “door grille”) to show you how easy it is to install - especially if you have hollow doors because you could PROBABLY use a utility knife - I came across this page which has a bunch of good ideas (with pictures!) for moving air through homes.