We don’t often think about the quality of the air we breathe in our homes. Maybe we take it for granted or maybe we just are too busy to think about potential allergens that circulate in the air, but indoor air quality should be an ongoing concern. Your heating and cooling system is the respiratory system of your home. In a typical six-room home, up to 40 pounds of dust is created annually through everyday living. A musty or moldy smell indicates the contaminants in your air are being pulled into and exhaled out of your HVAC system and re-circulated an average of 5 to 7 times every day. Contaminants build up in the duct work and decrease the performance of your residential heating or cooling system.
The National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) says the following factors lead to the pollutants in your air ducts:
Smokers in the household
Pets that shed high amounts of hair and dander
Water contamination or damage to the home or HVAC system
Residents with allergies or asthma who might benefit from a reduction in the amount of indoor air pollutants in the home’s HVAC system
After home renovations or remodeling
Keeping your home’s air ducts clear of allergens, dust, mold, and other contaminants maintains a comfortable living space. Not doing so can result in less-than-optimal air quality, increased breathing problems and allergic reactions. People with respiratory health conditions, autoimmune disorders or environmental allergies will feel the effects of a poorly maintained air system. The Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America says allergies affect as many as 30 percent of adults and 40 percent of children in the United States. Some of the most common allergens include mold, pet secretions and dander and pollen. These allergens that circulate throughout your home and through your HVAC system are detrimental to your overall health.
In addition to negatively affecting your health, NADCA says 25 to 40 percent of the energy used for heating or cooling a home is wasted, “Contaminants in the heating and cooling system cause it to work harder and shorten the life of your system. Although filters are used, the heating and cooling system still gets dirty through normal use.” Your HVAC system has to work harder to maintain your desired temperatures when it is not kept clean. That means a higher energy cost for you as more energy is required.
A cleaning professional can do a thorough inspection and make recommendations for an air duct and HVAC cleaning.