How Maximum Energy Efficiency Relies On Optimal Home Duct Layout

Home ownership comes with a lot of concerns. Two important issues are home comfort and energy efficiency. 

As efficiency rises, heating bills fall. In that regard, have you thought about your duct system? Is it helping your furnace do its job or hindering it? Maximum furnace efficiency — and energy efficiency, along with it — relies on optimal duct layout. So what is optimal duct layout? Here are the basics:

  • Your ductwork should run through conditioned spaces. Ductwork that runs through unconditioned attics and crawl spaces can easily lose heat and waste your energy dollars.
  • Your supply ducts should be as short and straight as possible. Short runs have minimal connections, which, by their nature, are frequent sources of air loss. Short runs with no twists and turns also optimize air velocity.
  • Theoretically, every room in your home should have an air return. If you have a room that lacks a return register, keep the door open as much as possible, or consider installing a through-the-wall fan, which facilitates air return. Alternatively, talk with your HVAC-system contractor about having a central air return in a location such as a hallway. This is especially effective for rooms on a second floor.

You can do your part to optimize duct efficiency by making sure your ducts are sealed and insulated. Check your ducts for loose connections, rips, holes and dents. Use mastic and mesh — not duct tape — to seal the leaks. Although this is a relatively easy weekend job, you might want to call your HVAC contractor for a systematic approach. Your contractor can replace crushed and dented sections, do a thorough job of sealing and insulating the ducts and reach spots that you might not be able to access yourself.

Cincinnati-area homeowners can depend on Apollo Home Heating, Cooling & Plumbing for expert ductwork attention. We’ve been in the home-comfort business since 1910, and we’re happy to help you optimize your energy efficiency — whether you’re sealing your ducts, buying a new water heater, replacing your furnace or just trying to gather information. Give us a call.

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"Ernie & Mike did a superb job on my new furnace and A/C installation. Despite having more than a day’s work to do, they came in and stayed until the job was done. They were organized, efficient, and protected the rest of the house well. Got both furnace and A/C installed the same day. Ernie was courteous, informative, and clearly knew his job better than anyone I’ve encountered before. The units look so good guests now get The Tour of our new system. Apollo is clearly not a fly-by-night company. I would recommend them to anyone in need of a new furnace and/or A/C."
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"We scheduled an estimate AND a tune-up. We knew something was wrong with our furnace, but hoped we could make it through the rest of the season. Upon telling Bill what our furnace was doing, he warned us immediately what the possible outcome was going to be; a cracked heat exchanger. He watched the flames roll backward, tested carbon monoxide levels, which were so high they meter’s last reading was 5,600 before saying “high”. He immediately shut it down, tagged it, and explained that with levels that high and children in our home he wanted off right away. He continued his inspection and showed us via a camera that not only was it cracked in multiple places, but had holes all over it. He gave us a few options for repairing it; his knowledge as well as genuine concern was beneficial and refreshing. Luckily we also scheduled an estimator, Micah, to come too and we were able to get costs between repairing and replacing (with several options). We decided to replace with a much higher efficiency furnace and one sized properly to our home. Hands down, not only did they both provide us great service and knowledge, but without sounding dramatic, they may have saved our lives. This was our first time calling Apollo, but it won’t be our last."
- Sarah B.
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