You may have a state-of-the-art HVAC system coupled with an airtight, well-insulated home, but if your home’s ducts are leaking or blocked, you’ll still pay higher than necessary energy bills. In some homes, as much as 30 percent of conditioned air is lost before it ever reaches vents and registers in rooms. Much of it leaks into areas that aren’t conditioned or used. You might as well be paying to heat and cool the outside.
How Do You Know Ducts Are Leaking?
The only surefire answer is to have a professional HVAC technician inspect and test ductwork for leaks, blockages, and other problems. Short of that, you can inspect visible ductwork yourself. If duct sections are obviously not well connected, or are tangled or kinked, you’ll need duct sealing and repairs at those spots, and probably elsewhere in the duct system, too. Uneven heating and cooling from one room to another is another signal that your ductwork may be leaking, as are unusually high energy bills.
What Problems Are Caused By Leaky Ducts?
- Reduced comfort. If all the conditioned air that’s intended for a certain room isn’t arriving at its destination, that room likely will be too warm or cool, or may stay stuffy most of the time.
- Higher bills and stressed equipment. When your heating and cooling equipment has to work harder to compensate for air lost through ductwork leaks, that wastes energy and puts added strain on HVAC components. More frequent breakdowns may result.
- Degraded indoor air quality. Often, as a result of pressure differentials in unconditioned areas that ducts run through, dirty air can get sucked into ducts, via poor connections and other leaks. That dirty air eventually will circulate into your home.
Working hand-in-hand with effective duct sealing is ductwork insulation. An insulation wrap around ducts, especially in areas where ducts are routed that aren’t heated or cooled, will keep the conditioned air cool or warm for its final destination in your home’s rooms.
To discuss duct sealing, repairs or replacement in your Portland-area home, please contact us at Roth Heating & Cooling.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Metro Portland, Oregon area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).
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