With summer right around the corner, you will want to ensure that your air conditioner is operating at peak efficiency. Unfortunately, air duct leaks are a common issue that can not only make it harder for your HVAC system to keep you and your family comfortable but can also result in significant increases in the cost of cooling your home. It would be best if you were looking for signs of a leak in your home’s ductwork so you can have it repaired or replaced so you don’t encounter issues with your AC in the heat of summer when you need it most. To help you spot any potential problems as early as possible, keep reading for a look at the most common signs that your home’s air ducts leak.
You Can’t Get Comfortable
A clear sign that something is wrong with your HVAC system is if you can’t seem to get comfy no matter how low you set your thermostat. If your air conditioner runs for hours on end and doesn’t seem to cool down your home, there’s likely a problem in your system. However, if your air conditioner was recently installed or you had your system recently inspected and repaired recently, this didn’t seem to fix the problem; then your ductwork may be to blame. If the air ducts in your home are outdated, there could be leaks in your system, and cold air could be unable to reach your vents, no matter how hard your system works. Regardless of whether the ductwork is to blame, if your air conditioner cannot cool your home, you should have it inspected by an experienced HVAC technician.
Certain Rooms Never Cool Down
Another clear sign of problems with your HVAC system is if your home seems to cool unevenly. The fact is that when your air conditioner is running correctly, it should distribute cold air evenly throughout your home. If you notice when moving from one room to the next that certain rooms in your home are significantly hotter than the rest, this may indicate that you leak somewhere in your air ducts.
If there’s a leak in your HVAC system, air could be escaping into your walls, attic, or crawlspace, leaving no cool air left for rooms in your home that are further away from your air conditioner. If you notice that your system is heating unevenly, you will want to have your ductwork inspected as soon as possible.
Your Energy Bills Have Gone Up
As your air conditioner ages, it will lose efficiency, and you will likely notice an increase in the cost of cooling your home. However, if you see a sudden and dramatic increase in your air conditioning bill, this may be a sign that you have leaked into your HVAC system. If there is a leak in your ductwork, your air conditioner will have to work significantly harder to maintain a comfortable temperature in your home. Some estimates suggest that leaky ductwork could increase the cost of cooling your home by as much as 35%. If the cost of cooling your home has increased significantly compared to previous years, you will want to have your HVAC system inspected. If your ductwork isn’t to blame, you may have a faulty component in your air conditioner or some other fault in your system that is causing your air conditioner to malfunction and work harder than usual. Regardless, you will want to address this issue before the heat of summer arrives.
Your AC Makes Your Home Dusty
As you are likely all too aware, fighting dust is a constant struggle in most homes. The average home collects upwards of 40 pounds of dust each year. However, while some dust is typical, you may have cause for concern if you notice extra dust in your home when you run your HVAC system, as this likely indicates a leak somewhere in your ductwork. Not only does a leak allow air to escape your air ducts, but it also allows dust and other debris to enter your ductwork. Then, when you run your air conditioner, this dust, dirt, and other debris will spread throughout your home, making it dirtier than usual. Not only can this be a pain to clean, but it can also harm your and your family’s health by causing respiratory problems. If your home is significantly dustier after running your air conditioner, you should have your HVAC system inspected.
Low Air Flow
Another common sign that your air ducts are leaking is if your air conditioner does not seem to produce as much air as usual. If you have leaky ductwork, air will escape from these leaks instead of reaching your vents. If you feel like your air conditioner has low airflow or notice specific vents are producing less air than others, you likely have a leak somewhere in your ductwork. An experienced HVAC technician can inspect your system and determine if a leak or other type of issue is causing your airflow problems.
As a homeowner, it’s your responsibility to ensure that your HVAC system is running correctly and will be able to keep you and your family comfortable, safe, healthy, and productive. If you have been encountering AC problems and suspect your ductwork is leaking, you should have your system inspected before our hot, humid summer arrives. Even if your HVAC system does not appear to show signs of issues, having your system inspected before summer can help ensure your system runs as efficiently as possible.
Feel free to contact us to learn more about the signs indicating that you may have leaky ductwork and schedule an appointment for your annual HVAC preventative maintenance.