May 23, 2016
By Mark Paup

Why You Shouldn’t Close Off Room Vents When the AC Is Running

Updated January 18, 2024

In any large home or a home that has rooms that are frequently empty, it isn’t usually necessary to provide air conditioning in every single location. However, a standard central air conditioning system sends air from the indoor cabinet into the ventilation system and distributes the cooled air to all the vents throughout the home. It’s convenient but can also be wasteful of energy.

Some homeowners think that they can get around this problem by closing off the vents in empty rooms. Most modern vent covers have shutters behind them that can be closed with a louver. But not only is this ineffective as a way to save energy, but it can also actually damage your HVAC system.

The trouble with closed vents

The shutters behind a vent grill are there to help direct the air as it enters a room. They are not an effective way to seal off the vent, and they won’t contribute to lowering energy costs. The air conditioning system is still expending the same amount of energy to cool the air and send it into the ventilation system. Blocking off the terminal point doesn’t lower energy consumption.

But what closing off the vents will do is raise the air pressure within the ventilation system. This will cause the air conditioner to work harder, and it also creates a risk of causing air leaks along the ducts. A rise in air pressure is a leading cause of air leaks in ducts, which are significant energy wasters.

Zone control is the answer

If you want to shut off cooling (as well as heating) to different parts of your home, the best method is to have a zone control system installed. This uses dampers inside the ducts to direct air, and it also interacts with the AC and heater to control how it works. Zone control prevents spikes in pressure and will help you save money.

Golden Rule offers AC services such as zone control installation in Des Moines, IA. Call us if you want a Service Provider who’ll treat you and your home like their own.

Contact Us Today for Heating & Cooling Service!

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