Repair Air Conditioning Ducts and DIY the Installation of Air Conditioners
Loose ducts leak air, causing the home to not cool as quickly. As a result, the homeowner will usually run the air conditioning longer, increasing cooling bills. Most damagingly, dust and other contaminants can leak into the duct work, causing illness and allergies and shortening the life of the air conditioning.
How to Repair Air Conditioning Ducts
Fortunately, if you can get to your ducts, you can fix them. Look at the damage to the duct. Solid ducts rarely get punctured in the middle, but they can get loose where they join other sections.
Flexible ducts can also come loose, or they can develop small tears. If the duct is loose, push it onto the connection. Clean the area with with a damp cloth or paper towel.
It does not have to be spotless, but you will get a better seal if it is not too dirty. Apply water-based mastic sealant to the gap or tear with a brush. Apply it liberally to cover the whole gap.
Give it about 10 minutes to start to cure. Cover the patch with mastic tape. The tape should completely cover the mastic sealant and overlap with the bare duct as well.
Wait a couple of hours for the patch to cure. Then turn on the air conditioning. Move your hand around the patch to feel for air.
If you did the patch right, there should be not air leaking out.
DIY the Installation of Air Conditioners
However, there are some general installation guidelines you can follow. Open up the window and clean any debris from the window frame with the attachment for your vacuum. Push the vacuum cleaner attachment into the crevices to remove all the debris.
Open up the accordion side panels on the window air conditioner. These will pull out of the sides. Apply weatherstripping to the bottom of the window sill where the air conditioner will sit to give it a tighter seal.
Measure this space with a tape measure and use scissors to cut the weatherstripping to the appropriate size. Remove the paper backing from the weatherstripping and place it inside the window sill. Push it in place all along the edge of the sill to apply.
Lift the air conditioner into the window. Get a friend to help you if its too heavy. The underside of the air conditioner will have a notch that sits over the bottom of the window.
Close the window to help keep the air conditioner in place once you set it inside the frame. There will be a notch along the top of the air conditioner, just like there was along the bottom, that the window will close into. You will know the air conditioner is level if the window can close into this notch.
The majority of do-it-yourself homeowners can easily install a window air conditioner. While whole house air conditioning systems must be installed by a certified professional, window air conditioners can be in place and ready to go in less than an hour. The installation process can vary slightly based on the model you purchase, so its a good idea to check the directions that come with the air conditioner.