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Cool Touch Air Conditioning and Heating Blog

Air Duct Leaks – Is There A Leak Test For My Home?

How can I find out if my duct system is leaky?

So how do you know if your duct system has leakage?  If your home seems dusty, or has dust around registers, there may be leakage.  If you have rooms that are too hot or too cold in comparison to the rest of the home, you may have duct leakage.  The best way to determine if a duct system has leakage is by performing a duct leak test on the home.  First, one of our home comfort specialists will take measurements of your home and system, and visually inspect the ductwork for any problems.  We then install an infiltrometer into an outside door on the home.  The infiltrometer is basically a giant fan that will suck the inside air from the home and blow it outside, causing a vacuum in the home.  While the home is in a vacuum, our home comfort specialist will test each supply register and return grill for any air leakage using special tools.  After getting the needed measurements, our specialist will check the shell of the home for any leakage that could have a negative effect on the system.  Once he has completed his inspection, he uses advanced computer software to calculate how much air is being lost from the duct system, and determine the overall effect it is having on the efficiency of the unit.  Our specialist will then explain the situation and give you options on how to solve the issues. The cost for Cool Touch to perform a duct leak test is just $99.00 per system, and usually takes about 2-3 hours to perform the test.

What Causes a Leaky Duct System?

In many cases the duct system is leaky because it was never sealed when the home was built.  It wasn’t code to seal ductwork until recently, and most contractors didn’t fully understand the effect that a leaky duct system had on the unit.  There are also many duct systems that were sealed using inferior products such as duct tape.  The brutal Arizona summers tend to deteriorate many products that contractors use to seal ductwork, and the ducts separate from the seal or the product falls off of the connections.  Even new homes will occasionally have severe leakage, depending on the materials used by the contractor who installed the duct system.  It is important to use the proper materials when sealing the duct system, because of the heat created in the attic.  Many contractors today will use a sealer that is not designed for extreme temperatures in order to save money.  This allows the contractor to pass the code requirements when the job is inspected, but the seal cracks and separates after being exposed to the extreme heat during the first summer.

It is actually somewhat rare to find a duct system that is leaking because of disconnected ducts or crushed and torn ductwork.  In those cases, it’s usually because someone was in the attic (like a cable guy or phone repair tech) and accidentally caused the damage.  We usually find that leaky duct systems don’t have one certain spot where there is excessive leakage.  It’s usually several very small leaks throughout the entire system that gradually add up to become the equivalent of a large hole.  In most cases, the existing ductwork is still in good condition, and the leaks in the duct system can be repaired without replacing the ductwork.

Find out if your home has air duct leaks

Contact Cool Touch today or contact our office team at (623) 584-3762. Cool Touch, an Arizona LLC serves the entire state of Arizona for residential HVAC service and commercial HVAC service, repairs, replacements, installations and regular maintenance. We also offer great deals on new HVAC unit sales, as an Authorized Dealer for Amana.  Need a new air conditioner?  Then our deals are the best in the west! A family owned business with an excellent reputation in business since the 2002 located in the Phoenix West Valley city of Peoria Arizona. Our service area extends all over the Phoenix Valley including Scottsdale, North Phoenix, Surprise, Buckeye, Goodyear, Tolleson, Laveen, Avondale, Estrella Mountain, Verrado, Vistancia, Peoria, Sun City, Sun City West, Sun City Festival, Sun City Grand, Glendale, Deer Valley, Arrowhead, Marley Park, and many more.  For more information or to schedule an appointment —  contact us, visit our website or call us at (623) 584-3762.

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