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1st floor not as hot as 2nd floor

k423 Member Posts: 18
edited February 2021 in Strictly Steam
Hi I’m in need of some advice, I have a steam boiler with a nest thermostat on the 1st floor. The 2nd floor where my 3 bedrooms are heat up pretty good temp usually around 76-80. The problem I’m having is that the 1st floor is always colder than the 2nd floor around 70-72. I have the nest set to around 74-75 so my boiler runs a lot trying to get to that temp because the thermostat is on that floor. Upstairs is alway blazing hot and downstairs alway cool. The last 2 months my gas bill been very high around $300 per month. I had a plumbing company come take a look at my system and this is what there recommending pic below. I also added some pics so you can see how long my boiler runs And my pressuretrol settings.


  • AdmiralYoda
    AdmiralYoda Member Posts: 629
    Every situation is different, but $300 a month isn't all that bad for a house that is kept well into the 70's. What size is your house, how old is it and how well is it insulated? Do you have radiators upstairs or just downstairs?

    Mine is an 1899 @ 1700 sqft and is fairly well insulated. A few spots could use improvements, but not too bad. We keep the heat at a constant 68 and our worst month of the year is usually $250ish. If I cranked up the heat similar to yours, I'd easily be over $300...probably closer to $400 per month. I'd also be dying of heat stroke at those temps, but that's just me.

    One last comment. When the weather is really cold...our upstairs gets warmer than our downstairs too and we don't have radiators on the second floor except a small one for the bathroom. The heat is just cranking away and heat rises, so it ends up upstairs.
  • ethicalpaul
    ethicalpaul Member Posts: 5,704
    Please remove the estimate from your post, the rules of this forum don't allow the posting of job prices.

    Having said that, the proposed course of action seems very reasonable to me. There is some combination of too much steam getting upstairs and too little getting downstairs. This can be improved with proper vent sizing. Your contractor says you may need more radiation downstairs, that makes sense. Your contractor says the near boiler piping is wrong, that is all too common and it's often beneficial to fix. Your contractor says your boiler is oversized, that happens all the time and your system will work better if he can make it fire at a rate that is closer to your radiation.

    After saying all that, I'm not sure what your question was. Did I answer it? :)
    NJ Steam Homeowner. See my sight glass boiler videos: https://bit.ly/3sZW1el
  • k423
    k423 Member Posts: 18
    Year 1928 @ 1672 sq ft radiators up stairs also 
  • nuheat
    nuheat Member Posts: 1
    upstairs may be hot because the heat is rising from the first floor. Do you have separate zones for upstairs and downstairs? Keep the downstairs heat higher. Upstairs will get heated anyways due to the rising heat. Try a ceiling fan downstairs so that heat is distributed evenly.
  • k423
    k423 Member Posts: 18
    Do not have separate zones 
  • nicholas bonham-carter
    Let the system stay off for an hour or two, until the radiators are cold, and then, by crossing the thermostat wires, cause the boiler to run constantly.
    Determine if all the radiators are receiving steam at the same time. If not, then you probably need more main venting.
    Reconnect the pest, and make sure that its features, (occupancy sensor, temperature set back, etc.), are disabled. --NBC
  • Erin Holohan Haskell
    Erin Holohan Haskell Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 2,289
    @k423, I've removed the price quote from your post. Pricing discussions are not allowed on this forum per website rules. Thank you.