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singforsupper 06-14-2005 10:35 AM

DIY Air Duct Cleaning... How to?
I have a small house that I bought two years ago. It has forced air heat and i added central air. The duct work was installed in 1997 and I seriously doubt that it has ever been cleaned. I cleaned the air intake duct work already. it was easy to access and with a mop, a shop vac and a rag i got a lot of dust out. About 1/2 inch of dust film had accumulated on the walls of the intake duct.

How can I clean the heating/cooling ducts? They are 4 1/2 inch solid galvanized steel pipe with collar connectors and they have 90 deg. elbows as they go from the basement thru the walls. Any suggestions? Would a light duty roto-rooter type snake cable with a car wash sized sponge on the end work? I don't think any of the ducts are over 40 ft. long so a light weight roto-rooter type snake with a rag or sponge on the end might do it? Would the roto-rooter snake tear up the duct work? Any advice is appreaciated. :confused:

murray 06-25-2005 01:02 AM

dont bother unless you have a moisture problem .the dust that is in there is clinging and not going anywhere ,these duct cleaning guys just clean out the dust that is clinging creating a new spot for dust to settle.though I do agree its someone elses dust yuck...but its not going anywhere .besides ,theres no air moving through a 4" solid galv pipe:D

raycyrx 09-18-2005 05:13 PM

I considered a duct cleaning when I replaced my furnace a few years back. Granted... I was talking to a furnace guy at the time, but he recommended (since I was adding a hefty filtration accessory to the system) that I not bother. Let the filter on the return do the work instead of a cleaning.

K2eoj 09-19-2005 10:10 AM

Why not try to take a section apart and see what is in there if it is accessable. I agree that scratching up the galv. finish would probably make more dust cling to it. I once disassembled all the ducts on a small, 80 yr old house and cleaned them with a soft brush and hose in the back yard. They were not as dirty as I was expecting and much less dirty than the returns and near the floor registers. HS.

skipjack 10-09-2008 10:02 AM

I just had my ducts done when I had a new furnace put in. I'm sure they hadn't been cleaned in 50 years. I was watching the guys and they hooked a big flexible tube to a vacuum in their truck. This put negative pressure in the system and then one guy went around with what looked like a long, rubber cat o' nine tails attached to a crank and this thing would essentially thrash around in the ductwork loosening up all the gorp while the vacuum sucked it out into the truck.

It was a pretty dirty job, in my case. But it only cost a couple hundred bucks to have someone do it.

Your ducts were installed in '97... unless there's a lot of pet hair flying around, I'd say your ducts are probably not that bad.

dac122 10-09-2008 12:06 PM

I live in an area with identical heating/cooling seasons as you. I just opened my plenum while doing work on my furnace and got a good look down my 27' 20 year old trunk. The fine layer of dust I saw is not worth a few hundred bucks to maybe get it and all my runs clean. If you have a major mold problem I might consider it, but then you probably have bigger problems than that.

I would save your money and just replace your filter every 30 days during heating season like most people don't.

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