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Is Duct Cleaning Worth It?


Air Conditioners, Duct Cleaning

You can’t see them and probably rarely think about ducts, but these airways are essential to your home comfort. And just like the rest of your home...

Posted by Ryan | July 29, 2022

You can’t see them and probably rarely think about ducts, but these airways are essential to your home comfort. And just like the rest of your home, ducts need to be cleaned every once and a while.

Is duct cleaning worth it? Yes. In this article, we’ll discuss why the occasional duct cleaning is great for your health, your home, and the efficiency of your HVAC system.

Finding the right team to clean your ducts is part of the equation. So make sure you’re getting HVAC experts with the know-how to get your money’s worth when you book a duct cleaning.

Dusting the Slate Clean

It’s difficult to know precisely when you need to clean your ducts. However, if you leave your ducts unattended for long enough, you may start to experience:

  • Respiratory issues
  • Constantly dusty living spaces
  • Strange odours
  • Poor furnace efficiency

Our technicians will happily confirm the state of your ducts during an annual furnace tune-up. Furnace tune-ups can help improve your furnace system’s efficiency and protect it from costly breakdowns.

For the best air quality, you should have your ducts cleaned by a professional every year. But you might need cleanings more frequently if you’re renovating your home or if you live in a regularly dusty or dirty environment.

Woman wrapped in blanket blowing her nose.

Dirty Duct Problems

Did you know that 50% of all respiratory illnesses are linked to poor indoor air quality? Ducting and indoor air channels are a huge part of the indoor air ecosystem.

Ducts that have been neglected can fill up with dust, bacteria, and other unpleasant things. Remember that air is constantly moving through the pathways and that whatever is contained in your ducts is something you could be breathing in.

Brush covered in dog fur with pomeranian looking at it.

Dust, Debris, & More

In a Toronto Star report, one individual who had gone years without a duct cleaning became aware it was getting harder to breathe in her home. Once she had a professional team look at her ducts, they discovered pounds of dust, construction debris, and years worth of human and pet hair clogging the airways.

This build-up can happen when proper attention isn’t given to HVAC maintenance. New homeowners should have their ducts checked before moving in to ensure these issues aren’t contaminating the air.

Black mold on outside of AC unit.


While ducts aren’t necessarily a trouble spot for moisture (since it’s a metal pathway with air constantly blowing through it), mould can still develop inside your ducts. If there’s a problem with the air conditioner or heat pump evaporator coils, this can increase the likeliness of mould.

If you have mould growing inside your ducts, it’s best to schedule a cleaning right away. It’s wise to have your HVAC system inspected at the same time to make sure the problem is localized to ductwork.

Rat climbing outside of vent grate.

Rodent Infestation

Rodents in your duct system can lead to a range of problems. Their droppings and urine exacerbate allergies and create horrible odours in your home. And their existence leads to blockages in your HVAC system, reducing your equipment efficiency.

If you notice rodents are invading your duct system, you will need to call our team as well as a pest-control specialist. Special cleaning processes may be needed if the critter problem is a big one.

Is A Duct Cleaning Worth It…

If you have strange smells coming from your vents?Yes. Book a duct cleaning as soon as possible.
If you see mould growth in and around vents or duct openings?Yes. Book a duct cleaning immediately.
If it’s been 1 year or more since your last duct cleaning?Yes. Schedule a duct cleaning and keep up with annual services.
If you have recently had a renovation or construction?Yes. Book a duct cleaning after your project is complete.
If you believe rodents are inside your home or ducts?Yes. Call a pest control expert, follow their advice, and schedule a duct cleaning after rodent removal.
If your utility bills are rising unexpectedly?Yes. Weak airflow could be contributing to poor energy efficiency. 

How Can You Maintain a Clean Duct System?

Now that you know the risks of neglecting your duct system, optimize your air quality after a professional duct cleaning. Action Furnace and our team of Comfort Advisors can help set you up with state-of-the-art air purification and filtration systems designed to keep your air supply as clean as possible.

UV-C Purification System.

UV-C Purification Systems

Mould sometimes develops when there are issues with the evaporator coil in your HVAC system. But by treating the coil with UV light, these systems eliminate mould, bacteria, and other harmful volatile organic compounds (VOCs) before they’re released into your home.

The APCO-X UV purifier is one of the best in the market, wiping away mould spores while producing zero ozone emissions. Speak with an indoor air quality expert for other air purifier options for your home.

HEPA air filter

HEPA Air Filters

Changing your furnace and air conditioner filters consistently will help maintain the air quality in your home. And high-quality HEPA air filters keep your air cleaner for longer. HEPA (high-efficiency particulate air) filters catch particulate matter as small as 0.3 microns wide, the average size of air allergens and contaminants.

These filters help prevent particulates from building up in your ducts, causing further problems down the road.

You should always choose your furnace filter based on its MERV rating. MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value, and this number can help determine the type of air filter that’s best for your home.

MERV ratings range from 1 to 16; the lower the MERV value, the fewer contaminants the filter will be able to catch and vice versa. Most homes’ furnace filters should have a MERV rating between 8 and 11. But if you’re having trouble managing your air quality, consider using a higher rated filter.

Man installing ductwork on humidifier

Maintain Home Humidifiers

Home humidifiers may seem counterintuitive if you’re looking to reduce the risk of mould growth in your vents, But you shouldn’t have to worry about this issue as long as you regularly maintain your humidifier.

Humidifiers can help reduce the amount of dust and allergens in the air, helping you live more comfortably in our dry Alberta climate.

Worker vacuuming vent in home

Get Professional HVAC Help

A duct cleaning is necessary each year because it helps you breathe easier and helps your HVAC systems run more efficiently. You can certainly try cleaning your ducts and vents yourself, but it’s a lot easier to call the professionals.

Action Furnace has the tools and the knowledge to clean your ducts, service your comfort systems, and provide feedback on the health of your home’s heating and cooling. Sparkling ducts will make a difference in quality of life at home. So yes, a duct cleaning is definitely with it.

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Written by Ryan Tutak

Ryan is considered one of Calgary's most knowledgeable residential HVAC specialists. Working in the industry for over 12 years, he's helped thousands of homeowners with their heating and cooling systems. Outside of running Calgary's most reputable HVAC business, you can find him on the Golf course practicing his short game or traveling with his family. His main goal is to create a positive collaborative culture, one in which his employees are excited to come in and are motivated to work hard. He spends the majority of his day working directly with Home Comfort Advisors, Service and Maintenance Technicians, and Customer Service Representatives ensuring they are fully prepared to lead the Home Service Industry in Customer Service.

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