Trusted Tips and Resources

Trusted Tips & Resources

Gibbon Heating and Air your Trusted Saskatoon Air Conditioning and Furnace experts share a tip on Return Air

Gibbon Heating & Air Conditioning has been serving Saskatoon and surrounding areas for over 25 Years, Gibbon is a "Total Service" company with trained technicians who are able to provide customers with solutions to all their SASKATOON Heating & Air Conditioning requirements! 

Here they share a tip on Return Air:  

In many homes return air struggles to find its way back to the furnace. This results in improper pressure balances from room-to-room and often leads to uneven room temperatures. Lack of return air causes comfort complaints, higher energy costs, and can even cause moisture problems throughout a home.

While most HVAC contractors install ducts and registers to deliver air to every room in a house, they often neglect to provide adequate return air back to the furnace. In most homes, there is usually only one return air grille in the common hallway that is attempting to serve the entire house. This means that all of the stale cold air in your home has to be pulled through that single grille before it can be heated by the furnace.

Here’s what happens when there isn’t enough return air in a home:

If the bedroom doors are closed, each bedroom becomes pressurized, forcing air into the bedroom walls and ceiling. In the winter, this humid air can contact cold surfaces and lead to condensation and mold.

Also, the main return air grille is starving for air. This then causes the hallway and living room to be depressurized as air is pulled from the attic, cracks in the walls, back into the hallway.

In the winter, the air that is pulled from the attic is cold and this increases the heating load. Conversely, during the summer, the air that is sucked indoors is hot and humid; this increases both the sensible and latent load on the air conditioner and increases power consumption.

There are three possible ways to solve the pressurized-bedroom problem. Each bedroom needs either:

A return air grille ducted back to the furnace;

A through-the-wall transfer grille connecting the bedroom to the hallway;

A crossover duct connecting a ceiling grille in the bedroom with a ceiling grille in the hallway.

The best option is of course the more expensive one: install a return grille/duct into every conditioned room of the house. Through-the-wall transfer grilles are a cheaper solution, but they have a major drawback: noise transmission. People in the hallway can often hear what goes on in the bedroom if a through-the-wall option is used.

A third option is a crossover duct. In this approach, a ceiling grille is placed in each bedroom and then connected to a grille in the hall. While a crossover duct will transmit sound, it will not be as noticeable as a through-the-wall return air.

Before considering a crossover duct, it should be noted that there are some disadvantages to this approach. A great deal of heat loss can occur in an attic space and it would be necessary in northern climates to insulate the duct work and this approach is not recommended in the Northern hemispheres.  

Wondering which option best suits your needs? Call a professional and certified contractor who can go over the options with you.


You can find Gibbon Heating and Air online Check out their listing here in the AIR CONDITIONING & FURNACE Category on THE Saskatoon Directory of excellence..they are your Trusted FURNACE EXPERTS Right here in Saskatoon!



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