How do I keep the heat out of my high ceiling?

by Chris
I have a 30ft high A frame ceiling with a ceiling fan. I am struggling to keep the heat at floor level in the upper 60s while the heat by the ceiling is in the upper 80s. An energy audit tech suggested putting up a tarp or tapestry across my support beams about 10 feet up to trap or slow the warm air from going up. The room is 12 by 30. I am trying to find something that would be easy to put up each winter then take down in spring and look somewhat good. Any suggestions?

  13 answers
  • Alice Elaine Lord Alice Elaine Lord on Feb 22, 2017

    I can see what's below but my mother put a loft for the Grandkids and a door to keep the heat from rising. She made a cute Indian type ladder for it. We also had a stair door to keep the heat down.

  • Hillela G. Hillela G. on Feb 23, 2017

    How a bout a hook that you can attach a small fan too and remove as well?

  • The only real way to keep heat from a ceiling is through stratification which is generally achieved through radiant floor heating & no fans or furnace blowing air around

    The only other option is to use the ceiling fans to redistribute the heat back down

    As for a tarp across, make sure it is of a radiant material to help redirect it back down & your edges are sealed tight. You might look into how they automate pool covers & shade structures

  • Stella Love Stella Love on Feb 23, 2017

    I would close that off and turn it into a room with a door to keep the heat out of there.

  • Lorraine Lorraine on Feb 24, 2017

    I'm not sure how to do it,but I think there's a way to reverse the fans spin so it spins in opposite direction to pull heat downwards. That would be my first action!

    • See 1 previous
    • Peggy Peggy on Feb 28, 2017

      Button on the remote to switch directions of the blades.

  • Eileen Proctor Eileen Proctor on Feb 24, 2017

    The best way is to make sure your fan has a reverse setting to push the warm air down, if not replace it with one that has .

  • Galen W. Yoder Galen W. Yoder on Feb 24, 2017

    Lorraine & Eileen have the simplest remedies . Going on the same idea, a cold air return connected to your forced air heating system could be your most effective addition. That would be under advice from an HVAC technician, or more than one, a second opinion never hearts! If that were not possible you might even consider building in some high volume Panisonic bathroom fans (very quiet), and plumb the vent pipe to the lower levels of the room. That air is not going to come down by itself. You have some nice looking wood work from what I can tell and the grills of the fans could be made of similar wood that is used in that area making blend in less noticeably. Of course all of that plan would require an attic and wall cavities to accommodate the mechanical aspect of the installation. Just a thought outside the box!

  • Mary Mary on Feb 24, 2017

    All most all fans have a reverse on them. At 30 feet I would call an electrician, have a newer fan installed , if it is an older one and have a remote controller installed in it. If it is not very old a remote can be put in it. The draft has to go down in the winter and up in the summer. The blades of the fan will determine the volume it can handle. So it might need to be larger.

  • Karin Karin on Feb 25, 2017

    My husband and I have a house with a similar issue. Our living area consists of living room, dining area and kitchen. The kitchen is below a loft so it has a normal height ceiling but there are no walls separating any of the spaces and the rest of the area is open to the 2 story ceiling above. We have a fan that we reverse in winter and run on medium that makes a huge difference. The one thing that's different is that our fan hangs much lower. It is mounted on a section of the down slope of the ceiling and hung with an extension rod, about 6-8 ft I think. It was the longest rod we could use without the fan wobbling too much when on high.

    I'm definitely no expert on this but possibly, with your ceiling fan so close to the top of the ceiling, it's not able to push the air up enough to get good circulation.

    Also, if your space is very large, if your ceiling is configured in a way that it can be done, you might want to look into replacing the single fan with 2 fans spaced apart to move more air.

    • Peggy Peggy on Feb 28, 2017

      I have a 24 x 24 family room. I put 2 fans and works great!

  • Martha O'Brian Martha O'Brian on Feb 27, 2017

    I understand the desire to keep the aesthetic look and try to find a functional solution. Have you considered the use of a double ceiling fan? It works much better than a single downdraft fan (unless you buy a really large one) because of the way the fans are angled. or

  • Claude Claude on Feb 27, 2017

    I have cathedral ceilings in my den. My ceiling fan is on an extension rod that lowers it 5' lower than the ceiling. I would also get a remotely activated fan so that it's a simple way that you will actually use. There is a winter And summer setting that is activated by a simple switch. Try that first. If you are not pleased with the way that it works (and it makes a big difference). I'm going to suggest something out of the can get clear, greenhouse plastic that is 12+' wide ...make a false ceiling near and using your beams. You can tack it with narrow strips of lightweight balsa or trim with very few tacks. We used a thick plastic that was clear over my sisters odd sized contemporary window..the plastic was so clear and the trim strips we used faded into the had to look twice before you realized that it wasn't just air space. We roll it up on the trim after carefully prying off in spring...wrap a sheet around it during summer to keep it clean , good luck. You're losing a fortune in heat like that.

  • Dixie Dixie on Feb 28, 2017

    I have a two-story home and the upstairs was always "out of balance". I had a new fan installed for my central AC/heat unit which runs constantly. Because of that, the air is always moving, so I don't lose either heated nor cooled air. Another thing, it appears you might could install a return-air duct up in the area which would move that air around. Just my ideas...