Making the HVAC system efficienct is not a single step you could take. You need to constantly check, inspect and monitor your heating and cooling system.
Even though it might seem like a lot of work, when you compare it with the expenses of AC repair, professional air duct cleaning, etc. – you will realize how efficient it is. But the problem is – people hardly know how to regularly keep the system, especially the air duct in check.
That’s why I decided to shed light on this topic. Here are the 5 steps that will help you increase the efficiency of your heating and air conditioning system by increasing the lifespan of the air ducts.
1. Identify the problem: Find the leaks in your ducts
The very first stage of the whole efficiency-increasing and air duct cleaning cost efficiency is to identify the problem.
Now, but identifying the problem, I mean looking at the air conditioning units and air ducts as a whole. Just looking at the central AC unit won’t suffice. You’ll have to take a closer look at the air ducts because today, solving the air duct problems is the main target for us.
Now, what you need to do is check every inch of the air ducts from one end to the other. It is not that complicated. If you have a ladder to reach to the top where the air ducts are placed, this won’t take more than few minutes, an hour at max if you have an enormous house or if the air ducts are way high.
If you are lucky, you will hear the sound of leaking air in your air ducts. But for that, you will require a quiet room and your ears closed to the air ducts.
And don’t worry if you have a leak in the air ducts. According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Star program, almost 66% of the air ducts have leaks in them. So, you are not that unfortunate because this type of leak is very common. But in this case, what is unfortunate—is the fact that these leaks are one of the main reasons you are wasting energy and paying for the wasted energy. Around 20% of the energy waste in your house is made up of energy waste due to the leaking air ducts. So, you can easily understand how important it is to ensure these leaks don’t exist in order to maximize efficiency.
2. Take necessary steps: Seal or cover the leaks properly
Now that you identified the problem, it is time to take necessary steps and, in this case, it is to seal or cover the leaks properly.
You can seal the leaks between the joints using a mastic, a goo-like paint, or even tape with foil in its back. You also need to seal behind the grilles or the registers from around where the air duct is meeting the wall or ceiling.
People make a common mistake in this part like using duct tape to cover the leaks. These duct tapes are not a good option to be used as a “sealer” for air ducts leaks. Also, some people use tapes with fabrics back but what they don’t know – the fabric on the back deteriorates over the course of time. That’s why the best option for a “sealer” is foil-back tapes or mastic.
3. Double check: Troubleshoot to see if everything is okay
Using a duct blaster, you can check whether or not you will need professional AC repair or air duct repair services. This might sound fancy but it is not actually. It is very easy to conduct a duct blaster test.
Don’t avoid this test because you might need professional air conditioning service or air duct services that require cash. Trust me, HVAC cost for a new system will cost way more than just the duct replacement costs.
4. Take preventive measure: Insulate & Fix the Ducts to ensure this never happens
An effective way to ensure maximum efficiency and minimum AC repair costs insulating the air ducts properly and takes every possible measure so that leaks don’t happen again.
To prevent the duct from throwing off heated and chilled air, insulating the ducts and the basement of the surface (walls or ceilings) is very important according to the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating & Air-Conditioning Engineers, otherwise known as ASHRAE.
This insulation on the basement of the wall or ceiling and on the air ducts will make sure the basement is warmer in the hot summer days and colder in the chilled winter days. Also, it is more economical to use more insulation in the attic or just buying a smaller HVAC unit.
Remember, preventing these leaks will not only save you the cost of professional air duct cleaning services, but it will also make sure energy loss is at a minimum. This way, you are saving both energy and air duct cleaning cost for the future.
5. Professional assistance: Take professional help if needed to clean the ducts or for maintenance
And lastly, you need to admit if the professional assistance is required.
There are several reasons that could trigger the need for professional air duct maintenance and cleaning services. If there are molds in the duct then you might need professional air duct cleaning for mold removal. Also, replacing your air conditioner can also draw the need for professional help to adjust the air ducts. Whatever it is, if you feel like this is overwhelming for you, just call a professional. And if you are residing near the Dallas–Fort Worth metroplex area, you can give us a call and ask for a well-put team to get the air ducts in your home cleaned.
See the summary of this article here in an infographic – 5 Steps To Extend Air Duct’s Life [Infographic]