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How Can I Tell If My Air Ducts Are Leaking?

You could be losing up to $200 a year due to air duct leaks. It’s no wonder that duct leaks are called “one of the top three energy wasters in most homes,” by Green Building Advisor.

But how do you know if your air ducts are leaking? (Spoiler: Most homes have leaky air ducts).

The four typical signs of leaky air ducts include:

We’ll dive into more details to help you determine if your air ducts are leaking and what you should do about it.

Want professional help to determine if your air ducts need to be sealed? We offer high-quality, professional customer service and guarantee that the job will be done right the first time.

Sign #1: High utility bills/energy inefficiency

If you have leaky air ducts, you’ll have higher monthly energy bills because your HVAC equipment will have to work longer and harder to heat or cool your home.

Air duct leakage wastes money in two ways:

  • It allows the conditioned air to leak out of supply ducts (ducts that carry air into conditioned rooms).
  • It allows unconditioned air to leak into return ducts (ducts that suck in air from your home).

According to Energy Star, leaky ducts can reduce your HVAC equipment’s efficiency by as much as 20%. So, if your monthly energy bills are way higher than you anticipated, air duct leakage could be the cause.

Having your air ducts sealed by an HVAC service technician can help lower your energy bills by ensuring that your heating and cooling systems are running efficiently. Not to mention, the cost of the duct sealing service often pays for itself in energy savings alone.

Sign #2: Uneven temperature spots

Holes, gaps or cracks in your ductwork allow warm or cool air to escape into your attic, crawl space or walls before it can get to the various rooms within your home.

If you notice that certain rooms in your home are always too cold or too hot, that’s a good sign your duct system is not properly sealed. You might even be able to feel weaker airflow coming out of some vents.

Having your ductwork professionally sealed by an HVAC service technician will ensure that you maintain a more comfortable and balanced temperature throughout your home—even during the most unforgiving Arizona summer months.

Sign #3: Poor indoor air quality

Leaky ductwork can also decrease the air quality in your home because it contributes to several issues, including:

  • Frequent allergy and asthma flare-ups: Holes or cracks in your ductwork can exacerbate health problems like asthma or allergies by allowing insulation particles, dust and chemical fumes to enter your home’s duct system.
  • Backdrafting: According to the EPA, when your return ducts leak air, it depressurizes your home, meaning that your home starts pulling in outdoor air—sometimes through your chimney and flue pipes. This brings harmful combustion gases (like poisonous carbon monoxide) into your home.
  • High humidity: If return ducts in your attic or crawl space are pulling in humid, dirty air, the extra humidity can leave you feeling uncomfortable, which can aggravate any sleeping problems your household may have.

Hiring an HVAC service technician to seal your air ducts will improve indoor air quality by preventing back-drafting and keeping pollutants from entering your air ducts and circulating throughout your home.

Sign #4: Excessive dust and debris in your house

Duct leaks that are located in unconditioned areas like attics or crawl spaces pull in tons of dust and distribute it into your home.

Unfortunately, if this is the case, no amount of dusting, vacuuming or cleaning will keep your home dust-free. Your HVAC system will just keep blowing out dust every time it turns on.

If the culprit is leaky ductwork, the best way to eliminate excessive amounts of dust in your home is to make sure your air ducts are properly sealed by an HVAC service technician.

Think your air ducts might be leaking? Contact the pros at George Brazil.

If you recognize the signs of leaky air ducts listed above, contact us and we’ll take a look at your ductwork. At George Brazil, we promise 5-star customer service and a quality guarantee to back our duct sealing services.