Static pressure is the level of the resistance to the passage of air in your HVAC system’s ductwork. The pressure of air works much like the pressure of water. If you shrink the diameter of the duct air has to pass through, the pressure goes up. This is similar to when you stick your finger in a garden hose.
It’s important to keep an eye on the static pressure in your system; if it is too high, it can damage your HVAC. Even static pressure whose levels are too low are problematic. An HVAC professional from Air Care Heating & Cooling can help make sure that the static pressure in your HVAC is at the right level.
What Causes Unhealthy Static Pressure?
Causes of unhealthy static pressure are most often improperly installed ductwork combined with filters that are not working right. Some customers find they have static pressure problems when they add a new room to their home. The static pressure that was fine when there were only eight rooms in the house is no longer appropriate for a house that has nine or ten. The ductwork can also simply be the wrong size. Ductwork that is too small raises the level of static pressure, while ductwork that’s too large lowers it. Static pressure that’s too low makes the airflow weak and won’t cool down or heat up a house adequately.
Problems with filters are also causes of the wrong static pressure. The system can have filters that somehow restrict the flow of return air; this puts more stress and strain on a blower. A common problem is a dirty filter, which can restrict airflow even more. This is why it’s important that you change your filters regularly. A filthy filter not only strangles the airflow to your home but can create respiratory problems for members of the household.
Signs of static pressure that’s not right for your system include:
- Unusually loud noise when the system is on
- Whooshing sounds when the system is turned on
- Cold and hot spots in the room
- Still air over a register
- Parts wearing out prematurely
The noise that’s present when the static pressure is not where it should be is the result of the motor in the HVAC system working too hard. In some cases, our customers say that it sounds like there’s an airplane taking off in their ducts. The hot and cold spots are because there’s not enough cool or hot air coming out of the registers. Ducts are also more prone to leaking when the static pressure is not where it should be, and even the quality of the indoor air is affected. For example, the cool air delivered by the air conditioning or heat pump can’t carry as much humidity as warmer air. When the workings of the AC are impaired, rooms can grow uncomfortably humid even if you are using a dehumidifier. On the other end, the wrong static pressure can affect the humidity in warmer air and leave your house uncomfortably dry.
Fixing Bad Static Pressure
Our HVAC professionals at Air Care Heating & Cooling have seen that the HVAC systems of a surprising number of our customers are just not the right size for the house. One of the first things our professionals can do is a load calculation for your home. A load calculation finds out how much tonnage your HVAC system can move in BTUs or British thermal units. If the tonnage is the right number for your home, it can be properly heated in the winter and cooled in the summer. Figuring out the load calculation can be a bit complicated. It takes into account everything, from the house’s square footage to how many windows and doors it has to which part of the house does or doesn’t get full sun during the day to the R-value of the insulation to the number of people who live in the house. However, our HVAC specialists can do it. They can also do a manual D calculation, which determines the optimal size of the ductwork.
Air Care Heating & Cooling is proud to have been taking care of our customer’s HVAC needs since 1981. Besides making sure the static pressure in your system is what it needs to be to keep you and your family comfortable throughout the year, we also help with the overall air quality of your home, troubleshooting and the installation and the maintenance of water heaters, whether they be traditional or tankless. A Lennox dealer and member of NARI, our technicians are knowledgeable, tidy, courteous and punctual. Ask about our 24 hours a day, seven-day-a-week emergency service in Shawnee, KS.
If you have a feeling that the static pressure in your HVAC isn’t what it needs to be, don’t hesitate to give us a call today.