FAQ

When should you have Air Ducts cleaned?

If there is substantial visible mold growth inside hard surface (e.g., sheet metal) ducts or on other components of your heating and cooling system.  There are several important points to understand concerning mold detection in heating and cooling systems: 
  • Many sections of your heating and cooling system may not be accessible for a visible inspection, so ask the service provider to show you any mold they say exists. 
  • You should be aware that although a substance may look like mold, a positive determination of whether it is mold or not can be made only by an expert and may require laboratory analysis for final confirmation. For about $50, some microbiology laboratories can tell you whether a sample sent to them on a clear strip of sticky household tape is mold or simply a substance that resembles it. 
  • If you have insulated air ducts and the insulation gets wet or moldy it cannot be effectively cleaned and should be removed and replaced. 
  • If the conditions causing the mold growth in the first place are not corrected, mold growth will recur. 
If ducts are infested with vermin, e.g. (rodents or insects).
 
If ducts are clogged with excessive amounts of dust and debris and/or particles are actually released into the home from your supply registers.

link

What is Air Duct Cleaning?

Air duct cleaning generally refers to the cleaning of various heating and cooling system components of forced air systems, including the supply and return air ducts and registers, grilles and diffusers, heat exchangers heating and cooling coils, condensate drain pans (drip pans), fan motor and fan housing, and the air handling unit housing.  If not properly installed, maintained, and operated, these components may become contaminated with particles of dust, pollen or other debris.  If moisture is present, the potential for microbiological growth (e.g., mold) is increased and spores from such growth may be released into the home's living space.  Some of these contaminants may cause people with allergies to have allergic reactions or other symptoms if they are exposed to them.
link

How should a Air Duct system be cleaned?

The most effective way to clean air ducts and ventilation systems is to employ Source Removal methods of cleaning.  This requires a contractor to place the system under negative pressure, through the use of a specialized, powerful vacuum.  While the vacuum draws air through the system, devices are inserted into the ducts to dislodge any debris that might be stuck to interior surfaces.  The debris can then travel down the ducts to the vacuum, which removes it from the system and the home.
link

How often should Air Duct systems be cleaned?

Frequency of cleaning depends on several factors, not the least of which is the preference of the home owner. Some of the things that may lead a home owner to consider more frequent cleaning include:
 
• Smokers in the household.
• Pets that shed high amounts of hair and dander.
• Water contamination or damage to the home or HVAC system.
• Residents with allergies or asthma who might benefit from a reduction in the amount of indoor air pollutants in the home’s HVAC system.
• After home renovations or remodeling.
• Prior to occupancy of a new home.

link

Does Air Duct cleaning prevent health problems?

The bottom line is: no one knows.  There are examples of ducts that have become badly contaminated with a variety of materials that may pose risks to your health.  The duct system can serve as a means to distribute these contaminants throughout a home. In these cases, duct cleaning may make sense.  However, a light amount of household dust in your air ducts is normal.  Duct cleaning is not considered to be a necessary part of yearly maintenance of your heating and cooling system, which consists of regular cleaning of drain pans and heating and cooling coils, regular filter changes and yearly inspections of heating equipment.  Research continues in an effort to evaluate the potential benefits of air duct cleaning.
link

Are there any health benefits that come from Air Duct system cleaning?

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems have been shown to act as a collection source for a variety of contaminants that have the potential to affect health, such as mold, fungi, bacteria, and very small particles of dust.  The removal of such contaminants from the HVAC system and home should be considered as one component in an overall plan to improve indoor air quality.
link