While reading a recent article about homeowners closing too many vents in their homes, with the hopes of saving some money on their utilities, it occurred to us that many people may not be aware of the danger of doing so.
While it may seem like the wise thing to do, because it would stop the heat from entering a rarely used room, and send it on to the spaces more often occupied, it doesn’t provide the cost savings (or efficiency) that people would expect.
This problem also happens on a larger scale in office buildings, equipped with Variable Air Volume Terminal units, as well as those equipped with standard volume air dampers. Often, an occupant will complain about conditions being too hot or too cold in the space. The facilities group will either adjust the airflow settings at that VAV unit, or close the volume air damper nearest the occupant’s area.
The problem with doing this, whether in the residential space or in the office building, is that is forces the air to other areas in the duct work, causing negative effects in those areas. It is also a waste of energy because, generally, the fan, heating- and cooling system will continue calling for heating or cooling because of the temperature readings in the areas where the air flows have been adjusted.
The proper way to ensure comfort in a home or office area is to balance the air flows, so that the lesser used spaces receive less flow than those that need it more. Additionally, it is important to check the temperature sensing devices to ensure they are sensing controlling properly. Duct mounted temperature sensors like the ultra-electronics 733 is a great temperature controller, which can help to ensure that the air temperatures are being properly monitored. In doing this, you can reduce the amount of energy spent heating or cooling where it is not needed, and truly reduce your utility bills.