Air flows through your duct work much like water flows through a garden hose. As long as there are NO kinks in the hose, you get a good volume of water flowing out of the end of the hose. When you KINK the end of the hose (for example by bending it near the nozzle) suddenly you have much greater pressure. The water may seem to squirt farther, but the reality is much less water is delivered.

You can test this theory at home. Just take any sized bucket and time how long it takes to fill the bucket with an unrestricted garden hose. Now kink off the end (or hold your thumb across the opening) and time it again. You will find it takes dramatically longer with any restriction in the garden hose.

Whether your home’s system is installed in a basement OR in the attic, the ducts must be properly sized and installed. Most new construction in Arizona utilizes an attic installation of the air handling unit with the hot or condensing coil mounted outside near the side of your house.

The BEST system design in the world will NOT function properly or efficiently unless the ducts carrying your conditioned air deliver the right amount of air. A well designed duct system minimizes the length of ducts and the number of bends. A poorly designed duct system means your furnace or air conditioner has to work harder, run longer and use more energy to get air to every room to keep you comfortable.

The air flowing from your air conditioning equipment is what professionals call “supply” air. This is the air flowing out of the registers or grilles in your ceiling. This air MUST be allowed to flow back to the fan in your air handler to efficiently cool and allow the proper circulation and comfort of the various spaces in your home. This is called “return” air. Strategically located large grilles (often containing your dust/dirt filter) are connected to ductwork that ferries the air back to the fan completing the air’s path.

A common design in many homes is a centrally located air return. Unfortunately, closing doors to rooms can cut off the supply of air to the return and create a pressure imbalance. Doors should be undercut or an air return placed in the room. Multilevel homes are more energy efficient if an air return is located on the bottom floor as well. It requires less energy to re-cool the air and allows better air circulation enhancing your home’s comfort.