Is cleaning your ducts on your yearly calendar of housekeeping tasks? It shouldn’t be, according to Scott Brady, a Lead Technician at Dave’s Duct Cleaning, an award-winning air duct cleaning company servicing homes in the GTA.
Brady says many people get their ducts cleaned too frequently. “I get disheartened when I hear people say they get their ducts cleaned every year. They don’t need to be,” says Brady. Here, he offers 3 ways to prolong your duct cleaning.
1). Maintain a regular cleaning routine. Keeping on top of your housekeeping can help keep your ducts clean, prolonging the need for duct cleaning. This is especially important if you have pets and children.
High traffic areas are especially important to keep clean. “Stuff falls on the ground and find its way into your system,” says Brady. Vacuuming out your vents in hallways and the kitchen on a regular basis will prevent all that debris from finding its way into your duct work.
2). Cover vents during renovation. If you’re renovating a part of your home, such as a kitchen or rec room, turning off your system and covering your supply and return vents can help you keep all that debris out of your ducts.
3). Do an inspection. If you aren’t sure [about the state of your ducts], you can have a company come to inspect. Dave’s Duct Cleaning charges $149 for an inspection and gives $49 as a credit towards the service in the future if the cleaning is deemed unnecessary at the time of inspection.
You may also want to inspect your ducts yourself. “Open up the return vent and take a picture. If it’s really disgusting, call us,” says Brady. If you have existing holes from a previous service, you can open them up, take your finger and run it along the duct for three or four feet to see how much debris you accumulate – just as you would a dust test along the top of a china cabinet.
When to clean ducts. Brady says ducts should be cleaned every five to seven years under normal living conditions.
If you’re doing a major renovation or if you have a lot of pets, have respiratory issues or live in a high traffic area you may need your ducts to be cleaned more frequently.
[Alternatively], if you have a HEPA filter and you maintain a regular weekly cleaning regime, you should be able to prolong duct cleaning for up to ten years.