Three DIY Fixes For Annoying Furnace Duct Noise
Old, neglected, or improperly installed furnace ducts can make all kinds of annoying (and sometimes even creepy) noises, from high-pitched whistling to loud clanging and banging sounds. Keeping the ducts well-maintained can help to reduce the likelihood of these problems, but if you inherited a duct system that already makes a lot of noise, you'll have to go on the offensive by taking active steps to knock down the incidence of these noises. Here are three ways that you can solve some of the noise problems your old or ill-maintained ducts may have.
1. Patching holes
Whistling sounds can occur when your ducts are losing air through leaks. These leaks, in addition to being noisy, can also make your furnace system less efficient because they mean the warm air doesn't get to the room it's supposed to go to. So repairing this problem can help you in more ways than just noise reduction. Finding and eliminating the holes may be easy or hard depending on how many there are, how large and obvious they are (or how well they're hiding), and how accessible the leaky section of ductwork is.
Ducts can rattle against wooden surfaces that they're next to or against the fasteners that hold them in place, and the rattling sounds are amplified by the interior of the duct. Find the spots where your ducts are up against a wooden surface and add rubber pads or some other type of safe insulation to absorb the vibrations before the ductwork can pick them up and amplify them. Insulate the fasteners as well if you suspect they're also a source of noise.
Sometimes the sounds of animals or insects in the ducts are unmistakable. In this case, or if you have the misfortune to see one actually emerging from the ductwork, keep in mind that you probably have a larger pest problem if there are pests in your ducts. Set out traps and, if it's safe to do so (for example, you have no children or pets living in or visiting your home and you know that only the pests you wish to exterminate will be able to access it), consider using poison as well. Poison is especially important if you have pests such as roaches, which are difficult or impossible to get rid of through trapping alone. Keep in mind that in some worst case scenarios, a pest problem could require professional help, but you can take these DIY steps as soon as you notice the problem. Then if you realize the pest problem is too serious to deal with alone, you can still call an exterminator.
These three fixes will help you take care of a variety of ductwork noise. There are other possible reasons for duct noise though, so if you have ductwork that's still making noises after you've attended to these issues, you may want to have professional maintenance done through a place like Butler Heating & Air.