Table of Contents Hide
- Why Does Mold Grow In Air Ducts?
- How Do You Prevent Mold In Air Ducts?
- Is Mold In Air Vents Harmful?
- How Often Should You Clean Your Air Ducts?
Got mold in air ducts and don’t know what to do? Read the article to find out how you can prevent mold in your home air ducts, how to clean them, and how often should you clean your air ducts.
Mold growth in air ducts is quite common. There are many reasons why mold tends to grow in air ducts. However, cleaning air ducts promptly to eradicate mold is necessary. In the first place, you should try to prevent mold in air ducts. As we all know that prevention is better than cure, we should first look for ways to prevent mold in air ducts.
This article will focus on why there is mold in the air ducts, how to prevent their growth, when you should clean your air ducts, whether mold is dangerous, and methods through which you can clean air ducts to eliminate mold from them.
Why Does Mold Grow In Air Ducts?
Mold in air ducts is common in households having air conditioner systems or poor ventilation. Two reasons for mold growth in air ducts are moisture and warm temperatures.
Mold needs an ideal environment that favors its growth. Lack of ventilation, moisture, humidity, and a warm environment are ideal conditions for mold growth. In addition to this, anything that traps moisture in walls, inlets, or outlets in your house or room will encounter mold growth sooner or later.
The following are a few conditions that contribute to mold in air ducts.
An Oversized Air Conditioning Unit
This reason might seem illogical to many, or many of you might not believe it. Still, oversized air conditioning units for a small room are the basic cause that gives rise to mold in air ducts. This is because larger or oversized air conditioning units tend to cool smaller rooms faster. When they have maintained the room’s cooling temperature, they turn off before dehumidifying the air. This leads to the build-up of moisture in the walls and the air ducts. This might not happen overnight, but it slowly starts to happen after you have installed an air conditioner in your room.
If you encounter mold growth in air ducts just after a new AC installation, it’s a sign that the AC unit is too large for your room.
Setting Air Conditioner On Low Temperature
Most of us enjoy sleeping in a cold room. However, you might have to put in extra effort to clean up the mold that will have accumulated in your air ducts later. When you lower the temperature of your air conditioner, the low-temperature air from the AC meets with the warm air in the room and causes it to condense in and around the vent’s surface due to the temperature difference.
If the moisture builds up time and again, this can lead to mold in air ducts. Although the temperature difference ideally required is around 20 degrees between the cold air and the warm air, you should be ready for the unexpected.
Leakage In Ducts
Leakage in outer air vents or outer ducts is usually underrated. However, this is the ideal environment for mold growth in air ducts. This is because they allow the warm air inside, and the temperature difference between the cold air and the warm air allows moisture condensation, which favors mold growth.
Ensure that you inspect your outer air vents and ducts every two to three days and seal them if there are any potential leaks.
How Do You Prevent Mold In Air Ducts?
As discussed above, it’s better to prevent mold in air vents rather than put in extra effort reinstalling a new system or cleaning the vent. The following are some of the ways to prevent mold in air vents.
Keep Moisture Away
Moisture is the keyhole for mold growth. Hence, keeping your air vents moisture-free can prevent mold growth in your air vents. To keep your space moist-free, you can install a dehumidifier. A dehumidifier will keep the moisture levels regular inside your house and prevent condensation of excess moisture in your home.
In addition to this, mold in air vents usually begins when the moisture level is around 70 or more. Ensure that your dehumidifier balances the moisture level between 35 to 50 percent so that your air vents are also gradually dehumidifier.
Keep The Vents Free of Blockage
Any blockage in the vents will account for poor ventilation and favor mold growth. Hence, ensure that your air vents are open and there is no blockage in the front of them. Furniture, curtains, or any other item blocking normal ventilation will cause mold in air vents.
This is because stationary air combined with conditions such as alternative dark and light environments will cause condensation and favor mold growth.
Cleaning HVAC Ducts
Cleaning mold is a time-consuming process. Hence, make sure you clean your HVAC ducts regularly to ensure no accumulation of moisture or dirt, which will favor mold growth later on. In addition to this, cleaning of HVAC ducts will also improve the air conditioning quality of your AC and will prevent mold in air vents.
For this purpose, you can also hire multiple professionals. These professionals ensure that the HVAC systems are adequately cleaned and in-depth to prevent long-term prevention.
Is Mold In Air Vents Harmful?
Mold in air vents is undoubtedly harmful and isn’t something you should ignore. Mold can make individuals more sensitive and create problems for individuals with low immunity. The mold in air vents will be incorporated into the environment, and you’ll eventually breathe it in. This will cause health issues such as hay fever, sinusitis, hypersensitivity, asthma, shortness of breath, and multiple infections.
How To Clean Mold In Air Vents?
We have already discussed multiple methods to prevent mold growth in air vents. However, even if you experience mold growth in your vents, there are methods that you can use to clean mold.
The following are methods that can be used to clean mold.
Air Duct Cleaning After Renovation
One of the methods to remove mold from your air vents is air duct cleaning after renovation. During the home renovation process, air ducts become home to dirt, dust, allergens, and bacteria. This can cause the growth of mold in vents in the long term. Hence, air duct cleaning after renovation is an ideal way to clean mold.
Cleaning air ducts after renovation involves four basic steps. Professional duct cleaners will carry out a visual inspection to investigate the amount of mold, dirt, and dust accumulated in your air duct. Then they will create negative pressure through truck-mounted vacuum devices. After doing so, they will remove all the particles using different kinds of brushes, such as rotating brushes, compressed air tools, and vacuum cleaners. In the final step, general cleaning of the HVAC system will be carried out to ensure proper cleaning.
Plastic Flexible Air Duct Hose
A plastic flexible air duct hose is a new, powerful, efficient, and flexible device to remove mold from your air vents. The plastic flexible air duct hose is designed to work with duct cleaning equipment to clean air ducts, coils, grills, and other HVAC system components.
To begin with, cleaning through this air duct hose, a prior inspection was conducted to determine the tools needed to clean the air vents. This can be done visually, or special devices such as cameras can monitor mold growth. Next, the air duct cleaning hose will be connected to the available ducting access points. This will allow the hose to collect all the mold and other loose particles with high pressure.
Use of special brushes will also be employed to remove the debris and ensure that the coiling of the air ducts is also clean. Finally, the technicians will also perform an overall check of the complete HVAC system to ensure no mold growth.
How Often Should You Clean Your Air Ducts?
Cleaning air ducts is necessary. However, few are aware of how often you should clean your air ducts. Whenever people opt for professional cleaning services, one of the questions professionals ask their customers is “how often should you clean your air ducts?” to know the general cleaning pattern of their customers.
The ideal time to clean your air ducts is every 2 to 3 years. Timely cleaning and maintenance of air ducts ensure that your indoor air quality is maintained. You encounter minor health issues, and there is no growth of mold or bacteria inside the air duct.
Timely cleaning of air ducts has the following advantages:
- It reduces your energy bills by providing better efficiency.
- It reduces the chances of air-bone diseases and respiratory problems such as asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis, and many other diseases.
- Timely cleaning allows you to maintain your place well. Moreover, it makes your living space a better place to live.
- Timely cleaning prevents expensive repairs, prevents occasional wear and tear, and ensures your HVAC system’s longevity.
Conclusively, you might not notice signs of mold in air ducts immediately, but this will eventually lead to many problems with your HVAC system and your health. The air quality in your place will deteriorate, your health will be affected, you will encounter repair issues now and then, and there will be a need to replace your HVAC system sooner rather than later.
Hence, ensure to perform timely cleaning of your air ducts and prevent mold in air ducts in the first place.