Air Balancing and Air Flow – Why It Matters for Your Health
When your HVAC system is unbalanced, the overall indoor air comfort of your home and the efficiency and operating costs of your system can be affected.
Air balancing ensures that the air-conditioned air is evenly distributed throughout your home and that the return and supply volume is in proper proportion.
Here are some reasons why air balancing and airflow are important for your comfort and health.
Common Poor Airflow Complaints
Homeowners often pay little attention to our HVAC systems—until something goes wrong. Even if something feels off in the comfort levels of your home, you may not know that the airflow in your home could be unbalanced.
One of the most common complaints that are attributed to poor airflow and an unlaced HVAC system is uneven temperatures throughout the home. You know how one room is freezing and the other stifling during the summer? This could be caused by poor airflow and an unbalanced system.
Another factor of poor home airflow is a pressure imbalance that is characterized by whistling noises, drafty spaces, doors shutting on their own when the air turns on, or even doors that are difficult to open.
HVAC Problems That Air Balancing Can Help Diagnose
Our technicians can identify many HVAC issues with air balancing including:
- Damaged or leaking air ducts
- Loose duct joints
- Undersized ducts
- Excessively long ductwork
- Ductwork with sharp turns
An Unbalanced System is Inconsistent
Depending on a particular room’s location to the air conditioner or furnace, certain spaces may receive insufficient cool or warm air depending on the season. Adjusting the thermostat to correct these inconsistencies may cause the HVAC system to run longer cycles and consume more energy all while causing unneeded wear and tear on the entire system.
Your House Can Become Depressurized
A properly balanced HVAC system does not happen by accident. It requires careful air balancing to achieve equal airflow throughout the HVAC system and your home.
- When an HVAC system is properly balanced, the air volume entering and leaving the rooms of your home through air supply ducts will be equal, resulting in neutral air pressure in each room.
- When the supply volume is too high, rooms can become pressurized. In this case, air will be forced out of the house through tiny structural cracks and gaps, wasting heating or cooling energy.
- When the supply volume is too low, the room will become depressurized. The negative pressure in the room will suck outdoor air in through cracks and gaps, making the AC or furnace run longer to compensate. Also, because this unfiltered air also carries with it pollutants and allergens, the indoor air quality of your home can become tainted. Further, a depressurized house is at greater risk of creating a backdraft of dangerous fumes from gas-fired appliances such as the furnace or water heater.
As you can see, an unbalanced HVAC system can cause extended cycles and you guessed it—poor airflow and higher energy costs.
How to Restore Balance
To restore proper air balance to your HVAC system, a service technician from Super Heat & Air will measure the airflow volume of each room and balance the flow with internal dampers and supply ducts, as well as inspecting and correcting any leakage in your home’s air ducts.
Air balancing is meant to maintain slightly positive air pressure in your home to foster optimal comfort in all rooms, enhanced energy efficiency, and healthy air quality.
Solutions that may be implemented to achieve the desired airflow include:
- Adjusting the speed of the blower fan and repositioning dampers
- Installing extra dampers
- Repairing defects, leaky joints, and holes in the ductwork.
- Installing additional return ducts
- Replacing clogged filters; a dirty filter causes an HVAC system to run more often and work harder. Change your filters regularly!
- Testing the air to ensure the right air balance
- Ensuring that electronic devices are far away from the thermostat to prevent auto settings from being thrown off by heat
Restore Balance in Your Home with Super Heat & Air
If you notice poor airflow or an imbalance in the heating or cooling throughout your home, call our pros at Super Heat & Air for a consultation. We will inspect your ductwork, check for any clogged filters, adjust the speed of your fan, and ensure that your home is properly balanced.
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