When should I replace my ductwork?
If you’re having problems with air quality or your utility bills seem to be climbing for no reason, you may have a problem with your ductwork, and you may wonder, “Can HVAC ducts be replaced?” The simple answer is, “Yes.” The next question you may have is, “When should they be replaced?” When it comes to HVAC duct replacement, age and wear are the primary reasons to put in new ductwork.
How long does HVAC ductwork last? You may wonder, “Should ductwork be replaced after 20 years?” While it’s common to say ductwork lasts 10 to 15 years, some types of ductwork may last longer. Metal ductwork, for instance, can last much longer than 15 or even 20 years, while flexible ductwork has a varied lifespan.
While ductwork can last a long time under ideal conditions, even metal ductwork is subject to wear as it ages. Metal ductwork expands and contracts with temperature changes, which over time can create gaps and leaks. The same is true for flexible ductwork. Over time it can develop leaks. These gaps and leaks will reduce airflow and energy efficiency. The older the ductwork, the more likely you’ll have problems with airflow, which will begin to affect your HVAC system overall, causing it to work harder to heat or cool your home. This may lead to costly repairs and you’ll probably see your energy bills slowly creep up.
So, as a rule of thumb, if your air ducts are over 15 years old, you may want to have a professional check them out. A professional will be able to tell the condition of your ducts and better recommend whether or not they need to be replaced.
How long does flex duct last?
While many homes have metal ductwork, others have flexible ductwork or flex duct, and because it is less expensive than metal ductwork, it may be a cheaper alternative when it comes to HVAC duct replacement. Flex duct’s lifespan can vary. Much of its longevity will depend on the installation, but poor installation will affect your ductwork’s dependability no matter what type it is. As with other types of ductwork, have your flex duct checked by a professional after about 10 to 15 years or if you’re experiencing problems like poor indoor air quality or decreased airflow.
HVAC duct replacement diy
Although it’s not recommended that you try to replace your whole home’s ductwork, with the right tools and skills, you may find it more convenient to replace a section. Here are some basic steps for diy HVAC duct replacement.
Steps to replace HVAC ducts
- Remove old ductwork: The old ductwork needs to be removed to make room for the new duct. The new ductwork is attached to the vent box or plenum.
- Secure and seal the duct: Attach the duct to the bottom of floor joists using plastic ties placed every few feet. Plastic ties are also used to seal the duct to the new box. Once in place, everything is sealed with aluminum tape.
- Create a wooden frame to hold the vent in place: This frame may be necessary to hold the vent in place.
- Fill in gaps between the floor and frame using insulated duct board: The duct board is cut to size and fit snugly onto both sides of the frame. The vent is further sealed with mastic adhesive cement.
Before you have your ductwork replaced in your attic, if you have any problems with roof leaks or moisture build up, roof inspections are a good way to check for problems with your roof that could affect your attic and your ductwork.
Is cleaning air ducts worth it?
While there isn’t much evidence that cleaning air ducts can help improve indoor air quality, there are some instances in which you might want to have them cleaned. If you’ve recently remodeled your home, you may want to clean the ductwork, especially if the ducts weren’t sealed during the renovation or if lead paint removal or asbestos abatement was involved.
Other reasons to have your ducts cleaned if you have evidence of animal infestation in the ductwork, if mold is present, or if contaminants are being released through the ducts after the registers have been cleaned. If someone in your household is suffering from an allergy-related illness and all options have been exhausted, you may want to look into getting the ducts cleaned.
How much does it cost to replace HVAC ductwork?
HVAC ductwork replacement costs will vary. On average it will cost about $285 per duct run. The cost is based on the number of runs replaced, along with the length of each run, as well as the type and size of the ductwork. Costs can increase to as much as $550 per run if ducts in walls and ceilings have to be replaced.
HVAC duct replacement near me
If you are in need of residential HVAC duct replacement in Fort Worth, TX, turn to the professionals at ACT Home Energy Specialists. We offer a wide range of replacement options. Find out how we can help or schedule an appointment by calling 817-781-8781.