Air Balancing Tips & Tricks

Is your home difficult to keep comfortable in the winter? After double-checking the thermostat settings, you may be unsure of what to do next. Apart from poor insulation in the walls, ceilings, and floors of certain rooms, cold areas could develop if your furnace is having trouble circulating air properly. Make sure your system is balanced correctly with these tips and tricks.

  • Keep all air vents open: Your HVAC system is calibrated to move air throughout the entire house, so closing vents in unused rooms creates added strain. As a rule, keep at least 80% of your vents open at all times. Also, make sure furniture, rugs, and curtains don’t block any registers.
  • Replace the air filter: After months of use, the HVAC air filter becomes clogged with dust, dirt, hair, fibers, and other airborne debris. Change the filter every one to three months to help keep the air flowing as intended and avoid balance issues.
  • Repair the ductwork: Leaky, detached, or otherwise damaged ductwork could result in uneven air distribution. Duct cleaning, sealing, or repair may be needed to restore proper balance.
  • Set the thermostat fan setting to “on”: If a particular room struggles with stagnant air, try changing the thermostat from “auto” to “on.” This leaves the blower running even when the burner has shut off, providing constant airflow to stuffy rooms. Use this as a temporary solution because running the fan continuously increases your energy bills.
  • Adjust the blower fan speed: You may be interested in a high-efficiency media air cleaner for better indoor air quality. The only issue is that tightly woven media filters restrict airflow. To combat this and restore balance, you may need an HVAC technician to boost the blower fan speed.
  • Install extra return vents: Ideally, every major room should have a return register. If your furnace receives all its air from a single return vent, having more installed could improve the air balance throughout your house.
  • Put in a second air handler: Buildings with three or more stories benefit from having two air handlers. The one in the basement can operate in the winter, effectively pushing warm air up to the highest floors, while another one in the attic can run in the summer to circulate cold air more efficiently.
  • Consider your HVAC system’s size: If your furnace is undersized, it may struggle to keep up with demand on the coldest days. Then again, an oversized unit is prone to short cycling, which causes comfort issues and increases energy costs. The next time you replace your furnace, make sure it’s sized properly for the best results.

Implementing these air balancing tips and tricks increases efficiency, improves indoor air quality, and boosts home comfort. If you need help, turn to Hoover Electric. We have over 40 years of experience providing high-quality HVAC services to Troy & Clinton Township area residents. Call us at (586) 756-5676 or contact us online to schedule the services you need.

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