Many homeowners become overly concerned with the state of their HVAC appliances that they forget about what comes in between. Air ducts are hidden channels for the circulation of air around the home, and deserve serious consideration when not only running these appliances, but also ensuring that indoor air quality is kept healthy. It is important to note that because these vents are hidden, we cannot easily see what is lurking beneath. Allergens like mold, dust, pollen, fur and other debris can clog up within the vents with time and pose a risk to human and animal health. Here are a few things you can do to help keep your air ducts clean and home environment healthy.
Professional dust inspections
– many air duct cleaning providers offer a free duct inspection to assess whether a professional cleaning is required. Generally speaking, specialists recommend that you should have your air ducts professionally cleaned, every 3-5 years. If you however have reasons for concern, a free inspection will let you know if there is an unforeseen problem. Remember to get several estimates before selecting the firm that will carry out the cleaning. Also keep in mind that duct cleaning can kick up a lot of dust in the house and make a real mess and duct cleaning companies aren’t always good at house cleaning, so you might want to hire a house cleaning company to come in after the duct cleaners and do a thorough clean of the home.
Air filter changing
– in between professional cleaning of air ducts, it is important that you regularly change your air filters. This will help maintain air quality at a good level and prevent the accumulation of debris that may build up and cause damage to your coil.
Air register cleaning
– air registers also require regular cleaning. Chances are you can do this yourself and don’t need to call in a heating and cooling specialist. If you however notice mold growth, get a professional in urgently as it may indicate unseen clogging within the ducts that is encouraging mold growth.
– a hose and nozzle attachment on your vacuum can be very useful in getting rid of any buildup of dust and debris in air ducts. If all seems well and you can reach the interior of the duct walls, wipe them down with a clean rag.
– if you detect any signs of mold spores when cleaning, it is important to have mold remediation work carried out alongside professional air duct cleaning. Without this action, you may only be placing a temporary Band-Aid on a problem that will later become more costly to fix.
In cases where the ducts are difficult to look or reach into, a professional service is recommended. If you also suspect an infestation of rats or mice in your air ducts, a professional can help to thoroughly clean them out, and seal any gaps created.
Keep in mind that the more sources of pollutants you have within the home, the more frequently you should undertake cleaning exercises. For instance, if you have several furry pets and occupants that smoke, there will be a faster build up of debris in the air ducts, calling for attention that is more frequent. In the long run, keeping your air ducts clear will also help reduce your energy utility bills, boost air circulation and improve upon the performance of your HVAC units.