Spring Cleaning: Freshen Your Air, Too

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With warmer weather right around the corner, you may be excited to finally give your home a deep spring cleaning. From wiping down the windows to vacuuming every nook and cranny, there’s a lot of cleaning to do—but have you ever thought about freshening the air in your home?

After running your HVAC system for months to keep your home warm during the cold months, chances are that your ducts could use a good cleaning. Ducts throughout your home are likely filled with dust, allergens, and other debris that can make the air in your home less than perfectly clean. After months of use, it’s also important to change your air filter.

Here’s everything you need to know about air duct cleaning and the importance of routine servicing of heating and air conditioning in Alexandria VA.

Guy in mask holding a a dirty air duct

Benefits of Duct Cleaning

The fact is that air ducts get dirty and, like anything else in your home when something is dirty, you clean it. Air ducts are known to collect dirt and dust, but accumulations can increase if your home has pets, smokers, a damaged HVAC system, or if you’ve recently completed a home renovation project. Because air ducts collect debris, cleaning them is important to ensure that the air in your home is healthy and that your system isn’t bogged down by the debris.

Cleaner Air

One of the top benefits of clean air ducts is improved indoor air quality. The HVAC system is the lungs of your home. The more we live in a home, the more dander, dust, and chemicals we introduce into it. These contaminants are sucked into the HVAC system and then re-circulated throughout your home. This causes the contaminants to build up in the air ducts and air filter.

Dirty air ducts don’t mean that your home’s air is entirely unhealthy. What it does mean is that there’s an increase in contaminants in the air that may be worsening health issues, especially those with environmental allergies or respiratory health problems.

Cleaner air also means less dirt and dust that is floating around and, ultimately, landing on your flooring and furniture. Having cleaner air means you don’t have to dust your blinds or vacuum your furniture nearly as often to remove built-up debris.

Lower Energy Costs

Another benefit that many homeowners don’t think of is the cost savings that come with having clean air ducts and a fresh air filter. Did you know that properly installed and cleaned ducts can improve your home’s energy efficiency by 20% or more? The key to an effective heating and cooling system is one that is properly maintained, to include clean ducts and a new air filter as needed. In turn, less energy is used, which means cost savings for you.

A Maintained System Is a Healthy System

If you’ve ever had to have an HVAC serviced, repaired, or replaced, you know just how expensive it can be. To prevent unnecessary overwork of your system, take the time to properly maintain it so that it lasts its expected lifetime. An HVAC system that is clogged with dust and debris has to work harder in order to pump air throughout your home. Paying a couple hundred dollars to clean the air ducts could mean thousands saved on a pricey repair, or worse, a full system replacement.

technician fixing air duct

Signs You Need Duct Cleaning

There is no solid evidence that clean air ducts prevent health problems, but many people agree that dirty air ducts introduce impurities into the air in your home. These impurities, like dirt and dust, typically settle on surfaces such as carpeting or furniture and can cause minor allergic reactions like sneezing if you happen to be allergic to dust or some other form of debris.

Since you don’t visually inspect your air ducts on a routine basis, it can be hard to know if they need to be cleaned or not. Here are tell-tale signs that you need duct cleaning and a new air filter installed in your home:

  • Visible mold growth
  • Excessive dirt and debris
  • Signs of rodent infestation

If you notice any of these signs in your home, it’s important to have your air ducts cleaned immediately. Since air duct cleaning is a highly involved process, it’s best to contract out the work to a company that specializes in air duct cleaning in Alexandria VA.

Importance of Air Filters

Most HVAC systems require a new air filter around the time when the ducts are cleaned—but why is it important to install a new air filter regularly? One of the biggest risks of a clogged air filter is that it can cause extensive and highly expensive damage to your system. Continued use of a clogged air filter can reduce the longevity of your system.

To save yourself hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars in repair, be sure to replace the air filter in your home as often as needed. The color of the filter is a good indicator as to whether or not a new one is required.

Another benefit to a clean filter is that the air in your home is fresher, cleaner, and healthier. No one wants to breathe in air that is full of allergens and dirt. This may cause issues for those with certain allergies or respiratory issues like asthma.

Without switching out the air filter, you’re circulating dust, pollen, and other small particles throughout your home. This not only impacts those living in your home, but can also lessen the lifespan of your furniture, flooring, and even your window treatments. We all know that dust, dirt, and other debris can settle on certain surfaces. Minimize this risk by routinely replacing your air filter.

How to Clean Ducts

Everyone is all about saving money where possible, but, as a homeowner, there are certain home servicing needs that are best left to the professionals. When it comes to keeping the air clean in your home, what you can do is change the air filter at least every three months. This way, the HVAC system is able to properly filter your home’s air.

Hand pulling out air duct

Another tip for keeping your home’s air ducts clean is to remove floor vents with a screwdriver and use your vacuum’s hose to clean the vent as far as you can reach. Be sure that the attachments are properly secured so that you don’t lose them in the air duct.

While you can clean portions of the air ducts, you won’t be able to clean them entirely. Air duct cleaning requires the use of highly specialized equipment that isn’t available for consumer use. Be sure to schedule air duct cleaning in Alexandria VA through a reputable HVAC company at least once a year. This ensures that the air in your home is clean and safe for everyone to breathe.

HVAC Service You Can Trust

No matter if you’re looking for air duct cleaning or heating services for your home, A-Advantage is ready to help with all of your HVAC needs. We offer a convenient air filter delivery program along with trusted services for all of your heating and cooling needs.

Don’t go another day without the HVAC service that you need. Make this year’s spring cleaning the time when you address your home’s indoor air quality. Contact us today in Alexandria at (703) 461-6701 or Manassas at (703) 368-7855 to schedule an appointment.

Sources

  1. https://www.energystar.gov/index.cfm?c=heat_cool.pr_hvac
  2. https://www.epa.gov/indoor-air-quality-iaq/should-you-have-air-ducts-your-home-cleaned
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