Air ducts are hardly given a second thought. These conduits for passing cooled or heated air throughout the home are out of sight, often behind walls or high along the ceiling, and, as a result, out of mind. Cleaning the air ducts is rarely a priority for most homeowners.
A dusty air duct poses no serious health risk, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. However, the presence of moisture can lead to mold growth. The mold spores are catapulted throughout the home via the air ducts. In such a scenario, the air ducts should be promptly cleaned.
The lack of health consequences of a dusty air duct fails to move homeowners to professionally clean them. What is likely to encourage homeowners to clean their home’s air ducts is the major savings on energy bills.
Air Duct Cleaning Maintenance Steps
Cleaning air ducts involves several factors. Air systems components are cleaned, as well as specific parts, such as grilles and diffusers, drip pans and the housing that holds the air handling unit. In addition, thorough air duct cleanings include the cleaning of air ducts and registers, fan motor and fan housing.
Professional air duct cleaners take several further steps during the cleaning process to improve the air duct performance. Refrigerant levels are checked. Coils are inspected and cleaned. Fitted and moving parts are given a thorough checkup. The thermostat undergoes close scrutiny to ensure optimum functionality, especially since a worn or broken thermostat will obstruct operation. This combination of steps contributes to the increase of HVAC energy usage by up to a remarkable 20 percent.
The air duct is professionally cleaned with specialized tools that dislodge dirt and debris. A high-powered vacuum then suctions out the accumulated dust.
Results of Air Duct Cleanings
Professionals who service air ducts note that energy consumption may be reduced 25 to 40 percent with regular air duct maintenance. An air duct cluttered with dust balls and debris is prompted to work harder to deliver the same functions as would a clean air duct. As a result, the lifespan of the air duct is greatly reduced. A clean air duct also delivers the desired temperature with less effort, which decreases the amount of energy used to operate the system and corresponds with lower energy costs.
In addition to excessive dust and dirt, problems with airflow within the air ducts can result from poor insulation or leaks. Disconnected segments also pose as a hindrance to smooth airflow within the air duct system. Impediments that reduce the efficiency of air ducts cause an upsurge in heating or cooling costs.
Regular maintenance of a home’s air ducts eliminates obstructions of dirt and debris, improving airflow and reducing energy expenses. Technicians who service air ducts also have the opportunity to address any additional issues that may hinder the optimal functionality of the air duct system.
Seasonal maintenance of the air ducts is recommended to ward off accumulations of dust. Service technicians also assess the need for air duct repairs or replacement during the cleaning process. As a result, regular upkeep extends the life of the air ducts.
Air leaks within the air duct also lend a part in soaring heating and cooling costs. Damage to air ducts occurs through human error, such as when people come into contact with the air ducts in the attic or similar storage spaces. A minor air leak can grow into a mammoth hole, spiking energy costs. Thorough inspections of the air duct, commonly performed during air duct cleanings, are necessary to pinpoint any possibility of damaging air leaks.
The whereabouts of air leaks within the air ducts can be found via a few telltale clues. Improperly screwed metal ducts can result in serious air loss. Ducts featuring fiberglass may be crushed or damaged via punctures. Tears in the outer covering of air ducts can leak air, as well. Condensation of moisture along the tears transforms the minor air leak problem into a serious mold issue.
Filters may also lead to air leaks. Changing the filters often or cleaning the filters periodically can cause unanticipated air leaks within the air duct system. Regular air duct cleanings can identify issues with the filter and put a stop to its pricey consequence of rising home energy bills.
Additional energy wasters include leaks in a home’s HVAC air handlers. Oftentimes, leaks can be visually seen or heard. Air leaks may also be felt along improperly fitted cover panels. Incorrectly installed air filters also result in costly air leaks. Heating and cooling experts note that low-quality manufacturing processes cause a number of furnaces and air handlers to be fraught with air leaks. Fortunately, leaks may be permanently sealed with silicone.
You can improve the airflow of your property with regular air duct cleanings. ServiceMaster Kwik Restore offers reliable air duct cleaning services to both residential homes and area businesses. High energy bills may be due to dirty or leaky air ducts. The benefits of cleaning the air ducts in your property include not only lower energy costs, but also improved air quality and the lengthened lifespan of the HVAC unit.
ServiceMaster Kwik Restore technicians recommend having a home’s air ducts professionally cleaned once every two to five years. Depending on your unique situation, you may opt to clean more or less often. Homes with occupants who are smokers may elect to service the air ducts more frequently. Remodeling work in the home may necessitate an air duct cleaning, due to the increased dust particles in the air. Homeowners with pets or those with allergies or asthma will experience the advantages of cleaning the air ducts regularly.
Our team at ServiceMaster Kwik Restore offers two convenient air duct cleaning service options: restorative cleaning (for air ducts that have not been cleaned in the last five years) or maintenance cleaning (for homes that have had the air ducts serviced in the last five years).
ServiceMaster Kwik Restore reliably serves the northern Illinois and southern Wisconsin communities of businesses and residential homes.