Technical Papers

The Stack Effect - When Air Circulation Negatively Affects Your Home

Wednesday, April 22nd, 2020 by Chelsea Bowen

Effectively heating and cooling your home is more than just adjusting the thermostat.  The size of your home, the difference between the indoor and outside temperature, and your home’s insulation play a larger role.  All of these factors contribute to a home energy term called the “Stack Effect.” 

The Stack Effect Crawl Space


Remember the science lesson from elementary school about heat rising? Well, this concept can be applied here! The Stack Effect describes the way that air moves throughout your home. As air is warmed in your home, it naturally rises to your attic. From there, it escapes through gaps and cracks in the ceiling, joints, windows, uneven floors, and even lighting fixtures and electrical outlets. 

As the air exits the top of your home, it creates a sort of vacuum, pulling in more air through the bottom level of your home, primarily through a basement or crawl space. This air exchange is a continuous cycle and is something that all homeowners should be aware of, especially in northern climates like MN and Wisconsin. The Stack Effect is strongest in cold weather because as heated air is escaping, it is being replaced by equal amounts of cold outside air. The result is high heating bills and uncomfortable temperature differences throughout your house. 

While a bit of air circulation in a home is not a bad thing, it can be problematic if your home’s lower level has moisture and humidity issues. Humidity build-up is costly to cool during summer months and is problematic to the overall health and wellness of your home. Unsealed crawl spaces and musty basements help mold and other airborne particles travel through your home when the Stack Effect is taking place.  

The DBS mission is to provide homeowners with solutions for healthy, safe, and comfortable homes. To help you eliminate temperature differences and unwanted conditions caused by the Stack Effect, we use products developed by the Basement Systems®. The SuperAttic™ insulation system, TerraBlock™, and SilverGlo™ crawl space insulations are just a few of the products we install to seal and protect your home.

DBS offers basement waterproofing, crawl space encapsulation, and whole-home energy solutions to help you combat the negative results of the Stack Effect. Call us at 1-218-525-0720 today for a FREE, no-obligation estimate with one of our highly trained Design Specialists. 

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1584 93rd Ln NE
Blaine, MN 55449
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