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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • by ct (2477) on 2002.06.11 9:23 (#9452) Homepage Journal
    You don't need to seal the basement, you need to vent the top floor to pull the cooler air up.

    If the roof sits in sunlight for any decent stretch of the day, get a powered attic vent on a thermostat. A fan that blows the hot air out of the attic when it gets to, say, 105, will make an ASTOUNDING improvement in the temperature of the third floor in the summer. A friend of mine just had to replace his attic vent fan. He knew it had gone bad when his otherwise nice and cool second floor suddenly became unfomfortable in midday despite a constant air conditioning flow.

    If you need more than that, an actual vent in the ceiling of an upstairs hallway, often on a manual switch, can change the climate in the house very quickly. They're usually big enough to recycle the air volume of the house several times an hour. Flip it on, open window vents in the basement, and within minutes it will have vented stale warm air from the second floor out, pulling cooler air up from downstairs. You'll end up with a house that is fairly close to one temperature.

    • I saw something like this on a This Old House many, many moons ago. They were renovating a colonial house in Georgia that had some a form of air conditioning in the 19th Century[1]. How'd they do it? By installing a ring of propane burners around an open vent in the center of the roof (at the top of the central spiral staircase, IIRC). When it gets hot, just fire up the burners and watch the air rise and circulate. Same basic principle. :-)

      [1] You can date the technique to the introduction to gas lin