What Vent Types Will Best Serve Your Home’s HVAC System?

What Vent Types Will Best Serve Your Home’s HVAC System?

While all vents in your house move air, vent types differ according to function and location. The HVAC system in a typical residence moves more than 1,500 cubic feet of air per minute. This airflow passes through a variety of vent types as air volume is continuously circulated throughout the house and then back to the furnace or air conditioner. Here’s how to tell the difference between the various vent types in your home:

Supply Vents

These are vent types that deliver heated or cooled air to individual rooms through supply ductwork.

  • The supply vent is usually among the smaller vent types and is  located on an upper portion of a wall or in the ceiling.
  • For optimum control, supply registers are preferable. A register (versus a simple grille vent) includes louvers operated by a small lever to manually adjust airflow. This allows control of conditioned airflow volume entering the room, as well as control of the direction of the airflow.

Return Vents

Return vents are under negative air pressure to draw conditioned air out of a room. Return air is pulled through return ductwork back to the furnace or air conditioner to be filtered, then heated or cooled again.

  • A return vent is generally a simple grille that cannot control airflow nor be manually closed.
  • Returns may be located anywhere in rooms, including the floor.  However, floor returns are more likely to be blocked by furniture or other objects.
  • Many homes do not include dedicated individual return vents in every room. Instead, a single return vent is located in a central location — often a common hallway that extends to all rooms.

Exhaust Vents

Typically installed in the ceiling of bathrooms and kitchens and controlled by a timer, exhaust ventilation is a one-way process that incorporates a powered fan to pull humidity and odors out of a single room. Exhaust airflow goes through a dedicated exhaust duct to the exterior of the house.

For more about the various vent types in your home and how they impact comfort and efficiency, ask the professionals at Powers Heating & Air.

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