Duct maintenance is critical to maintaining healthy indoor air quality. When the need for it is established, professional duct cleaning may be required, also. In most homes, the HVAC ductwork conveys over 1,000 cubic feet of air per minute to all parts of the house. Whatever’s in your ductwork gets in your breathing air—and vice versa. Because the majority of residential ductwork is routed through areas inaccessible to the average homeowner, in most cases, only an HVAC professional can properly inspect, evaluate and clean your ductwork.
Here’s what you can do yourself to care for your ductwork:
- Purchase quality pleated HVAC system air filters and change the filter monthly.
- Vacuum air vents in individual rooms. Remove the grille and vacuum out dust accumulation as far as you can reach inside the duct.
- Don’t close supply or return vents in individual rooms. This doesn’t save energy, it disrupts system air balance and may cause duct leakage.
- Get roof leaks repaired promptly. Water infiltrating ductwork commonly installed in the attic causes deterioration and mold growth.
Under the following circumstances, consider an evaluation and duct cleaning by a qualified professional:
- If toxic mold growth inside the ducts is verified by sampling and testing.
- If the ducts have been infiltrated by water or exposed to chronically high indoor humidity.
- If your home has recently been renovated, remodeled or undergone abatement procedures such as lead paint or asbestos removal.
- If there is evidence of infestation by rodents, insects, birds or other creatures inside the ducts.
- If you see dust or dirt emitted from air vents when the system blower turns on.
- If occupants of the home are reporting allergy-like physical symptoms or illness. These should first be examined and diagnosed by a physician, then steps taken to rule out other possible causes.
To avoid scams, choose a duct cleaning service offered by an HVAC contractor with an established track record in your community and certified by NADCA, the National Air Duct Cleaners Association.
Contact the professionals at Apollo Home Heating, Cooling and Plumbing for more information about an evaluation and duct cleaning procedure for your home.