Testing & Balancing Air Duct Flow
If your technicians aren’t checking system airflow on every service call, you’re doing your customers a disservice. At Williamsburg Heating & Air Conditioning, testing & balancing air duct flow is the missing link in getting residential HVAC systems to perform at or near their peak levels.
In the commercial, industrial, and institutional markets, HVAC balancing is more recognized and accepted as a necessary service than it is in the residential market. We have found, however, that the need for residential air balancing may be even greater than in the other markets simply because of the lack of awareness that has existed for so long. The residential projects on which we have provided these services have turned out to be exceptional in terms of overall system performance. Not all residential customers are ready for their HVAC system to be balanced, but you can be assured that just about all residential customers need it.
Testing is the Key
The key to proper residential air balancing is testing. If you don’t measure, you’re just guessing. After testing more than a thousand HVAC systems we have found less than 5% that are operating above 90% of the equipment-rated capacity. Most operate in the 55% to 65% range before balancing or corrective measures are put in place.
Our existing clients have been apprised of the need for air diagnostics and balancing and many of them have gone through the process to test, assess, correct, and verify their system’s performance. Any new clients we take on are informed immediately that airflow diagnostics, balancing, and full system commissioning are necessary unless they have already had it done. If they are not prepared to proceed, we are honest with them and tell them that traditional service and maintenance can be done, but overall system effectiveness and performance is not guaranteed.
There is a distinct process to balancing a residential HVAC system. You first assess and measure or “test-in,” then re-assess, perform any corrective actions, “test-out,” verify, and document. Here is how to put that process into motion on a project.