Putting your ducts in a row

Future-Proof: Navigate Threats, Seize Opportunities at ICNY 2018 | Jan 22-26 at the Marriott Marquis, Times Square, New York

"Out of sight, out of mind" is a phrase that can certainly be applied to the heat duct system that runs under your floor or through your attic. But just because you can't see the ducts -- and there still seems to be heat coming out of the registers -- doesn't mean that your heating system is working as well as it could. And since your heating system is typically the single biggest energy user in your home, small problems with the duct system have the potential to translate into big dollars being wasted each month. There are four basic steps that you'll want to undertake in this order: inspect, repair, insulate and clean. Any or all of these steps can be taken by the ambitious do-it-yourselfer, or can be hired out to the pros. Inspect: The first step in the process is to inspect the system, which is going to mean some crawling around. With a strong light source -- preferably a cordless one so you don't have to worry about dragging cords behind you -- work your way along each of the du...