A really bad air conditioning installation that resembles a metallic octopus hanging from your basement ceiling has been dubbed by professionals as "the ductopus". The problem with this horrible installation by one contractor means that he or she has absolutely no professional or working knowledge of how ventilation works, nor does he or she know how to properly help air conditioning repair. If you see this nightmare in your basement taking shape during installation, or you witness it after the contractor has left, here is how you can fix this nightmare.
Better Design Ahead of Time
Ductopus problems are the result of both licensed and unlicensed HVAC contractors not taking the time to design a system of vent connections that is both functional and aesthetically pleasing. This does not mean that their final results will not work. It just means that they will be about as efficient as a whirligig in a desert valley with no wind. To put it another way, your air conditioner will blow and blow, but your house will still feel warm because not enough cool air is reaching all of your rooms. Before you hire an HVAC contractor and allow him or her near your basement and your forced air furnace, get him or her to draw up a working and feasible design for ventilation connections.
Utilizing Prefabricated Metal Vents Instead
The ductopus is not only a very poor design, but is also comprised of an expandable ventilation material rather than prefabricated metal vents. The reason for this is that the expandable ventilation material is significantly cheaper than the prefabricated metal vents, and contractors who try to underbid other contractors do so by using the expandable material instead. Unfortunately for consumers who were trying to save money up front, they have to find a lot more money to fix this problem. The best thing you can do for yourself and your home is to request metal vents and ventilation all the way. It forces the contractor to design better connections and seal off all leaks and edges before they become a problem.
Hire Only Licensed HVAC Contractors
It does not take much to purchase a truck or van, slap a heating and cooling label on it, buy a little advertising, and call yourself an HVAC contractor. Unless you, the consumer, knows enough to ask to see the contractor's license, it is very probable that you will get a ductopus in your basement. Worse still, an unlicensed contractor can cause extensive damage to your home's heating and cooling systems, which in turn will cause you more money to repair and replace. Save yourself from the inevitable ductopus and get a copy of the contractor's current license before you hire him/her.