Air quality and the general performance of your HVAC duct system will increase if your ducts are free of damage and impurities. Though having your ducts professionally inspected once a year is always a good idea, there are a few basic maintenance procedures you can do on your own.
Catching tiny faults before they become bigger ones will save you money on repairs and reduce the need for professional inspections. Learn how to look for air leaks and clean your air ducts.
Check For Air Leaks In The HVAC Ducts
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You will require a few simple tools to inspect your air ducts.
Take a screwdriver, a flashlight, rags, and a digital camera with you (or smartphone with flash). In case you need to patch up a leak, keep some HVAC aluminum foil tape (NOT duct tape) or mastic sealant (especially for duct work) on hand. Remember to dress appropriately for work. Wear old clothes and rubber gloves if you don’t want to get your hands soiled.
The main unit and its enormous ducts will be your first stop (which are connected to the branch ducts that run throughout the house). Air is blown through the branch ducts on one side of the duct system, while air is drawn in on the other.
Turn on your HVAC duct system and check for air leaks around all air duct connections. To increase the sensitivity of your ability to detect air leaks, moisten your hand slightly. You can also use an incense stick or a thin piece of toilet paper to check for leaks; if the paper clings to or blows away from any point where two pieces of metal are linked together, you have a leak.
If you have visible ducts in your home (typically in the basement or attic), you should investigate these next. Examine the insulation around the ducts for any signs of deterioration, such as ripped pieces, moist areas, or mildew.
A wet spot indicates a clog and a concern about indoor air quality, indicating that the portion should be cleaned. Contact range hood duct installation Marietta to repair your ductwork if you see any damage to your insulation, mold, or moisture concerns.
Basically, you’re looking for any air movement around the seams and connections of your ductwork. Inspect your air duct insulation for damage and wet areas while testing for air leaks.
How To Keep Air Ducts Clean
Repairing an air duct leak can be simple if you see a visible leak coming from the main unit ductwork. For leaks on a flat surface where two pieces of metal are bonded, aluminum foil tape and other heat-approved tape are ideal.
When shopping, look for the Underwriters Laboratory (UL) label. Before applying mastic sealant or foil tape, grab your rag and make sure the area is clean.
Simply apply a piece of aluminum foil tape over the leak. Moreover, you can also fix it with a mastic sealer and a paintbrush after cleaning the area. Use mastic sealant to close leaks that are difficult to close using foil tape.
Mastic sealant is, on average, more effective than duct tape. It has a longer shelf life and is easy to apply. The only disadvantage is that it is ineffective for leaks larger than 1/4 inch and that it may be ugly for certain people.
Use aluminum foil tape and mastic sealer to close gaps greater than 1/4 inch.
Additional Tips For Air Duct Sealing:
Following the sealing of air ducts in the basement and attic, you will notice that both places become cooler. Consider insulating your attic and basement if they aren’t properly insulated. It is also suggested that you insulate your pipes in both places. For attic and basement insulation solutions, contact a professional contractor.
If you’ve converted your attic or basement into living space, you’ll need to hire a professional to install supply and return ducts.
To avoid mold and moisture problems, make sure your ductwork insulation has a good vapor barrier.
Check your CO detectors for any concerns with carbon monoxide.
Always consult an HVAC professional before repairing or installing ducting. Changes to your duct system should only be done by qualified contractors.
Duct sealing done at home can only go so far. You’ll need to hire a professional if you really want to seal all of your air ducts. You may now seal your complete air duct system from the inside using modern technologies.
Challenges And Solutions With Air Duct Sealing
Most rooms in your home should have a vent. You should either install directly on the floor or install the upper half of a wall. Remove the vent and use a flashlight to inspect the inside of your ducts.
A digital camera with a flash is also a fantastic alternative. Moreover, you can use it if you can’t see very far into the ducts because it can capture more depth. Look for huge dust bunnies, mouse droppings, and mold. You should arrange a professional examination and duct cleaning if you observe a lot of dust and debris. Moreover, this might be helpful in case you notice anything unusual. Unfortunately, the average household cannot perform DIY duct cleaning.
In conclusion, we can say that evaluating your ductwork once a year is very crucial. Firstly you can stay ahead of the curve on duct maintenance. Secondly, you can keep your energy expenses low while maintaining great air quality. The longer you wait to seal and clean your air ducts, the worse your indoor air quality and energy efficiency will be.
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