DIY Projects

Project File #5
Do It Yourself
As Soon As Possible
Save up to 30% on heating and cooling

Proper maintenance of your HVAC system can lead to big energy savings.

HVAC systems can often be found in the attic. Although this frees up space in your home, it’s not ideal from an energy-efficiency standpoint. But with a little attention, you can make sure these systems waste less energy, which will ultimately help you save on heating and cooling costs.

Project Overview

Tools and Materials:

  • Utility knife
  • Caulk gun
  • Gloves
  • Lights
  • Duct mastic and foil tape
  • Foam/caulk/construction adhesive
  • Duct insulation
  • Fasteners


  • Dust mask/respirator
  • Gloves
  • Safety glasses
  • Kneepads
  1. Before you begin any work on your HVAC system, determine whether yours is fuel-fired, a split-system electric heat pump, or another kind of system. You’ll also want to familiarize yourself with the basic features of your furnace, including the supply and return ducts.
  2. Perform a visual inspection of your system, making sure to check any condensate lines for proper drainage. You’ll also want to check for a secondary drain pan, which will protect your attic from moisture accumulation and water damage.
  3. Pay special attention to the ducts closest to the HVAC system. Those seams feel the highest pressures from the blower and can move the most air. This includes the furnace filter slot—if it is located next to the HVAC system. And when was the last time you replaced your furnace filter?
  4. Inspect the ductwork throughout your home, and find gaps or seams that could benefit from extra duct sealing with mastic. If you can feel air blowing out of gaps or cracks when the blower is running, those are good places to start. If you removed or moved duct insulation to inspect and seal, be sure to re-install the duct insulation.

Download Project File

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