What is the meaning of duct cleaning?
Cleaning ducts refer to cleaning different parts of your forced air heating and cooling system to remove dirt and particulates. A professional duct cleaning includes the cleaning of:
- Registers and supply and return ducts
- Grilles and diffusers
- Heat exchangers
- Heat and cool coils
- Condensate drip pans
- Housing and fan motor
The duct cleaning technician will first remove contaminants from the HVAC system's surfaces using brushes, air nozzles, and other so-called agitation devices. Then, the loose particles are collected using a vacuum cleaner and then removed from the house.
The entire HVAC system is then placed under constant negative pressure to stop particles from entering the living spaces. The vacuum hose creates a suction that forces contaminants to move only one way. This is sometimes called negative pressure duct cleaning.
To kill microbes in ducts and other parts, duct cleaning technicians might also use a chemical biocide.
Why do people have their ducts cleaned?
Air is constantly circulated between your HVAC equipment and your central air conditioner or heating system. The air circulates approximately 5-7 times per day depending on how big your house is and the HVAC system.
Mechanical ventilation is also used to draw fresh air inside your home.
This process will continue for many more days, and dust particles from both inside and outside of your house will start to build up inside your air ducts. This can include dirt, dust, pollen, hair, bacteria, and air pollutants. The composition of your home's 'dust mixture' will depend on its age, climate, household habits, and how many people live there.
How much dust is in your ducts? It all depends on where you live. On average, duct cleaning in Greater Toronto Area removes 5 to 6 pounds of dust.
What is the average time it takes to clean ducts?
Without knowing your home, it's difficult to predict how long a duct cleaning will last. There are many variables that affect the time it takes to clean an HVAC system in a house.
- The size of the house
- Dimensions and numbers of HVAC components
- The amount of dust buildup
- There are many duct cleaning technicians on the job
It is impossible to give an exact time estimate without this information. These factors should be considered when a quote is given.
How Often is Duct Cleaning Required? According to the EPA
It is not pleasant to see the air they inhale moving through clogged passages. We recommend that your ducts be cleaned every 3 years.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation both agree that your ducts don't have to be cleaned on a specific schedule. It's an optional part of your home maintenance.
However, there are exceptions. The EPA agrees that your ducts should be cleaned or replaced as soon as you notice.
Excessive DustThis does not mean that you have lots of dust in your home. It also means that dust is coming out from the supply registers. You should not allow visible dust to enter your living space through the registers.
VerminRodents, vermin, and other vermin pose a health risk. It's almost certain that your air ducts have been contaminated by rodents or other vermin.
Water DamageMold can thrive in damaged ducts. Before you can have the ducts cleaned, it is important to identify the cause of the damage.
Restricted airflowThe flow of air can be impeded by excessive dust and debris.
MouldConcern should be raised if you see any visible mould, slime, or other growth within the ducts. Sometimes the first sign of mold can be a musty, earthy odour, but you should first confirm its presence.
OdourDo you notice a foul odour coming from your HVAC system's ducts? This could be a sign of mold, vermin or water damage that needs to be addressed.
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