How Do I Know If My Air Ducts Need to Be Cleaned?

duct full of dust and dirt

Improving air quality with duct cleaning

As a homeowner, you know that you have certain duties to perform around your home on a daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly schedule. Some are done without even thinking about it. Some are done with a reminder system, maybe on your iCalendar, and one of those things should be air duct cleaning

Air duct cleaning, is it necessary? “Necessary”, no. Recommended as helpful, yes. Air duct cleaning isn’t necessary, it isn’t like the air duct police are going to be knocking on your door. However, it isn’t a bad idea and when it is properly done, air duct cleaning can be helpful in some situations. Like a house with filthy air ducts that are infested with insects, rodents, or other vermin. 

If you could see the mildew and mold growth in the air ducts, around and in the mechanical components of your HVAC system, you wouldn’t be questioning this why air duct cleaning task should be considered necessary. The purpose and value of air duct and vent cleaning would be apparent and gross, in fact, most homeowners can’t tolerate the nastiness. 

What happens if you don’t clean your air ducts?

If you are one of those homeowners that doesn’t believe air duct cleaning is beneficial, think about this for a moment: Has anyone in your home started suffering from allergies or nasal congestion with no prior history? Is anyone, including yourself, feeling lethargic, more than the lazy day here or there? You may be suffering from the results of dirt air ducts. Read on for some other signs that air duct cleaning could fix for you and your family: 

  • Dirty air ducts smell.  With mildew and mold building up in the air ducts, a musty smell begins flowing through your house. Regular air duct cleaning will keep that mildew and mold cleaned out and odor free. 
  • Dirty air ducts make your home’s indoor home environment dirty.  Cleaning air ducts on a regular basis has proven to ease, even eliminate serious health issues and improve the overall health of everyone in the house. Pulmonary health conditions are the one thing that medical research has found improves with a regular schedule of air duct cleaning. 
  • Dirty air ducts have been linked to the cause of allergies, colds, coughing, and sore throats. The air quality in your home drops a great deal when you don’t have a regular air duct cleaning routine. The dirty air ducts circulate and promotes allergens and bacteria through the house and anyone with allergies, asthma or other breathing issues are sick more frequently. This is especially true for children and the elderly. 
  • Dirty air ducts are inhabited by insects and rodents. Without air duct cleaning, insects and rodents begin nesting, creating a nuisance and with the diseases they carry, they become a serious health threat. 
  • Dirty air ducts are the number one cause of the “sick building syndrome”. Yes, that is a thing and when air duct cleaning is overlooked, allergens, dust, pet dander, and pollen get stuck in the air ducts and accumulate. After some time, when the air ducts are used, that stuff gets blown and distributed throughout your home.  
  • Dirty air ducts speed up the aging process. When we can’t breathe good, we feel tired, but we don’t always realize it is because we aren’t breathing good. By not having a routine air duct cleaning in place, the entire household is breathing in contaminated air from the dirty ducts. When we’re tired and keep pushing ourselves, it ages us faster than it does when we have a good 8 hours of clean air sleep. 
  • Dirty air ducts lessen the efficiency of your HVAC system. Without air duct cleaning, debris and dirt are left, builds up, and impedes the efficiency of your HVAC system. This debris and dirt contaminate the air, adding to the possibility of health issues. 

How do professionals clean air ducts?

Professional air duct cleaning contractors use specialized blowers, brushes, and vacuums to clean out the intake, return ducts, and intake throughout your home. A thorough air duct cleaning involves a cleaning the air handler, coils, fans, grilles, housing, motors, and fans through the entire HVAC system.

Can I clean my own air ducts?

Yes, if you know your home needs an air duct cleaning service, but the budget is tight, you can do an air duct cleaning yourself. This isn’t an easy task and will take longer than you may estimate, so plan a full day. Be prepared for insects, mildew, mold, and possible rodent or other vermin. You won’t have the same high-powered, professional equipment and supplies that professionals use, so you shouldn’t expect the same results. 

How long does it take to clean air ducts in a house?

An air duct cleaning for a typical single-family home can be completed within two hour or may take up to four hours. Factors that can affect the time are how many technicians are on the job and how many different turns the air ducts have. If you have indoor pets, it could take longer to compete the job. 

Vent with duct

Can dirty air ducts make you sick?

Definitely!  As we covered earlier, allergies, colds, coughing, and sore throats can often be the results of missed air duct cleaning. You can start feeling lethargic when the air ducts need cleaning because you’re not breathing well as you sleep. If your home has air duct without insulation, this doesn’t eliminate the need for regular air duct cleaning. Insulation doesn’t make air duct collect any less debris and dust but could actually suck more into them. Dial 678-203-4784 today for your air duct cleaning needs.