It used to be that very little “science” went into the ductwork design in a home cooling and heating system. Often, it simply had to accommodate the structure design instead of the equipment and air space. There could be one room with good air flow because it had a direct link from room register to the equipment. The adjoining room, because it was more convenient for the contractor, had ducting that took the “scenic route”: ducts twice as long that curved and twisted and left that room with a bare whisper of air.
Now, technology has replaced guesswork. Ductwork design has to work for the entire system. The influence of high-efficiency heating and cooling equipment has had a major impact on ductwork design. The ducting is the delivery system for energy-efficient equipment. If the design is not right, the equipment cannot perform to its best capacity.
There must be a good balance between incoming and return air registers. If not, the air handler will not recycle air properly and will pull air from outside sources. This lowers the efficiency of the equipment. Also, the best ductwork design gives each room as direct delivery of air as possible. This balances comfort in the entire home. It eliminates cold and hot spots and allows the equipment to work in an even and efficient way.
Ducts must now be sized and configured to match the needs of the home’s occupants and equipment, rather than the design. When new high-efficiency equipment and ductwork design perform together properly, you get the maximum benefit. One produces the best heating and cooling for the lowest cost; the other delivers it at peak efficiency.
Before you upgrade to a high-efficiency HVAC unit, contact Ernst Heating and Cooling. We can check your ducting to see if it is sized and designed for your equipment. If not, we can design and install ducts that will maximize comfort and minimize energy costs. Call in the Metro-East area at (618) 633-2244.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information, click here to download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.