Is Your Ductwork Leaking?

Types of Air Duct Leakage

keeping heating ductwork properly sealedAir ducts are the pathways for cooled and heated air to enter throughout the home, says the Pleasanton heating and cooling expert.  Since the air duct system is hidden behind ceilings and walls, homeowners often forget about the efficiency of a duct system and important role it plays in conditioning the home’s indoor air.

Duct system leaks have a large impact on energy consumption.  A report by the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) indicates that 70 percent of homes have significant duct leakage and are losing up to 30 percent of conditioned air.  Energy efficiency is greatly impacted by leaking ducts.

Your Pleasanton heating contractor will often use a simple pressure test to measure air-tightness of the air distribution HVAC system.  Using a duct blaster, blower door or pressure pan, the total duct leakage can be measured in your home or commercial building.

Sealing the ducts is even more effective than sealing the building or home envelope.  This is because of the pressures in the air distribution system.  When the HVAC system is running, the pressures are much greater, and the holes in the duct system will leak.  The challenge with identifying duct leaks is that the air leaks are invisible unless you have an infrared camera.

Methods and Types of Duct Sealing

  • Duct tape should never be used to seal ductwork.  When used on ductwork, it just dries out and disintegrates.  Today, your Pleasanton heating professional uses advanced technology when sealing ducts.
  • Some of these processes include polymer particles to stick to the edges of the leak and then stick to each other.  In this respect, the leak is fixed from the inside out.  This type of duct sealing is based on aerosol duct technology.
  • The process begins with closing off the registers, and aerosolized adhesive particles are blown into the duct system.  As the particles exit through the leak, they deposit on the leaks’ edges.
  • Since many duct systems are only partially accessible, aerosol duct technology is a very practical solution.  Other methods for duct sealing include mastic tape or metal tape.

If you have central heating and cooling, be sure to maintain your ductwork with regular inspections.  Air ducts should be cleaned as needed, and any holes or cracks should be sealed.

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