Leaking air ducts make your home uncomfortable, waste your energy, and strain your HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system. You need to be on the lookout for signs of air leak so that you can plug them as soon as you confirm the diagnosis.
Telltale Signs of Air Leaks
Uneven Heating and Cooling
This is one of the classic signs of leaky air ducts because not all parts of your house will be serviced by conditioned of heated air. For example, if air ducts leading to the kitchen are leaking, you may find your kitchen colder or warmer than other parts of the house depending on the season. In such cases, you may find yourself arguing with other members of the household on whether to turn the thermostat up or down because you are exposed to different temperatures.
Too Much Dust in the House
Leaks in the return sides of ductwork can pick up dust and other air pollutants along the way. These pollutants will then be circulated throughout your house along with the returning air. This means your house will have an unusual amount of dust. You may find yourself cleaning or dusting the house more frequently than normal.
Increased Energy Bills
Lastly, you should also suspect leaking air ducts if your energy bill has shot up with no obvious increase in consumption. This is because your HVAC will be losing cool or warm air through the leaks and making it work longer than normal to maintain the set temperature.
Common Leak Points
If you suspect that your ducts are leaking air, then these are the places most likely to be responsible for the leaks:
Defective Duct Connections
The most common points for air leaks are the connection points between different pieces of duct materials. This makes sense since these connection points or joints are weaker than continuous surfaces of the ducts.
You should also check the joint between the ducts and the registers since they may also leak when they detach. This is particularly true with old ductworks that have experienced prolonged wear and tear.
Rusty or Corroded Points
Lastly, any corroded ductwork material is also likely to leak. This may be the case if the house has experienced water leaks or moisture problems in the past since moisture accelerates corrosion.
Even if you can't identify the source of air leaks, but you suspect one, an HVAC technician will be able to diagnose it and deal with it in time. That's why you shouldn't hesitate to consult a technician anytime you suspect an air leak. For more information, contact a company like John Legg's Heating & Air Conditioning.