Is it Time to Replace the Ductwork in Your Home?
April 23, 2021
Air ducts supply your entire home with conditioned air. Ductwork issues range from poor airflow and ventilation to indoor air quality problems. A ductwork repair professional should periodically inspect the system; they can provide ductwork maintenance to help it last longer, but eventually the time will come when old ductwork must be replaced.
Look for These Signs
Fortunately, there are signs that indicate it’s time for new ductwork, to avoid/mitigate the issues caused by older systems. These include:
- Old Ductwork: After about 15 years, AC ducts start to wear out. Ductwork may collapse and gaps and holes may form within it. Oftentimes pests such as rodents and insects take up residence, especially when there are holes leading to outside. If there are deteriorated seams, seals, and joints, you’ll soon feel the effects; and if you see asbestos insulation, it’s definitely time for ductwork replacement.
- Poor Airflow: Damage to air ducts, clogs, and a buildup of dirt can limit the amount of air that flows through the system. This can strain your HVAC system and limit heating and cooling performance. You can easily lose one quarter of the air in your home due to a ductwork problem such as a leak or poor fitting.
- Odors: The most common odors related to old ductwork are that of mold and mildew. Uneven temperatures and condensation create conditions that allow mold and mildew to grow, causing furniture and household materials to deteriorate and possibly a range of health problems. Poorly insulated ductwork can lead to condensation elsewhere in the home. Other odors may include burning, rotten egg, oil, or animal waste smells.
- Mold: Aside from odors, you may see visible mold in the form of discolored paint, wallpaper, or drywall as well as other surfaces, especially around vents or windows. If mold is visible, it’s safe to assume more is hidden. Contact an HVAC repair professional for a ductwork evaluation and mold inspection.
- High Energy Bills: Your energy bill is likely to go up if a significant amount of air escapes your ducts. A sign of a leak is if you set the thermostat to a certain temperature, but the indoor air temperature doesn’t go as high. A ductwork inspection is a good idea if your monthly utility bill increases for no apparent reason.
- Noisy Unit: An HVAC system is designed to operate with relatively little noise. If your ducts are noisy, they may be improperly sized or there are airflow issues within. An imbalance in your ductwork can cause your HVAC system to be stressed and overworked.
- Inconsistent Temps: If one area or room of your home is much warmer or cooler, you may have leaky ducts. Imbalances in the ductwork can occur for many reasons, and are more likely as it ages. A normally functioning system should provide even temperature distribution throughout your home.
- Poor Air Quality: Old, faulty ductwork can leave your home dusty or stuffy and cause an increase in allergy symptoms. Pollen, dirt, and a variety of pollutants can enter through holes, bad seals, and gaps and into the interior of your home. Bad ducts can even carry exhaust gases into rooms that can be a health hazard and immediate fire danger.
Contact Fix-It 24/7
Our company provides 24/7 plumbing, HVAC, and electrical repair services in Golden, CO and throughout the Denver area. If you have the ductwork symptoms mentioned above, contact us for ductwork maintenance or AC repair. Call (303) 214-0277 to request an appointment.
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