Duct cleaning is something you can get to be a fan of if you like improved energy efficiency, enhanced airflow, and a healthier quality of air.
However, there is a proper place and time for something like duct cleaning. It’s actually not always worth the money you shell out for it.
There are many sound reasons for duct cleaning. For starters, you might have noticed mold inside your ducts or elsewhere in your HVAC system. One great way to check this out is just giving your ducts a serious sniff. It honestly works. If your ducts have mold, you will smell it immediately, and if that proves to be the case, then duct cleaning is the minimum step you need to take at the least. If the issue is serious enough, you might want to consider having any contaminated duct work cut away and replaced.
Of course, you want to get your ducts cleaned if you suspect vermin like insects or mice calling them home. Likewise, if your airflow is poor to one room or even multiple rooms, as this often a sign of a duct blockage. In cases such as these, keep your eyes out for particles getting spewed out of your ducts, or even no or little airflow in isolated spots around your home.
You could also think about getting duct cleaning done if you just moved into a home that is newly built. The same goes for immediately after major renovations. If a construction crew or contractors aren’t careful, there’s all kinds of dirt and debris they might sweep into your ducts, be it insulation fibers and pieces of drywall to even coffee cups and lunch bags. Not all HVAC systems are the same, but most modern units don’t need stuff like this in them. At Professional Choice Cleaning, our main focus is commercial and post construction duct cleaning (commercial and new residential construction). We do not provide duct cleaning services for residential clients as we are primarily a commercial cleaning company.
A few contractors are going to tell you that duct cleaning will solve all your home’s dust problems. That’s patently false. Dust is something that gets everywhere. You make it when you walk, when you cook, when you open windows and doors, and surprisingly even when you actually clean. As you do all these things, you wind up exposing yourself to even more dust that you would if you stuck your head up over a dirty duct and breathed in deeply. So, dust isn’t actually a bad thing in itself. If it was, everyone would have breathing issues. Also, it’s simply impossible to avoid.
When duct cleaning is done properly by trained professionals, it will remove debris and dirt from all your ducts.
Once the work is done, you’ll find all sorts of wild things that you never would have imagined were in your ducts, from pet food and kids toys to paper clips and gum wrappers.
Here’s the rub though. If duct cleaning is going to prove beneficial, it must be done properly. This means that your duct cleaner must clean all components of the HVAC system, from the grilles and diffusers to the heating and cooling coils. Often its a good idea to contact your heating and cooling service provider and have them perform the necessary work on the equipment side of things. Also make sure the air-handling unit, fan and motor housing, and condensate drain pans are covered. Your professional also needs to closely inspect the cold-air return. If it’s ducted, then it’s a prime landing spot for debris and dust, just like any hot-air vents are. If they’re not ducted, then they’re magnets for drawing together things such as insulation fibers and mold spores into your air supply. A robust cleaner is going to look inside your cold-air return and plenum, in addition to any hot-air ducts.
Finally, a good professional is going to take time to inspect his work after it is finished, much like you took time to research him before you actually hired him.
That usually means sending a camera down the ducting, although some cut a few tiny sections of your ducting for a direct visual inspection.
Once the job is done, your cleaner might be looking to spray some sort of antimicrobial chemical into your ducts so he can kill off any mold that is remaining. If he makes you that offer, refuse it. If his work was good enough to start with, there’s no good reason to let him spray that stuff in there now. Think about it. What logic is there in paying someone to spray pollutants into your home HVAC after you just supposedly had it all cleaned? So, in terms of duct cleaning, go for it if you have a solid reason to do so, such as blockages, recent renovations, blockages, vermin, or mold. Also, if a few years have passed since the last time it was done, then do it then too. However, don’t feel like you need to have it done regularly just because you heard someone talk about the supposed health benefits. As always, be sure your hired cleaner is a thorough professional.