For anyone who has either rented or purchased an older home, the pungent smell of aged, clogged air ducts is one that is all too familiar. It can smell like mold, mildew, dust, or any other handful of unpleasant odors, and that’s not even getting into the items causing it and what their long-term effects can be. So before immediately going for the more expensive HVAC upgrade, it may be as simple as cleaning out the air ducts.
The good news is that there are professional air duct cleaners out there that can help you remediate most of your problems as long as the ductwork itself is sound and in good condition. But aside from the obvious odor of mold and mildew, what other signs exist that tell you that it’s time to clean your air ducts? We are so glad you asked.
Your Energy Bills are Going Up
If you have seen your energy costs steadily go up over time, chances are your HVAC system is working harder to reach a preset temperature. This could be due to dust and debris clogging the air ducts and preventing the system from operating efficiently.
Consider your recent energy usage and look for any new additional fees. If you don’t recall any unusual usage or see anything out of the ordinary on your bill, then it may be your ducts or ductwork that need to be cleaned.
The House is Always Dusty
Dusting is not everyone’s favorite chore/activity, but if you find yourself doing it again and again repeatedly, only to be met with more dust in the morning, your ducts are likely dispersing dust every time they blow air.
On average, flat surfaces are typically dusted every few weeks or once a month. Anything outside of that could suggest your ductwork needs cleaning.
Strange Sounds in the Ductwork
With the exception of the motor that pushes air through it, your ductwork should not make much noise. If you hear any strange noises, call a professional to check out why. Ignoring problems like these could result in even costlier repairs down the road.
Unstable Airflow Throughout the House
Moving from room to room, check each air duct for air flow. If the airflow in one room feels weaker than another, it is likely due to clogged ductwork. Only a professional air duct cleaner would be able to make this determination and make the repair, so make the call and report your findings once they get to the house.
Air Filters Have to Be Continuously Changed
Changing HVAC air filters periodically is one thing, but if you find yourself changing them every 4-5 days, this could be indicative of clogged air ducts. Periodic filter changes are a good practice for responsible HVAC owners to get into, but any other filter changes outside of the regular maintenance schedule should be handled as quickly as possible to restore the health of your indoor environment.