Ducts are like the lungs of your home. After the return air is drawn into the HVAC system and conditioned, the ductwork sends it to registers where it’s distributed through the home. If you’ve got problems with your ducts, poor indoor air quality may result in several ways.
Ducts may come apart or develop holes in the attic, crawl space or near the air handler. Return ducts could be drawing in nearby pollutants, including mold, bacteria from insect or rodent nests, dirt and dust. Both supply and return ducts should be periodically inspected and repaired. Fix holes and gaps, and reconnect separated ducts.
Unbalanced Air Supply
The amount of air that an HVAC system draws in should be the same as it supplies to the home to maintain a neutral balance. If either the supply or return ductwork has leaks, negative pressure can result, and infiltration from outdoor air will occur. The infiltrating air won’t be conditioned or filtered, and poor indoor air quality can increase.
Gas-powered water heaters, boilers and furnaces send exhaust by-products, including carbon monoxide, outdoors via the flue. The gases rise and leave the home because they’re less dense than indoor air. Sometimes, a condition of low indoor air pressure occurs because there’s fast expulsion of air through exhaust fans in the home. When this occurs, combustion gases may be drawn back into the home and harm occupants. Leaking return ducts can contribute to this by creating negative pressure.
Poor Humidity Control
Leaking ductwork can also diminish the A/C’s ability to control humidity. For example, leaking return ducts may draw in added moisture from a damp basement or crawl space, compromising the A/C’s ability to dehumidify the home’s air.
Learn more about improving poor indoor air quality with Griffith Energy Services Inc.’s indoor air quality solutions, or give us a call at 888-474-3391.
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