Airflow doesn’t always receive enough attention when it comes to conversations about indoor air quality (IAQ) and home comfort. Inefficient airflow can make parts of your home feel warmer than others or, depending on the season, create chilly drafts. DIY projects like installing fans and moving furniture can improve airflow in your Berryville, Virginia, home.
Create a Cross Breeze
If you want to temporarily improve air circulation in your house and create an influx of fresh air, consider opening doors and windows. If air can come in through two opposing entrances (such as windows on the front and back of your house), you’ll create a refreshing cross-breeze that will encourage air to flow into neglecting corners of the home.
Fresh air has numerous health and comfort benefits. It can stimulate mental clarity, improve brain function, increase the oxygen content in your lungs and blood, and even strengthen your immune system. While there’s nothing wrong with running your HVAC system for comfort, you can also take advantage of fresh air when the opportunity arises.
Additionally, when you turn off your HVAC system and rely on natural sources of air flow, you’ll reduce your utility bills. When the system isn’t running, it doesn’t use electricity from your home.
Turn On Fans
Ceiling and portable fans can also help improve air flow. The vents and registers in your home dispense air, which circulates in predictable patterns based on furniture and wall positions, as well as room layouts. If something blocks the circulation, air won’t reach that part of your home. Fans, however, disrupt airflow patterns to great effect.
Ceiling fans work well in large rooms with open layouts. You can also use table and floor fans to improve air flow if you want the air to move in a particular direction or if you’re not running your HVAC system and feel too warm. Portable fans also come in handy in rooms with high ceilings because you’ll feel the air flow more directly.
Clean Your Vents and Change Air Filters
Dirty vents and air filters can obstruct air flow through your home. The vents are responsible for sending conditioned air into your rooms, while your air filter prevents dirty particles and other contaminants from entering your HVAC system. When they get dirty, airflow might become thin, which means you’re not getting the full benefit of your air conditioner or heat pump.
You shouldn’t attempt to clean your ductwork or other delicate HVAC components yourself. However, you can unscrew vent covers and vacuum them out to remove dust and debris. If they look particularly soiled, you can also rinse them with water or wash them with mild dish detergent. Similarly, change your air filters every two or three months in addition to other system maintenance.
If you’re still having trouble, we can clean your ductwork for improved air flow. Our trained experts will examine your ducts for tears and other issues that can allow air to escape (and therefore increase your electric bill). Plus, we’ll make sure your ductwork is clean and free of clogs so your home benefits from the conditioned air your HVAC system generates.
Sometimes furniture and decor can obstruct air flow, especially in homes with small, self-contained rooms. For example, placing artwork or a headboard in front of an air vent can drastically restrict air flow. Additionally, you don’t want to install a thermostat where it’s blocked by curtains or where it receives direct sunlight because it won’t read the interior temperature correctly.
Air returns also need unobstructed access to the home. If the air conditioner has to work hard to extract air through those returns, you’ll see increased utility bills, and your home might not feel as comfortable as it would otherwise. If you’re concerned about “ugly” vents and registers, visit your local hardware store to investigate stylish alternatives.
Air flow is essential for a happy and healthy home, especially when temperatures start to rise. If you’re struggling with higher utility bills, contact Griffith Energy Services at 888-474-3391 for an HVAC consultation.
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