When you own a house, there are lots of maintenance items to consider year-round. The roof, the paint, the hot water heater, the dishwasher, the gutters, the yard … the laundry list is long. In our experience in the duct and HVAC business, we’ve discovered that HVAC isn’t always very high on homeowners’ to-do lists unless something catastrophic happens like a system failure. Handling your HVAC system this way is the most expensive path you can take. More than most other systems, HVAC systems need consistent maintenance. They work hard, especially in Southern Florida, where we depend on our air conditioning almost year-round.

Most people are fine with getting their filters changed and their AC units inspected, but we’re talking about duct cleaning. Duct cleaning is more involved, as it requires specialists to physically clean out your ducts and sometimes HVAC unit, removing dust, mold, and other contaminants affecting your air quality. How often do you need to have this work done?

According to the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA), you should have your ducts cleaned every three to five years. That being said, you may need it more often or less often depending on where you live, how often you run your HVAC system, and how sensitive your household is to allergies or asthma.

When is it time to clean your air ducts?

  • Every three to five years. If a contractor advises you to clean more often, you should be wary as ducts don’t need that much cleaning.
  • If you just moved into a new place, it’s a good idea to get the ducts cleaned. This is especially true if the former owner can’t remember the last time the ducts got cleaned!
  • You just finished building a new home. Chances are very good that the air ducts are full of drywall dust and other debris from construction.
  • You just completed a remodeling project. Remodeling usually spreads sawdust and other contaminants through a home, including the ductwork. You don’t want your hard remodeling work to become covered with dust (and you don’t want to breathe it, either).
  • You have reason to suspect there’s mold growing in your ducts.
  • Every time the system turns on and air exits the vents, there’s a visible poof of dust.
  • You see vermin like rodents or insects entering or exiting your vents and suspect an infestation somewhere in the house.
  • Your filters have black debris right outside of them, and when you change your filters, you see a lot of buildup on and around them. Both of these are signs that you’re overdue for cleaning!

Is air duct cleaning really worth it? 

Air duct cleaning hasn’t been endorsed by the EPA as an ultimate solution to health issues, but there is a lot of evidence that it helps, especially when it comes to respiratory issues. Whether you have asthma or allergies (or both), dust mites, pollen, and dander can practically cripple you. You need your HVAC system to be your ally, to fill your home with safe, clear air that’s a relief from the outdoors. However, a contaminated HVAC system can be your enemy, turning your home or business into a miserable place.

According to the NADCA (and our experience), you won’t get the results you need from duct cleaning unless you ensure every part of the system is addressed. It doesn’t matter if you change the filters if you have a filthy air conditioning unit or contaminated corners in your ducts. You need a cleaner who will use negative air machines and tools to physically remove debris so it can be collected. Just blowing a lot of air through the system is not sufficient.

What to expect from a great duct cleaning company. 

  • You’ll pay between $400 to $1,000 for a good duct cleaning because it will address the furnace, central system, and air coils. If a contractor has lower prices, you’re not going to get good work.
  • The work itself should take a few hours. There is no such thing as a great duct cleaning that takes only half an hour.
  • When you ask if they follow the NADCA’s standards, they should say yes!

DUCTZ is proud to be Broward’s premium air quality testing and duct cleaning team. Turn to us today for world-class service!