Maintaining your HVAC system should be an easy decision. Regular maintenance extends the life of your system and helps identify needed repairs before they turn into more significant problems. However, misinformation abounds on the internet along with half-baked opinions, and it’s no wonder that many people develop misconceptions about HVAC servicing. Here are five air duct cleaning myths unmistakably debunked. This information will help you make a properly informed decision before deciding whether to make a booking for air duct maintenance.
1. Air Ducts Don’t Get Dirty – They Have Filters That Stop Dirt
Myth number one is that so little dirt enters air ducts that they should rarely (if ever) need cleaning. However, even the best filters can’t stop all air-borne particles from getting through to the air ducts and lodging there. In addition, incorrectly installed HVAC systems and failure to properly maintain and operate them can lead to pollutants finding their way past filters. Finally, moisture that inadvertently enters the ducts can also lead to mold growing on the surface of the vents.
And let’s not forget about uninvited guests. Creepy crawlies and vermin are in the habit of making their way not just into homes but also into HVAC systems. Their droppings and filth will lodge within the air ducts, eventually impacting your home’s air quality.
2. Air Duct Cleaning Myths — I Can Do It Myself
Some homeowners have a strong misconception that they can do all air duct cleaning by themselves, particularly if they’re into DIY. However, consider whether you have the right tools to get into every nook and cranny before jumping into this venture. All parts of duct systems aren’t usually visible, so how will you be sure that pollutants haven’t been left behind?
Professional air duct cleaners use specialized equipment to ensure the thorough removal of pollutants. Powerful industrial vacuums, air-washing, air compressor hoses, and dirt-pigs form part of their arsenal of tools.
3. Only Qualified Technicians Should Change Air Filters
Myth number three addresses people who believe it’s all too technical and no part of HVAC systems should be touched by homeowners. However, this is not the case in regard to air filters. Regularly changing air filters by yourself will minimize the need for air duct cleaning, saving you money. In addition, using the highest-rated air filters will absolutely lessen the amount of dirt, pollen, and other contaminants getting into the air ducts.
Air filters are usually located in a slot near the furnace unit and behind return air grills or vents. Depending upon your HVAC system, there may be multiple filters. Open the filter compartment and slide out the filter. If it looks dirty and clogged, it’s time to replace it.
If you can’t find the filter, a quick online search for the manufacturer’s HVAC operating instructions should solve the problem. However, if you’re not the handy type and find this overwhelming, you can always hire a handy person to do this for you.
4. Air Duct Cleaning Myths — Dangerous Chemicals Are Used
Myth number four has instilled an unnecessary fear in homeowners around chemical cleaning agents. Many believe dangerous chemicals and potentially hazardous fumes are used in the cleaning process. So, naturally, they are reticent to book an air duct cleaning session. However, professional air duct cleaning does not require toxic chemicals to be generally used. Powerful vacuums draw out most of the particles from the ducts.
In some cases, biocides may be needed to treat bacteria, mold, or algae, as they pose health risks. Professional cleaners will ensure that the household is properly protected from any potential ill effects of the treatment. Check with the company and ask them to detail their process and what cleaning agents they use.
5. House Plants Clean My Air – I Don’t Need to Clean the Air Ducts
Myth number five is a relatively new one, based on incomplete facts. Some laboratory studies have suggested that indoor plants can reduce dangerous gases and pollutants from the air. Unfortunately, this has led many people to exaggerate the benefits associated with houseplants. The EPA has warned that evidence is lacking in this area. Houseplants can only remove low levels of pollutants in the home. The EPA also warns that over-watering indoor plants can cause the growth of mold and mildew, contributing to poor air quality.
Find the Right Air Duct Cleaning Company
Unscrupulous air duct cleaning companies may try to persuade you that cleaning is necessary more than once a year. However, even once a year may be unnecessary if air filters are regularly changed. If you’re concerned about your indoor air quality, contact us at Six Penny Chimney. We will happily discuss every aspect of air duct cleaning with you.