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Of all the appliances we use in our homes on a day-to-basis, the HVAC or air conditioning system might be the one that we think about the least, since our typical interactions with it are as simple as moving a switch up or down a few degrees or changing the return air filter on a monthly or bi-monthly basis. This “set it and forget it” approach, however neglectful it may sound, is the normal extent of our dealings with this device and the air ducts attached to it. As long as it’s working, we think, it must be fine. Ironically, of all the appliances we use, there is no other machine that has a more constant and intimate interaction with us, our bodies, our lungs and our entire immune system, as long as we are breathing the air it supplies, every second of our daily lives! There could be some potentially expensive and unhealthy side effects from the passive approach to HVAC operation. The following facts about air ducts might suggest the need for a more conscious effort to monitor and maintain this complex and unseen system in our homes and workplaces. 

By their very nature, the ducts that distribute our heating and air conditioning are dark, damp and full of microscopic contaminants which serve as nutrients for various types of mold, fungi and dust mites. These contaminants and air pollutants can lead to discomfort, odor, or adverse health reactions such as allergies or respiratory symptoms. More importantly, they are essentially a super-concentrated reflection of your home’s overall indoor air quality, and each new cycle of air is a recycling and redistribution of the same ecosystem of contaminants. If the dark, damp and dirty buffet in your ducts goes unchecked, it can become a breeding ground for even more potentially dangerous contaminants in the air circulating throughout your home. Dirty air filters, air leaks in ductwork and poor ventilation that carries outside or attic air inside can also contribute to unhealthy IAQ levels in the home or office. 

While it is true that air duct cleaning alone may not cure or prevent any respiratory illnesses like asthma or other severe allergic reactions, it does play a very important role in the symptom treatment and guided control of these conditions. 

Almost every HVAC and furnace manufacturer on the market has some set of guidelines on how often you should have your unit cleaned or inspected, but this should be done at least once every 5 years at an absolute minimum. Although the EPA does not offer any recommendations for the cleaning of air ducts, it’s a great idea to have both components inspected and/or cleaned at the same time, since they are so completely connected that the cleanliness of one depends largely upon the cleanliness and breathability of the other. Basically, a spic and span air handler or furnace will NOT stay that way for long, if the ducts it supplies and eventually pulls from are dirty. Furthermore, a regular cleaning and inspection of your air ducts can even increase the efficiency of your HVAC system, saving you money by keeping you comfortably cool or warm for less, when your system is ready to work at its best. 

Here are just a few more facts about indoor air quality and your HVAC system that might persuade you to schedule a regular inspection for cleaning with your local air duct and IAQ specialist:

  • According to the EPA, indoor air pollution is ranked in the top 5 environmental dangers to the public, and studies have shown that 2 out of every 3 IAQ problems can be traced back to the HVAC and air duct system. 
  • The American College of Allergists states that 20% of all illnesses are either caused or worsened by indoor air pollution.
  • The levels of some indoor air pollutant samples have been found to be as much as 70 times greater than the levels in outdoor air.  (duct9-11.com)
  • The average 6-room house collects 40 pounds of dust per year. (Discover Magazine)
  • About 40,000 dust mites can live in only one ounce of dust. (duct9-11.com)
  • Over 50 million Americans suffer from allergies, and 1 out of 6 does so as a direct result of contaminated air duct systems. (Total Health and Better Health Magazines)
  • Airflow problems in your HVAC system can reduce its efficiency by as much as 15%. (energystar.gov)
  • 0.42 inches of dirt on a heating or cooling coil can reduce efficiency by 21%. (EPA)
  • 9 out of 10 HVAC system failures are caused by dirt and dust. (LCES—Louisiana Cooperative Extensions Service) 

If you’re looking to enhance the efficiency and quality of your HVAC system, Enviro-Clean Services, Inc. is the partner you need. Our expertise and dedication to providing top-notch HVAC and air duct cleaning services are unmatched in the industry. By reaching out to us, you’ll not only be taking a vital step towards improving your indoor air quality but also ensuring the longevity of your HVAC system. Don’t hesitate to contact us today and experience the difference we can make for your home or business.

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