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Is It Time to Replace Your Air Ducts?

Signs Air Ducts Need Replacing

Air ducts play a vital role in getting hot and cold air distributed throughout a home. These ducts act like blood vessels, moving and distributing filtered and temperature-controlled air throughout the building. When these break down it can severely impact the comfort and livability of a home. 

Below, readers can learn more about the three main symptoms that indicate it’s time to replace ductwork. 

Old and Battered Ductwork

aging duct tape

When considering whether it's time to replace ducts, one of the first things to do is consider the age of the ductwork. Ducts typically last for 10 to 15 years, but may require replacement sooner if they have been damaged or improperly cared for. While replacing an air duct system is often a very expensive undertaking, it is typically best to replace cheap ducts with higher quality ducts that will last significantly longer. 

While there are other signs that point to a need for duct replacement, one of the easiest is simply inspecting the ducts. This can typically be done in the crawlspace or attic depending on the location of the HVAC system. If there are bent corners, loose joints, or visible gaps it's definitely time to replace ducts. Many joints are sealed with tape which can deteriorate over time allowing debris into the HVAC system.

Suspiciously High Utility Bills

coins close to the house

When the heating or cooling bill suddenly jumps, this often points to a leak in the duct system. Sometimes these leaks can build slowly so there may not be a huge jump in the utility bill, but a slow increase over time. Tracking the average utility bill over months and years can help identify this problem.

These types of leaks can cost a lot of money in the long run and should be fixed as soon as possible. A qualified HVAC professional can run a pressure leak test to see the location and severity of the leaks. If the leaks are small it is sometimes possible to patch or repair it instead of requiring total replacement. 

A good HVAC company will advise homeowners on the different options and whether or not a system can be repaired or requires replacement.

Nasty Indoor Air

man crossing arms

The final telltale sign of a duct system that needs replacement is poor air quality. Leaks in the system allow dust and other contaminants into the system. As ducts are primarily located in attics and crawl spaces, dirt and insulation are the most common debris that leaks into ducts, and hardly something that anyone should be breathing in. These leaks allow them to bypass the filter, allowing allergens and dirt directly into a home. 

This can exacerbate allergies, asthma, and even cause other health problems. Additionally, this debris can damage the heater or AC, and cause it to work harder than necessary. If enough foreign material builds up in the system it can significantly shorten the lifespan of the unit due to motor strain.

About Honest Abe’s Home Services

Honest Abe’s Home Services serves the Osage Beach area with high-quality plumbing and HVAC services. With upfront pricing and 24/7 service, their experienced contractors and technicians provide exceptional customer service and value.