Homeowners are always on the lookout for energy-saving tips for their homes. There are many different suggestions out there. You may ask yourself questions like: Should you close doors in unused rooms? Should I keep my wall vents open or closed? Do you leave basement vents open or closed in winter?
One of the most popular energy-saving things many homeowners do includes closing the vents in vacant rooms. Many think that by blocking cold air return vents, the conditioned air is redirected to areas that you want to cool or heat faster and better. Therefore, their heating or cooling systems are put into optimum use. Although this might sound like a logical explanation, doing this can actually cause the opposite of what you intended. Does closing vents redirect air? No. In fact, doing so might be costing you more. Not only that, but it also damages your central heating and cooling system.
Why You Shouldn’t Close Vents To Control The Temperature
Table of Contents:
- Why You Shouldn’t Close Vents To Control The Temperature
- Understanding How HVAC Ventilation Works
- Closing Air Vents Is Not Advisable
- Home Cooling & Heating Cost-Saving Tips
- Call Hart Home Comfort For All Your Heating & Cooling Needs
This article dives into the reasons you should avoid closing the HVAC air vents around your home. It also includes some energy-saving tips including the utilization of zone temperature control system solutions.
Understanding How HVAC Ventilation Works
An external force is needed to move air around your home. Otherwise, it will remain motionless. This usually comes in the form of a fan in your HVAC system. The air in your central system, for instance, is pushed through the condenser coil for the cooling process. The blower fan then distributes conditioned air in your home.
The fan motor can either be variable or fixed. It depends on the type, make, and model of your heating and cooling unit at home. A variable motor is equipped with a sensor that can detect the air pressure inside your home. This way, it can adjust the settings to maintain comfort. On the other hand, Fixed motors run at a fixed rate and are not affected by indoor air pressure. A unit that has a fixed motor tends to be the cheaper option between the two. However, it will also work harder to move the air throughout the limited space of your home.
Closing Air Vents Is Not Advisable
If you want to have a more cost-effective home, closing heating or air conditioning vents in winter is definitely not the way to go. Listed below are a few reasons:
HVAC Units Work Differently From How You Think It Does
Your HVAC unit does not come with sensors that can detect when the vents are closed or open. It will utilize the same amount of energy to create the same amount of cold or warm air. It can only maintain the setting you had input on its thermostat. The amount of energy will remain the same unless you adjust the HVAC’s thermostat settings. Therefore, closing the registers doesn’t affect your electricity bill. You would still pay for the same energy volume, whether you close the vents or not.
Internal dampers in your HVAC unit is what controls the air supply volume that goes into each room. There must be adequate airflow volume to ensure that the system maintains consistent temperatures no matter how far the rooms are from the blower. Closing one or more vents means that the airflow and temperature balance is disrupted throughout the system. The imbalance can create issues such as too little airflow to rooms that are farther from the blower, or too much in closer rooms.
When the vents in your HVAC system are pushed shut, the return register remains open. This is because you only close the supply register. Air is drawn out of the room via the return vents. However, since the supply register is closed, the same amount of air isn’t supplied back. In turn, it creates low air pressure in the closed room. Outdoor air will then infiltrate the area through small cracks, gaps, or holes in the windows or doors. This will affect the temperature inside your home as it will decrease or increase in accordance with the temperature of the air outside. It can also lead to reduced air quality that can affect your health, among other problems.
Lowered HVAC System Lifespan
The static pressure in the ductwork becomes elevated when supply registers are shut close. Consequently, the blower receives more pressure and becomes more strained. The blower will continue to work harder than it should when you keep vents close. This can result in weakened HVAC components and, in turn, lead to a shorter life expectancy.
Home Cooling & Heating Cost-Saving Tips
Your HVAC unit’s size was determined based on your home’s area size and other specifications. This means that it can adequately cool or heat the specific size of the area you have. Closing vents mean you lessen the space your system is cooling or heating. Therefore, the system might not work as it should.
An HVAC unit that offers zone temperature control might be what you are looking for if you want to achieve thermal comfort while still saving money at the same time. This type of system lets you divide your house into different zones. For instance, your bedroom can be zone one while the living room is zone two. Temperature control zoning allows you to set different temperatures in different zones.
Check your thermostat as well. Set it at the lowest possible setting and use the fans to allow air to flow properly throughout the area. You can put buffers or insulation on your windows as well. Use window treatment. These will help ensure that thermal levels are maintained.
Ductless Mini-Split Systems
You also might want to install a supplemental HVAC system, such as a ductless mini-split. Place a ductless heating and cooling unit in rooms that you use often so you can customize the temperature to fit your needs. You can minimize the use of the central heating and cooling system this way. Contact your trusted HVAC technician, like Hart Home Comfort, to know more about the ductless heat pump and other concerns you might have.
Call Hart Home Comfort For All Your Heating & Cooling Needs
When you are looking for superior HVAC services in your area, do not hesitate to call Hart Home Comfort. We offer high-quality and affordable heating and cooling services, including repairs, installations, replacements, and maintenance.
Our team of NATE certified technicians can provide you with knowledgeable and timely service at reasonable prices. We always deliver honest and excellent service. Rest assured that our customer’s comfort, energy-efficiency, and satisfaction are our top priorities.
Talk to a Hart Home Comfort representative to learn more about the services we offer! Receive a free, in-home estimate when you make an appointment with one of our licensed HVAC professionals. Call Hart Home Comfort today!