Not everyone on earth is an air duct expert–meaning that it can be rather challenging to know exactly when you need to look into repair services.

I mean, how are you meant to know what’s outside of normal function? You almost certainly have better things to do during the day than carefully examine your air duct system (don’t worry, nobody will ask you to do that).

But, despite that, it’s nonetheless important to know when you need to call in backup to ensure you aren’t left without a functioning system for a bit. Plus, if you can catch a small issue early on and make the repair, you’ll likely save yourself from having to write a larger check later on.

So, to help you and the future versions of yourself, we’ll be explaining some easy-to-pick-on things to keep an eye out for. If you’re ready for that, continue reading!

What to look and listen for

That’s right if you want to have the best chance of spotting an issue, your best bet is to keep your eyes and ears open for any disturbances in the force–sort of speak.

Speaking of ears,

Keep them focused on listening for a noisy HVAC system

One could say that HVAC systems have always caused a stir.

However, times have changed, and technology has gotten less disruptive. In other words, you can definitely expect some noise from an HVAC system, but it should never be an annoying amount of noise.

If you can’t tune out a rattling sound or a vibration that the ductwork is sending through your home, then you may need to look into it and ensure that it’s nothing beyond annoying.

Two quick notes: 1) Your ducts are usually joined together using plastic or fiberglass, but if those joints get damaged or knocked loose, they could be the source of that rattling or other whistling sounds. 2) Loud noises when air is circulating through the system could elude to holes in the ductwork, which can only get worse if left alone.

Aside from your eyes and ears, you can also use your wallet to keep tabs on the duct system.

High energy bills

Let me first say that, yes, all ductwork will allow some amount of air exscape. Unfortunately, no system is that good (yet); however, if your duct system allows too much air to exscape– usually more than 20 percent– that could quickly be reflected on your bill.

There’s usually one reason for that, and it’s really simple. You see, as you turn on your air conditioner, you’ll set your preferred temperature, and the system will work until it can reach it, correct?

Well, now say that there are holes in the ductwork. That means there’s air escaping and not influencing the temperature of your home, which results in your system working harder to reach the temperature you set and only using more energy– costing you more money.

If you’re experiencing higher than normal energy bills and you haven’t changed your habits or bought some new electronics, then a dying HVAC system may be your culprit.

Temperature variations in the home

What does that mean? Let me explain, and first say that no, I’m not referring to rooms cooling down or heating up normally.

Instead, I’m actually referring to a room or two that may feel disproportionately colder or hotter than it really should be– mainly in contradiction to the rest of the house.

If you’re experiencing that phenomenon, it could be the result of faulty ductwork in your home failing to send the right amount of air into a room. Luckily, there’s a better way to inspect this than just using your own sense.

Start by taking an indoor thermometer in a room that you think is normal, and then bring it into the room that is experiencing temperature fluctuations.

A lot of dust in your home

There will always be dust in a home, that’s just a fact, and it’s certainly nothing to be concerned about. However, faulty ductwork could result in the build-up of too much dust, which does carry a fair amount of worry with it.

An easy way to tell if this is happening is to pay attention to your body and home. If you notice that you’re sneezing a bit more and your home is a good bit dustier than average, you could have a problem on your hands.

The odor of mildew or mold

The smell of mildew and mold can make your entire home feel like a dungeon instead of the welcoming place it should be.

Both mold and mildew are usually caused by uneven temperatures inside and outside of the air duct– which can easily happen if your ducts aren’t insulated properly, or some joints are faulty. In either case, it’s definitely best to investigate to prevent you or your loved ones from breathing that contaminated air.

In conclusion, be aware…

If you take all of these points into consideration, and you keep your eyes, nose and ears alert, as I said, you’ll definitely be able to spot when the ductwork is in need of replacement. The only thing left after you notice the problem is to get some assistance!

While you can certainly notice an HVAC system in need of replacement, actually replacing it is a whole other story, that’s for sure. So, if I can give you my final piece of advice, don’t try to replace or repair it alone. After all, we’re talking about the quality of the air that you breathe day in and day out.

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