Are Your HVAC Ducts Leaking? Here’s How to do a Quick Check

Are Your HVAC Ducts Leaking

The HVAC ducts in your home are responsible for carrying warm air into the home in the winter and cool air to the home in the Summer. It’s also responsible for routing air from the home back into the HVAC unit. In all of these ducts there can sometime be gaps, cracks, or breaks in the ducts which can cause all sorts of problems. And what’s worst is you may not even know it’s happening. In this article I’ll look at some of the things that you can do to check your air ducts and make sure they are not leaking. 

Are Your HVAC Ducts Leaking? Here’s How to do a Quick Check

In Michigan, most people have a furnace and air conditioning unit installed. The units may be separate or made together as one complete HVAC unit. In either case, many times these two units will share the same HVAC ducts. So if you have problems with your air ducts, it can affect your home all year during warm and cold seasons. I will go over some simple things you can do to check if your home’s HVAC ducts are leaking air below.

Are Your HVAC Ducts Leaking? Here's How to do a Quick Check

For Homes with a Crawlspace

Most homes that have a crawlspace will have air ducts run underneath the floor in this crawlspace. So if an air duct starts leaking or breaks then the crawlspace will receive the heat or cool that is supposed to go inside the home. A great way to check if your home’s air ducts are leaking in the crawlspace is to measure the temperature of the crawlspace when the heat or air conditioner is on versus when it’s not. If the temperature shows a huge difference then you may be heating and cooling your crawlspace without even knowing it. If you suspect that this is happening then you’ll need to get an annual inspection of your HVAC and let them check the HVAC ducts to make sure they are not leaking.

For Homes without a Crawlspace

For homes without a crawlspace the HVAC ducts are located in the attic in most cases. You may even have a closet the has air ducts in it as well. Like a crawlspace home you’ll need to measure the temperature difference in the attic when the heat or cool is on versus when it’s off. There should not be a huge difference in temperature. If there is then have your air ducts checked by a professional.

What Happens When My HVAC Ducts are Leaking

It may seem like a small problem but actually leaking air ducts can cause all sorts of problems. It can also depend on how large the leak is to determine how much of a problem it will be. The main problem is that the unit is not very energy efficient when a air duct is leaking. It will cause the unit to run much more and use a lot more energy. It may also cause the unit to run steadily on if the temperature difference is huge. Your energy used by the unit could skyrocket and be 2 or 3 times the normal use. That’s why it’s so important to get the air ducts checked during an annual inspection of your unit.

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