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Old 12-14-2015, 08:39 AM   #1
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Which is the lesser of two evils??

I'm not sure where this post would belong. I'm seeking advice on what I would consider green/health issues with home repair.

I'll start by saying we hopefully won't be in this house more than two more years. We have multiple repairs to tackle and a limited budget. In the spring we will be completely gutting the bathroom to address a mold issue.

On top of that, it looks like rodents at some point decided to chew holes in my HVAC flex duct on the inside, at least at the tops under the vents. The outside odf the ducts appear to be in good shape and of course I can't see all the way down into the ducts to see if there are more holes, but I'm hoping the rodents didn't adventure too far. Total, we would need to either replace or cover the holes with foil tape to probably eight of them. The fiberglass insulation is exposed and this troubles me. Some of hr coils are rusted which leads me to believe it's been this way for a while. We did replace the one in LO's room because I insisted last summer.

That being said, I can't afford to replace them with metal ducts. If I replace with flex duct, I run into off-gassing of formaldehyde and sytrene and who knows what.

What I'm asking is, would you just cover the holes with tape (hoping all the fiberglass fibers that would be blown around were done so a while ago) so you avoid the other exposures, or is the fiberglass more of a worry?

My hands are tied and any more money we spend in this house we will not get back.


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Old 12-14-2015, 09:21 AM   #2
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#1 the mouse problum needs to be addressed first.
What goods it going to do to tape up a few holes if there still still there to make more holes?
What's an "hr coil"?


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Old 12-14-2015, 09:31 AM   #3
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If you talking health issues, the rodent and mild issues are number one . Rodent droppings can cause all kinds of health issues. My order of fixes, rodents , any water infiltration that might be contributing to the mild environment , the mold (fixing the bathroom) and then the ducts
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Old 12-14-2015, 09:31 AM   #4
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The mice are gone. This happened a while ago. I meant "the coils," the hose that coils around the flex duct and holds the plastic. Its rusted where the tear is.

It could be degradation?? But I figured rodents at some point.
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Old 03-16-2016, 05:48 PM   #5
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Re: Which is the lesser of two evils??

I would replace the ducts, even if it meant to live with the couple of weeks of off-gassing, as if there's rat droppings inside the ducts where you cant see that would be a lot more dangerous in my opinion.
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Old Today, 01:48 AM   #6
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Re: Which is the lesser of two evils??

The lesser of two evils principle (or lesser evil principle, lesser-evilism) is the principle that when faced with selecting from two immoral options, the one which is least immoral should be chosen.
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Old Today, 07:51 PM   #7
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Re: Which is the lesser of two evils??

You mention plastic flex ducts. I'm not sure if that product is designed or intended for HVAC ducting but it may be allowed in some areas. If there is a concern about off-gassing, I would think the HVAC air heat would exacerbate it. You mention exposed fibreglas - is this from an insulating wrap of the ducting or someplace else.

Your rodents may be gone but their droppings may remain. As mentioned, they can be a source of toxins.

You may be at the crossroads of doing what you consider right, doing what you think is necessary, doing what you can afford and doing what will give you a return on sale.


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