While there is a lot to consider when building a modern home, health, energy efficiency and comfort should be high on your priority list. And although they might not immediately come to mind, air ducts are one of the greatest contributing factors.
Duct work – while rarely seen or thought about after installation – can contribute to or detract from the safety and livability of your home in no small way. In fact, the US Department of Energy asserts that duct repairs could be the single most important energy improvement measure you can take. At Clarum Homes, we couldn’t agree more.
When building an energy efficient modern home, it is imperative to pay close attention to duct work to avoid improper sizing or leaks. If these details are not closely monitored, it won’t be long before duct work is piping heated, cooled and otherwise conditioned air right into your attic – not your living spaces. Not only does this cause an increase of up to 40% in unnecessary energy consumption, it can also have a huge impact on your family’s health and comfort.
Leaky ducts are uncomfortable, resulting in rooms that are too hot, cold, humid or dry.
They’re also unhealthy, adding particulates that can aggravate respiratory problems and often cultivating dangerous mold and fumes – chief concerns for any homeowner.
So how do you differentiate between inefficient and high-performance duct work?
For starters, high-performance duct work begins with a strategy. And at Clarum, we are committed to making sure every room in your modern home gets the proper ratio of air supply and return.
Part of that strategy involves striving for the fewest-possible bends and gaps. Bends are obstructions; they impede the flow of air just as a bent pipe impedes the flow of water. And gaps – while they can and should be properly sealed – are by definition the weakest link of the system. So a good design never bets all on the strength of its sealants.
Routing is important as well. Where do your ducts go? It’s best to keep them out of unconditioned areas, because ducts tend to lose conditioned temperatures to their surroundings, even when insulated. If they must pass through an unconditioned space, your builder should devote extra attention to insulating them.
At Clarum, high-performance duct work:
Like every other element in a high-performance home, duct work is part of a comprehensive system. It doesn’t operate in a vacuum; rather, it has to perform as a team-player in a web of interconnected systems – adding to the overall comfort, health and energy-efficiency of your home.
At Clarum Homes, we bring the skill, experience and attention to detail to make that happen, because we know how much it matters.
Want to learn more about Clarum’s Whole Systems Approach to Custom Home Building? Call us at 650.322.7069, or fill out our contact form.