Nobody likes high energy bills. But worse than the high energy bills is not knowing how to lower them. There are many causes of high energy use in your home and we have already talked about a few ways to reduce them. But did you know your air ducts may be losing up to 20% of your heated and cooled air?
That’s right – according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the leaks, holes, poor connections, cracked seals and lack of insulation in your ductwork can cause up to 20% of the air moving through your ducts to be lost.
What causes leaking air ducts?
Much of the ductwork for your home heating and cooling system runs through unconditioned spaces (like garages, attics and basements). That means your air ducts are subject to the extreme hot and cold temperatures present in these areas most of the year, which can cause seals to crack and deteriorate. Another common cause of leaking air ducts is improper installation.
How to tell if your air ducts are leaking
If your heating and cooling system’s air ducts are leaking, there will be signs. Some of the symptoms of leaking ductwork include:
- High utility bills – The loss of heated and cooled air through holes, cracked seals and insufficient insulation will contribute to high utility bills. If your energy bills spike in the middle of summer or winter, your air ducts could be leaking.
- Hot & cold spots – While there could be numerous causes of hot or cold areas in your home, leaking air ducts is a common one. The further away from your central air conditioner or furnace, the more uncomfortable the hot and cold spots will be.
- Excessive dust – Holes and cracks in your ductwork can let in dust and debris from the attic, walls or basement. Homes with leaking air ducts are much more dusty.
If you think your air ducts are leaking, contact a qualified heating and air conditioning expert for help repairing them.
Nicholson Plumbing, Heating and Air Conditioning serves the HVAC and plumbing needs of the residents of Framingham, MA and the surrounding areas.
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