Controlling Your Airflow with HVAC Dampers

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We’ve all been there. Sitting in an office building where one part of the building is freezing while the other side feels like a sauna. There’s an art to keeping a consistent temperature throughout your building, and HVAC dampers help make it happen!

What is an HVAC Damper?

An HVAC damper is a movable plate located in your ductwork that regulates airflow and redirects it to specific areas in the building. These dampers are typically used in zoning. HVAC dampers work to maintain your spaces’ comfort and safety by supporting your HVAC system and keeping it from working harder and longer.

Why You Need HVAC Dampers

HVAC dampers are essential to your zoning system because they allow you to control the amount of hot or cold air distributed throughout your building. In addition, the dampers control the air that flows in and out of the building, ensuring the air is safe.

How do HVAC Dampers Work?

Acting as valves in the ducts, HVAC dampers help determine which parts of your home require hot or cold air based on your chosen settings. Proper airflow is maintained evenly throughout the building when dampers regulate the space’s internal temperature.

Another way to ensure your dampers work properly is to make sure your building is properly insulated. Dampers and insulation work together to cut down costs by ensuring air is kept in and preventing your system from overworking.

Manual vs. Automatic: Choosing the Right HVAC Damper for Your Needs

Manual

Automatic

Manual Dampers

Manual dampers are not ideal for large buildings as the HVAC systems in large spaces are generally on or near the ceilings. Manual dampers have a straightforward design that allows operators to control the airflow through the system. However, they are located outside of the air vents and cannot be controlled remotely.

Automatic Dampers

Automatic dampers are more expensive, but they can be controlled remotely and even self-regulate based on the current climates. Thermostats are designated to each zone and are used to calculate the precise air temperature and airflow to achieve the desired condition. While cost is a factor, being able to program the dampers remotely is worth it.

The 3 types of HVAC dampers to choose from include:

  • Blade Dampers
  • Air Control Dampers
  • Louver Dampers

HVAC Damper Maintenance

Taking care of your dampers ensures they will run smoothly and efficiently. Many dampers are neglected until they stop working but staying on top will keep them working efficiently and extend their life.

Dampers should be inspected at least once every six months for any visible damage. If you don’t feel the air is being distributed evenly, you may want to adjust your dampers. You’ll also want to make sure you adjust your dampers when switching from heat to air conditioning.

7 Steps to Adjust Your HVAC Damper

  • Turn your fan to the ON position
  • Open every damper all the way
  • Open every vent in the building
  • Confirm which ducts flow into which areas
  • Make any necessary adjustments
  • Monitor and adjust again if needed
  • Label the damper position for future use

Switching Your HVAC System in 5 Steps

  • Finish the cycle
  • Replace and clean
  • Adjust your dampers
  • Set the thermostat
  • Turn it on

It is essential to finish the current cycle before switching to heat or air conditioning. By preventing an unnecessary disruption, your system will continue to work efficiently. Next, replace all your filters and clean your coils. This prevents extra strain on your system and keeps your air clean and fresh.

Once that is complete, adjust your dampers accordingly to ensure airflow will be directed to the correct places. Then set your thermostat to the optimal temperature and turn it on! Once turned on, let it run through the full cycle and then make any necessary adjustments if needed.

Choosing the Right HVAC Manufacturer

Whether you plan to complete the maintenance yourself or hire a technician, picking the right manufacturer to serve your needs is imperative. The ideal manufacturer will be able to offer technician services, installation, and ship products to customers.

The right manufacturer also should be knowledgeable of all things HVAC and be able to provide recommendations when needed. So, while saving money is always top of mind, it’s imperative not to skimp on costs when it comes to your HVAC unit.

Why Lloyd Industries?

Lloyd Industries continues to be a leading HVAC manufacturer. Geared towards commercial real estate, Lloyd Industries sells products that are top of the line. The company prides itself on keeping all products up to code and offering different sizes to fit your unit.

Lloyd Industries provides local reps that can inspect your system, offer recommendations, address any issues, and complete routine maintenance on your equipment. If you are looking for some guidance while self-installing, it also offers downloadable installation guides to walk you through each step.

Lloyd Industries continues to provide top-tier customer service while providing safe and affordable products.

Other Types of Dampers for Your HVAC

Fire dampers

Smoke dampers

Backdraft dampers

Why You Need Fire Dampers

Fire dampers are installed within the air ducts of your HVAC system to stop flames and smoke from spreading through the air vents in the event of a fire. Fire dampers detect excessive heat and activate when the room temperature hits 165 degrees Fahrenheit. A fusible link attached to the fire damper will melt and close the damper. This helps to stop a fire in its tracks.

Adding Smoke Dampers to Your HVAC

Smoke dampers help reduce the spread of smoke and other gasses throughout a building or home during the event of a fire. Like fire dampers, when the fire alarm is triggered, the smoke dampers are activated, shutting immediately to prevent smoke from traveling through the ducts.

Improving Ventilation with Backdraft Dampers

Backdraft dampers help your system regulate the airflow throughout each room. They are designed to allow contaminated air to flow out while simultaneously preventing contaminated air from coming back in.

Your HVAC system is complex, with many moving parts to keep everyone in your building safe and comfortable. There are several different types of dampers that are crucial to protecting your building in the event of a fire and ensuring your air quality is healthy and safe.