Why Replace Your Ductwork?
Entirely replacing your ductwork system is admittedly pricey and a job of work for our professionals at Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD.. However, there will come a time when your ductwork system does need to be replaced with a newer and more energy-efficient system. Here are some reasons to replace it:
- Ductwork over 15 years old
- Thermal heaving
- Rust damage
- New HVAC system
- Too many twists and turns
Signs that it might be time to replace your ductwork include lots of dust in your home, a mildewy smell coming out of the ducts due to condensation and fluctuating temperatures from one room to the next. Also, the HVAC system may be unusually rackety where it used to run quietly. This is often because the ducts have started to sag or bend over time.
Properly installed and maintained ductwork can last as long as 25 years, but after about 15 years it starts to break down a bit. This makes it more and more inefficient, which costs you more and more money.
Ductwork that’s been in the job for 15 years or more is also subject to thermal heaving. This is very much like what happens to a stone or concrete pavement. The hot weather causes it to expand, and the cold weather causes it to contact and heave, which can cause it to crack and spall. In the case of ductwork, the stresses of conveying warm air during the winter and cool air during the summer can make the seams start to leak. If your ductwork has been badly installed, the seams may fall apart completely. This not only causes you to lose cool air in the summer and warm air in the winter but have the bad air from your unfinished basement or crawlspace enter a room.
If your ductwork is not insulated and made of metal, condensation can form on it in the summer and form rust. Over time, rust eats into the metal. This also causes expensive leaks.
Another very good reason to get new ductwork is that you are buying an entirely new HVAC system. If you are considering this, our Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD. HVAC technicians will first perform something called the Manual J and Manual D calculations. The Manual J calculations figure out each room’s heat gain and loss, which will tell us how much air conditioning you’ll need. When we do the Manual D calculations, we will figure out the design of the ductwork and determine its air flow requirements and what sort of forces can hinder it. These calculations help prevent us from installing ductwork that is too large for your house. It saves you money and prevents your HVAC system from being overly stressed.
There’s also the problem of your ductwork having too many twists and turns for really good airflow. Some turns are inevitable as the ducts branch off from the main trunk to serve the room, but some ductwork systems too often resemble bowls of cooked pasta to be really efficient.
Benefits of New Ductwork
The benefits of installing a new ductwork system include:
- Improved energy efficiency
- Lower bills
- Better air quality
- Stabilized temperature
- Longer life for HVAC system
After you install your new ductwork you’ll quickly see a decrease in your energy bills, as conditioned air is no longer escaping through leaks, and the ducts are operating with peak efficiency. Because the ducts are clean and have no leaks, they also won’t pick up pollutants such as pollen, pet dander, mold spores or dust and spray them into the rooms you’re in.
When you replace your ductwork you’ll also notice that when you set your thermostat to a certain temperature your rooms achieve that temperature and maintain it until you change it. This is true even if you have a zoned system, and you set one room to one temperature and do not run the heating or air conditioning in another room at all. Your new ductwork will almost certainly be quieter than your old one, and thanks to Manuals J and D, it will be exactly the right size for your home.
If you think it’s time to replace your ductwork, our HVAC professionals at Nacogdoches Sheet Metal, Plumbing & Air Conditioning, LTD. stand ready to assist. We will make sure to install a system that is quiet, energy-efficient, steady and contributes to your HVAC system having a long working life.