Ways unclean air ducts can affect your health
Air ducts form the skeletal framework of heating, ventilation and air-conditioning systems. This is because heating or cooling air used in HVAC occupy the air canals in more percentage always. This structure makes the air ducts responsible for the health of the occupants of a controlled space for various reasons.
The effects of unclean air ducts
Molds and mildew: Air ducts provide an atmosphere with a moisture balance that supports the growth of molds and mildew. These are structural hazards and contain gases and harmful matter that when airborne can cause infections. Also, they have a terrible smell that obviously amounts to discomfort while affecting your ability to focus on other irritations.
Allergies: When the air channels are not cleaned after a long period. Allergens like pollen, dust, pet dander etc.
gather and get distributed throughout the controlled space. People breathe through these contaminants and get affected by their allergies. Worse, they might get cases of serious respiratory diseases.
This low quality of air is dangerous for people with respiratory conditions. For example, asthmatic patients will find it dangerous to live in a space with a continuous presence of their allergies.
Infestation: Just like the air channels provide locations for allergens to be cultured. They are also an ideal location for rodents and insects to house pests. Insects have allergens they host and distribute in their excreta products (droppings etc.) which contributes allergies and respiratory attacks. Not to mention that when these insects breed, they reproduce millions of their kind.
Rodents are maybe even worse. They directly cause structural damage and are hosts of bacteria. Hence, breathing in air that has come in contact with their excreta can make you ill.
Sinus problems and aging: The air duct circulates the same indoor air. When left for a long time without proper cleaning, dust fragments gather and mix with the circulating air. This mix passes in through nasal passages and permeates through to the sinuses. The mix then locks the sinuses, causing an inflammation which in turn could cause an infection. Sinus infections are serious and must not be left untreated. However, simply avoiding this eventuality is a better choice of action.
As observed from fatigue when exposed to this contaminated air. The moist air carrying these dust particle and/or pathogens are also responsible for being a catalyst to the aging process.
Ventilation and cooling systems’ inefficiency: Dust and other particles in dirty air channels can get the air filter clogged. This results in a reduction in the quality of the air desired for a controlled space. Also, gathered dirt and dust fragments are very capable of disrupting the order of operation/efficiency of the heating/cooling process. When this happens, the air filter loses its potency and you are exposed to contaminated air. This could end up causing sickness.
The importance of routine maintenance
In short, air ducts are essential parts and the biggest part of the HVAC system. This means that they require a routine maintenance effort (cleaning) that equates their size. If they are not, you run a risk of suffering due to an invasion of your respiratory system by contaminated air.