5 Principles of HVAC Ductwork Design
The principles of ductwork design used today correct many common installation errors of years past. However, the benefits of good duct design, such as lower energy bills and greater comfort, are only applicable to your Mid-Atlantic home if you hire the right contractor that adheres to industry best practices.
If you suspect you need duct modifications, make sure your contractor follows these five principles of good HVAC ductwork design.
To achieve balanced airflow and even temperatures, your HVAC provider must size the ducts correctly with an accurate heat gain/loss calculation of your home. If you are retrofitting old ducts or installing ducts for a new HVAC system, your provider may suggest adding return grilles and dampers.
Since ductwork conveys conditioned airflow, they are essentially a component of your living spaces. With that in mind, it’s wise to install as many duct runs within the conditioned areas of your home to minimize energy losses.
Ducts can’t always be installed within your home’s insulation barrier. If this is the case, make sure ducts outside the living spaces are insulated. Optionally, you may install insulated flex ducts or metal ducts lined with insulation.
Proper duct sealing is essential to lock in maximum efficiency and comfort for years to come. Malleable mastic paste or an aerosol sealant may be applied to duct joints to prevent smaller air leaks. Metal tape wrapped around duct joints gives the strength ducts need to last.
Make certain your HVAC technician tests your new or modified ductwork for balanced airflow and the leakage rate. Specialized equipment and testing, such as a blower door, flow hood test and manometer, yield leakage rate, return air pressure and supply air pressure respectively.
To ensure your ductwork design maximizes heating and cooling efficiency, bring in a qualified professional.
At Sobieski Services, Inc., our goal is to help our customers in Delaware, Pennsylvania, Maryland and New Jersey learn more about energy and home comfort issues — especially HVAC and plumbing issues — so that they can save money and live in healthier, more comfortable homes.
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