We don’t think about the importance of our ductwork, but as part of the overall heating and cooling systems in our homes, ductwork plays a vital role in our comfort. Ductwork is hidden in ceilings, walls, and sometimes floors, conveying conditioned air to rooms throughout the house. Because they are not visible, we tend to forget about them until there is a problem.
What if you knew that leaky ductwork could lose as much as 30% of heated or cooled air? What if you knew that leaky ductwork could dramatically raise utility bill expenses? These hidden components suddenly become a lot more important. Read on for additional problems and some solutions to help save you money on your electricity bills.
Heat Conduction in Ductwork
Central air ducts are often made of thin metal. As they snake around the home, these ducts sometimes run through spaces like attics, where they are subject to heat conduction. The warmed or cooled air inside the ducts is affected by the high heat or chilly temperatures of the attic, changing the temperature of the conditioned air headed to the rooms of your home. Of course, this thermal loss means the HVAC system has to work harder to keep interior temperatures comfortable.
Solutions for Ductwork
Luckily, solutions for leaking ductwork and ducts that pass through the attic are inexpensive and very effective. By tackling these projects yourself, you could save hundreds of dollars a year on your utility bills while reducing the strain on expensive HVAC systems.
The first solution is to seal all leaks and gaps in the ductwork “runs”. Specialized duct-sealing tape, usually made of foil, is available at most home improvement stores. Duct mastic, a thick paste, can also seal the joints where two pieces of duct meet. The mastic is applied with a brush and does a great job of eliminating wasteful air leaks. If your ductwork is hidden inside the walls, it may be beneficial to hire a professional to help you seal the leaks.
Next, we want to reduce heat conduction in the ductwork. Insulating the bare metal ducts with fiberglass or Rockwool insulation blankets is an inexpensive method. This is especially important if the ducts pass through unconditioned spaces like attics or unfinished basements. Just like with the air sealing, a professional HVAC installer can help with this project.
Now that you know more about keeping air ducts clean is, it’s time to tackle these home improvement projects. Before you know it, you’ll be saving money on electricity costs!
Would you like more tips on saving money? Contact ProCoating.com today!