What to Do If You Have Insects in Your Air Conditioner Ducts

insects in air conditioner ductsPests such as insects are always looking for places to live and access to food and water. They often enter homes through air conditioner ducts. Insects can be attracted by the smell of food or Freon from the air conditioner or by the water that drips from the compressor hose.

Once insects have made their way into your air conditioner ducts, it is only a matter of time before they leave them and travel into your house. Then they can bite people and pets and get into food and other places where they can cause destruction.

Don’t Use Pesticides to Get Rid of Insects in AC Ducts

When insects have invaded their home, most people tend to go to the store to buy a can of pesticide spray. However, if insects are getting into your home through the air conditioner ducts, you should not spray a pesticide there. If you do, the fumes will be spread throughout your house the next time the air conditioner turns on. This can negatively affect the indoor air quality in your house and possibly make you, your family, and your pets sick.

Get Your AC Ducts Professionally Cleaned

A better solution is to have your air conditioner ducts cleaned. This can remove insects and prevent them from getting into your home and causing a nuisance. Professional duct cleaning can also remove any droppings the insects have left behind that could be affecting your indoor air quality whenever the air conditioner blows them into your home.

Preferred Hood & Duct is a professional duct cleaning company serving homeowners throughout Monterey. We can clean your air conditioner ducts to remove insects that have gotten in them and are invading your house. This can eliminate insects and improve your comfort and quality of life at home.

How to Keep Insects out in the Future

After you have had your AC ducts cleaned, you will need to take steps to keep insects from coming back in the future. You can install fine wire mesh over your duct openings to keep insects from getting back into the ducts and your home. Then you will be able to use your air conditioner all summer long and not have to worry about insects infesting your home.

To get in touch with Preferred Hood & Duct about these and other services throughout Monterey, use the form below.

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Can Air Duct Cleaning Really Help with Pollen Allergies?

air duct cleaning pollen allergiesWarm spring weather means pollen from trees is in the air. This can aggravate allergies for many people and make life unpleasant. Pollen allergies can cause sneezing, a runny nose, and red, itchy eyes.

Many people cannot get relief from their pollen allergies in their own homes because pollen has accumulated in the heating and air conditioning ducts. Every time the furnace is run at night or the air conditioning system is run during the day, the pollen is circulated through the HVAC ducts. Pollen can settle and accumulate inside ductwork and form a layer of contaminants.

How to Reduce the Amount of Pollen in Your Home

There are some steps you can take to eliminate pollen from your house and relieve your allergy symptoms. One way to keep pollen out of your house is simply to keep your doors and windows closed as much as possible. The less pollen that enters your house, the less will accumulate on your carpet and furniture and in your air ducts.

A furnace filter can trap much of the pollen in the air, which can reduce the amount circulated by the heating and air conditioning systems. It is important to use a quality filter. Many cheap ones allow up to half of the pollen in the air to slip through and do little to relieve allergy symptoms.

Carpet and upholstered furniture can trap pollen. The pollen can be released in the air when you walk on the carpet or sit on the furniture. Then it can get into the air ducts and be recirculated. You can eliminate pollen from your carpet and furniture by vacuuming.

Getting Your Air Ducts Cleaned Can Relieve Your Allergy Symptoms

Cleaning your air ducts can eliminate pollen and stop it from being continuously recirculated through the air. If you have not had your air ducts cleaned in several years, they may be filled with pollen. Having them professionally cleaned may relieve your allergy symptoms and help you breathe better at home.

Preferred Hood & Duct can clean your air ducts to remove pollen and other contaminants that can cause allergy symptoms. We have the equipment and expertise necessary to remove contaminants and improve the air quality in your home. This can dramatically improve your allergy symptoms. Contact us today to schedule an appointment to get your air ducts cleaned.

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How to Deal with Mold in Your Home’s Air Ducts

air ducts moldA house with poor air quality can make its occupants physically sick. Poor air quality has been blamed for headaches, nausea, watery eyes, fatigue, and skin disorders. These symptoms can be caused by a buildup of pollutants, including mold. Mold produces spores that float in the air and can cause people to have allergic reactions if they are repeatedly exposed to them.

An air conditioning system can contribute to mold. If mold spores make their way into air conditioning ducts, they can accumulate there, along with other contaminants, such as dust. You cannot see or smell these contaminants in your AC ducts, but they can still affect your health.

Moisture is an important factor that allows mold to grow in a house. It is almost impossible to avoid moisture in air conditioning ducts. If you use your air conditioner a lot, there is little time for the moisture to dry up. Moisture can cause dirt to become caked on inside the duct, allowing mold to grow.

The situation is especially troublesome in humid climates. As the humidity fluctuates when an air conditioner is run, mold can grow, produce spores, and be spread throughout the house through the air conditioning ducts.

You can prevent mold by using the air conditioner less or by cleaning the ducts on a regular basis. Changing your filters regularly can prevent the buildup of dust, dirt, and mold. You can replace your filters with a newer version that can remove smaller particles from the air.

If it has been a while since you had your AC ducts cleaned, now is the time to schedule an appointment, before you start using the air conditioner every day to battle the summer heat. Preferred Hood & Duct can clean your AC ducts to remove dust and mold and prevent a host of health problems for your family. Contact us today to schedule a duct cleaning appointment.

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Can Duct Cleaning Help with Indoor Allergies?

air conditioner allergiesEvery spring and summer, millions of Americans struggle with allergies. Allergens such as dust, mold, and pet dander can make it difficult to breathe and lead to sniffling, sneezing, and itchy, watery eyes. Many of these problems can be alleviated by cleaning air ducts and changing air conditioner filters.

Air ducts in a home are designed to exchange air inside the house with air that is heated or cooled by the HVAC system. When the heating and cooling system is on, it withdraws air from inside the house. The HVAC system can also collect allergens from the air, including dust, mold spores, and pet dander. These particles are drawn into the air ducts and are then blown back into the house the next time the system turns on. This repeatedly pollutes the air with allergens and can aggravate an individual’s allergies.

An air conditioning system can also worsen allergy symptoms. This is often caused by a dirty air filter. The air filter is supposed to remove allergens before cooled air is transported through ducts and into the house. If the air filter is dirty, it is unable to block allergens. When allergens pass through the filter into the air in the house, they can contribute to allergy symptoms.

If you suffer from allergies, getting rid of allergens in the air in your house is relatively simple. Cleaning your air ducts can eliminate much of the dust, mold, and pet dander that is currently being recycled in your house every time the air comes out of your HVAC system. Performing routine air conditioner maintenance and changing a dirty filter can also improve the air quality in your house and relieve your symptoms. An air filter can work with your home’s HVAC system to purify the air and remove allergens, such as pollen, dust, and mold spores.

Preferred Hood & Duct can clean the HVAC ducts and air conditioner filters in your home to stop allergens from being spread through the air. This can significantly reduce or possibly even eliminate your symptoms. Contact us today to schedule your duct and AC cleaning appointment.

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Price, Accomplishment, Quality Check List

How to Find a Good Home Air Duct & Air Vent Cleaning Company

Home air vent cleaning services can be hard to shop for. Air vent and air duct cleaning is something that is often (and unfortunately) overlooked by many homeowners, so those who are looking for a good cleaning company often don’t know where to begin or what to look for.

If you’re looking for an air duct cleaning company in Monterey, follow these tips to make sure what when the time comes, you go with someone you can trust. Continue reading “How to Find a Good Home Air Duct & Air Vent Cleaning Company”

Springtime - © 2012 Shelly ʕ•ᴥ•ʔ . Licensed under CC-BY.

Spring Cleaning Should Include Air Duct Cleaning

Spring is almost upon us here in Monterey, and that means it’s time to start thinking about annual spring cleaning. Open up the windows, beat the dust out of the carpets, wipe down the floors and wash the windows.

Spring cleaning is a great way to finally banish the winter blues, improve productivity, and even boost health. More than just an afternoon surface clean, spring cleaning is supposed to be a deep, thorough, rejuvenating process for you and your home.

If you want to do it right, you have to go beyond the surface. That means making sure your air ducts get the same treatment as the rest of the house. Continue reading “Spring Cleaning Should Include Air Duct Cleaning”

The interior of a warehouse.

The Benefits of Commercial Air Duct Cleaning

The interior of a warehouse.While everyone knows that air duct and vent cleaning is a necessary part of every homeowner’s maintenance schedule, many business owners and building managers neglect to have the ducts cleaned in their commercial structure. There are many reasons why this might be a case, from ignorance to stinginess, but the fact remains that every building needs its ducts cleaned at some point. Remember: just because the interior of a building’s ducts are out of sight doesn’t mean it’s okay to leave them out of mind. This is especially true in Monterey, with cold winters and hot summers that make for well-worked HVAC systems.

Why Should Air Ducts Be Cleaned?

Over time, dust and other pollutants build up in air ducts. Ultimately your ducts will end up recirculating these contaminants with the air, reducing indoor air quality and posing a potential health risk to anyone who spends a substantial amount of time in the building. For commercial buildings like warehouses, factories, office buildings, and others this means one more hazard for employees to worry about. It can also mean productivity lost to workers sick from poor air quality – as much as $60 billion worth of productivity according to the EPA.An office with exposed air ducts.

In many industrial environments, accumulated dust in air ducts can also pose a fire hazard. You don’t have to be an HVAC
expert to know that a lot of dust with a direct path to a furnace or other heat source could conceivably catch on fire! Proper cleaning reduces the risk of combustion in air ducts, protecting lives, livelihoods, and property.

Finally, properly cleaned commercial air ducts can also save money. Accumulated dust makes furnaces, air conditioners, and other HVAC systems work harder. This increases energy consumption and energy spending. (In our opinion, saving money on heating and cooling shouldn’t be something anyone sold on.)

 How Often Should Air Ducts in Commercial Buildings Be Cleaned?

Required frequency of cleanings will depend on a number of factors, including how heavily used the HVAC system is and what kind of airborne contaminants are present inside. Have your ducts inspected regularly by a qualified duct cleaning professional, annually or so at first. Eventually an appropriate frequency can be established.

Contact Preferred HD in Monterey for a commercial air duct inspection and service quote.

Animals in Your Air Ducts? Prevention and Solutions for Vent Vermin

A rodent in a homes basement or ductworkAs the weather here in Monterey gets colder, many animals like mice, rats, squirrels and other critters start to look for someplace warm to hunker down until spring. Sometimes Mother Nature provides, but all too often these animals find refuge in a home or business’s heating or aid ducts.

Animals in air ducts can cause a lot of damage in problems down the road, so it’s best to prevent this from happening in the first place. Of course, if it’s already too late for that it’s time for a game plan to get the pests gone (and keep them away).

If you want to keep animals out of your air ducts, or think you already have them and want to know what to do about it, keep reading to get more info from Preferred Hood & Duct in Monterey, CA.

How to Prevent Animals from Getting Into Air Ducts

As with any other problem, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure when it comes to animals in your air ducts. Prevent them from getting in by taking the following precautions:

  • Minimize the number of entry points. Animals, especially rodents, can often get into a home’s air ducts by crawling through small holes and crevices in the building’s exterior. Inspect your home, either by yourself or with the help of a professional, to make sure there are no holes in the siding, soffit, fascia, or other common problem points.
  • Cover vent openings with a wire mesh cover – 16-gauge, 18-gauge, or 22-gauge works best. This will prevent rodents, birds, bats, and other creatures from getting inside the only necessary openings in your home or business’s ductwork.
  • Consider purchasing an ultrasonic animal repeller to keep animals away from your home. These devices run on an AC plug or batteries and emit a high-frequency sound that humans can’t hear, but the kinds of animals that find air ducts cozy absolutely hate. They’re easily available at most hardware stores and online.

What to Do About Animals Already in Air Ducts

If you think you already have animals in your air ducts (the sound and smell is usually the best giveaway) you need to take action immediately.

First, you need to call a licensed professional pest control company to have any living animals removed from your air vents or ducts. If you’re confident in your abilities, laying down traps is also an option, but poison isn’t recommended. Once the infestation is eliminated, take the precautionary steps outlined above to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

Finally, it’s time to get your ducts cleaned up and have any damage diagnosed and addressed. If you’re in Monterey, call Preferred HD for all your residential and commercial duct cleaning needs. They’ll clean up whatever mess your unwelcome guests left behind, and point out any serious damage they may have done. Get in touch by calling (860) 613-1130 or using this online form today.

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Is Your Furnace Blowing Lukewarm Air? This Might Be Why.

A girl in winter clothing at her laptop computer. Via Justin Hall on Flickr.The weather is getting colder here in Monterey, and that means people are turning on their furnaces for the first time of the year. If you’ve turned on your home’s heat and found the air coming out of your home heating vents is lukewarm at best, you’re probably pretty frustrated.

Unfortunately, there can be many answers to the question, “Why is my furnace blowing lukewarm air?” Here are some of the most common explanations. Some are easily remedied by any homeowner, and some will require an HVAC professional to address.

Leaking Air Ducts

If your home’s air ducts are leaking, cold air could be making its way inside and mixing with the hot air produced by the furnace. This results in mild, lukewarm air emerging from the vents. Duct leaks can be caused by deteriorating seals, improper installation, and damage from pests. If you’re experiencing lukewarm are from your ducts in addition to symptoms of duct leaks like higher than usual utility bills, call a heating and cooling expert to diagnose the problem.

Problems with the Filter

If your furnace’s air filter is clogged or improperly installed, it may restrict the flow of air to the furnace burner. If the blower is still operating however, this will result in lukewarm air coming from the vents. A simple visual check should be enough to tell you if your furnace’s air filter is dirty. If it is, throw it away and replace it with a fresh one. If you’ve just done that, and there’s still a problem with the burner, the filter might be improperly installed. If you’re not confident replacing it yourself, call a professional.

The Thermostat is Set to “On” Instead of “Auto”

When the thermostat is set to “on,” the furnace system blows air whether or not the furnace is actually producing heat. This will result in lukewarm air emerging from the vents. Set the thermostat to “auto” and the fan will only run when the burner is actually producing heat.

A Problem with the Gas Supply or Furnace

If your furnace isn’t getting any or enough gas, it won’t be heating anything, much less the air coming from your air vents. Make sure there’s no problem with the gas supply. This problem could also be caused by a faulty thermocouple or flame sensor. If the burner’s not igniting and there’s no problem with the gas, contact a professional to investigate.

If your heat isn’t working and it’s cold outside, it’s imperative that you get it working as soon as possible. If self-troubleshooting isn’t doing the trick, call a professional right away.

For HVAC inspections and duct cleaning in Monterey, call Preferred Hood and Duct.

Image Credit: Justin Hall, licensed via Creative Commons

ACCA’s Updated HVAC System Cleanliness Standard Approved by ANSI

air duct cleaningAs with any other industry, HVAC cleaning relies on a strict set of standards. Set by the Air Conditioning Contractors of America, these guidelines for the HVAC cleaning industry are called Restoring the Cleanliness of HVAC Systems standard, or the ACCA 6 QR – 2015.

New guidelines were recently approved by the American National Standards institute (ANSI) for the first time since 2007. The new guidelines have been clarified for language and streamlined for efficiency, with updated references and citations.

According to the updated ANSI/ACCA 6 QR – 2015 standards, the minimum procedures and practices for HVAC cleaning are as follows:

  • Determine when airside surfaces should be cleaned, and when they require repair or replacement;
  • Clean the airside surfaces within HVAC systems;
  • Control the spread of contaminants, which may be released as a result of the HVAC cleaning process;
  • Verify the cleanliness of HVAC systems.

More detailed standards are laid out for different areas of the HVAC industry, including refrigeration system maintenance, system installation, installation verification, residential maintenance, and restoration. More information about ACCA guidelines can be found on their website here.

The ACCA’s Quality Standards are detailed instructions for design, installation, maintenance, and repair, and have been adopted across the board by utilities, government agencies, manufacturers, and HVAC technicians across the country. If you’re looking for HAVC cleaning services, be sure to ask if the company if they’re familiar and compliant with the ACCA’s standards. If they’re not, it’s time to find someone more reputable.

If you need duct cleaning and other HVAC services in Monterey, look no further than Preferred HD. Preferred HD hold themselves to a standard in keeping with the ACCA and more. Whether it’s for a home or commercial building, if you need your air ducts cleaned in Monterey, you need Preferred HD. Call (860) 613-1130 to learn more.