Cleaning the ducts in your home is an essential project that you should not neglect. Dirty air ducts can contribute to allergies and might even eventually cause mold formation. Moldy ducts are a health hazard, and they can be very expensive to clean. If you clean your ducts on a regular basis, you will not need to worry about mold and allergies. Most people hire a professional HVAC contractor like one from Arlington Heating & Air Conditioning to clean their ducts. However, if you are able to gather the right tools and have access to a ladder, it is project that you can often do on your own. This article explains how to clean your ducts with ease.
Accessing the Ducts
First, you need access the ducts by removing the air registers. This only requires the removal of a few screws so it is quite simple. However, there is one step that you can do before removing all of the ducts. Remove the register from one duct. Then, close the vents for all of the other registers in your home. Next, you can tape a large black trash bag around the perimeter of the open register. Turn the AC or heater on at the highest level. This blows loose dirt and dust in the vents, and it will save you a lot of time. Finally, you can remove the rest of the air registers and begin cleaning the ducts.
Cleaning the Ducts
Cleaning the ducts is hard if you don't have a long pole. A long, telescoping pole with a universal head for attaching paint rollers or dusters is ideal. These are usually sold in the paint section at home improvement stores. You can find cleaning attachments that will fit, too. The most useful attachment for cleaning ducts is a sponge. For added cleaning power, soak the sponge in a diluted all-purpose cleaner and wipe down all 4 sidewalls of the ducts. You will definitely need a work light, head lamp or flashlight so you can actually see what you are cleaning.
It is very important to keep an eye out for black mold. If you notice mold, you should try to clean it yourself. However, it is still a good idea to contact a mold expert to take a closer look. While you air registers are removed from the wall, you should clean them as well. You can easily wipe them down with a wet rag before you reattach them.