Ducts can fail before HVAC system

It’s not uncommon for ducts to deteriorate and malfunction long before your heating and air conditioning system stops working well.

The results are bad: Higher energy bills, a waste of heated and cooled air, more stress on the system, and a drop off in the quality of your indoor air.

Over time, ducts can get dislodged, develop holes, or lose their connection with joints, seams or air duct seals. These flaws disrupt the flow of air and can create uneven temperatures from room to room.

Squirrels, rats and other pests may infiltrate a home and gnaw at ducts, puncturing them in the process.

Leaky ducts also can create moisture, a breeding ground for spores, bacteria and, worst case scenario, mold.

A typical duct system may start to fail after a decade or so. You can prevent problems and get reassurance by having your ducts checked by a professional every 10 years.

But don’t wait if you hear whistling in the ducts, or smell foul odors or experience high energy bills. These are signs that the ducts already need attention.

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