Home Inspection Articles

Getting Your Ducts in a Row: The Truth Behind Duct Cleaning

Posted by Thea Scrimger on May 16, 2013 11:58:00 AM


Homeowner Poll

With spring now in full swing, your "To Do" list might be getting a little long and you may be wondering if every maintenance item is necessary - is there anything you can skip?

Telemarketers may be intent on selling it, but do you really have to worry about your air ducts? We reached out to our Homeowners Association partner, AtlasCare, to research the reality of air duct maintenance and how to ensure they receive the care they need.

In a typical six-room home, up to 40 pounds of dust are created annually. When not properly maintained, the air ducts in your home can harbor all kinds of allergens, including cobwebs, dust, mold, fungus, and chemical pollutants.

Air ducts are the lungs of your home. Their purpose is to circulate fresh, clean air for you to breathe. There are all kinds of circumstances and contributors adding to or creating dirty air ducts. These can include:

  • Animals in your home that shed hair, fur and dander.
  • Construction in your neighborhood. Dirt and dust travel - if your windows are open you are inviting them inside.
  • Indoor renovations.
  • Excess moisture in the air which can lead to mold build up in some duct systems.

Dirty air ducts can also affect your energy bills. They cause your furnace and air conditioners to work overtime. This can result in increased maintenance and reduced performance for both of these systems. The strain dirty ducts put on these systems can also contribute to overly high hydro and gas bills.

We encourage cleaning your air ducts upon moving into a home, or if you have just completed a major renovation or remodeling project. Homes with family members who have allergies or asthma may be particularly sensitive to air quality issues, and duct cleaning on a more regular basis may be appropriate. Homes with smokers or pets that shed hair and dander may need more frequent duct work as well.

This simple maintenance will help ensure the longevity of these systems and the health and cleanliness of your home. if you are not sure of what to look for in a service provider, consider the following:

  • Is the company able to show proof of NADCA (National Air Duct Cleaners Association) membership and certification?
  • Is the contractor willing to conduct a thorough inspection of the heating and cooling system prior to performing any work?
  • Does the contractor agree to disclose any problems discovered during the inspection - NADCA's Assessment, Cleaning and Restoration Standard requires this.
  • Is the heating or cooling system fully operational before cleaning?
  • Will/did the contractor clean the supply duct work?
  • Will/did the contractor clean the return air duct work?

At Carson Dunlop we believe that a great Home Inspection is just the beginning, which is why we created the Carson Dunlop Homeowners Association. This not-for-profit program provides our clients and real estate partners with fast, easy and cost-effective access to group discounts, benefits, and warranties to help protect their investment. To learn more about the Carson Dunlop Homeowners Association, please click here.

Association partner AtlasCare provides Carson Dunlop clients and real estate agents with exclusive discounts on new installations, heating and cooling services and duct cleaning. AtlasCare is currently offering Homeowners Association members $80 off precision duct cleaning, with Benefect disinfectant and fungicide at no additional charge (a $49.95 value). To learn more please click here or call 1-800-268-7070.


Topics: Home Inspection, Monthly Newsletters, Carson Dunlop, Homeowner Tips