Any damage to your Boca Raton air conditioning system’s ducts can reduce its efficiency to a great extent.

In a well-functioning system, all of the conditioned air moves from the ducts to the various rooms in your home. However, if the duct system is damaged, both energy and efficiency are lost. This, in turn, burns a hole in your pocket in the form of inflated energy bills.

Let’s find out more about AC ducts.

How Do Air Ducts Work?

Air ducts are the large tube-like mediums that route hot or cold conditioned air into a room. When these tubes are free of debris and holes, your air conditioning system works efficiently.

However, when dirt, dust and other debris or objects obstruct it, or when the tube is damaged or develops a hole in it, the air either backs up or escapes. This makes the AC system work harder than it usually would.

There are two types of air ducts that go through a home: supply and return. This is why every vented room in a house has two types of vents: a supply register/vent and a return register/vent.

Do You Have a Bad Duct?

When the air in your room takes longer than usual to cool or if you’re experiencing uneven cooling, you can be sure something’s not right with the ducts (unless a piece of furniture is blocking your vents).

To be sure that the ducts are faulty, you may want to look for the following signs:

  1. One particular room in your house consistently has a different temperature compared to the rest of your house
  2. Your utility bills have suddenly increased significantly or are lower than usual despite using the air conditioning system
  3. There is little or no flow of air coming through your register/vent after switching on the air conditioning. This usually happens when the duct is either blocked or compromised.
  4. You find that your air filter gets dirty frequently. While changing your air filter regularly is a must, you should not have to do so more than once a month.
  5. You often see streaks of dust and dirt sitting at your registers. This may be the result of a leak.
  6. You spot a hole in your duct or the duct is broken or even missing

Inspecting Air Ducts

The process of detecting issues in your duct begins with their proper inspection. Here’s how to go about it.

a. Inspecting the Main Unit

The main unit is usually connected to large ducts, which are further connected to branch ducts that are spread throughout your house (more on them later). One side of the duct system passes air through the branch ducts, while the other side pulls the air in.

To inspect your main unit, you can turn your air conditioning system on. Check all the duct connections and see if you feel any air leaking through. Alternatively, you can use a piece of toilet paper to check for leaks. If the paper stick to or blows away from any of the joints in the duct, you may have a leak.

b. Inspecting Branch Ducts

Branch ducts run throughout your home. Typically, they are easily visible in the basement and the attic areas, and should also be inspected.

You should examine the insulation surrounding the ducts for any damage like holes, tears, damp or wet spots, or mold. Wetness/moisture can mean a blockage in the ducts, which could raise concerns about your indoor air quality. Any damage to the insulation or any mold issues in the ducts are best addressed by Boca Raton air conditioning professionals. A DIY job is not recommended.

Repairing Leaking Air Ducts

If you have a proper understanding of your Boca Raton air conditioning system’s ducts, you may be able to fix some issues yourself. This includes repairing minor air duct leaks.

Before you start, you should clean the area that needs repairs with a soft cloth. You can then use aluminum foil tape or another heat-resistant tape to seal leaks on a flat surface where two metal pieces are joined.

Simply place the foil tape over the leak and use a mastic sealant and a paint brush to seal it. Use the mastic sealant only for areas that are difficult to close with the foil tape.

A mastic sealant is more effective than other duct tapes. It is easy to apply and lasts long. However, it cannot be used to close big-sized leaks. This is why it is used with aluminum foil tape.


Repairing AC ducts isn’t as easy as it sounds. Before attempting a DIY job, it is necessary that you equip yourself with adequate knowledge of how they work. Hopefully, the above information will be helpful in this regard. Of course, if these don’t work or if the issue is a major one, you may have to consider replacing the ducting, rather than repairing it. Either way, getting professionals on the job will save you a ton of money and hassle.

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