5 Ways Ductwork Impacts Your HVAC System in Maumelle, AR
Ventilation ducts are critical to all traditional central HVAC systems since they are the means by which such systems distribute heated or cooled air through your home. These connective and distributive functions have serious implications for how the HVAC system in your Maumelle, AR home operates. Here are five ductwork issues that can affect the efficiency of your HVAC system.
1. Leaks and Efficiency
Damage to your ductwork, if sufficiently severe, will cause holes, and air will escape through these holes as your HVAC system attempts to perform its normal operations. This leak will diminish the strength and volume of airflow, which will either mean that your HVAC system won’t heat or cool your home as effectively as it could before or that the system will start working overtime to maintain a comfortable temperature.
Whichever of these two things happens, your system’s efficiency will decrease. If the system is working harder, your energy bills will almost certainly skyrocket, as your HVAC will draw on more energy while attempting to make up for the reduced airflow.
2. Ductwork Insulation and Efficiency
The best way to avert mishaps like those described above is to ensure that your ductwork insulation is in good condition. Effective ductwork insulation not only decreases the likelihood of a leak but also reduces unwanted temperature changes to the air in your ductwork.
If your ductwork is poorly insulated, the conditioned air moving through it cannot maintain the desired temperature. Warm air will lose significant amounts of its heat to the cooler outside environment, and cool air will warm up on hot days. Good insulation prevents the outside temperature from adversely affecting the air temperature within the ductwork.
3. Improving Indoor Air Quality
Central HVAC systems have air filters that remove at least some of the larger pollutants from the air that travels through your ductwork. Although the primary purpose of these filters is to protect your HVAC system’s internal components from damage and the accumulation of assorted filth, they also have the additional effect of improving the air quality in your home.
If you feel it is necessary to do so, you may purchase higher-MERV-rated (Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value) filters for your system to improve its ability to trap even higher percentages of smaller pollutants. However, traditional HVAC systems cannot use filters with MERV ratings higher than 13. If you wish to improve your indoor air quality more than that, you can purchase an external air purifier with a HEPA filter, which has a MERV rating of 17.
4. Sizing and Layout
You should never do business with an HVAC contractor who won’t perform manual calculations to determine what ductwork size is appropriate for your home. Any contractor that guesses the proper size at a glance is likely to be wrong, resulting in a system that is either too small to allow sufficient airflow for you or so large that it causes frequent HVAC cycling.
The layout and shape of your ductwork also matter. If a prior installation has arranged your ducts to connect key areas of your home by the shortest paths, your HVAC system will function with maximum efficiency. If not, performance will be suboptimal.
5. Cleanliness and Efficiency
It’s fairly obvious that dirty ductwork can adversely affect indoor air quality, but it can also reduce your system’s efficiency. Collections of dirt or debris in your ductwork will affect the speed and smoothness of the airflow, getting worse as time passes.
Unless you happen to have a ductless mini split, you will have to spend some time thinking about the quality, style and state of the ductwork in your HVAC system. Such considerations have implications for the comfort levels in your Maumelle, AR home that may not be immediately obvious. To bring your ductwork up to par and enjoy the full power of a central HVAC system, call Freyaldenhoven Heating and Cooling and ask for our ductwork services team.
Image provided by iStock
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