A little known fact that eludes many Ottawa homeowners is the massive part ductwork plays in ensuring your comfort throughout the home. Many customers believe that simply upgrading the furnace or air conditioner will solve any issues the home may have with cold spots and warm areas. The reality is far different! Even the best equipment manufactured today will struggle to keep the home comfortable if the ductwork is inadequate. If the furnace is the heart of your home then the ductwork is most definitely the veins and arteries of the system. Just like in the human body, if the distribution network is clogged or too small even the most powerful furnace will not be able to get the proper airflow to certain areas. In the industry we consider this a “comfort robbing” property, with poor ductwork ranking as the number one issue that plagues home comfort levels throughout North America.
This poor quality can start with improper design. Too many turns and wrong sizing can leave your home starved for air. Nobody wants to pay high energy bills to not heat or cool the house properly. This does not even take into account the added wear and tear an improper ducting system adds to your homes HVAC system. Poor ductwork increases the failure rate of equipment as furnaces and air handlers are designed to have very specific amounts of air coming in and out at all times.
The next most common issue we run into when assessing people’s ductwork is leakage. Improper sealing of the ductwork can add up to forty percent to operating costs for you HVAC equipment. Not only will your wallet suffer but so will the overall comfort of the home as your conditioned air seeps into the open spaces between walls and floors. Your ductwork runs in two different systems in your home.
One of these is known as the supply ductwork and like the name states, these distribution system supplies rooms with warm or cold air depending on the season. The second system of ductwork running through your home is known as the return. This system is a series of grills attached to ductwork that runs directly back to the furnace. The combination of these two ductwork systems allows the air to constantly circulate throughout the home while passing through your filtration system. When sealed properly and installed well, your homes air should remain conditioned constantly and as clean as possible by passing through the filter as much as possible.
When return ducts are not sealed properly it can have a major issue on your health. Any openings in this return ductwork will allow particulates and dust from the walls and ceilings to enter your distribution system and your family’s lungs! The reason this happens is due to the pressure of the ductwork system, the return air is being pulled towards the furnace, thus putting it on a negative pressure. This negative pressure is what pulls the dust, mould and particulates back into the air stream.
Finally, one of the most common complaints we hear from customers is loud or noisy grilles and registers. Inadequate sizing of grilles and returns creates loud whistling noises that resonate throughout the entire house! Your home comfort advisor should always ask about any problem areas in the home and do their best to address these issues.
This can sometimes be difficult as most of your ductwork is installed in walls, floors and ceilings that are covered by finished dry wall. In many cases it is not viable to tear the walls and ceilings apart to get ductwork replaced.
Do not fret! There are other options in terms of creating better airflow in the home. First off, CFM (cubic feet per minute) booster fans are a viable option for those that are struggling with problem areas throughout the house. These fans help push the air to those tough to reach bedrooms that are located far from the furnace. Duct sealing is always a viable way to ensure you are getting the most out of your system, this along with upgraded insulation will aid in performance. Call AirZone HVAC Services to have an assessment on your duct work today!