If and when your home can use air duct cleaning

One of the essentials to maintaining a clean and healthy HVAC system is duct cleaning.

A duct system provides an easy path for mold, mildew, dirt, dust and other debris to be dispersed throughout your home. These contaminants can cause severe health problems if you are exposed to them. Allergy sufferers are especially susceptible to these unwanted pollutants.

Over time, several factors can lead to a contaminated duct system. Damp conditions can lead to the growth of mold and mildew, which produce airborne spores that are spread throughout your home via your forced air system. Areas with high humidity are most susceptible to these growths but leaking roofs can lead to the problem as well. Vermin, such as squirrels and rats, often make their way into your duct system, leaving behind hair, dander and feces. You don't want these types of particle contaminants floating around in the air you breathe.

Your HVAC technician should perform the following procedures when performing duct cleaning.

  • Create access points to inspect the inside of your duct system. This includes removing registers and returns and possibly cutting additional holes in the ducts to accommodate equipment.
  • Use both his eyes and specialized equipment to examine and clean the duct interiors.
  • Use soft-bristled brushes to loosen the contaminants without damaging the duct interior.
  • Use compressed air combined with special pneumatic whips and brushes to loosen and direct the contaminants from the ducts.
  • Use vacuum systems and equipment to remove the contaminants from inside of your home. This might include the use of handheld vacuums equipped with HEPA filters or larger equipment such as vacuum trucks to remove the contaminants.
  • Protect flooring and furnishings during the cleaning process.
  • Clean and replace registers and returns. Seal and re-insulate any access holes created during the duct cleaning.