What are Air Ducts and How Do They Affect Airflow?

What are Air Ducts and How Do They Affect Airflow?

Your HVAC system is much more than the bulky furnace in the basement or the air conditioning unit sitting outside the home. For instance, what about the channels connecting the furnace or air conditioner to the vents located all over your home?

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The channels are known as air ducts, and they play an integral role in the overall functioning of the HVAC system. Here’s everything you should know about ducts and their impact on airflow-

What are Air Ducts?

As mentioned above, air ducts are channels or conduits responsible for the passage of cold or warm air to cool, heat, or ventilate every room. The ducts are connected to the heating or cooling system, which filters and then cools or heats the air before supplying it to the duct.

The air ducts are vital to the overall functioning of the HVAC system as they ensure thermal protection and help maintain air quality inside your home.

What are the Different Types of Air Ducts?

Not every type of air duct is ideal for every home. Thus, it is essential to understand their types. Air ducts can be divided into two categories- flexible and rigid.

Rigid Air Ducts

Rigid ducts are made from many different materials and have a rectangular or cylindrical shape. They’re reliable, enduring, and often insulated. Some of the most common rigid duct materials are sheet metal, fiberboard, and fiberglass-lined.

How Does Air Flow in Duct Systems?

Homes are equipped with a forced ducting system. Think of it as a cycle where the negative pressure of the air ducts sucks the air and passes it through the filter. Now that the air is clean, it is cooled or heated and sent to all the different parts of the home. The cool or warm air remains in the room before getting cycled again.

The duct system has return ducts and supply ducts. Here’s how they support the airflow-

Return Ducts

Return ducts are responsible for pulling air from living spaces and sending it to the furnace or air conditioner. The return duct vents are known as return grilles. The duct can also features a filter either on the grille or further inside the duct. Typically, you’ll find the air filter near the furnace.

Supply Ducts

Supply ducts perform the role of supplying cool or warm air inside the house. They generally feature dampers, known as registers, for controlling airflow. The registers are commonly installed near doors or windows to effectively minimize cold or heat loss. If it is a large room, there can also be two registers for even air distribution.

Always Consider Professional Assistance When Dealing with Air Duct Problems

While you now have some basic information about air ducts, their functioning, types, and how they affect airflow, you’re not a professional.

In case of any issues like cold and hot spots, reduced airflow from vents, loud noise, reduced air quality, or high utility bills, ensure that you always call a professional HVAC technician. Beeson Mechanical Service can be reached at 317-535-9338.

Call your local HVAC technician today to learn more about energy audits and how you can save money on your gas bills.