One of the most common customer questions is, “Will a duct cleaning improve indoor air quality?” In most cases, the simplest and most straightforward answer is no. Despite maybe having in issue with bacteria, mold, or dust, your duct work is likely not the cause, despite looking dirty, and the cure is installing an indoor air cleaner.
It is reasonable to assume that dirty looking air ducts are causing airborne contaminants. However, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency states, “Duct cleaning has never been shown to actually prevent health problems. Neither do studies conclusively demonstrate that particle (e.g., dust) levels in homes increase because of dirty air ducts or go down after cleaning. This is because much of the dirt that may accumulate inside air ducts adheres to duct surfaces and does not necessarily enter the living space.”
In fact, an air duct cleaning can cause a problem by loosening dust and dirt once trapped. Moreover, mishandling the cleaning process can damage the duct work, negatively affecting your heating and cooling system’s efficiency. Nonetheless, there are signs you do need an air duct cleaning. These will include if you:
- Discover mold growing in the ducts,
- There are rodents and other pests inside the ducts, and
- Dirt and dust are actually coming from the registers.
The energy efficiency of a home relies on closing the building envelope. This is a home design that locks heating and cooling energy in the home, but it also traps airborne dust, mold, bacteria, viruses, and other contaminants. New windows, doors, siding, and other improvements improve energy efficiency, but will diminish indoor air quality. The answer is installing an indoor air cleaner.
If you would like to talk about if a duct cleaning will improve your indoor air quality, or need more information, please contact us.