3 Common Air Duct Issues

Your air conditioner uses air ducts to distribute conditioned air throughout your home. If your ducted AC blows stale or insufficient air into your home, faulty air ducts are the likely culprits. In most cases, air duct issues arise if you fail to maintain your system regularly.

The following are common air duct issues you should watch out for and what you can do about them.

Dirty Ductwork

Over time, dirt and debris can build up on the air duct walls. As a result, airflow through the vents worsens due to germs, dust, and contaminants that clog the pathway. This issue impacts your AC's performance, evidenced by high energy bills. 

Even worse, the dirt and debris that build up inside your air ducts can ruin your indoor air quality. Dirty ductwork compromises the air quality in your home, which adversely affects those who suffer allergies and respiratory ailments in your house. To resolve this issue, you should schedule a professional duct cleaning as often as your AC contractor recommends. 

Poorly Sealed Ducts

Poorly-sealed air ducts cause the conditioned air to leak before it gets to its intended destination. As a result, your air conditioner has to work much harder to cool your home. This inefficiency results in unnecessary energy use and high repair costs when internal parts break down from overworking.

Leaky ducts also cause your unit to wear out faster, which significantly cuts your system's lifespan. Even worse, cracks and holes in your ducts create room for pests and debris.

If your ductwork has significant debris, your AC contractor will first clean the air ducts before they seal them. You may not quickly locate loose or damaged ductwork, so enlist a professional to inspect and fix your ductwork. 

Incorrect Ductwork Design

Ideally, your duct system should effectively meet your needs based on your home size, rooms, and available spaces. If you undersize the ductwork, you will experience cold and hot spots or fluctuating temperatures in your home due to airflow issues. High energy costs and popping (or whistling) noises as air passes through the ducts also indicate undersized ductwork. 

On the other hand, oversized ductwork causes your AC to work harder to push air through the air ducts, which increases your unit's vulnerability to failure. An HVAC technician can evaluate your ductwork and redesign it accordingly. 

If defective ductwork is to blame for your unit's inefficiencies, have it checked by an AC repair technician. Also, keep up with preventative AC maintenance to ensure your unit always runs at maximum efficiency.