The quality of the air you breathe impacts your health, and poor indoor air quality (IAQ) can be directly related to your ductwork system. Ducts handle a massive amount of the air each day, and if their integrity is compromised, they can lead to poor indoor air quality.
Leaking ducts lower your IAQ, pulling in air from the areas through which they run. If the ducts run through the attic, basement or a crawl space, you could be breathing the dust, dirt and other particles found in these spaces. Odors or particles from insects or vermin may also circulate through the ducts, contaminating your home’s air.
Unbalanced Supply and Return Ducts
When a supply or return duct has a leak, it alters the air pressure balance. This results in air infiltration from the outdoors through cracks to the exterior.
When you have vented gas appliances inside your home, you may experience backdrafting of carbon monoxide (CO) into the ducts if they have leaks. A gas water heater, clothes dryer and heating system all vent their combustion gases outdoors, but a leaking duct can siphon those gases into your home’s air supply.
Humidity and Mold
Mold growth in the ductwork not only contributes to poor indoor air quality, it also poses a serious problem. Their spores exist nearly everywhere, and when they land in the ductwork, they’ll have ample organic material from the dust particles in the air for food and water from the air.
If your cooling system runs less than 15 minutes at a time, it could be too large for your home. Short running times leave humidity behind because the evaporator coil inside the blower compartment doesn’t have time to get cold enough to condense the humidity. Mold can have serious health consequences for sensitive individuals.
For professional help tackling poor indoor air quality, learn more about Gartner Heating & Cooling’s air quality solutions, or give us a call at 847-965-9645.