Many people today are aware that the air in their house may not be as clean as it should be. There are concerns about environmental toxins that are present in homes that residents are not aware of. One way to control substances that should not be in the home and air that people breathe is with vent cleaning. RoofChek.com encourages you to get professional vent cleaning performed frequently. Most companies clean the entire heating and cooling system in the house, including vents, the furnace, and air conditioning unit. If the vents in a home are full of dust, remnants of toxins from cooking and cleaning products or from pests that live in the home, it is not safe for the residents to breathe the air that is blown out of the vents.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) warns residents that they need to be aware of substances in their homes that can cause dangers. Dust can accumulate into a thick layer that sticks to the walls of the vents as well. Besides these normal occurrences, there can also be mold growing or rodents living in the vents. In this case, the EPA recommends that a professional vent cleaning service should be called. Professional testing under a microscope to determine whether scrapings from the inner walls of the vents are mold may be required, and a professional vent cleaning service can determine this for the homeowner. Professional testing for mold costs around $50. Mold in the heating and cooling vents can cause medical problems, especially if anyone in the household is allergic to it.
Vent cleaning should also be done if there are any animals like mice or insects living in the vents. Animal debris can be blown into the air that the people who live in the house breathe, contaminating the air. Professional vent cleaners may need to first exterminate the vermin living in the house. Some companies will call in a professional exterminator that is sub-contracted by their company, or they may perform the extermination themselves. Cleaning the vents while there are still live animals in the vents will not eradicate the problem. First of all, nests and all animal debris must be cleared out.
Vent cleaning companies sometimes recommend that a chemical biocide is applied to the walls and inside parts of the vents and ducts. This application kills bacteria and fungi such as mold. It also keeps these substances from growing again. Homeowners should be aware that there are no chemical biocides registered by the EPA at this time. It is unknown whether these sealants and biocides are safe to breathe. Until more research is completed, homeowners should keep in mind that any chemicals in the air that they breathe are probably not healthy. In some cases, it may be better to breathe the chemical than to have mold growing in the vents. If there is moisture that provides an environment for mold to grow, the problem should be addressed so that it doesn’t happen again.
The cost for duct cleaning ranges from around $450 to $1,000 depending on the system. If there is a problem, such as mold or vermin, the price for vent cleaning is higher because a lot more time is required to deal with the problem. If mold or animal debris needs to be cleaned from heat exchangers heating and cooling coils, drip pans, fan motor and fan housing, registers, and other parts of the heating and cooling system, more time is required.
After the cleaning is complete, the homeowner can inspect the parts of the heating and cooling system with a flashlight to see if it looks as if it was thoroughly cleaned. The vent cleaning should be repeated in about three to five years.