Written by Brad Crawford
No matter how up to date or efficient your home comfort equipment may be, getting the full benefit depends on your ductwork design. Poor design wastes energy, is more costly, negatively impacts your comfort level, and even affects your indoor air quality.
Elements of ductwork design
Homes should have ducting systems that match the design of the home and its heating and cooling equipment. Some aspects of ductwork design are universal to any home. If ducts are compatible with the following, your system’s in good shape:
- Ducts shielded – Ducting should be running in conditioned spaces, spaces within heated and cooled areas. This could be interior walls, ceilings or between floors. If your ducting is mostly in the attic, basement or crawlspace, it must be well insulated. Otherwise, you’re losing much of your heating and cooling before it reaches the rooms in your home.
- Sealed joints – Joints connecting ducting to your equipment, each section or registers must be sealed to prevent air leaks. Air leaks can cause you to lose up to 30 percent of your heating and cooling.
- Sloping bends – Duct sections that bend should have gradual slopes instead of sharp bends. A turn sharper than 45 degrees slows down airflow and reduces the circulation momentum.
- Air returns – Air return vents should connect between rooms for the best circulation. Blocked return vents or rooms without air returns cause an imbalance in the circulation of heated and cooled air. The exchange of air in a room is also off balance without a free-flowing exit for air to be recirculated.
If your ductwork design is lacking in any of these areas, it should be checked by a professional technician. Upgraded ducting can greatly enhance your comfort and lower your energy bills. If you have questions regarding your home’s ductwork or any other home comfort issues, please contact us at Crawford Services, Inc. We’re always ready and happy to help our north Texas neighbors.