There are many reasons to have industrial ventilation and commercial air ducts cleaned on a regular basis. These reasons include increasing HVAC efficiency, maintaining the ventilation equipment, avoiding contamination of the manufacturing process, and avoiding accumulation of combustible dust. Yet one important reason is often overlooked: indoor air quality.
Dirty air ducts and HVAC systems become breeding grounds for a wide assortment of creatures that can cause severe health issues.
Dust mites are prevalent in dirty ductwork, where they feed off of organic matter within dust. There can be between 100 and 500 dust mites living in just one gram of dust (the same weight as a standard paperclip). These tiny dust mites cause severe allergic reactions in some people, caused by the excrement and dried shells of the creatures being blown through the ventilation system.
The best way to eliminate dust mite colonies in your ventilation system is to keep it clean, free of dust, and dry. If these are not taken care of the ventilation system will fill with these illness causing mites.
Mold & Mildew
Many people have mold in their HVAC system without even realizing it. Mold and mildew thrive in dark, humid, dirty areas, and dusty and inefficient ventilation is a perfect spot for them to grow. Mold and Mildew produce spores to reproduce, and these spores become airborne and are passed throughout the building’s ventilation system. Inhaling these spores can cause a range of health issues including asthma, allergic illness, respiratory infection, and in severe cases toxic poisoning. Reactions to these mold spores can be headaches, coughing, and Irritation of the eyes or throat.
Making sure air duct ventilation is dry and clean is the best way to prevent mold in air ducts. If the HVAC system has become dirty and is running inefficiently, or the filters are old and clogged, it will not be able to pull all of the spores out of the air or eliminate moisture from the air ducts.
Bacteria and Viruses
Certain types of bacteria and viruses can travel through the air to spread infections. Damp and dirty spaces allow for accumulation and breeding of many of these bacteria and viruses, and ventilation systems easily spread these disease causing organisms around. Poor or stagnant air circulation can cause the bacteria and viruses living in air ducts to thrive and cause infection more easily.
Making sure ventilation systems are moving clean, filtered air efficiently is the best way to prevent the spread of these diseases, and prevent employees from becoming unnecessarily sick.
What do you think is living in the air ducts above your head? If you want to find out how to get rid of them, contact a Hughes Environmental Council-certified Indoor Environmentalists (CIE) and Council-certified Microbial Remediators (CMR) on staff at 888-845-3952 or www.hughesenv.com