When is Air Duct Cleaning Necessary?


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Not a lot is actually known about the proper methods of duct cleaning or their benefits, as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made clear.

The EPA has stated that studies have failed to effectively display a direct link between the dust levels in air ducts and dust levels in homes, which may illustrate that cleaning ducts won’t prevent health issues. However, certain other types of buildup can potentially cause health issues in homeowners, which cleaning can help eliminate.

When and Why Air Duct Cleaning is Important

You should consider cleaning your air ducts if:

  • Mold is plainly visible inside of the ducts or on certain parts of your heating and cooling systems.
  • Ducts suffer from vermin infestation such as rodents or insects.
  • Ducts are clogged with large amounts of dust, debris, or particles that actually get inside the home.

These three main conditions typically have more issues behind them, which is why you should identify the direct cause of the problem before cleaning or doing anything else with the ducts.

In many cases you may want to clean your heating and cooling system parts, which can increase the system’s longevity while making it more efficient. Cleaning the ducts alone won’t necessarily help increase HVAC efficiency.

If you decide to get your air ducts cleaned with the help of service providers, you should make sure that the company you choose is capable of giving you what you need. Certain companies may require you to permit the use of biocide to kill and prevent the growth of bacteria and fungi, or the application of a sealant to keep dirt and dust contained. Keep in mind that both of these solutions are somewhat controversial, as the EPA has not registered any biocides for use in internally-insulated air ducts, and there isn’t enough research to suggest that biocides and sealants can effectively clean ducts or cause health problems in homeowners.

Before selecting any service provider, you should make sure that they will clean the entire system and have the appropriate qualifications to complete the job.

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What to Expect

Indoor pollution continues to be a problem for many homeowners, and companies are pushing services and certain products to help improve indoor air quality. Air duct cleaning services can vary greatly in price, costing anywhere between $450 and $1000 depending on the extent of the project.

Some of the factors that influence air duct cleaning services include the size of the air duct system, accessibility, level of contamination, and climactic region. It’s important for homeowners to understand exactly what the cleaning project will entail before paying for air duct cleaning services, avoiding any unpleasant surprises.

Cleaning service providers should make it clear that they will clean the entire system, and not simply individual components, as neglecting to clean every part can result in the re-contamination of the rest of the system. Cleaning companies normally use specialized tools to dislodge debris and dirt, and use a vacuum cleaner to remove them.

If a service provider recommends or even requires the application of biocides and sealants, you should make sure you are fully informed prior to agreeing to these treatments.

How Long Does Air Duct Cleaning Take?

Depending on how extensive the cleaning project is, cleaning may take anywhere from hours to days to complete. The size of your HVAC system, amount of buildup, and accessibility can all factor into the time it takes to sufficiently clean it and remove all sources of contamination.

Homeowners should request an estimate of the number of hours or days a project will take, and determine if there will be any interruptions at any point. Service providers should be able to provide a written agreement that covers the amount of time the job will take along with the total cost.

How Often Air Duct Cleaning Should Occur

Contrary to what you may think, the EPA doesn’t recommend regular cleaning of air ducts. Air ducts should only undergo cleaning if contamination from dirt, dust, mold, or bacteria is present. This may be more frequent if service providers fail to completely clean the entire system, but if they properly clean all air duct components, then future problems should remain relatively infrequent.

Ultimately, air duct cleaning shouldn’t be a frequent necessity for any homeowner with functioning HVAC systems, but if there are certain problems such as buildup of contaminants or air leaks, you should contact a cleaning service provider that you trust.

Don’t Settle for Any Service Provider

If you need a reliable air duct cleaning company to give your HVAC the attention it needs, Ecogenie is one of the best options available. Through our services, you can experience improved air quality and benefit from contaminant- and leak-free air ducts that will keep your HVAC system working the way it should.

To get started on your cleaning project, contact us today. We can also provide other services to keep your home in top shape, including dryer vent cleaning, carpet cleaning, deep cleaning, and mold removal.