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First Choice Heating & Cooling Blog

An Important Winter HVAC Prep Tip: Seal the Ductwork

duct-sealing-with-caulkingHave you already scheduled heating maintenance for the fall? This is the most important service you can have done to prepare for the winter, since it gives your heating system the best chance to sweep through the winter without problems, no matter how cold the outside may get. The peace of mind you receive from maintenance is well worth it—and you’ll save money on heating costs as well.

But you may need additional service to help your heating system operate at peak level for the season. You may not know if, but the ductwork in your house might suffer from numerous leaks and gapping. A loss of the airtight integrity of the ducts will reduce the effectiveness of your heater and lead to inflated bills. It can even lower the quality of the indoor air.

The way to solve this problem is with professional air sealing in Howell, MI, which is a service we offer. You may not need the work, but if you do, the difference it makes is tremendous.

How Do I Know I Have Leaking Air Ducts?

Yes, that’s probably your first question. You can’t see most of the ductwork, so how do you know it has leaks? 

Well, the easiest way is to schedule duct testing with our team. We recommend homeowners have tests for their ducts done every few years to catch developing issues with leaking ducts that often don’t show signs early. If you’ve never done testing for the ducts before, this is a good season to schedule it—a prep step for the winter you may not have realized you needed. 

There are other signs you can watch for that indicate leaking ducts:

  • Low airflow coming through the vents.
  • Uneven heating in the rooms, with hot and cold spots showing up in the rooms more distant along the ventilation system.
  • Dusty and moldy odors from the vents.
  • The heater short-cycling (turning off before completing a full heating cycle).
  • Rattling sounds from the vents. 
  • A steep rise in heating costs that you can’t account for.

Although there are other possible causes for each of these, they still point toward issues that require professional attention. We can find out if you need duct sealing.

Can’t I Seal My Own Ducts?

No—you don’t have the tools and training to locate them, access them, and seal them. Because of the existence of “duct tape,” people make the assumption that sealing duct leaks is a DIY task. It isn’t, and duct tape is misnamed: it is useful for almost everything except ducts. The heat changes in ducts causes the tape to turn brittle and fall off after only a month or so. 

For a thorough job, you’ll need our pros to first test the ducts and determine where the leaks are occurring. We can then access them and use special professional tools to seal the ductwork. These include special resin-based mastic sealant and metallic tapes. Once we finish sealing the ducts, we’ll run a test again to ensure we got the job done. 

If your home had a voice, it would call … First Choice! First Choice Heating & Cooling offers duct sealing and other ductwork services.

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