DIY Heating System Repair: Insulating Your Ducts in One Weekend

Although they may seem imposing due to their size and appearance, the ducts in your attic, crawlspace, and garage are actually quite accessible and can greatly benefit from sealing and insulating, especially if you’ve noticed high utility bills, drafty rooms, or stuffy air in your home. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, between 20 and 30 percent of warm air from your furnace may escape through cracks and holes in your ducts, leading to energy loss and reduced efficiency. Sealing and insulating your ducts can be a productive weekend project, offering immediate benefits such as decreased energy loss, lower utility bills, and improved air quality in your home.

While sealing and insulating ducts is a manageable task, it’s important to use the right tools and materials for the job. Avoid cloth-backed or rubber adhesive tape, as well as duct tape, which have short lifespans and are not suitable for sealing ducts. Instead, use mastic sealant and foil tape with the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) logo, both of which can be found at home improvement stores.

Begin by inspecting your ducts for loose or worn tape, holes, cracks, dents, or disconnections. Replace worn tape and patch joints with sealant, ensuring a secure seal. Next, insulate your ducts using R-6 duct insulation, wrapping it around the duct and securing seams with foil tape. While neatness is important, ensure complete coverage of the duct with insulation.

During this DIY project, you may encounter ducts that are difficult to reach or require additional reinforcement. Some ducts may need sheet metal screws or metal/plastic bands, while others may need to be replaced altogether due to age-related wear and tear. In such cases, our Chico heating system repair technicians are available to assist and reinforce your efforts. Contact us today for expert guidance and support!

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