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Old 01-31-2015, 10:11 PM
 
Location: Metrowest Boston
146 posts, read 117,351 times
Reputation: 223

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Hi folks!

(yet another) housing-related question:

How effective for heat management is it to have an air return in each bedroom? My house was built in 1998, and only four air returns;

1- A large one in a hallway (1st floor)
2- A 12x12 in the master bedroom (1st floor)
3- A 12x12 in the office (1st floor)
3- A 18x12 in the upstairs bonus room (2nd floor)

However, I have three bedrooms on the 1st floor that do not have returns, or any sort of above-door gap. They also are typically closed due to having pets that are not wanted in the bedrooms. As you might expect, they get pretty toasty. Thoughts?
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Old 01-31-2015, 10:37 PM
 
340 posts, read 483,520 times
Reputation: 364
Quote:
Originally Posted by trevor0101 View Post
Hi folks!

(yet another) housing-related question:

How effective for heat management is it to have an air return in each bedroom? My house was built in 1998, and only four air returns;

1- A large one in a hallway (1st floor)
2- A 12x12 in the master bedroom (1st floor)
3- A 12x12 in the office (1st floor)
3- A 18x12 in the upstairs bonus room (2nd floor)

However, I have three bedrooms on the 1st floor that do not have returns, or any sort of above-door gap. They also are typically closed due to having pets that are not wanted in the bedrooms. As you might expect, they get pretty toasty. Thoughts?
I think the heat returns in your house is fairly typical for newer homes. Obviously it is best to have a return in each bedroom but there are many homes these days with only one return for the entire house. Can you saw off an additional inch or half-inch of the bottom of the bedroom doors to increase circulation?
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Old 02-01-2015, 07:10 AM
 
Location: Spring Hill, Florida
3,011 posts, read 4,830,644 times
Reputation: 3273
My house was built in 1985 and has seven returns total:

12x12 in each bedroom (5)
16x24 in living room - dining room area
16x24 in the family room - kitchenette area

I grew up in a house built in the 50s with only one return in a common area. The bedrooms were never the right temperature (either too hot or too cold). Our last house (a split-level built in the 60s)had a 16x20 return in the wall between the kitchen and living room (with grates on both sides to pull from both rooms). Upstairs, each bedroom (4) had a return (I suspect they were added later). Downstairs, there was a 16x20 return in the family room.

My current house seems to be the most balanced temperature-wise of anyplace I've ever lived.
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Old 02-01-2015, 07:15 AM
 
13,572 posts, read 9,237,936 times
Reputation: 4360
My bedroom is always 4 degrees warmer in the summer and 4 degrees colder in the winter. House will be 78 in the summer and my room is 82. Only one return in my house and a new A/C system put in last June. If i leave the door open and turn the stat down to 76 my room will get to 79 at best.
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Old 02-01-2015, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Florida
5,141 posts, read 2,950,766 times
Reputation: 9308
I replaced the door to my 2nd bedroom/office with a louvered door. Good ventilation without being disturbed when working.
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Old 02-01-2015, 09:09 PM
 
Location: Metrowest Boston
146 posts, read 117,351 times
Reputation: 223
Thanks all for the insight on this! A well known contractor (great Angie's reviews) who added the 12x12 return to my office, is willing to add three additional 12x12 returns for each of the three bedrooms for $1000 even. Does this seem like a good deal?
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Old 02-02-2015, 04:25 AM
 
Location: Spring Hill, Florida
3,011 posts, read 4,830,644 times
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I think that's a fair price for the complete job on all three.
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Old 02-02-2015, 02:22 PM
 
Location: Castle Rock, Co
1,614 posts, read 2,666,484 times
Reputation: 959
we just had a house built 2 years ago and there was one up stairs and one down stairs. They installed little vents above each of the doors to allow ventilation throughout the rooms, never had an issue and that was the most efficient house we have ever lived in as far as electricity usage goes.
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Old 02-02-2015, 03:51 PM
 
3,923 posts, read 10,291,180 times
Reputation: 5212
Well, I never thought about it but I just counted the returns in my 1980s ranch. I have 12, one in every room but only one super-sized in the family room ceiling. At one point before the new AC, we had shut off the ones in the 2 unused bedrooms but haven't done that in a few years. Or did I misunderstand something.
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Old 02-02-2015, 04:25 PM
KPB
 
1,428 posts, read 911,429 times
Reputation: 1196
Quote:
Originally Posted by TampaKaren View Post
Well, I never thought about it but I just counted the returns in my 1980s ranch. I have 12, one in every room but only one super-sized in the family room ceiling. At one point before the new AC, we had shut off the ones in the 2 unused bedrooms but haven't done that in a few years. Or did I misunderstand something.
Those you counted are probably the vents that blow air out, he's talkin about the ones that suck it back in (return) where your filter go's.
Some newer houses have several smaller ones throughout the house instead of just one big one in the middle of your house.
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