The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that the air inside your home can be two to five times more polluted than the air we breathe outside. While we talk frequently about how changing the air filters in your HVAC system can improve air quality, so too can making sure your ductwork is clean.
Here are some of the benefits of having your ducts cleaned.
- Health. Allergens, mold, dust, pollen, mildew and even pet dander can invade your ductwork. This can make breathing more difficult for people with asthma, allergies and other respiratory problems.
- HVAC system efficiency. Dirty air lessens the effectiveness of your HVAC system by making it work harder to push warmer or cooler air into your living space. This could increase your utility bills. So much like you need to change the filters in your HVAC system or remove lint from your dryer filter, so too you need to remove substances from your ducts.
- Cleaner house. The allergens, mold, dust, etc. mentioned above get circulated and enter your living space, landing on your furniture, carpeting, etc. Having your ducts cleaned reduces this.
- No smells. Ducts will house and circulate stale smells from cleaning agents, paint fumes, mold, tobacco and even food preparation. Cleaning of the ducts removes these odors.
The National Air Duct Cleaners Association recommends you have your ducts cleaned every three to five years. A proper cleaning should include cleaning:
- the interior of the heating and ventilating system
- the furnace fan
- the coils inside the air conditioning or heat pump
The cleaning should also include fogging a disinfectant through the system to eliminate any remaining mold, bacteria or other contaminants.
When hiring a duct cleaning company, make sure they will perform the above functions. Expect the cleaning to take several hours.