Monday, February 06, 2012

The do and don’ts of air duct cleaning

Air ducts can get dirty over time.
The indoor air quality in most homes and buildings is compromised by a variety of factors.

It could be poor ventilation, high humidity, mold, chemicals and VOCs, particles, dust, allergens, and more.

And a lot of these indoor air pollutants may be spread throughout the house by the ventilation system – which is why many people like to get their ducts cleaned once in a while.

There is no scientific evidence that regular duct cleaning will improve the indoor air quality, but if you think about getting it done, there are many factors to consider when choosing a duct cleaning service.

  • Establish a need. Is it really necessary to clean your ducts? Does it distribute excessive dust or debris throughout the home, or is it contaminated with mold, mildew or pests? Remember that some levels of dust will always be present in a home, even with clean ducts.
  • Find a good professional service. There are many scam artists out there, and often, they will lure customers with low prices. Experts say a good air duct cleaning should start at around $300 and take about 3-5 hours. Check a company’s local reputation or references. 
  • Be in the know. A qualified professional will not only clean the ducts, but also the other components of the HVAC system. This includes coils, drain pans, fans and humidifiers. Ask your service provider for a list of things they will do and ask them to verify all of them as they complete them. Most reputable air duct cleaners will also use a filter to trap the debris they remove, which allows you to see the progress.

  • Don’t go by price alone. Any deal that sounds too good – usually is.
  • Don’t forget to check if the air duct cleaners in your area require a license. Ask for proof of license and proof of insurance before you hire.
  • Don’t go with a company that offers other cleaning services (like carpeting or chimney cleaning). Always use a specialist.

Want better indoor quality?

There are easier and better ways to reduce the level of indoor air contaminants in your home.

Avoid bringing in new pollutants such as harsh cleaning chemicals, pesticides, VOC-emitting paints or products, and so on.

AllerAir's AirMedic air purifiers
Make sure your home is ventilated. If you can, open the windows regularly to air out rooms!

Use a portable air purifier in the room you frequent the most. This could be your bedroom or the living area, for example.

The air purifier needs many pounds of activated carbon to be able to remove a wide range of harmful chemicals and gases, a HEPA filter to trap irritating particles and optional UV germicidal filtration to neutralize contaminants such as bacteria, viruses and mold.

Check out AllerAir’s extensive line of air purifiers or speak to an IAQ expert from AllerAir for more information and options.