Floor vs Ceiling Air Vents: What You Should Know
Air vents are found exclusively on the ceiling. In many homes, they are found on the ceiling and floor. If your home has both floor and ceiling air vents, you might be wondering how they differ. While the placement of an air vent may sound insignificant, it can affect your heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) system’s performance.
Floor Air Vents
Floor air vents are typically more effective at heating than their ceiling-installed counterparts. This is because hot air rises.
When running a furnace during the winter, hot air will travel through the ductwork under the floors before being released out of the floor air vents. Upon exiting the floor air vents, the hot air will begin to rise. It will travel from the floor to the ceiling while simultaneously heating all of the space through which it passes.
Ceiling Air Vents
Ceiling air vents, on the other hand, are more effective at cooling. Cool air does the opposite of hot air. While hot air rises, cool air descends.
Adjusting ceiling air vents so that they point downward will result in a cooler home during the summer. The cool will naturally gravitate from the ceiling to the floor. If you live in Georgia, you may want to prioritize ceiling air vents for this reason. Georgia has relatively mild winters, but it almost always has hot and humid summers.
There are other things to consider when planning the placement of supply air vents, such as insulation. You should install air vents in spaces where they are properly insulated. If there’s little or no insulation in your basement or crawlspace, floor air vents may result in increased energy expenses. Assuming your attic is properly insulated, ceiling air vents will probably be a better choice.
You should also consider the layout of your home. Some homes have a tall and open layout, which can make it difficult to access ceiling air vents. If you’re planning to install new ductwork and air vents, choose a placement that’s easy to access and works for your home’s layout.
Where is your furnace located? Most furnaces are installed in either the basement or crawlspace, or they are installed in the attic. The conditioned air will have to travel from this area to the supply air vents. If your furnace is located in the basement or crawlspace, floor air vents will result in a shorter travel distance, which may result in increased energy efficiency.