The Hidden Secrets of Ducts
If you seldom think about the duct system in your home or, dare I say, never, you wouldn’t be alone. You’d be like most homeowners who pay little attention to this important household system. To be sure, many people are surprised to find out how their home’s duct system can have a strong bearing on home comfort, energy savings, personal safety, indoor air quality and play a role in global warming. In fact, the U.S. Department of Energy states that a duct system is one of the most important household systems, calling it “a vital element in home energy efficiency.”
We expect our central heating and air systems to work perfectly all the time, and most often they do. But when your furnace stops working efficiently—and winter sends an unsuspecting chill into your home—what should you do? Interestingly, when this happens, almost-never thoughts of ducts become daily thoughts, until the problem is resolved. With the chiller days of winter fast approaching, a cold home caused by a malfunctioning duct system will cause discomfort for many Bay Area homeowners. The solution can vary, but it makes most sense to call a professional to get your system evaluated.
If you recognize any of these signs, your duct system may be in need of repair:
- A higher than normal energy bills for this time of year, with other factors accounted for
- An obvious space or gap in a duct where you suspect a tight seal should be
- A noticeable stuffiness in a particular room . . . . Is the air circulating at all?
- A living area that heats up very slowly when the thermostat has been turned on
- A duct system located in a crawlspace, attic, basement or other unconditioned location
- A bent or tangled duct or one that does not appear to be properly insulated