It is very easy to scare the average homeowner when it comes to their HVAC systems. Not only is the system a highly sophisticated and complicated device, far beyond the capability of most DIY handymen, but the ductwork in your home is virtually invisible. If someone comes along and tells you that it is in need of a cleaning, you may be inclined to immediately believe them, because you can’t see for yourself and prove them wrong.
The truth is, there are definitely some times when duct cleaning is advised and necessary, but there are also many companies out there trying to scare you into accepting substandard service for no good reason.
To help you make sense of what air duct cleaning is, and when you do and don’t need it, here is an easy-to-follow breakdown.
Immediate Cleaning Is Recommended If…
- You Can See Buildup – The vents in your home will get dusty, just like everything else in your home will get dusty if left alone long enough. However, the dust should easily wipe away. If that is not the case, of if you can see dust and debris piling up behind the vents, there may be a problem in your ductwork. Air duct cleaning services can perform a complete inspection and cleaning to address the problem
- You Recently Renovated Your Home – The filters on your HVAC system can handle regular household dust, but the material kicked up during a home renovation is a taller order. As a safety precaution, especially if you live in an older home where lead paint or asbestos may be present, it is recommended that you have your air ducts and HVAC system thoroughly cleaned after home renovations.
- Someone in Your Home Has Respiratory Sensitivities – Some indoor allergies can be quite severe, as can asthma. If someone in your home is suffering frequent respiratory distress, there may be a problem in your ductwork. An inspection and cleaning is recommended to remove harmful allergens and irritants.
- Mold Was Found In Your Home – Mold can be extremely hazardous to your health, and also very difficult to get rid of. As part of a professional and thorough a mold removal, be sure to get your HVAC system and air ducts thoroughly cleaned.
- Animals Chewed Into Your System – One mouse can do an awful lot of damage, and a family of mice living in your air ducts is that much worse. Some animals can carry diseases that are harmful to humans, and animals nesting in your air ducts could be spreading them throughout your home. Immediate cleaning is recommended upon the discovery of animal problems.
Cleaning is NOT Required If…
- The Tech Can’t Show You The Problem – Before beginning any cleaning service, the tech who visits your home should be able to show you why a cleaning is necessary. This is usually done either with a scope, or by removing the vents so that you can clearly see the problem for yourself.
- Substandard Equipment Is Brought on Site – Duct cleaning companies are certified to safely remove dust and debris. Doing this improperly, or with substandard equipment can lead to bigger problems.
- The Company Rep Keeps Trying to Upsell You – You may get sales pitches about special sprays or sealants, “whole house specials,” or other vague promises of doing a better job than they would otherwise do. Air duct cleaning should be thorough and professional no matter what. If someone keeps trying to upsell you, all they’re really promising is to take more money.
Before signing on for an air duct cleaning, always ask for recommendations, and read online reviews to make sure that you are dealing with a reputable company. Good work always speaks for itself.