What is going on in your ductwork?

What’s going on in your ductwork?

If you live in a home with ductwork, you might wonder exactly what goes on inside of your air ducts. Without taking the ducts apart, it’s a little hard to tell, right? But taking the ducts apart is asking for trouble. What if you find mold? Homeowners are always worried about mold growth, regardless of where it is in the home. There has to be mold in the ductwork, right?

Your ductwork isn’t as scary as you might think

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, you can expect to find some level of mold somewhere in every home. A number of different common mold species pose varying degrees of danger to human health, and because individuals react differently to mold in different concentrations, there are no standards for an “acceptable” level of mold. But one thing is clear: mold generally prefers dark and wet to just about anything else.

The good news is that while mold can certainly grow in the ductwork in your home, most homes don’t have mold in their ducts. But that doesn’t mean your ductwork gets a clean bill of health. Dust, dirt, pet hair and pollen can collect in large quantities in the ductwork in your home. Debris is often deposited in the cold air returns, and it often makes its way to the filter on your furnace or air handler. This is one good reason to change your furnace filter regularly!

Mold may not be going wild in your ducts, but it can grow in other places in and around your heating and cooling system. Your furnace is a pretty inhospitable place for mold, but your air conditioner – that’s a different story. Your air conditioner works by drawing moisture out of the air, so you can get biological growth on parts of your air conditioner where moisture condenses, and that can cause a host of indoor air quality problems for your home.

Changes in seasonal temperatures, rain and humidity all promote the growth of mold and harmful bacteria. Cleaning a central air conditioning system helps to reduce these potential dangers, but the organisms will return whenever the conditions permit.

One way to eliminate the possibility of getting sick from your ductwork and central air conditioning is to eliminate the ductwork and central air conditioning. That doesn’t mean you have to give up indoor comfort, though! A ductless air conditioner doesn’t circulate the air in your home the way a traditional central air conditioner does. A ductless air conditioner provides cool air in the summer and warm air in the winter by sending cooled or heated refrigerant through sealed lines to the indoor units in the home. A fan inside the indoor unit blows the cooled or heated air into the living space, and cools (or heats) the room to the desired temperature.

By eliminating ductwork from your indoor air equation, you stop the cycle of depositing and circulating dust, pollen and dirt around your home. You also avoid the possibility that organisms that live and breed in your air conditioner can be distributed around the house.

If you would like to learn more about ductless air conditioning, and how you can use it to reduce or eliminate summer allergens and other potentially harmful organisms in your home, please contact us at New England Ductless at (781) 995-2665. We’ll be happy to show you how ductless air conditioning can improve the air quality in your home!

Photo Credit: Gokhan Okur, via FreeImages.com