You try hard to keep your house clean. You regularly dust, vacuum, clean the floors and take the trash out, but still you feel like you are never rid of the dust and stale air in your home. Did you know that certain air pollutants can be up to five times higher indoors than outdoors?
Allergens and contaminants primarily originate inside the home from pets, cooking and the use of appliances and fireplaces, smoking, paints, damp environments, and much more. Other pollutants can be tracked inside on clothing and shoes, or can seep in through open windows and doors. All of this can contribute to poor air quality.
Poor air quality can leave your family suffering from a host of negative health effects, such as irritated eyes, nose and throat; headaches; and, allergy-like symptoms; and it can worsen symptoms of asthma or other pre-existing health conditions.
If you aren’t comfortable with the quality of the air that your family is breathing inside your home, it is time to have your air ducts cleaned. You should also have your ducts cleaned if you have had a significant home renovation, your roof leaks, you have a pest infestation in your home, or there is visible mold in the ductwork or vents.
Air Duct Cleaning Improves Indoor Air Quality
Your HVAC system includes a series of interconnected vents, pipes and flues that make up the ductwork in your house. Eventually all of the air in your house will flow through this ductwork as air flows from the air conditioner or furnace in and out of the rooms. Contaminants in your ductwork can exacerbate already poor indoor air quality.
When you hire a trained professional for a ductwork cleaning service, anticipate two staff to spend up to four hours cleaning the system. Depending on the issues encountered during the process, it could take longer. You can expect the following during the ductwork cleaning process:
- Inspection of the cooling and heating system to assess the amount of dirt and debris along the ductwork passageways, and to ensure there are no asbestos-containing materials.
- Special tools, including blowers, vacuums, and brushes, will be used to dislodge the debris from supply, intake, and return ducts.
- Air handlers, registers, grilles, fans, motors, and coils in the HVAC system are thoroughly cleaned. Chemicals are rarely used in a cleaning, and if so, you should be told prior to usage.
- HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters are used for vacuums to ensure no particles are left behind.
- Any access holes created in the ductwork during cleaning will be properly sealed according to industry standards.
Ways to Clean the Air
In addition to a thorough duct cleaning, the following green steps may be beneficial for maintaining clean air and temporarily clearing the air in your house prior to a cleaning:
Open the windows. One of the best ways to clear out offensive odors and remove pollutants is by opening the windows and doors and letting in the fresh air while letting out the bad air.
Change the air filter. Your HVAC unit air filters should be changed regularly, but should especially be changed if you notice excessive dust or poor air quality in your house. How often you switch out the filter depends on a lot of factors, including type of HVAC unit, size of house, and outdoor air quality.
Make your home non-smoking. The single, biggest pollutant of indoor air is cigarette smoke. The more than 4,000 chemicals in cigarette smoke can lead to a host of illnesses in the smoker and those inhaling the second-hand smoke.
Get indoor plants. Not only are indoor plants pretty, but they have been shown to help aid in the removal of carbon monoxide and other pollutants. Consider scattering pots of ivy, spider plants and peace lilies throughout your home to help remove harmful chemicals from the air.
Restore Your Peace of Mind
Having your ductwork cleaned is something to have done periodically to help keep your family, friends and pets safe from potential pollutants. More frequent cleanings are recommended in certain circumstances and in homes with residents with severe allergies or respiratory conditions.
Cleaning air ducts is a great way to improve the air quality in your home. Learn how renewable energy sources like Community Solar are helping to keep the air clean outside too.