Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Simple Ways to Reduce Heating Duct Noise
Put an End to that Rattle and Hum!
You love your home’s central heating and air conditioning, but you hate all the noise it makes. Rattling, blowing, ticking, creaking, and a host of other noises coming from your ductwork can turn a fantastic convenience into a real nuisance in the time it takes to crank up the thermostat. Here are a few tips that can help turn down the volume on a noisy HVAC (Heating ,Ventilation and Air Conditionin) system.
Check Internal and External Components:
One of the biggest contributing factors to a noisy heating system is a faulty relationship between the unit’s indoor and outdoor components. If internal and external parts are linked in such a way that they vibrate against each other, this will send plenty of sound through your home’s ductwork. Because ducts connect every room in your house when you have a central HVAC system, you may find it hard to escape all the noise. If you hear whining, buzzing, howling, or vibrations, have a professional check your HVAC system to ensure indoor ducts are independently connected to outdoor components.
How's Your Insulation?
Insulating your ductwork can also really cut down on unwanted noise. Sounds that come through ducts are generally caused by your heating system’s air handler. This metal box has a motor that can make parts vibrate as the system works. Adding a layer of insulation to the air handler can dampen the noise caused by these vibrations, sending less reverberation through the ducts. Insulation can also eliminate noises on the outside of your house, making you instantly more popular with the neighbors.
Another way to insulate is with materials that absorb sound. This helps deaden noises, making them quieter and less intense until they eventually disappear at the farthest point from your system. Acoustic insulation can be added along ductwork, in the same way you might insulate plumbing pipes.
How's Your Fan?
Cleaning your home’s HVAC system fan is crucial to the quiet, efficient operation of your unit. The fan draws in dirt and dust, which can collect on the blades and interfere with its operation. Built-up debris can cause rattling and vibrations that will travel through the ducts and vents. If your fan is the wrong size for your system, it can also create noise as it struggles to keep up with demand. Keeping the fan clean and ensuring you have the right size fan for your unit will cut down on noise significantly.
Cleaning and Maintenance:
Regular duct and heat system cleaning and upkeep ensures your entire heating system is performing at its best. Professional maintenance keeps parts in good working condition and helps make sure that system components are installed correctly. A certified technician will tighten loose connections, fix gaps, clean parts, and add insulation to any system mechanisms that could be causing unusual noise. You should try to have a professional tune up and your HVAC system at least twice a year. The easiest way to remember is to schedule maintenance in the spring and in the fall, just before the peak cooling and heating seasons.
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