Are you unsure of whether or not you should be cleaning your air vents? Are you confused about how often to clean them? Maybe you’ve never even thought about cleaning your air vents. Well, the truth is, it needs to be done, and done often. If you’re unsure of how, why, and when to clean the air vents in your home, we’re here to help!
How Do the Air Vents Relate to My Home’s Comfort?
The air vents in your home are connected to your HVAC system. The air vents are the last point conditioned air reaches before actually entering your home, and probably the only part of the HVAC system that you’re very familiar with. Air vents are important for allowing air to circulate throughout your home and if they’re dirty, your air flow and comfort will be negatively affected.
Types of Air Vents:
Supply Vents: Supply vents are the small vents you see all around your home. They received their name from their job of supplying your home with conditioned air. Where the supply vents run through your home is where you’ll receive conditioned air.
Return Vents: Return vents are the bigger vents in your home. There may be a few close to common areas, or one in the middle of the home. These vents are responsible for returning the air from your home back into your HVAC system to be recycled.
Signs It’s Past Time to Clean the Air Vents
Mold: If you see mold around your home, especially around the vents, it’s time to clean them. Mold can cause aggravating symptoms and allergic reactions, especially in those with respiratory issues. Mold should be cleaned immediately when discovered anywhere in your home.
Uncomfortable Temperatures: If you feel your HVAC system is not heating or cooling your home properly, it could just be due to dirty air vents. Dirty air vents can restrict air flow, leaving you with hot and cold spots throughout your house. Clean your air vents and ensure they’re not blocked by furniture.
Unpleasant Odors: If you’re beginning to smell odd, unpleasant odors, it could be due to dirty air vents. As they build up dust, dirt, hair, and other contaminants, the smells of these particles become stronger and harder to ignore.
Rise In Energy Bills: It’s likely if your air vents are obstructed by dirt and other debris, your energy bills have risen. If you’re experiencing relatively high energy bills, clean your air vents and see if it makes a difference.
Importance of Cleaning Your Air Vents
There are a number of reasons why cleaning your air vents is important regarding your comfort, efficiency, and the safety of your home and your family.
- Circulate fresh air throughout your home
- Increase efficiency and save money on your energy bills
- Lessen the risk of house fires
- Get rid of unwanted odors
- Regulate humidity levels
- Prevent serious health issues in allergy sufferers
- Have a healthier home with cleaner air
How to Clean Air Vents
Cleaning your air vents means more than just a quick dusting that could just make your air quality worse. Luckily, cleaning your air vents is a relatively easy task that you can do yourself! Before you begin cleaning your air vents, you’ll need these essential supplies: a cleaning brush, dish soap, a screwdriver, gloves, and a step-ladder (if your vents are on the ceiling). Then, just follow these steps:
- Turn off your HVAC system so the air doesn’t begin blowing when the vents are not attached. They are there as a layer of protection, so when we remove them, the system should be turned off.
- Unscrew the air vents from the floor, wall, or ceiling and pull them off.
- Wash the air vents in warm, soapy water, scrubbing them with the brush and soaking (if needed).
- When done, lay them out to dry, or dry them with a paper towel or rag.
- Put the air vents back and take a minute to change the air filter in the system if needed.
- Turn the system back on and you’re good to go!
If cleaning your air vents doesn’t solve the issues you’re facing, call the professionals at Shannons Heating & Cooling. We provide maintenance tune-ups and AC repair for residents and small businesses in Pensacola and the surrounding areas. For more helpful HVAC information, check out our other helpful articles.