How Do I Know if My Air Ducts Need Cleaned?

You silently rely on the fact that your home provides you with a safe living space to return to after a hard day’s work. But, with improper maintenance to components such as air ducts, this safe living space may be compromised.

Air ducts are systems in place throughout your home that connect vents in rooms to a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system. The HVAC system can heat or cool air, depending on the settings, and send it through the air ducts to regulate temperatures. Air ducts, if properly taken care of, can function for a long time with no issues. But, if their cleanliness and upkeep are neglected, air ducts can circulate more than just air to your home: toxins, dust, dirt, and more.

The question now is, how do I know if my air ducts need to be cleaned?

While there are other signs that your air ducts should be inspected, the general rule of thumb is to clean them every three to five years. This, of course, is dependent on numerous factors such as the general weather patterns and climate and atmosphere of your location. The frequency of cleaning will also depend partially on how much you use your HVAC system.

There are several things to watch for that signal the need for cleaning.

First, check for odors and unwanted scents coming from your air vents. Bad odor in itself is an undesirable quality for anyone’s living space, but this is a likely signal for mold or mildew, something that should be taken care of right away. To confirm if it is truly coming from the duct, keep note of if the scent is more or less potent farther away from the vent.

Another sign to watch out for is how consistent the air flow is in each room. If you find it being noticeably uneven throughout the rooms in your home, this could be a sign of debris blockage or serious dust buildup.

If there is dust buildup, this will lead to your home becoming dirty more quickly after each cleaning. This may happen if you have recently had construction done in or around your home, but if you find yourself having to dust bookshelves and counters more often than normal, it may be time to inspect your air ducts.

Though these are three signs that your ducts may need cleaning, be sure to pay attention to any abnormality in your air quality that may pose a threat to your overall health.

How do I know if my air ducts need to be cleaned?

Photo by Garin Chadwick on Unsplash

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