A new, energy-efficient air conditioner or furnace can substantially save you money on energy costs throughout the year. Just as it’s important to make sure your doors and windows are sealed and your attic has sufficient insulation to boost energy savings even more, the state of your duct insulation can significantly impact overall energy efficiency as well. Here are some ways having insufficient duct insulation could be negatively impacting your comfort—and your wallet.
One of the most noticeable problems with the AC when the ductwork isn’t properly insulated is uneven cooling in your home. Even if the AC is working perfectly, you’ll experience warm spots in your home because of ducts that allow the cold air to escape on the way to the vents. Air may escape because of actual damage to the vents, but often the real problem is a lack of insulation that allows the heat transfer, resulting in warm areas of the home. Poor insulation can affect the air pressure for the return and supply ducts, which means air delivery is lower than it should be. There can also be problems with backdrafting, which makes it difficult for all the rooms to remain a consistent temperature.
When there’s a lot of heat transfer or lost cold air in the ductwork, the AC has to work harder to make up for this inefficiency. The system will run longer and more frequently than necessary to try to compensate for the loss of cool air. This is hard on your system and often results in frequent repairs, but it can also significantly reduce the life span of your AC. Adding insulation to your ducts can stop this air loss and make sure your AC only runs when necessary.
In addition to placing additional wear and tear on your AC, insufficient insulation will reduce the overall efficiency of your AC. In fact, up to 30% of cooled air can be lost through poorly insulated ducts. The system will work much harder to try to keep the home at the temperature set on the thermostat, which will cost you more money and be harmful to the environment.
The overall purpose of the air conditioner is to remove moisture from the air, because doing so lowers the temperature of the air. Unfortunately, poorly insulated ducts can actually result in more moisture entering the ducts and the home as well. Additional moisture is not only hard on the AC since it has to work harder to remove it, but it also can result in other moisture problems as well, such as mold growth in the ducts that will easily spread throughout the home and pose a health risk to your family. A heating and air-conditioning service can install duct insulation that has a vapor barrier to prevent these problems.
It can be difficult to know how well your ducts are insulated, so it’s a good idea to have a regular duct inspection by a company providing heating and air-conditioning repair in Alpharetta. Signs of duct problems include warm rooms in the home, higher utility bills, musty odors from the AC vents, excess dust buildup on furniture, or rooms that feel stuffy or damp. If you notice these issues, be sure to call Triad Mechanical at 770-682-0075 to schedule a duct inspection and to learn how to improve your ductwork insulation.
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