The ducts in your home or condo push around the warm or cool air from your furnace or air conditioner and they do need to be cleaned, as often as yearly, depending on the size of the house or condo. Over time, dust and debris, which may include mould and fungus, will accumulate in your ducts and these may create air quality problems in your unit or house and can lead to health problems like allergies, coughs and other issues. Especially if you have a baby in the house or an elderly person or immunocompromised person, the bacteria and mould that can build up in your ducts over the winter can cause a lot of respiratory problems! Duct cleaning professionals have high-end tools that can easily get rid of the dust and debris that gets settles in the ducts.
Cleaning out the ducts can reduce energy consumption and cut down your electricity bill. The reason is that if the ducts are blocked heavily the furnace or AC may have to work extra hard to push through the warm or cool air. Cleaning of dust in the furnace can also help to improve the performance of the system. Often it requires a professional service to properly clean the intricate filters of the air ducts. If you live in a condo, speak with your Property Management about when last this service was done and ask your Board to schedule it as part of yearly maintenance. It might already be covered under the building costs. Cleaning the ducts for the dryer is mandatory in most condos because it can be a fire hazard if the lint builds up over several years.
Compared to other maintenance items for a house or condo, the average air duct cleaning for most situations costs between $250 and $500, with the price affected by factors like the size of the home, the number of ducts and their configuration. If it’s a house, then usually there is a base fee around $200 and that covers 10-15 duct openings in your home. For each additional duct there is an extra cost. So remember to calculate exactly how many ducts you have before you have the service done.
If You decide to go for it, here is what to expect:
Duct cleaners come with a truck and need to park in the driveway so they can maximize the access into the house. They have a powerful vacuum that sucks everything through a long pipe out of your home so nothing should vent to the inside of your home. In order to access the ducts they often have to unscrew the duct cover plates (metal plates that prevent things falling in the ducts). In older houses this can take extra time and screwing things back in place is not so easy if the screws and plates have become rusted over time.
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