Duct testing is a process that involves sealing an entire ventilation system and then pressurizing it to determine how airtight it is. Professional methods are used to obtain a more accurate analysis, which involves specialized equipment connected to the duct system and air flow measurements recorded to detect any leaks. Service Experts Heating & Air Conditioning can help you repair and seal your air ducts, as well as insulate them for improved comfort and energy efficiency. The most reliable way to assess the tightness of a duct system is the duct fan test (also known as the Duct Blaster test).
This method involves a miniature fan door-like device that is connected to the duct system and then depressurized to measure the amount of air pressure that is leaking from the ducts. Studies have revealed that 80% of new homes have serious issues with the quality of duct sealing. Dirty ducts can be professionally cleaned to remove dirt and debris. According to Krigger and Dorsi, “leaks range from less than 50 cfm25 for a fairly narrow duct system to more than 500 cfm25 for a duct system with a lot of leaks”.
Pressure tray readings don't actually provide measurements of duct leaks, but they do provide a method for comparing the relative permeability of several ducts in the same house. In a typical home, about 20 percent of the air moving through the duct system is lost due to leaks, holes, and poorly connected ducts. This means that air conditioning escapes the duct system before reaching indoor living areas, resulting in wasted energy. A 2001 study found that Massachusetts Energy Code requirements for duct sealing were largely ignored. To ensure your home's ventilation system is properly sealed and functioning optimally, it is important to have it tested by a professional.
The most effective way to test your home's ducts is with a duct fan test. This method involves connecting a miniature fan door-like device to the duct system and then depressurizing it to measure the amount of air pressure that is leaking from the ducts. The results of this test will help you determine if your home's ducts need to be repaired or sealed in order to improve energy efficiency and comfort levels.