There has been much debate about the necessity of air duct cleaning and whether or not it helps improve air quality inside the home. Here is a little information to help you decide for yourself if air duct cleaning is right for you.

What is air duct cleaning?

Air duct cleaning is a service provided to vacuum out the dust and gunk that collects inside your air ducts over time. It also includes cleaning the supply and return vents, grills, heating and cooling coils, drain pans and air handler housing unit. Your air filter catches a lot of the debris that goes through your HVAC system but a small percentage of it stays behind and if there is moisture inside the ducts from leaks in the vents, mold can grow inside the ducts creating an unsafe condition for family members with any type of breathing problem.

Does it help to improve air quality?

There is no concrete evidence to prove that duct cleaning improves the air quality, according to the Environmental Protection Agency, but you would think that not having that gunk in there would be helpful to keep your system clean and discourage mold and bacteria growth. Periodic cleaning of your HVAC system does help extend its lifespan and helps it run more efficiently.

How to decide if I need it?

There are a few indicators that would suggest your system would benefit from a good cleaning. You might consider air duct cleaning if you have any of these conditions:
• visible mold inside the ducts or on any of the system components
• strange odors coming from the vents
• signs of vermin inside the ducting; droppings, hair
• excessive dust or debris blowing out from the vents when the system cycles on

Under these circumstances, duct cleaning may correct the problem. This type of cleaning, however, should only be needed infrequently because if you have regular system maintenance your HVAC technician does most of this for you.

Tips for Choosing a Service Provider

Be sure if you do choose to have this done that the company you choose is licensed to do the work and is qualified. They should also use no chemical biocides and adhere to the NADCA air duct cleaning standards. This type of work should only be done by someone qualified because improper cleaning of the system could damage the components resulting in system failure.

Since there is no real scientific evidence to support air duct cleaning as a means of improving air quality, a better choice might be to contact your local HVAC Company and schedule a maintenance call. If your system is dirty or needs to be cleaned for whatever reason, it is a safer choice to let a trained and certified technician do it. If you have any questions about system cleaning or issues with heating or cooling, contact ABA Heating and Cooling.