Whether you're building a new house or planning a renovation or addition, be sure to develop an effective ductwork design before you break ground on your project. Properly designed ductwork has a bigger impact on your utility bills than you might think, so make sure the following factors are considered in your planning and construction:
- Your ducts should be sized to provide balanced airflow to every room in your house. Your furnace or air conditioner should deliver conditioned air without excessive noise and without having to work too hard to overcome friction due to ducts that are too small or have too many restrictions to airflow. With a good ductwork design, you can install smaller equipment than you would need for a badly designed system. This will save you up front on the cost of the system and will save you on energy costs for as long as you live in your house.
- Your system design should specify that joints between ducts be sealed with mastic and mechanically fastened together with clamps or sheet-metal screws. Joints can develop gaps due to thermal expansion if they're not tightly connected. Well-sealed ducts will prevent conditioned air from escaping from your system before it reaches its destination. Leaking ductwork accounts for as much as 30 to 40 percent of the energy losses in many homes.
- Your ducts should run inside the conditioned air spaces of your home whenever possible. If they need to run through unconditioned spaces, such as your garage or attic, your ductwork design should specify that they be well insulated in such spaces to prevent energy losses.
- Bends in ducts should be designed to have gentle angles that avoid sharp corners. Sudden turns cause excessive resistance to airflow that your air handling unit has to burn extra energy to overcome.
For more information about proper ductwork design and maintenance, please contact us at Joe Behr Plumbing & Heating. We have served homeowners in the Mid-Ohio area since 1965. Our top priorities are keeping your family comfortable and your utility bills low. Call us today.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Mid-Ohio area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about duct design and other HVAC topics, visit our website.