From time to time, if you live in a home of some type you need to fix something. Just like cars, stuff wears out, breaks or there is something better. My dad always said that if a mechanic was installing a shiny new part, they were happy. They hated having to clean up and reuse old parts – I have to agree as I feel the same. Let me open that box with the new speed part and I am all giggles but if I have to clean some old piece of grunge – ugh – let me out of here.
So back to the house stuff. About 6-7 years back I spent a Saturday in the attic going over all of the connections that we have for the HVAC system. My system uses a combination of insulated tin box and flex ducting to get air to and from the various rooms in the house. What I discovered then was that there was a high number of leaks in our air system and of course whether you’re heating the air or cooling it, anything lost is wasted money. After that day, I felt fairly confident that I had a pretty tight package and any air leakage was at the bare minimum.
What happened recently though is that we have had some issues heating one area of the house and another area has been getting too warm. Main problem was one of the air door dampers was blocked open due to a bad motor – that was discovered last summer but we had not repaired it at that time. After the normal research, calling around and etc I ordered a replacement motor and installed it. The installation itself wasn’t bad at all but what irritated me was the amount of air that I losing in the duct system. Apparently several things had happened, one we had a new system installed about 4 years ago to replace our old unit. And to look at from the side that you could see, everything looked great. But it was the other side of it, one that I admit is difficult to get to that was downright wrong! They had simply pushed the various parts of the air handler together and didn’t even bother to seal it to the main ducts. I couldn’t believe it, I had air just pouring out and to make it worse it appears that when we told about the air door problem, the duct was cut open – I guess to view the position of the damper and left open. Between the two, its a wonder we could cool or heat the house! But I can tell you that the attic space must have been pretty nice.
So just a note, the next time you have work like this done take the time to inspect the work. You don’t have to be a professional to feel air leaks, you hands and fingers will tell you what you need to know. And if you haven’t checked out your duct work lately, it might be something you want to look at for leaks. It could save you some money and increase your comfort.