When Deciding on A/C Repair or Replacement, Consider Ducts and Insulation

June 11, 2014
Ross and Witmer

When your air conditioner begins to show signs of age and wear, you’ll be faced with the decision to either repair or replace the system. While making your decision on A/C repair or replacement, take into consideration some other elements of HVAC efficiency that will affect the performance of a new or repaired system.

Ductwork Concerns

The ductwork in your HVAC system is the distribution pathway for the cool air your A/C produces. When conditioned air escapes the ductwork, you’ve not only lost air you’ve already paid to cool, you have to pay to cool additional air to make up for the loss. Excessive air loss from the ducts also means that conditioned air isn’t reaching your living spaces, which results in inconsistent cooling and an uncomfortable indoor environment.

To improve the performance of either a new or repaired air conditioner:

  • Make sure all ductwork sections fit together securely and are sealed at each connection with proper material, such as metal tape or mastic sealant.
  • Ensure connections at supply vents and return registers are tight and sealed.
  • Insulate the ductwork with blanket insulation or rigid fiber board to prevent energy loss through the material of the ducts themselves.

Insulation Concerns

The amount of insulation in your home also will affect how well your A/C performs. Insulation restricts the flow of heat, which keeps your home cooler in the summer. To evaluate your insulation, you can:

  • Conduct a visual inspection of insulated spaces such as wall cavities, roofs and ceilings to see how much insulation is present.
  • Have a professional energy audit performed to pinpoint areas of heat flow into or out of your home. These are the areas that need new or additional insulation.
  • Seal air leaks in your home’s structure that can allow cold air out and warm air in. Air sealing and insulation go hand in hand for proper building weatherization.

With nearly 70 years of professional HVAC experience, Ross & Witmer continues to provide expert heating and cooling services to customers in Charlotte and the surrounding North Carolina communities. Contact us today for more information on A/C repair or replacement, and the role ductwork and insulation play in ensuring HVAC efficiency.

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