Equipment key to quality air duct cleaning

Equipment key to quality air duct cleaning

How important is air-duct cleaning? How often should it be done? Is it worth it to pay the extra money to ensure there is no mold in the air ducts?Angie's List member Glenn Millar

Regularly cleaning your air ducts is an important factor in reducing excessive dust, says Walt Otto, owner of highly rated Otto's Air Care in Tigard, which also services Portland.

"It's worth the money - about $50 in addition to our average $150 air-duct cleaning charge - to sanitize the system to eliminate mold and mildew," Otto says.

Matt Jeppesen, owner of highly rated Power Vac LLC in Portland, suggests avoiding hiring a company that uses a shop vacuum with spinning brushes to clean air ducts, because that method doesn't clean the system as thoroughly. "The best method is done with negative air machines, HEPA-filtered vacuum units or truck-mounted systems," Jeppesen says. "You should get this done every five to seven years."

In addition to regularly changing your air filters every few months, Jeppesen suggests installing new replacement ductwork for extreme odors such as cat urine. He also recommends keeping your HVAC system off while remodeling, or placing cheesecloth over return vents to avoid contaminants.

"To maintain clean air after cleaning, a good furnace filter is required. We suggest a quality electrostatic filter," Otto says.

Do you have a service-related question? E-mail us at mailbag@angieslist.com.


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