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The ducts in your home generally have no moving parts and only “support” the system that actually heats or cools your home. But the ductwork is also possibly the largest support of that system as it snakes around throughout the entire structure. Ductwork actually plays a significant role in the success of that whole system.

HVAC experts state that 25% or more of energy is lost because of ductwork. Don’t wait until you discover problems to learn about the need for ductwork services. The service providers with Smart Heating and Air know that ductwork is a critical component in keeping your family comfortable in any weather. 

What does ductwork do?

Short answer – channels or “ducts” pull air into the heating or air conditioning system and then deliver the heated or cooled air back through the ducts to warm or cool your home. 

Common types of rigid ductwork:

  • Sheet metal – made up of steel or aluminum, it is the most durable and least likely to have mold issues
  • Fiberglass lined – common in commercial spaces and resist heat loss and condensation. However, the fiberglass can degrade and release particles
  • Fiberboard – made of compressed resin with glass fibers, it is sealed and provides sound reduction. Possibly lowest cost but can permit growth of mold or bacteria in a humid environment as well as decreased efficiency

When ductwork fails

No matter how well your heating and cooling systems work, poorly constructed ductwork or failure to obtain ductwork services to maintain your ductwork can cause problems that result in air loss and increased energy costs:

  • Incorrect installation
    • wrong size ducts – ducts must match the size of your heating and cooling system
    • ducts not sealed/insulated correctly and/or wrong materials used to tape joints together
    • design not specific to your home – layout, orientation to the sun, usage, etc.
  • Blower test not conducted to ensure air isn’t leaking from ducts
  • Ductwork has not been checked or maintained regularly to prevent issues
  • Ducts are damaged or dirty – resulting in loss of efficiency, allergens dispersed in living spaces

What do they do?

Even though ducts themselves don’t typically contain moving parts, there are a number of supplemental parts that work with the ducts to ensure the system works correctly.

  • The plenum is potentially the most important part of a ductwork system. Consisting of both supply and return plenums, it’s the distribution and collection box for the system
  • Dampers regulate air flow or seal off a duct if smoke or fire is detected 
  • Air handler unit (AHU) is a large metal box that houses a blower, dampers, and other essential components
  • Duct fittings equalize the pressure and balance the airflow
  • Vents distribute warmed or cooled air into living spaces

These things all work in conjunction with your ductwork to ensure that the whole system produces the desired result – warmed or cooled air that is clean, reliable, and efficient. The best way to ensure that is use ductwork services to include a check-up of your ductwork along with yearly maintenance of your heating or cooling system. 

The future

There’s a hot (or “cool”) new thing in the heating and air conditioning world that provides a great opportunity to try something different, particularly in an addition, single area, or a new build. 

Ductless air conditioners or heat pumps are an interesting alternative to traditional ductwork. They operate on a split-system concept to cool or warm different zones in your home. They’re highly efficient, provide a consistent temperature, and have less air leakage and don’t experience the security issues of a window-mounted unit. 

Ductless systems are quiet, highly efficient and provide clean, breathable air. The current cost of installation is probably the biggest obstacle to choosing a whole-house system but hopefully the cost will come down as they become more popular. 

Regardless of your current system or the system you’d like to have, the best thing homeowners can do to achieve efficient operations is to have regular maintenance performed to keep your system running smoothly and reduce repairs. Partnering with experienced pros who provide ductwork services will ensure that you understand all of the options best suited to your home and your family’s needs.

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Every Smart Heating & Air Conditioning across the nation is owned and operated by a local team of HVAC professionals. This means that you’ll be receiving help from a team of HVAC professionals who are familiar with the unique climate needs of your area.

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If you’re in need of HVAC repair, Smart Heating and Air has the experience you can count on for quality maintenance, repair, and replacement services. We proudly serve residents across the country and are available 24/7 for emergency services.


Maintaining efficient systems helps lower the cost of facility and equipment expenses. At Smart Heating and Air, we take care of all of your heating and cooling repair, maintenance, and installation needs to keep your business running smoothly.

Smart Heating and Air service providers are trained to work on any brand or type of air conditioner, our technicians will visit your home right away and inspect the system to find the source of the problem. If you notice a drop-off in efficiency, an increase in the cost of your electricity each month or that your home simply is not staying as cool as it once did, call us right away for AC repair nationwide. Whether you’re thinking about replacing or upgrading your current air conditioner or are in need of an air conditioning repair call Smart Heating & Air. If you need a new packaged central air conditioner or if you would like to know more about air conditioning, give our local air conditioning experts a call. We can help you choose the right air conditioner for your home and then install it for you, so you can rely on it for many years to come. We are also available for annual AC tune-ups and maintenance. We have been working with families and businesses nationwide to keep their homes comfortable and their bills low. We can do the same for you.