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4 Reasons Your Ducts Are Making Your Atlanta Home Uncomfortable

Want to improve the heating and cooling of your Atlanta home? Sure, an upgrade for your furnace or air conditioner may do the trick. But your furnace and air conditioning systems are only one portion of your HVAC design. Without proper ductwork in place, efficiency can be lowered, airflow can be reduced, and your overall comfort level can continue to decrease.

Your ductwork may not be designed properly

The Air Conditioning Contractors of America have issued best practices for ductwork design. According to their guidelines, ductwork design elements include location, sizing, supply and return, airflow and more. By following their thorough recommendations, ducts will maximize efficiency while balancing airflow.

Unfortunately, not all duct installers adhere to these practices. For example, some installers will size ductwork based on square footage alone. Older homes may have cavities in walls, basements, crawlspaces and attics that leave heated and cooled airflow uninsulated. These practices are unacceptable by today’s standards.

Your ductwork may not be created from acceptable materials

Ductwork must be fabricated from approved materials in order to maximize efficiency. While steel metal ducts are most widely used, other materials such as fiberglass flexible ducts have gained in popularity. Flex ducts offer the advantage of being easy to work with and easy to install in tight spaces. They are also insulated, which allows them to be installed in unconditioned spaces. However, installed incorrectly, they can tear or crack, leaving your HVAC vulnerable.

Your airflow may not be balanced

A home’s air supply and air return should be balanced to promote proper air filtration, comfort and energy efficiency. If supply ducts are too small, they will make a lot of noise. If they are undersized, a substantial pressure drop is created across the blower, which can bring it to a halt in a short amount of time. Proper balance means there is a return grille in every space with a supply register. It also means eliminating obstructions to promote freeflow of air.

Your ductwork may not be sealed properly

Tight seals can save as much as 20 percent of your home’s cooling and heating costs. Metal ducts should all be tightly sealed with proper fasteners, including sheet metal screws and heat resistant metal tape. Appropriate collars and straps are necessary to ensure flex ducts are properly sealed. Ductwork should be tested from time to time to ensure proper function, especially if changes are made to your home’s environment, such as with a remodel or addition.

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