Air duct disinfection is an essential part of the air duct cleaning process, especially when there is mold growth or vermin infestation. Without further disinfecting, general cleaning of the air ducts may encourage reappearance or reinfestation in the future. Although some duct cleaning companies may claim that their services are essential to health, there is no evidence to support these claims. Ads may suggest that duct cleaning will reduce energy bills by improving system efficiency, but there is no data to back up these claims.
Even if the ducts are dirty, cleaning them is not likely to provide any measurable benefit. In fact, independent investigations conducted on duct cleaning indicate that the process removes so much dust that it creates a bigger problem than it solves. Different methods can be used for air duct cleaning and disinfection, but the most effective way is to hire a professional air duct cleaning company. It may be a good idea to clean your air ducts simply because it seems logical that the air ducts will get dirty over time and should be cleaned from time to time. For example, an inadequate suction collection system can release more dust, dirt, and other contaminants than if the ducts had been left intact. In addition to basic cleaning services, many duct cleaning companies also clean heating and cooling equipment (heat exchangers, cooling coils, condensate purge buckets, fan motors, fan blades, and fan housings).
A professional air duct cleaner will start by covering any cracks or openings in the ducts to maximize airflow and by using a powerful vacuum to remove most of the dust and dirt. If sufficient dirt and moisture are allowed to enter the duct system, there may not be a significant difference in the rate or degree of microbial growth in the bare or internally coated sheet metal ducts. Deodorants for HVAC ducts can help eliminate all types of odors from air conditioning systems and provide a perfume-like odor. If you or someone in your family has asthma or allergies, you may want to consider cleaning your home's heating and cooling ducts. The EPA has published several publications for guidance on how to identify potential indoor air quality problems and ways to prevent or fix them.
Air duct cleaning service providers may tell you that they need to apply a chemical biocideto the inside of the ducts to kill bacteria (germs) and fungi (mold) and prevent future biological growth.
It is also important to inspect your duct system for leaks, as these reduce efficiency and introduce air quality problems. These products are specifically designed for use in ducts or as ducts themselves, and are tested according to standards established by Underwriters Laboratories (UL), the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM), and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).