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How do I keep my air ducts clean?

Keeping your air ducts clean is necessary for maintaining a healthy and comfortable indoor environment. Air ducts tend to accumulate dust, dirt, allergens, and mold over time, which can negatively impact your indoor air quality. It can also reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system, making it work twice as hard as it used to. Poor indoor air quality caused by dirty air ducts can be a nightmare for people with allergies and underlying respiratory issues. In this article, we will be sharing effective strategies to keep your air ducts clean and maintain a healthy indoor environment.

Change your filters regularly

The air filters inside the HVAC system play a crucial role in trapping airborne particles, preventing them from entering the ductwork. Over time, these filters can get clogged, reducing their effectiveness. This, in turn, limits the airflow inside the ductwork making your HVAC system work harder than it is supposed to. Consider replacing your air filters based on the manufacturer’s recommendations, typically every 1 to 3 months to keep your air ducts clean.

Schedule a professional duct cleaning

air duct cleaning in progress

Keeping your air ducts clean is crucial to keeping fresh air in the home

Although visual inspections are a great start, it is highly recommended to hire a professional duct cleaning service every 3 to 5 years. Professional cleaners have years of experience and use specialized equipment to thoroughly clean your air ducts. They can get rid of accumulated debris, pet dander, dust, and mold, improving the overall indoor air quality of your home.

  1. Perform regular inspections

One of the best ways to determine whether your air ducts need cleaning or repairs is by conducting regular inspections. It is essential to inspect your ductwork periodically even if you don’t notice any obvious signs of contamination. Pay close attention to unusual odors or a decrease in air quality as they are some of the signs of clogged or dirty air ducts.

  1. Seal any leaks in the ductwork

A thorough inspection of the ductwork will help you detect the sources of leaks in your ductwork. Check for any visible leaks or gaps and seal them properly to prevent outside contaminants from getting into your system. Leaky ducts not only make the accumulation of dust and debris worse but also reduce the efficiency of your HVAC system.

  1. Control humidity levels in the house

Maintaining the right level of humidity in your home can help prevent mold growth in your air ducts. Consider using a dehumidifier in damp areas such as the basement to ensure that your home’s humidity levels range between 30% and 50%. Not only will this discourage mold from getting inside your ductwork but also improve your indoor air quality.

  1. Keep your house clean

Maintaining a clean, living environment reduces the amount of dust and dirt that accumulates inside the ductwork. Regular cleaning routines such as dusting, vacuuming, and sweeping can help reduce the amount of dust and dirt that enters your HVAC system. Consider using high-efficiency particular air filters (HEPA) as they hold off dirt effectively by capturing more fine particles.

  1. Provide proper ventilation

To ensure that your indoor air remains fresh and clean, it is important to provide proper ventilation by installing exhaust fans and opening windows. Using exhaust fans in the bathroom and kitchen helps to remove excess moisture which can promote mold growth. Opening doors and windows when the weather is favorable allows fresh air to circulate and dilute indoor pollutants.

  1. Schedule HVAC maintenance

You must maintain your HVAC system regularly to keep your air ducts clean. Professional HVAC maintenance involves inspecting, cleaning, and testing the entire system to ensure it is operating efficiently and effectively. You can have it down at least twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall. A well-maintained HVAC system operates more efficiently and maintains a healthy indoor environment.

  1. Take good care of your pets

If you live with pets, you need to know that the fur and dander they shed periodically can lead to dirty air ducts. It is important to groom your pets, vacuum their bedding, and clean their living areas to reduce the number of pet-related debris that accumulates inside your ductwork. Consider using air purifiers equipped with HEPA filters to reduce airborne pet allergens.

It is essential to keep your air ducts clean as it helps to maintain a healthy indoor environment and maximize the efficiency of your HVAC system. By following the above tips, you can reduce the accumulation of allergens in your ductwork, improve indoor air quality, and potentially lower your monthly energy bills. To ensure your air ducts remain clean at all times, you need to conduct regular inspections and professional cleaning alongside good home maintenance practices.

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