I have a client who will eventually spend the money and have her ducts sealed and insulated, and the system properly balanced, but in the meantime her house is pretty hot on the 2nd floor. She has registers that were installed on the main supply trunk which have kept her basement cool, but she doesn't need the air to leak into her basement.

So, I remember seeing those magnetic register covers a few months back. Any suggestions on which covers actually work, and manufacturers of these register covers?



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Just use Saran wrap since it's only temporary.

Bob, I hear you, but this client is at least a little bit concerned with aesthetics, as they have a family member living in the basement. I am pretty sure that if I recommend saran wrap they will not be pleased with the recommendation, no matter how much it achieves their short term goal.

In my world, I'd put saran wrap (or similar) up all day long, but I am just living in that world of my clients.

I didn't figure anybody that lived in a basement would be picky, but I understand the need to please your customers. Since somebody is using that space why cut off all airflow? How difficult would it be to retrofit with butterfly dampers? How about stuffing something into the duct right behind the register? The problem with shutting off the registers is the whistling noise...

Good points Bob.

I guess I will just try to convince the HO to have the registers permanently closed off.


Remove the register and attach your choice of sealing material inside the register. Then reattach the register.  Saran Wrap, Duct Mask, Magnetic Material, CardBoard.  Cut to fit on site.  I've done this with supplies in the furnace room.  Returns in the furnace room, I use the magnetic on the outside.

Great advice.

Thank you John!


Go to your local sign company-have them cut pieces of the material they use for magnetic vehicle signs.

Air pressure will most likely blow them off.

Interesting that you say that Bob. I had been pondering that.

It appears that I will just have to opt for permanently sealing the registers.

Thanks gents!

Good point,,,if you were sealing a high percentage of the registers in a house. I was thinking that they would do ok since they stand up to 70 mph wind, but that is shear strength, not direct pressure. But then again, how much pressure will there be-most of it would be relieved by the registers upstairs, no? And then it would be mostly a matter of shear strength. And far less than a speedy vehicle.

Maybe another alternative is to stuff the registers with foam board-maybe scraps from other jobs.

I like where you're going with this. I had considered the same thing (as there is a heck of a lot of scraps of rigid foam around the office here).

Many times we have used sign material and it won't blow of 99% of the time. And don't have the guy cut it as you can do that with a razor knife and a board or with a big pair of scissors.   You can get it is sheets or rolls, and a 12" roll will go a long way.  We have tried this on duct testing, but it doesn't work unless you depressurize - that's a whole other story on pressure/de-pressure in duct testing.  And you have to be careful of the little lever that opens and closes the louvers - cut a hole for it or cut the cover short of it.  And if you don't like that, sell her a couple of pieces of your duct testing tape if you still use it.


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