A Guide To DIY Duct Cleaning

You should have your air ducts professionally cleaned every few years. However, in between the scheduled cleanings you can also do some light duct cleaning yourself. These DIY cleanings are great way to check up on your ducts and remove allergens that could be flowing into your home. This article explains the best tools and supplies for simple duct cleaning. This is an easy DIY project because the tools are basic, the work is not too physical, and it is not dangerous.

What You Need

There are tow unique tools you need to clean your own air ducts. First of all, a telescoping (extendable) pole. These are often called painters' poles and they are sold in the paint department. The HVAC section might have similar poles, but they are essentially the same. They will all have a universal male screw attachment. This is perfect for attaching the duct cleaning brush (the second unique tool). The brush handle will have a female attachment, so it can be easily twisted on to the pole. You will also need a flathead screwdriver, flashlight, and hose vacuum.

Cleaning the Ducts

First, you need to use the screwdriver to remove the bolts that secure the air registers to the wall. Now, use you flashlight to look deep into the ducts. Look for mold or any dark build up on the duct walls. If you do notice mold, you should immediately call a mold expert. If if just looks like there is light dust build up on the duct walls, you can continue to clean them.

The cleaning pole can be awkward to handle when it is fully extended, especially if you are working from the top of a ladder. The best technique is to insert the pole into the duct. Guide it to the back of the duct (as far as it will go) without rubbing the walls. Then, pull it back out, applying pressure to the duct walls as you pull. This sweeps the dust out of the ducts, rather than further in.

The tricky part comes when you have swept all of the dust to the edge of the ducts, where they meet the wall. You don't want to sweep the dust all the way out and onto your floors. So, use the hose vacuum to suck up the dust before it falls. This part of the job is easier if you have a helper who can vacuum while you do the sweeping.

This simple air duct cleaning process will help improve the air quality in your home.