Friday, August 26, 2011
Thinking about having your ducts cleaned?
We get calls all the time regarding duct cleaning. Many homeowners do it on a regular basis as a way to keep their system clean. Unfortunately we always have to disappoint them when explaining Sandium does not offer these services.
We don't do it because we don't believe it offers any real benefits to those homeowners who run their system on a regular basis -- which is most homeowners. Because when the system is in operation, whatever airborne particles (large and small) are going to get discharged out of your vents anyway.
The low cost air duct cleaners use a vacuum that supposedly would capture the dust, but the vacuum power is so low that its like vacuuming your carpet from 6" above (how effective is that!?). The better cleaners use a rotating brush and snaking device to get into your duct system, but then you just run the risk of shredding common ducting types like wire-flex, which leads to leakage in your duct system. Duct leakage is already a major problem, with an average of about 30% leakage in an average home's duct system! That's like filling your gas tank to the top, and then losing 1/3 of it before you even leave the station! Beyond the tearing and duct leakage problem, you are simply just stirring up dust that was otherwise settled and caked in and not airborne.
There are situations that justify duct cleaning. For example: If your system has been invaded by critters and you want to get rid of any droppings left inside AFTER your repair the ducts. Or you see chunks of dust or dark matters coming out of your vents. Or, if you are planning to turn on a system that has been sitting idle for over a year.
I'm not making this stuff up! Follow the link below to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) website which has a white paper on this exact matter.
I'll leave you with a quote from the EPA: "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."
Enjoy the reading!