Between the walls
Through the walls of your home run wiring, plumbing, and yes, vents. These vents are the respiratory system of your home, pushing air and heat through the rooms of your Palo Alto house. But regular maintenance is required, otherwise dust, moisture, or other impurities get into these essential systems:
HVAC and Air Duct Cleaning
Your HVAC controls the climate of your house, heating the air in winter, cooling it in summer, and circulating it from room to room. Regular maintenance you can perform yourself includes changing any filters in accordance with manufacturer’s instructions, repairing minor leaks, and keeping an eye out for mold or standing water in or around the machinery.
Your furnace generates the house’s heat. Regular maintenance you can perform yourself includes changing filters, cleaning the machinery yourself at the start of each cold season (if recommended by the manufacturer), and watching for any sign of clog.
Dryer Vent Cleaning
Your dryer has only one vent, but its a very important one. Dryers generate a tremendous amount of heat that must be properly expelled. They also generate a tremendous amount of flammable impurities - namely, lint. Dryers are one of the appliances in your home most likely to cause a fire. Regular maintenance on your dryer includes cleaning the lint trap after every use of the dryer, and watching the vent for any signs of clogging or malfunction.
When to call a professional
You’re doing everything right, but things still seem to be going wrong with your ventilation systems. So when is it time to call in the air duct cleaning, furnace cleaning, and dryer vent cleaning pros?
- When your system is broken or operating at less than peak efficiency. If your HVAC, furnace, or dryer suddenly seem to be eating up all your electricity, it may be from dust or debris clogging the machinery or vents.
- When you have pests. Insects and rodents may be making your vents their new home. An air duct cleaning can remove unwelcome visitors - and whatever droppings they’ve left behind in your house.
- When you have pets. Pets are wonderful - pet dander, hair, feathers, and shavings, not so much. If you have a pet, your vents may be pulling in all the bits of himself he leaves around your house.
- When you have allergies or asthma. If you have any kind of breathing difficulties, or are extra-sensitive to air quality, you need to keep dust out of your home. A professional air duct cleaning, furnace cleaning, and dryer vent cleaning may noticeably reduce your symptoms.
- When you have mold. Should a recurring mold ever appear on your HVAC equipment or near your vents, contact an air duct cleaning professional immediately.
Finding a professional
There are many qualified air duct cleaning, furnace cleaning and dryer vent cleaning contractors in the Palo Alto, CA area. By following a few helpful tips, you can easily find the professional who’s right for you:
Before you make the hire
- Check the references. If the contractor provides you with numbers, go ahead and call, or search online for business reviews on consumer feedback websites and the BBB
- Check the license. The state of California requires a license for air duct cleaning services. Ask your Palo Alto contractor about his status and experience.
- Check the expertise. Does your contractor have experience with your particular HVAC or furnace.
- Check the quote. A legitimate contractor will show you a detailed quote. Make sure you know how many hours the job is estimated to take and the price for services to be provided.
Once you hire someone:
- Be clear in what your expectations are. Some contractors only do air duct cleaning, some do furnace cleaning and dryer vent cleaning too. If you want all three, be sure that is understood.
- Depending upon the size of your home, the air duct cleaning, furnace cleaning, and dryer vent cleaning may take between 3 to 8 hours. Be sure that your contractor has either come himself or sent employees of his company, not subcontractors.