The air in the average home circulates through the ducts about five to seven times per day. With it, Your HVAC system also circulates dust, mold and many known allergens that wind up in the air you breathe. All that debris can have an adverse effect on your living environment.
Filters can catch a large percentage of these things but, over time, dirt, dust and other particles (like those mentioned above) do build up. The simple fact of the matter is that people neglect duct cleaning. It’s a real out of sight, out of mind situation. They dust and clean the vent covers, but in the meantime all manner of gunk is building up inside the ducts.
Dirty Ducts and Health
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) there is no substantiated proof that anything that makes it past your filters is particularly harmful, the effects of many of these particles on those sensitive to them is clearly observable, as is the residue left behind when dust or dirt get blown around your clean house.
The bottom line is this: if you are feeling the affects of allergies inside your home, if it seems like you need to dust more often than you used to, or if you sense a distinct odor of mold or mildew coming from the vents, chances are your ducts are dirty and should be cleaned as soon as possible. It isn’t the cheapest investment in home maintenance, but it will keep your HVAC system running smoothly and eliminate many of the above mentioned issues for a significant amount of time.
Check Your Ducts
While it may not be easy (or even possible) to see what is going on throughout the duct work in your home, it is possible to get a fairly accurate picture of what’s going on in there with the aid of just a digital camera with flash. Remove one of your vent covers, reach inside as far as you can and snap a few pictures. Make sure you use the wrist strap on the camera because if the camera falls, it might be irretrievable without hiring someone to get it (which would likely cost more than the value of the camera).
Now check out the pictures on as large a screen as possible. Do you see gunk within a few feet of the vent? If so, this could be an easier job than you think. A vacuum cleaner with a long hose attachment might solve the problem then and there. If, however, there is a long line of junk with a a thick coating of dust and debris that extends beyond your vacuum cleaner’s reach, your duct work would benefit more from a professional cleaning.
Signs Your Ducts Need Cleaning
If you notice any of these things around your home, chances are it’s time to get your ducts cleaned:
- Dust clogs on the vents
- Noticeable dust particles blowing around a vent or out of a register
- Visible mold on the inside of the duct-work
- Dead insects or evidence of rodent droppings inside the ducts
Getting a handle on this problem now will save you time and money later. Don’t wait. Call a professional duct cleaner for an estimate today.