Understanding your HVAC system is half the battle when it comes to keeping it working the way that it should. Along with learning about the system's functioning and necessary maintenance, you also want to focus some of your attention on the ducts. Often taken for granted because they aren't visible and don't require regular attention, there are still concerns that you should have about them. Here is information that will introduce you to the ductwork in your home.
1. Your ducts can leak
When you don't have a complete understanding of how the ducts work in your home, you might not understand why it is so bad for the ducts to have leaks in them. Some of the problems that come with having leaks in your ducts include:
- Difficulty achieving the desired temperature throughout the house
- The HVAC system overworking itself to achieve that temperature
- The energy bills skyrocketing due to the HVAC system working overtime
- The system will likely need repairs sooner due to the excessive wear put on it
- The unit may need a full replacement sooner
A common area for leaks is where the ducts connect. Also, they can get damaged should something like a raccoon end up in them because they have very sharp claws. One way to recognize leaks in the ducts is by hearing a whistling or hissing sound. Another way is to pay attention to the energy bill each month, so you notice when it suddenly goes up.
1. Your ducts can get dirty
Many people believe the ducts throughout their home won't get dirty since the system has an air filter. However, as time goes on dust will still gather in the ducts. Plus, other things can end up in them, such as mold. Everything from time to construction work and home repairs can cause your ducts to end up dirty.
While you may think that dirty ducts aren't a big deal, leaving them in that state can have serious repercussions. One important thing to understand is that once you have dirt or mold in your ducts then that debris will be beyond the filter, so all of the air blown into your home will have particles in it that also get blown out. People with respiratory or allergy problems won't do as well in a home with dirty ducts. Also, anyone can be affected by breathing in mold spores, especially if that mold is black which is a very toxic type of mold.
If you notice one or more people suddenly being affected more by allergy symptoms or having more breathing issues, or exhibiting symptoms of mold-related illnesses, then you should have the ducts checked to see if they are dirty. Another way to spot this issue is to recognize that you are doing a lot more dusting of your house. Once you know they are dirty, you should contact air duct cleaning services.