April 25, 2012

Should You Have Your Heating Ducts Cleaned After a Kitchen Renovation?

The heating ducts in your home: to clean or not to clean?

It's a controversial topic with air duct cleaning companies boasting huge benefits on one side of the argument and disbelieving home owners questioning the value of the service on the other side.

First, let's turn to Canadian Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) for some information:
A hot air furnace heats and distributes air through its ducting system. The ducts are usually made of sheet metal and are most obvious in your basement, where they hang from the floor joists. The return, or cold air, ducts bring air to the furnace, usually collecting it centrally in the house. The return air trunk duct is the big rectangular duct along the basement ceiling that enters the bottom of the furnace. The supply, or warm air, ducting usually exits from the top of the furnace. It starts with a trunk duct on the basement ceiling. The individual supply ducts, in round or smaller rectangular sheet metal, branch off the trunk duct and go to each room, where they terminate in a floor or wall register. Over time, dust and debris will collect in these ducts, particularly in the return air ducts.
What we found inside a cold
air return duct after a renovation.
While CMHC questions the reasoning behind having your ducts cleaned on a regular basis to improve your  indoor air quality, remove house dust and improve your energy costs, they do agree that duct cleaning after a major renovation--or upon moving into a newly built home--is a good idea.
"If you are moving into a newly constructed house, and have doubts about the diligence of the construction crew, duct cleaning can be useful. Drywall dust, fibreglass pieces, and sawdust have no place in ducts. Duct cleaning will also catch the odd occurrence where lunch bags or soft drink cans have fallen or been swept into ducting. For similar reasons, duct cleaning may be advisable for older houses following major renovations." 

Debris found inside a cold air
return duct after a renovation.
Monarch Kitchen and Bath Centre president Neil Samson couldn't agree more.

"It's always a good idea to have your ducts cleaned after a major renovation," says Neil. "Ripping down cabinets, tearing up flooring, installing new electrical and drywall...it all creates a lot of dust and debris. Even when you cover the vents, bits and pieces of material can make their way into the ducts. These pictures are just one example of the what we find in the ducts during a kitchen or bath renovation."

Are you considering a kitchen or bath renovation? We'd be happy to help. Drop into our Pickering showroom and speak with one of our designers or call us at 905-686-2001.