During the warm seasons here in Louisiana, you’ll want to find ways to cut back on your air conditioning bills without needing to sacrifice too much when it comes to comfort. There are many ways you can do this: learning the best settings on your thermostat, installing a smart thermostat, remembering to schedule spring maintenance, and running ceiling fans.
But there’s a trick that many people use that actually won’t save energy, and in fact may lead to damage to the HVAC system: shutting vents in unused rooms.
Why closing rooms vents isn’t useful
The standard room vent consists of a metal grill with a handle to move shutters behind it. The shutters are effective at directing where the air blown through the grill will first move. The shutters can also be closed—but this ineffective when it comes to conserving energy. You aren’t reducing the amount of cooling coming from the air conditioner just because you’re partially blocking the cooled air from reaching the room. The AC isn’t doing any less work because of this. In fact, the air conditioner may end up working harder because the reduced airflow will make it more difficult for the system to reach its temperature target.
Why closing rooms vents can be damaging
Another reason to keep the vents open is it prevents an increase of pressure in the ventilation system that can damage the ducts. The higher the pressure in the system, the more likely it will create air leaks in the ducts—and this will lead to major problems for the air conditioner (as well as the heater later during the year).
There are many improvements you can have done for your air conditioning system to help save energy. If you’ve already tried other methods (except for shutting room vents!) and you still think you’re paying too much for cooling, call our technicians and they’ll help you with options for more energy efficient air conditioning!
Hall’s Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration is the Doctor of Home Comfort in Shreveport and Vivian, LA.