Did you know that some air pollutants are present at higher levels indoors than outdoors?
That’s why it’s vital to know what contributes to indoor air pollution.
Their indoor concentrations can even be two to five times higher than outdoors. That includes particulate matter (PM) and molds, among others.
One of the possible culprits is your King County home’s ductwork, which may form layers of PM over time. If that happens, it can start circulating contaminated air throughout your abode.
So then, how can you tell you have filthy ducts and that you need air duct cleaning in King County?
We’ve outlined the top indications below, so be sure to keep reading.
1. You Haven’t Cleaned Them For Years
It’s wise to get your air ducts cleaned once every three to five years. That’s a long enough time for dirt, debris, and dust to settle on the ducts’ surfaces.
So, if it’s been more than that since you’ve last scheduled an air duct cleaning service, now’s a good time to do so.
If you’re still hesitating, consider this: King County received an F grade in the 2021 State of the Air Report. That’s because the county experienced numerous days with high particle pollution levels.
Particle pollution (AKA particulate matter or PM), in turn, consists of dust, dirt, soot, or smoke. It can also comprise sulfuric acid, ammonium sulfate, pollen, and mold spores.
Either way, you’d want to avoid PM as much as possible, as it can aggravate asthma. Moreover, health experts associate exposure to this pollutant with respiratory infections.
2. You Have a Rodent Infestation
Rodents, including mice and rats, can build their homes and live in air ducts. They can even harvest some parts of your duct insulation to create their nests.
Worse, mice and rats are pervasive because they’re quick to reproduce. So, it’s no wonder that 14.8 million US households reported seeing them at home between 2020 and 2021.
The worst thing about such pests is that they can transmit diseases to humans and other animals. These include hantavirus pulmonary syndrome, plague, and rat-bite fever, to name a few.
So, if you have rats or mice at home, it’s vital to get pest control experts to eliminate the infestation ASAP. From there, consider hiring an air duct cleaning company to sanitize your ductwork.
3. Conditioned Air Smells Putrid
A solid sign you have rodents in your air ducts is if your conditioned air reeks of decay. Such foul odors can indicate that a dead pest is decaying in the ductwork.
The smell alone, which can be nauseating as is, should be enough reason to get your ductwork checked. Then, if something is decomposing there, have the ducts cleaned and sanitized ASAP. That way, the experts can eliminate the bacteria involved in the decomposition process.
What’s more, eliminating the putrid smells from your air ducts can also help keep other pests away. After all, these odors can attract carrion-feeders, also known as scavengers. Examples of such critters are carrion beetles, carrion flies, and cockroaches.
4. Visible Dirt on Supply Registers
The supply registers are the vents that supply conditioned air into your home. That means the air they deliver has already passed through the air filter. In short, the air that comes out of them should harbor lower levels of contaminants.
For the same reason, supply registers should be less prone to forming layers of dust and debris. So, if yours have visible dirt on them, it may indicate that you have dirty air ducts. Thus, it’s best to get them cleaned as soon as possible; otherwise, your indoor air quality (IAQ) is going to suffer.
5. Moldy Odors Coming Out of Vents
The colder the air in your air ducts, the higher the chances of condensation forming on them. In addition, the more humid the air, the more water droplets that can form on the ductwork.
A small amount of ductwork sweat is okay, but not if you add mold spores to the mix. Remember that these mold “seeds” can germinate in as little as 24 to 48 hours if they land on a damp spot. From there, they can start to colonize and keep growing under the right conditions.
So, if the air coming out of your vents always smell stale or musty, you may have molds in your air ducts. That’s quite likely, considering that King County’s humidity often exceeds 70%. Some mold species, in turn, tend to start growing in such humid environments.
In any case, it’s best to contact a local air duct cleaning service to inspect and clean them for you.
6. Sniffles Abound
Excessive dust, debris, and mold in air ducts can lower your home’s indoor air quality. After all, those contaminants can mix with the conditioned air delivered by your heater or AC. In some cases, cooled or heated (and contaminated) air can also seep out of leaky ductwork.
Either way, such duct problems can be some of the culprits behind your home having poor IAQ. Unfortunately, that can result in allergy symptoms, such as sneezing and sniffing. Eye and nose itchiness, as well as nasal congestion, may also occur.
If you and other household members experience those signs, it may be time to get your ducts cleaned.
7. Higher Energy Bills
Dirty HVAC filters, fans, and coils can reduce your systems’ efficiency. The same can happen if you have filthy air ducts on top of leaky ductwork. All those issues can make your heater and AC work harder, which, in turn, forces them to use more energy.
As a result, your energy bills can go through the roof. That’s even more likely to happen during the peak heating and cooling seasons.
So, before your bills go up any higher, have your heater and AC undergo seasonal maintenance. Consider air duct cleaning, too, especially if it’s been years since you last had them cleaned.
Schedule Air Duct Cleaning Services Today
As you can see, there are many signs that you need air duct cleaning in King County, from foul odors to having pests. Time will also tell; if three or more years have passed since their last cleaning, then it’s best to do that ASAP.
If you’re ready to get the air ducts in your King County home cleaned, our team here at Capitol Duct Cleaning can help. Schedule an appointment with us now, and we’ll make sure you’re 100% satisfied with our service.