Moving Hot Air with Ducting

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New Member
Feb 1, 2023
Jasper, Alberta
Apologies for creating a new thread on a well-worn topic, but I'm hoping for some feedback on my little plan:

We have a small cedar log home (panabode) built in 1962 with a gas-fired boiler as the primary heating system. Last year, I installed a Drolet Escape 1800 in the living room as a secondary heat source for very cold days, of which we have many here in the Canadian Rockies. The stove is more than capable of heating the whole house, but with vaulted ceilings and poor insulation from the cedar log walls, the rooms furthest from the stove tend to get pretty cool. I have tried running fans blowing cool air from those rooms toward the stove, and that does help somewhat, but I am still interested in finding a way to move some of the hot air that gets trapped in near the vaulted ceiling in the living room to the cool bedrooms on the other side of the house.

Lucky for us, there is a hallway running between the living room and the bedrooms that has a crawlspace above it (grey shaded area in diagram). This seems like a perfect place to hide some ductwork and blow hot air from the top of the living room into the bedrooms, which also have vaulted ceilings. My idea is to create a vent near the top of the living room wall, run a short section of insulated duct tube to an 6" inline fan, which would suck warm air out of the living room and push it through a Y-split and two sections of insulated duct tube to the coldest two bedrooms (Bdrm 1 and Bdrm 3 in the diagram). These two bedrooms have more exterior walls and therefore get colder than bedroom 2. I also feel the fan will be more effective pushing air through two duct lines than three.

I understand that moving cold air is more efficient than moving warm air, but the goal here is to get some of the warm air trapped near the ceiling to other parts of the house, namely the coldest bedrooms.

Is this a waste of time and money? Are there tweaks to this plan than could make it more effective? Any suggestions of good inline fans or alternative equipment?

I'm all ears! Thanks!
I had a log cabin with a LARGE fireplace. We had huge fires in there. I had the same issue with vaulted ceilings. However the house had forced air HVAC. I would simply run the HVAC on blower mode (no heat), put the ceiling fan on the vaulted ceiling rool the fireplace was in, and the fireplace would heat the whole house. It worked fine. Same principle as what you're looking to do.
Reverse the air flow to pull air from the bedrooms and blow it into the stove room. That is more efficient and should result in more even heat.
Reverse the air flow to pull air from the bedrooms and blow it into the stove room. That is more efficient and should result in more even heat.
I had a feeling you might say that...

Do you think that would require installing transom vents or something similar to allow warm air to flow back into the bedrooms?

I have a setup similar to what you have proposed in your first post.

I purchased it here (Australia):

The stove is in a large room and I have a duct that sucks air just above it (there may be a code issue in the US and Canada with this setup) down a long hallway of almost 10 metres.

I did two winters without the ducting so can compare with and without.

This is the second home in which I have used this type of arrangement and I am extremely satisfied with how effective it is. If it meets your codes I can highly recommend it. The whole house is evenly heated and you can hardly tell the fan is on.
transom vents or something similar to allow warm air to flow back into the bedrooms?
A decorative transom vent would certainly help move more warm air from the stove room, but I'm not sure exactly how much.
At my MIL's house, the stove was at one end of the house in a solarium with glass on three walls. Fortunately, there were two doorways into the living room, and a transom grate into the hallway from there. The house had 9.5' ceilings and some blown-in exterior wall insulation, but it still lost a lot of heat.
The transom grate was always there, so I didn't get a before/after comparison, but I could feel warm and cool air moving through the transom doorway.