Air Ducts are present in HVAC (Heating, Ventilation and Air-conditioning) systems to provide airflows that take care of supply and exhaust. Usually referred to as ‘ventilation’ ducts because they also deliver ventilation as part of supply-exhaust cycle, they are a good way of ensuring optimal comfort in heating and cooling as well as the quality of air.
Ducts can be of the following types:
• Aluminum ducting
• Fabric ducting
• Fiberglass ducting
• Flexible ducting
• Galvanized steel
• Polyurethane insulation panels
It is recommended that air ducts are cleaned periodically to remove not only dust and pollutants but also things like children’s toys, debris, paper clips, pet hair and any material that can be trapped inside. The National Air Duct Cleaner’s Association (NADCA) estimates that a modest six-room home collects up to 40 pounds of allergens, dirt and dust in the air ducts annually. In statistical terms, that means 40,000 dust mites per ounce of dust correlated to 40 pounds of dust.
When is it necessary?
The timing or period of cleaning can vary from home to home, location to location and the general condition of the equipment.
However, some pointers to initiate a cleaning could be:
• When dusting and sweeping need to be done more often,
• When there are visible traces of dust around the home,
• When certain areas of the house seem to get no regular air flow from the ducts,
• When a musty smell or odor keeps hanging in the air
• When the occupants of a home experience burning sensation in the eyes, nose and throat, congestion in the nasal passages, constant sneezing, headaches, running nose etc.
Benefits of air duct cleaning
Apart from the most obvious benefits of a clean home and environment free from dust and pollutants, energy savings is a crucial benefit. With regular use, air heating and cooling systems do tend to get dirty; the dust and contaminants make the systems work harder thereby lessening the life of the ducting systems. Energy efficiency studies show that up to 40% of the energy used for indoor heating or air-conditioning is wasted, which is a whopping amount when translated into power and energy bill payments.