Many homeowners believe that closing air vents will redirect air and help save energy costs. Closing air vents does change the airflow in your house. But this may not lead to energy efficiency. The air from unused rooms may not flow according to your expectations.
If you close vents in unused rooms, the air that would get into the rooms gets redirected. However, the air may end up in the wrong places. The air from the vents in unused rooms can leak and flow into unconditioned areas of your home.
Why is Redirecting Air Important?
Your HVAC system works best when there is a balance in air pressure. Pressure in the room comes from the intake and outflow of air. If there is no balance in the airflow in the room, the HVAC system will not function well.
For example, if you close all the vents in one room, the pressure in the room may increase. When the air pressure increases, the room may experience spots with very cold air. Moreso, the HVAC system will have to overwork to correct the anomaly.
This overworking may lead to an early replacement of the system components. Thus, redirecting air is important to create and maintain a balance in air pressure in all rooms.
Does Closing Air Vents Save Energy?
Closing air vents does not save energy. If you close air vents in one of your rooms, you may end up with high energy costs. The HVAC systems work by heating and cooling your home. The system does this based on the size of your home.
Closing air vents in one of the rooms in your home causes the air to return to the ductwork. This is the air that was supposed to move around the home. The air then begins to leak through the air duct leaks due to closed vents. This is the hot air that comes from the heat exchanger. much
When heated air is lost through air ducts leaks in unused rooms, the furnace has to compensate for that. The furnace compensates for the loss by increasing the number of runs.
The higher the number of furnace runs, the higher the energy consumption. Thus, having closed vents does not help you save money or energy consumption.
Does Closing Air Vents Redirect Air?
Your air conditioning system needs adequate airflow volume to function properly. Good airflow is necessary to maintain the air pressure and temperature inside the house. You reduce the return airflow volume when you close the air vents that supply air in any room.
Reduced return airflow damages the internal components of the heating and cooling system. One of the components sensitive to pressure changes is the heat exchanger. If you close the air vents, the heat exchanger may develop cracks because of overworking.
A defective heat exchanger is a safety hazard. It poses many other dangers. It may lead to deadly carbon monoxide gas infiltration into the house. It may also damage the entire heating system. Replacing or repairing a heating system is quite costly.
Also, if you have closed vents in unused rooms, you may end up with frozen coils. If the foils freeze, the system’s compressor may get damaged. This will force you to spend more money on the early replacement of the system components.
Does Closing the Air Vents Help Other Areas of the House?
People close one or more vents in their homes to help other house areas. It is common for people to close vents in unused rooms or a closed room to help other rooms where people are. But closing the air vents does not help other areas of the house.
When you have closed vents, air from the HVAC systems fails to flow properly. The warm air fails to reach the intended destination. Also, the conditioned air is redirected to other places where it may not be required. Such places include the attic and crawl space. Duct leaks also occur when you close vents in a room.
The loss of conditioned air creates hot and cold spots. Heated air begins to move from warm rooms to the rooms and areas that have cold air. Your heating and cooling systems begin to overwork to compensate for the loss. The heating system would be potentially overheating if this continues for long.
Partially Closing AC Vents
Having a fully closed vent in a room is not a good idea. Ideally, you should leave all air vents open. Yet, you may consider partially closing the air vents in your home. Partially closing air vents in one or more rooms helps you benefit in both ways.
On the one hand, you will not experience the problems caused by high or low air pressure. You will not end up with a damaged heat exchanger. A defective heat exchanger can release deadly carbon monoxide at any time. Carbon monoxide poisoning is a real danger when this occurs.
Also, partially closing air vents will help move the conditioned air around the room. This will protect you from experiencing reduced air quality. You may also enjoy a safe internal temperature because of minimal duct leaks.
What is the Best Way of Saving Energy?
The best way of saving energy is to ensure that you use your HVAC equipment optimally. This usually calls for investing in energy-efficient solutions. A broad range of solutions can help cut your energy consumption.
You will eventually realize the benefits of energy savings. The solutions preserve your system components from damage from high or low airflow.
One of the solutions involves the use of ductless systems. Ductless systems allow you to control air pressure independently in every room. Installing them can help you avoid higher utility bills. This is because you may decide to shut the vents in one room all the while.
You may then have a balanced airflow in all the others. You can schedule service with a certified HVAC technician to have this system in your home.
You may also adopt a zoned heating and cooling system. Dampers are used to restrict energy losses from duct leaks and ensure heat flows to where it is needed. Installing a zoned heating and cooling system is a good way of saving money. This system is more affordable than the other options.
Should I Close the Basement Air Vents?
You do not have to close the basement vents for the same reason as not closing vents in other rooms. Your system can comfortably handle all the heating and cooling needs of your basement. If you close the vents, you will interfere with the airflow and static pressure. Too much static pressure will disrupt the temperature balance in the basement. Similarly, too low static pressure in the basement is undesirable.
Closing any air vent in the basement interferes with the air pressure inside the room, apart from airflow. Poor air pressure inside the basement will make the place uncomfortable.
In addition, closing the vents in your basement interferes with the functioning of the air conditioning system. Some system components may get damaged because of the effects of closing the vents in the basement.
Why you should Never Close your Air Vents
There are many reasons why you should not close your air vents. They range from health hazards that carbon monoxide poisoning causes to the costs of higher utility bills.
1. Mold Growth
Closing the vents in unused rooms in your home may lead to mold growth. This occurs because of the moisture build-up when you have closed vents in some rooms. Also, closed vents in rooms trigger lower surface temperatures. Lower surface temperatures in your rooms will cause mold growth at high rates.
2. High Energy Bills
If you close the vents in any of the rooms in your home, you will end up with higher energy bills. The HVAC system ends up consuming a lot of energy when you have closed valves. This occurs due to a lack of temperature balance in the room’s different areas.
Also, heated air gets wasted because it leaks and ends up in extreme places like the attic. The heating and cooling system has to overwork to create additional heat to replace what you would have lost. This translates into high utility bills.
3. Temperature Imbalance
Temperature balance is necessary for indoor air quality to be ideal. If you close vents, some areas in your house may become very cold while others experience relatively high temperatures. This is because the air vents you close force the same amount of air back to the ducts as the open ones.
The heat from the warm areas automatically begins to move to the cool areas. Too much static pressure messes up with the overall temperature state of the home.
The disruption of temperature balance may cause airflow problems in the home. The rooms close to the blower may have high airflow levels. The rooms that are far away from the blower may experience low airflow.
4. Damaged HVAC components
Closing air vents in your home may damage the components of your HVAC system. The system has components that are very sensitive to sudden heat rises. The components are also sensitive to changes in pressure.
If you have closed your vents, the blower may overwork. This creates extra heat to replace what you lose through duct leaks. If the blower is overworked, it may get damaged in the process.
The other system components may also get damaged by sudden heat rises. The heat may occur in your home from having closed vents.
Does Closing Vents Redirect Air FAQs
Does Closing Vents Redirect Air Conditioning?
Closing vents may redirect the air, but this does not improve the overall air conditioning in your home. The HVAC system functions perfectly when all the vents are open. If you start closing vents even in an unused room, you will start experiencing disruptions in the heating and cooling processes.
The vents that you close will cause the same amount of air back to the ducts in your home. The warm air that would have moved to the room will blowback to the ductwork and leak.
Should I Leave Vents in Unused Rooms Closed or Open?
You should not leave vents in unused rooms closed. Instead, you should ensure that the vents are always open. This is important for ensuring that your HVAC system functions perfectly. It also ensures that the components of your HVAC system do not overwork and malfunction.
Is it Proper to Close Vents in Unused Rooms?
It is not proper to close vents in unused rooms. Closing vents in unused rooms does not lead to energy efficiency. On the contrary, you will end up spending a lot of money on energy bills and repairs to the system. The same amount of air you block from unused rooms gets lost through leaks. Also, the air conditioner will not function properly if you close vents in unused rooms.
What is the Right Time to Open Vents?
The right time to open the vents is during the summer. Opening the vents during the summer allows the air from outside to circulate in the house. This prevents moisture build-up that may trigger mold growth and many other unpleasant results.
What is the Right Time to Close Vents?
The best time to close the vents is during winter. Closing vents during winter controls cold and dry air from outside. Also, this practice prevents the freezing of coils and pipes in your home’s attic. The air conditioner will work perfectly even after closing vents in winter.
Ideally, you should not close your vents. Closing them causes more disadvantages than benefits. You will end up spending a lot of money on utility bills, risk carbon poisoning, and experience hot and cold spots in your house. Besides, closing the vents may trigger mold growth.
Instead, the best practice is to adopt energy-efficient methods to help you maintain the indoor environment and keep the HVAC system intact.