If homeowners knew what damage dirty air ducts could be causing, they’d never neglect them again! Everything in the air that goes through your HVAC system (dander, dust, bacteria, chemical particles) is re-circulated in the system around five to seven times per day. As these things circulate, they create a build-up in ducts that can even threaten the health of residents in the home. Recognize these warning signs that you need to call your HVAC service for duct cleaning.
Your allergies are acting up.
If you or someone in your home is allergic to common irritants like dust or pollen, you shouldn’t have many issues with allergies in a home with an effective HVAC system. Effective systems will easily improve indoor quality of air. Build-up in ducts can mean these particles are re-circulating into your air and even causing higher levels of dust than would normally occur. Take note if you’re seeing a consistent layer of dust on surfaces like furniture and plants in your home.
Your utilities are higher.
Trying to lower utility bills and finding it difficult? One culprit may be a backed-up HVAC system lowering your home efficiency. An inefficient system will over-compensate and waste energy. A home energy audit and an update on your insulation is a good idea any time of year. But if you’re confident the issue lies with your HVAC, get a pro out to check it out ASAP so you can achieve those lower utility bills.
A weird smell from vented air.
Are you noticing a musky or otherwise unpleasant smell from the air around your vents? This could be a sign of mold, pests, and other infestations brewing in your air ducts. No rodents, insects, or mold should accumulate easily in clean air ducts. If you have unwanted residents stinking up your ducts, there is probably build-up in there creating an inviting environment for them.
Debris or mold around the vents.
See also the previous section, “A weird smell from vented air.” If mold or critters are making their home in or around the vents and ducts, you might start to notice debris. Droppings, fur, insect casings or carcasses may be visible around or just inside the vent. Visible mold may appear on the vent itself or on the wall around the vent.
If you’re noticing any of these scary symptoms, call professionals to check up on your ductwork right away.