Most homes in our area have central, forced-air HVAC systems that distribute conditioned air through a system of supply and return ducts. The ducts are installed inside the walls, ceilings or floors, so all that's visible are covered HVAC vents at the duct openings. Learning more about these vents and their purpose can help you keep your HVAC system working reliably and efficiently, so you enjoy a comfortable home.
The Basics of Supply and Return HVAC Vents
An HVAC system with proper air distribution has a ductwork design that incorporates a certain number of supply ducts for conditioned air delivery, as well as return ducts to bring stale air back through the air handler to be reconditioned. You can easily tell the purpose of a duct by which of these two types of vent covers it has:
Individual rooms in a home generally have one or more supply vents with louvered covers called registers. This kind of cover typically has a built-in damper that opens and closes with either a roller or lever control. Although the damper control lets you close the register completely, doing so can have serious consequences for your HVAC system, including airflow imbalances, a loss of energy efficiency and a greater likelihood of equipment breakdowns or failures. To avoid such problems, it's best to always keep your registers fully open, even in seldom-used rooms.
The HVAC ducts that return air through the system have stationary vent covers called grilles. Your duct system design dictates how many return vents you have, but typically, there are just one or two on each level of a home. Airflow restrictions on the return side can cause the same efficiency and performance problems as closed supply vents, so once you identify your return grilles, make sure they're never obstructed by long window treatments, furniture, area rugs or other household items.
If you're experiencing discomforting issues like uneven cooling or a decline in cool air output in your Broken Arrow home, contact us today at Air Assurance for an expert assessment of your HVAC vents and duct system.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the Tulsa and Broken Arrow, Oklahoma area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, call us at 918-217-8273.