Ductwork cleaning

I have horrendous indoor and outdoor allergies. Would cleaning my ductwork help? If so, any tips on how to DIY?
q ductwork cleaning, cleaning tips, hvac, This shows exposed ducts near my HVAC
This shows exposed ducts near my HVAC.
  23 answers
  • Deirdre Sullivan Deirdre Sullivan on Mar 20, 2015
    I feel your pain! Check out these tips: http://goo.gl/ksVh0l Cleaning your ducts can be good for your health. It will also boost the efficiency of your HVAC.

  • D & K D & K on Mar 21, 2015
    If your entire duct system is metal I'd say you'd be wasting your time and money. Metal duct work rarely collects dust or materials that would cause a problem. Because they are metal and smooth almost all dust that is sucked into the system is simply blown out each time the blower engages. Now if they are the hard fiberglass "board" type I'd have to say yes. You'd get more benefit from using a good quality pleated HVAC filter if you're not already using them. They're slightly more expensive than the cheap non-woven filters and much more effective at collecting dust and allergens that might cause you problems.

  • Carole Carole on Mar 21, 2015
    Do you know what you are allergic to? I used to be allergic to mould spores, animal dander, grass pollens and tree pollens and dust mites. It is actually inhaling the dust mite pooh that is the allergen, rather than the dust or dust mites themselves. I have been having immunotherapy for several years. They inject you with what you are allergic to in small doses and build the doses up over time to a maintenance level. Like a vaccine. Injections start at one per week for a couple of months, then bi-weekly until they reach maintenance dose level and then you go onto one injection per month. I found it really helped me and I am now only allergic to dustmites and olive tree pollen and privet pollen. If you have not done so already, get yourself allergy tested and ask about seeing an allergy specialist who can give you this immunotherapy for your allergies. It is effective in about 75-80 per cent of people who try it. No more sneezing, itchy eyes and nose and feeling stuffed up and getting sinus pain and headaches. Good luck.

  • Grouchy Grouchy on Mar 21, 2015
    YES INDEED! Besides, what would it hurt? Make sure you get someone who knows what they are doing and is aware that if the crud gets out and into the space it good for you!

    • See 1 previous
    • Carolyn S. Carolyn S. on Mar 23, 2015
      @Fab and Pretty Companies that do duct cleaning are services and not free! I have never used a duct service that wanted me to sign up for more cleanings. Yes, with furnance /ac cleaning services.

  • Carolyn S. Carolyn S. on Mar 21, 2015
    I might do the duct cleaning first time and then make sure you're changing your filters as often as necessary. If you're not sure, hold a new one up to the light and hold the used one up. Also, increase the filtration rating of the filter. All I can speak of is Filtrete that rates by numbers, 1200, 1500, 1900, etc. The higher the number the more dense the filter is and therefore will capture more stuff. Other companies are putting out allergen filters. These are more expensive, so if you need to use the generic filters, I'd look at them once a month.

    • Christina Christina on Apr 13, 2015
      @Carolyn S., thanks. Yes, i change my filters monthly. Great tips about the filtration numbers.

  • Mf Mf on Mar 21, 2015
    Get your ducts professionally cleaned. But before you do that, rip up any wall to wall carpets and/or area rugs that trap dust and mold spores, and get them out of your house. Hardwood, tile or vinyl floors are so much better for your health. Limit window treatment to choices that can be washed vs choices like mini blinds are dust collectors. When Spring hits, don't hang clean laundry out on your wash line to dry. Pollen attaches itself to your clean clothes and then you end up wearing and sleeping in pollen. Keep your windows and doors closed during the day when the pollen count is the highest. Only open in the early morning and evening, and never when it is windy. My Chiropractor told me to buy local honey before Spring and put in my tea, yogurt, pancakes, etc. You have to use local honey so read your label. Local honey bees will gather the pollen to make their honey that affects you in the Spring. Get a jump start on the Spring so you don't have to take drugs. Your allergist is going to prescribe drugs which keeps him/her in business.

  • Roxanne Betlinski Roxanne Betlinski on Mar 21, 2015
    I also have allergies & was advised by a professional who used to clean air ducks till he found it to be worse. When cleaning it releases dust particles in the your house & creates worse problems. The advise of D& K remodeling is correct. Save your money. Get rid of carpet whoch holds dust underneath you never can get. When we removed ours, we were amazed what was under. Keep air ducts & filter cleaned regularly. Local honey is also great.

  • Barbara Barbara on Mar 21, 2015
    Has anyone had success with the filters that you put in your vents?

    • Fab and Pretty Fab and Pretty on Mar 21, 2015
      @Barbara the best results we've had is with changing filters every 3 months, vacuuming/sweeping diligently and keeping a filter on where we have birds...they have an unusually huge amount of dander.

  • Kelly S Kelly S on Mar 21, 2015
    Definitely have then professionally cleaned along with the furnace. It will cost between $500 and a $1,000 but your health is worth it.

  • Jim Pack Jim Pack on Mar 21, 2015
    Save your money! The advice of those above that say it is a waste of your time and money are correct. I have been in the building construction and maintenance trade for over thirty years and I can tell you that duct cleaning is one of the biggest scams there is.

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    • Kathy Kathy on Mar 22, 2015
      @Jim Pack No, it's not a scam. I had mine cleaned several years ago, and saw what came out - paper cups, newspaper, gum wrappers, dirt, dust, etc. The people building homes sometimes sweep garbage into vents.

  • Barb Burnham Barb Burnham on Mar 21, 2015
    Having managed as many as 1600 single family homes (military) we often had ducts professionally cleaned for families with allergy issues. Hands down feedback was enormously positive. Was in that business ( from managing homes, to inspecting new construction, to directly managing new construction and complete renovations) for over 30 years at numerous states/ cities. I agree wholeheartedly with Mf but would go further and say your furniture should be leather so it can be truly cleaned of all pollen brought into the home on clothes. Fabric furniture surely can never be clean enough continuously to keep it pollen free. Good luck.

    • Mf Mf on Mar 21, 2015
      Barb, I forgot about leather furniture! Good catch! Mary

  • Liliana Wells Liliana Wells on Mar 21, 2015
    Have them professionally cleaned and listen to all the other good advice here. Change the filter regularly, get rid of carpets/rugs. Fabric will hold dust and allergens. We also have two HEPA filters, one for the living room and one for the bedroom. They seem to help my husband's breathing; but nothing is completely effective. Good luck.

  • Linda kelley Linda kelley on Mar 22, 2015
    Oh honey, definitely!! I had mine done....what a difference. You can't imagine the disgusting filth that comes out of there.

  • Jill Jill on Mar 22, 2015
    Yes! Cleaning your ducts does help. I have had this done every few years or so, but you want to know what works even better? Using filters that cut to fit inside the vents leading to the rooms, and making sure you change the filter to your heater/air conditioner on a regular basis. The minimum the filter should should be changed is every three months, or sooner if you live in an area that is really dusty dirty, or if you have pets!

    • Barbara Barbara on Mar 22, 2015
      @Jill These are the filters I was referring to in my earlier post. So they do work....I have noticed a reduction in dust coming from the vents from using them.

  • Carmen Carmen on Mar 22, 2015
    When we moved into our current home we had the ducts cleaned and sealed. I too suffer from allergies, and know that definitely this helped me since previous owner had a mini zoo in the house. Changing your filter monthly. Keep all the vents clean. Also take other measures like door mats out side the door and at the door when you enter, wash or vacuum frequently, and not walking the house with shoes used outside keeps pollen from entering..

  • Kathy Kathy on Mar 22, 2015
    This is a job best left to professionals, especially since they know where to cut the duct work open. We had it done a few years ago and saw how much dust and debris can be in there.

  • Mary Mary on Mar 22, 2015
    I m a curious how much does duct cleaning cost - just an average figure. Thanks

    • Dottie Unruh Dottie Unruh on Apr 08, 2015
      @Mary You can find duct "cleaners" operating at all kinds of prices. Beware those who claim to do a whole house for $89, or such. Needn't cost $1,000, either. Pick a middle of the road priced one, truck mounted, and check with your local Better Business Bureau on the one you choose.

  • Barb Burnham Barb Burnham on Mar 22, 2015
    It depends on locale. Here it is about $300 for 1300 -1500 square foot house.

  • Ragne Ragne on Apr 09, 2015
    We recently got it done. I didn't feel like spending the money, but after finding a Livingsocial (or Groupon) voucher, I couldn't pass the deal. It seems like it helped.

  • Ljk1162278 Ljk1162278 on Apr 11, 2015
    I have allergies as well, but have never had our ductwork cleaned. We did add a good filter to our intake vent, and that definitely helped. We change it out about every three or four months. A good air cleaner also helps. I will be adding a few plants known for their air cleaning properties this week. If you decide to try plants, just be sure you aren't allergic to any of them! : )

  • DD DD on Apr 13, 2015
    Have your ducts cleaned professionally, make sure they use a system with a hepa filtration system on the unit they use. Also make sure that you humidifier is cleaned when you furnace is serviced at the beginning of heating season, and have the A/C system cleaned prior to cooling season. As for filters make sure, as stated previously, that the filters are changed every 3 months and that you are using more than the 50 cent filters those are useless in capturing micro particles. At least use the white pleated filters, also make sure the fan is in the ON position when you vacuum the return register so that any particles that are not caught in the vacuum are caught on the filter

  • Tonia Tonia on May 29, 2015
    Ask if they have a camera. There are scammers out there. If they are willing to run a scope camera in your vents before and after they are the real deal.

  • John White John White on Apr 16, 2018
    The importance of duct cleaning is very important to keep your home free from unhealthy air that might spread germs, allergies, mold and some other diseases. So, you should always follow regular HVAC system maintenance by doing duct works & cleaning your air filters. In winters duct clogged into the filters and due to which, air quality gets poor and you may get allergies or several health issues. Therefore, its better to follow routine to do duct work to keep HVAC system for a long run. To do the duct cleaning by DIY then you should have some of the tools like

    • Vacuum cleaner with accessories hose
    • Dust brush for your vacuum microfiber cleaning cloths
    • Rotary drier vent brush cleaner
    • Cordless drill.

    If you have any problem then you can contact-us.