Duct cleaning services have become increasingly popular, but just how needed are these services? While routine duct cleaning isn’t proven to improve your home’s air quality or reduce dust in the home, there is evidence that heating and cooling coils, air handling units and motors can make an HVAC unit less efficient when these parts are dirty. Duct cleaning by itself may not be necessary, but in some cases, cleaning both the HVAC unit and the ductwork can be helpful.
What Is Duct Cleaning?
Those who perform professional duct cleaning use specialized vacuums, blowers and brushes in order to clean the intake, return and supply ducts in the home. Professional duct cleaning should also include a thorough cleaning of the HVAC system’s registers, grilles, motors, fans, housings, coils, and air handler.
When Is Duct Cleaning Helpful?
According to the EPA, duct cleaning can be helpful if the HVAC unit and the ducts are contaminated. While it doesn’t hurt to get routine duct cleaning, this service isn’t necessary unless you’ve experienced the following:
- Renovations—Renovating or remodeling your home can result in dirty ductwork, especially if the ducts weren’t sealed off. If there was asbestos abatement, significant dust, or lead paint removal, you may need to have your ductwork cleaned.
- Animals—If you notice animal infestation or nesting inside your ducts or HVAC system, clean both the ductwork and the HVAC unit after the animals have been removed.
- Mold—Mold growth can be a problem inside ductwork, so get your ducts and HVAC system cleaned if you notice visible mold growth.
- Contaminants—Clean your ducts if you notice pet hair, debris, odors or other contaminants, as the ducts can release them into the room after the registers have been vacuumed and cleaned.
- Illness—If anyone in your home is suffering from an allergy-related illness that can’t be explained, you might want to consider having your ducts and HVAC unit cleaned if no other step has helped alleviate the problem.
How Can I Avoid Duct Cleaning Scams?
If you do decide to get your ducts cleaned, you’ll want to steer clear of scams. Fortunately, professional, reputable HVAC cleaning services do exist. Avoid any company that claims your home is “unhealthy,” and follow these tips:
- Get a full service cleaning.
- Check references.
- Avoid any gimmicks.
- Get free estimates.
- Check certifications and standards.
- Verify results of the cleaning.
- Avoid sprays and sealants.
- Avoid steam cleaning.
Duct cleaning can be helpful when done professionally. If your home is in need of duct cleaning services, trust a quality company that cleans not just your ducts, but your entire HVAC system as well.
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