Your ductworkcould be costing you a lot of money. According to Energy Star, a typical house may lose 20 percent of its heating and cooling energy through leaks, holes and improper duct connections. Your home will benefit from a professional inspection of the ductwork, but you may be able to take a preliminary look yourself at any ducts that are easily accessible.
Problems with your ductwork can include seals at connections that are missing or have deteriorated over the years; kinks in flexible ducts that inhibit air flow; leaks around vents, registers and filters; and poor insulation where ducts run through your attic, garage, crawlspace or any other un-conditioned area.
There are several benefits to making sure your ducts are in good working order:
- You will save money on utility bills by preventing the loss of heated and cooled air through leaky ducts.
- Your house will be more comfortable, since your ducts will deliver all of the heated and cooled air to the areas where it is needed.
- Your house will be safer because exhaust gases from your furnace or other utilities won’t be sucked into your ducts and carried into your living spaces.
If your ductwork inspection shows that you have leaks, disconnected ducts, kinked flexible sections or insufficient insulation, it is relatively simple to correct these problems. This may be a job you are comfortable doing yourself, or you may prefer to have an HVAC specialist do the work.
The first step to take is to straighten any improperly bent ducts and reposition ducts that have become disconnected. Then all joints should be properly sealed using metal tape or mastic sealant. Despite its name, the gray “duct tape” you see at the hardware store is not the right thing to use here, because it deteriorates quickly. Next, be sure your vents, registers and filter slots are well-sealed around their edges. Finally, add insulation anywhere the ducts run through un-conditioned spaces.
Contact the experts at Overland Park Heating and Cooling with any questions you have about proper duct sealing. Our professionals can help you find the best ways to minimize your heating and air-conditioning costs.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about air-conditioning and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.