Your air ducts work to move hot and cold air from your central heating and cooling system throughout your home, maintaining the comfort levels in each room. However, over time, debris can build up and block your ducts, ruining the efficiency of your heating and cooling systems. Thankfully, there are a number of warning signs you can look out for to help determine when you need to contact a professional to have your ducts cleaned.
No Air Flow
Hold your hand over the vents in your home to see if there is any air coming through when your air conditioner or central heating system is turned on. If there is a very small amount of flowing air, or none at all, your air ducts have become clogged and your heating and cooling systems cannot service your home properly. It's a good idea to check every vent in the home, as sometimes the blockages are only located in a single room or area of your house.
If you notice a strange smell in your home whenever your air conditioner or heating system turns on, there may be mold and mildew growth within your ductwork. This usually takes on an earthy smell, and occurs if you have a high amount of humidity within your home. You should consult with a professional immediately, as mold can be a serious health hazard if left unchecked. In the future, you should also consider investing in a dehumidifier to reduce the amount of humidity within your home and discourage further mold growth.
Increased Energy Bills
If you notice that your energy bills have increased without a corresponding increase in the amount of appliance use within your home, your ductwork may be blocked up. This prevents heated or cooled air from reaching the rest of your home, and so the thermostat of your heating and cooling system will not register that your heating and cooling system is working. This leads to an increase in the amount of energy that your heating and cooling system uses as it tries to make up the difference.
Dust and Debris
If you notice a larger amount of dust and other small pieces of debris throughout the air in your home, especially around the vents in each room, there may be a large buildup within your air duct system. This can greatly reduce your home's air quality and aggravate respiratory conditions and allergies if left unchecked, and you should contact a professional, such as one from Universal Refrigeration, immediately.