Current concerns over energy use and conservation issues have led to a great deal of attention to be focused on household equipment and systems. Your HVAC system is responsible for about half of the annual energy costs for your home. While recent design improvements in heating and cooling equipment have led to better energy efficiency, issues with ductwork continue to play a role in poor home performance.
Ducts and Your System Performance
Your ducts can account for 20 to 40 percent of the energy usage by your heating and cooling equipment. As air moves through the system, poor connections, holes and leaks can cause huge amounts of conditioned air to be lost. The drain on your budget is obvious, and sealing those leaky air ducts is important for improving your home’s energy performance and decreasing your bills. Also important is ductwork cleaning to improve system efficiency and indoor air quality.
How Did the Leaks Get There?
Ducts can be made from a number of different materials. Some are crafted of sheet metal while others are designed from fiberglass tubing. Plastics are also used, and one of the most common plastic options, flex, has the ability to bend. This material is helpful for installation in areas where some flexibility in ducts is necessary. Old ducts can deteriorate, and holes, leaks and cracks can develop as a result. Structural work can also lead to inadvertent damage. Rodents can chew through some materials, making their way into ducts. Caulking and other sealing materials can dry and crack over time, creating leaks.
Diagnosing and Sealing Leaky Air Ducts
If you notice an unusual spike in your energy bill, a leak is only one of many possible explanations. You may have duct leaks that aren’t noticeable because your bills seem to remain pretty consistent over time. The best way to identify the presence of leaks is to work with a heating and cooling contractor. This can be addressed with seasonal maintenance service. In addition to fine-tuning your heating or cooling unit, a technician can check pressures and examine your ducts for problems. A tune-up can make a big difference in overall energy use in your home, and if duct sealing is needed, you can arrange for the service.
Gentry Heating provides comprehensive home comfort and air quality service and solutions to our customers in Tryon, NC. We are able to pinpoint energy usage issues in your home and equipment so that you can get back on track with optimum comfort and minimum energy expenses. Whether you need to figure out why your heating and cooling bills have skyrocketed or whether you are concerned about the efficiency of your system, we can help you find solutions. Please give us a call for more information.