Your Guide to Inspecting Your Air Ducts

Inspecting Your Air Ducts

The pandemic has left more homeowners relying on their DIY attitude. Keeping on top of your home’s condition and inspecting your air ducts is one way to ensure your HVAC system stays in good working order.

Why Inspect Your Air Ducts?

You may wonder why you should spend time inspecting your air ducts. But they have a serious impact on your home.

Ductwork harbors mold and mildew and spreads these contaminants throughout your home. This causes considerable discomfort for those with allergies.

Inspecting your air ducts also reveals any infestation. If you have critters living in your attic, checking ductwork will keep you informed.

An inspection will also reveal air leaks, which can cost you money. If your AC isn’t working as well as it should, cold air may be leaking from the ducts.

How to Inspect Your Air Ducts

You’ll need a flashlight, a screwdriver, and some incense or tissue paper. A camera or smartphone will help you document your findings.

1. Turn on your HVAC system and look for dust coming out of vents or registers.

2. Starting at the air handler, feel around the duct connections for airflow. Smoke from incense shows leaks by getting blown away or sucked into the duct.

3. If your ductwork is accessible, such as in the attic or basement, follow the main branches as far as possible. Check connections for leaks with the incense, or use tissue paper, if you prefer.

4. Follow the branch lines to each outlet, feeling for airflow that indicates a leak.

5. Check insulation for gaps or tears. Also, look for mold and water damage. Use a camera or smartphone to document these areas of damage.

6. Now check the ductwork interior: use the screwdriver to remove vents or registers. Then, examine the interior using the flashlight.

7. Look for pest droppings, mold, or other debris.

8. If you have duct board instead of metal, look for water damage or tears. Check for gaps between ductwork sections.

What Did You Learn by Inspecting Your Air Ducts?

After checking the integrity and cleanliness of your ducts, you may wonder what happens next.

Have your ductwork cleaned, if necessary, to extend the life of your air handler.

Have water-damaged duct board or insulation replaced immediately to prevent health hazards from toxic mold.

Leaking ducts cost you money. You can perform a quick-fix yourself using aluminum foil tape to close up any obvious gaps.

Next Steps

Many homeowners have discovered the joy of homecare tasks and working with their hands. But others may not have the time, tools, or skills to perform an effective inspection.

Make an appointment today with the professionals at One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning in Chattanooga. We can inspect, clean, and seal your ductwork to preserve the integrity of your system in even extreme temperatures.