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A little known provision of DET Verification is the need to visually check the duct sealing of what we call the air handler stack: air handler, plenums, take off collars, and attached duct work at the at the air handler unit.
Verification Authority. Either the HVAC contractor or a DET Verifier can verify the duct sealing on the Georgia Residential Energy Code Compliance Certificate after visual checking the installation.
Verification Conditions. Duct sealing checks only need to be done when either the air handler or evaporator coil is replaced and a duct test is not performed.
Unfortunately, homeowners are denied the opportunity to improve their energy use as intended by this provision of the Georgia energy code because a building permit to replace the air handler unit is not obtained, as required.
Home InSight has done a number of these checks for builders, and we routinely check them as part of a home inspection. Here’s what we’re finding:
Occasionally, we find some typical things that were routine in the past
4. Plenums incompletely sealed to air handler units
Builder Training Availble
Home InSight is happy to train builders in the methods of sealing the air handler stack. This knowledge can lead to sealing the ductwork with existing staff or ensuring the HVAC contractor does it. It leads to better comfort and energy performance while avoiding call backs.
See Georgia building code requirements for duct sealing the air handler stack.
Expect Resale Home Inspection Major Findings!
Beware: From Home InSight’s perspective, improperly sealed air handler stacks are a building code violation as early as 1 Jul 11. By looking at the manufacture date of the equipment, we can figure out if the equipment is installed later than this date. We claim it a major finding in a resale home inspection. It’s best to avoid the call back!