The duct system in a home can suffer from
a number of problems that prevent it from evenly heating and cooling the living space.
Poor design. A well designed duct system minimizes
the length of ducts and number of bends, is sized correctly and places
ducts within conditioned spaces. A poorly designed duct system means
your furnace or air conditioner has to work harder and use more energy
to get air to every room to keep you comfortable. If the duct system
installed in your house was poorly designed or your house has changed
from the original design your duct system may need to be modified to
correct the problem.
Poor duct installation. Sometimes the duct system
is designed well, but it is not installed well. Most duct systems leak
air because the installer did not seal the leaks. The more air that
leaks out the more energy it takes to heat and cool your home. Another
common problem is ducts in an attic or crawl space that are not insulated.
Overtime, duct insulation may fall off if not properly installed. Flexible
ducts come with insulation and make the installation easier, but kinks
in the duct will restrict air flow, and if connections are not sealed
air leaks out.
Unbalanced ducts. An unbalanced duct system doesn't
sound good and its not. Most duct systems have never been balanced and
others have been improperly adjusted. The result is that the right amount
of air is not going to each room and it takes more energy to keep you
comfortable. A heating and cooling contractor can modify or adjust your
ducts to evenly heat and cool every room in your home.
Not enough air returns. A common design in many homes
is a centrally located air return. Unfortunately, closing doors to rooms
can cut off the supply of air to the return and create a pressure imbalance.
A better design is to install a return duct in every room that has a
Many of these problems can cause pressure differences between rooms or the
inside and outside of your house that cause air leakage from the outside
that your feel as cold drafts in the winter. A heating and cooling contractor
that specializes in duct repairs can recommend solutions to solve many of
these common duct problems. The contractor will use special diagnostic equipment
to determine duct pressures; air flow and leakage that help determine the
efficiency of your duct system and prescribe improvements.