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How Do You Know If Your Ducts Need Cleaning?

Some HVAC companies offer a service called duct cleaning. They'll use long hoses and powerful vacuums to remove all dust and debris from inside your ducts. So how do you know whether you need this service? Here are four key signs to watch out for.

Dust In and Around Your Vent Covers

Take a look at your vent covers. Are they covered in dust and grime? If you are able to see past the vent covers and into the vent boxes themselves, check whether those vent boxes are filled with dust. Keep in mind that the vents on your first floor are likely to become dirty before those on the second floor. They catch the dust before it is able to travel further up. In any case, if your vent covers are dusty, your ducts are likely dusty too, which means they could benefit from a cleaning.

Moldy, Mildew Odors

When your heat or air conditioning turns on, pay attention to the way the air smells. You may want to stand directly in front of a vent and take a whiff. If you notice that the air smells like mold or mildew, that usually indicates that there is mold growing inside the ducts. The best way to get rid of it is to have a duct cleaning service come out.

Quickly-Clogging Air Filters

You should be changing your HVAC filter every couple of months. If it seems to be absolutely packed with dust every time you change it, or if you have been needing to change it more frequently than usual, this suggests that your ducts are dirty. Some of the dirt is blowing out of them and getting caught in the air filters. If you have the ducts cleaned, then your air filters will last longer going forward.


If you struggle with indoor allergies, you may have noticed an uptick in symptoms over the past few months. This could be because allergens are getting caught in your ducts and being blown through the home when your air conditioning or heat turns on. If you have the ducts cleaned, you'll likely notice a reduction in your allergy symptoms afterward.

If you notice one or more of the issues above, then it is a good time to have your ducts cleaned. Your duct cleaning professional can look over your system and tell you how often you should have this maintenance done going forward.

Contact a local company to learn more about duct cleaning