How Can Duct Replacement Help My HVAC System?

April 20, 2020

When contemplating the weak points of their HVAC systems, many home and business owners focus almost exclusively on the furnace or air conditioner itself. Of course, installing a more efficient heater or air conditioner can improve the comfort of your space. However, that is not the entire picture. Many people forget to consider their ductwork.

The ducts of an HVAC system are the pathways that transmit the heated or cooled air to where it belongs. Thus, their importance cannot be overstated. Duct technology has come a long way since the early days of HVAC, and duct replacement can net significant benefits to your Seattle or Tacoma home or business. Here are just a few of the ways that Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning can help with your duct replacement.

More Direct Pathways

To many people, installing ductwork may seem like a simple matter of connecting various points of a house or business via tubes. While this is fundamentally correct, doing so efficiently and effectively is not a simple task. Older HVAC systems are often composed of a maze of poorly laid out ducts. Even poorly designed modern homes can suffer from bad duct planning. An inefficient duct layout can hamper the efficiency of a home and require significantly more energy to heat or cool. But the issue is not just the expense inherent in running an inefficient system.

A poorly designed duct system can cause a house to be regulated unevenly. Most buildings only have one or two thermostats. Thus, the system must be designed in such a way that each room remains roughly equal to each other. In older HVAC systems, the rooms closer to the furnace or air conditioning unit are often much warmer or colder than outlying rooms. Modern designs solve this problem by using balancing pipes, air throttling, and temperature mapping. The technicians at Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning are skilled in replacing HVAC ducts, which can ensure that each room is equally comfortable.

Higher Insulation Factor

In the quest to make a home more efficient, the first thought should be insulation. However, the process of insulating a home is normally limited to installing more material in the walls or attic, or perhaps installing more efficient windows. An often-overlooked method to increase the efficiency of a home is to replace the ductwork for the HVAC system. Older ducting was simply made of tin with very thin walls. Thus, even a powerful furnace or air conditioning system may struggle to regulate the temperature of the home due to the thermal loss through the ducting. Think about the difference between a thermos and a paper cup. One will keep your coffee warm a lot longer.

Ducting is no different. Modern ducts are optimized to decrease thermal loss. Thus, all of the energy that your HVAC system consumes will be used to heat or cool the rooms, rather than being lost to the atmosphere. While some modern ducting is still simply bare metal, the walls and joints of the ducts themselves are much more advanced. Regardless of the location of the ducting, these modern ducts can make a huge impact on the efficiency of a system. Yet, the largest gains are seen in replacing exposed ducts.

It’s common for ducting to be run through an uninsulated attic or basement. By forcing the air to travel across a very hot or cold area, the HVAC system is forced to work much harder to compensate. This not only costs more money, but it can shorten the life of the system. Modern ducting is often treated with an insulating layer whenever the ducting goes through an exposed area. Thus, the efficiency of the system is vastly improved.

Safer Materials

Efficiency and comfort aren’t the only reasons for replacing your HVAC ducts, safety is an important factor as well. The HVAC systems in many buildings are decades old. Thus, the safety standards existing during their installation may have been significantly lower than modern codes. It’s not uncommon for older HVAC systems to have lead, asbestos, or any other forms of dangerous coatings and chemicals. When the air blows through these ducts, the contaminates can easily be introduced into the air you breathe.

Without a complete inspection of a ducting system, it can be almost impossible to ascertain any dangers that may be lurking. Given the fact that new ductwork improves the efficiency and efficacy of HVAC systems, the added safety benefit is just another motivation to make the change.

Cleaner Ducts

In addition to dangerous chemicals, older duct systems can get extremely dirty. After decades of unfiltered airflow, it’s common for HVAC ducts to accumulate dust, dirt, hair, and even mold. Due to the turbulence of the air blowing through the system, it’s easy for these contaminates to mix with the air you breathe. Although this can impact the health and wellness of anyone, having clean ducting is especially important for those with existing health issues.

Whether you deal with simple allergies or a compromised immune system, it’s crucial to ensure that the air you breathe is as clean as possible. As compared to the damp and musty HVAC ducting of yesteryear, modern systems are specifically designed to provide clean and dry air for years to come.

Localized Temperature Control

Older HVAC systems were not nuanced devices. They could make a building warmer or colder, but that was about the extent of their abilities. In contrast, modern systems are significantly more sophisticated. A properly designed HVAC system can individually regulate rooms of a building to maximize the efficiency and comfort of the occupants. However, this often requires a redesign of the ducting. Because older systems were designed to heat or cool a building uniformly, the ducting was inter-connected with no ability to control specific zones.

However, by replacing the ductwork with a modern system, you’ll be able to control the temperature of specific rooms. This offers many advantages. If different people in your home prefer to sleep at different temperatures, there will no longer be conflict. Or if you only use certain rooms occasionally, you’ll no longer have to pay for the heating and cooling of empty space. This is yet one more way that replacing your HVAC ducting can make for a more efficient and comfortable environment.

Call on the Pros

Despite the “out-of-sight, out-of-mind” status of HVAC ducting, it’s the key to providing the most efficient and healthy environment. When servicing or replacing an HVAC system, you must pay attention to your ducting. Even the most modern and efficient systems can be choked by using outdated or poorly designed ducting.

If you are looking to update your HVAC system or find out why it’s not performing to your standards, give the experts at Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning a call. We can help you reach the most economical and beneficial solution to replacing your HVAC ducting. Or, if you need any other service to your HVAC, water heater, or electrical system, the helpful experts at Brennan Heating & Air Conditioning will be thrilled to help with those needs as well. Contact us today. Our team serves Seattle, Lynnwood and the surrounding areas.

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