How to Clean Central Air Ducts. Clean air ducts allow the system to work more efficiently and provide the homeowners with a healthier environment. Although there are professionals who specialize in cleaning air duct systems, a homeowner can easily clean the most vital parts of the system on his own.
Things You'll Need
- Dust mask
- Cleaning brush
- Paper towels
- Vacuum cleaner
- Air filter
Recognize signs that the air ducts require cleaning. If you experience visible mold growth, an infestation of insects or other small animals like mice, or a clogged system such as dust blocking air flow from vents, then consider conducting an air duct cleaning. To prevent harmful health risk and damage to your system clean your air ducts on a yearly basis.
Gather the tools you need to conduct the cleaning. Get a screwdriver, heavy-duty cleaning gloves, cleaning brush, rag, paper towels, vacuum cleaner and tape. Also, purchase and wear a dust mask while you clean if the dust buildup is extreme or you have dust and mold allergies.
Remove the vent covers with a screwdriver, and then remove the air filters if present. Wash the inside of the duct and the wall or ceiling where the duct connects because it is a challenge to vacuum this space efficiently and you do not want to damage your wall by using the vacuum's strong force.
Vacuum the air ducts as far into the ducts as you can. First, tape the vacuum accessory to the hose before attempting to clean the air duct with the vacuum. Securing the accessory with tape prevents you from losing the accessory as you reach farther into the air duct to clean.
Replace the air filter, if necessary, and reattach the vent covers. Vacuum the vent covers to remove any excess dust particles that are caught in the covers. Change your air filters monthly to maintain clean air ducts longer.