Ductwork Inefficiency

Did you know that homes with ductwork lose approximately 25 percent more air and require between 25 to 40 percent more heating and cooling energy than homes with differing heating methods? This is due to the fact that a system with a blower causes pressure differences inside of the house as well as within the ductwork itself.

To get a warm-air system to work efficiently, make sure that the shell of the house and all the duct work that pass through crawl spaces, or areas that are unheated are sealed – and insulated. A very important factor is to make certain that there are sufficient return air ducts. If there are not enough air returns, the furnace will starve for air, causing it to take return air from places it shouldn’t. If all return air comes from one location or if the house has two stories and no return duct from upstairs, get your heating company to add another return duct.

You can tell the difference between supply and return ducts by touching them when the furnace is on: Supply ducts feel warm; return ducts, cool. Another way of testing is by holding a tissue in front of the grill. If it sucks the tissue toward the grill, this is a return. If it pushes the tissue away from the grill, it is a supply.

Balancing heat distribution

To provide even heating distribution, adjust the supply registers or the dampers in the ducts so that each room receives sufficient heat relative to its size. Also make sure that the amount of air that the air supplies are equal to the amount of room air returned to the furnace. To achieve this balance, leave open the door to any room that has a supply duct but return duct, or cut a 1-inch gap between the carpet and the bottom of the door. Without this air passage, some of the heated air blown into the room will be forced to leavge the house through cracks and imperfections in the walls and around windows.

These tips and information listed here are only for educational purposes, because extensive training with furnace and heating operation is required to properly address these problems, we encourage you to hire a certified technician to do any related modifications or repairs. To reach one of our highly-qualified technicians for Portland heating repair, please call us at the following number: