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Proudly Serving the Puget Sound Area Since 1977

Spring 2012

Reasons to Have Your Duct System Professionally Cleaned


Your HVAC system has many components, including ductwork, which is often overlooked. Many homeowners don’t realize that ductwork requires the same regular maintenance as their furnace or air conditioner. Here are a few reasons why you should have your duct system professional cleaned once each year.

Air Quality Issues


Ductwork moves a very large quantity of air between your air handler and the vents whenever your furnace or air conditioner is on. While the primary role of the ductwork is to move heated or cooled air, it can also moves a great deal of airborne contaminants, including dust, mold, pet hair, and more. Most indoor comfort systems have some form of air quality control such as a filter, but it is often located within your heating or cooling unit or air handler.

Over time, contaminants can settle in the ductwork and they will be re–circulated whenever your HVAC system turns on. Unless you have an indoor air quality system you’ve installed, dirty ductwork will circulate these same contaminants throughout your home on a regular basis.

Vermin Infestation


For many homeowners, mice, rats, squirrels or other vermin can manage to find their way into your home and one of their favorite hiding spots is ductwork. Regular, annual cleanings will remove any signs of vermin, including old droppings or food that might be causing indoor air quality issues.

Who Needs Duct Cleaning


While everyone with an indoor duct system should have a cleaning done at least once a year, those who experience moisture problems or who have issues with their indoor air quality should have it done immediately.

Ductwork that isn’t properly cleaned on a regular basis presents many problems which shouldn’t be ignored. It can make your heating and air conditioning systems less efficient. Debris can block airflow and hinders the transference of heated or cooled air. As a result, you may not be as comfortable as you would like. It might not be a problem with the furnace or air conditioner – it could simply mean it’s time to clean your ductwork.

On average, one good annual cleaning will take care of the majority of these problems and allow for a professional inspection of your ductwork to make sure it has no leaks. Call us for more information or to schedule an appointment.

 

How Carbon Monoxide Detectors Can Save Lives

 

You’ve probably heard time and again how important it is to have a working carbon monoxide detector on every floor of your home and to check the batteries on a regular basis to ensure it continues working properly. What is carbon monoxide and why is it such a potentially dangerous gas? Here are a few things you should know about carbon monoxide and how a detector can save your life.

Where Carbon Monoxide Comes From


Carbon monoxide is most commonly a by–product of incomplete combustion. This occurs whenever something is not fully burned. The smoke given off by a fire is a good example of an incomplete burn. Anything that uses fuel is a potential source of carbon monoxide and is why fuel–burning appliances have venting and flues. Those without them, such as generators or barbecues, are only supposed to be used outdoors.

For homeowners, the most common source of carbon monoxide is gas or oil burning appliances. Especially if your appliances are old and therefore don’t burn the gas completely (anything other than a blue flame is an incomplete burn), it produces carbon monoxide gas. Most of the gases produced by this combustion are vented through the flue from your furnace or ventilation fans near appliances. However, if something breaks or a leak occurs, carbon monoxide can start to build up.

How a Detector Saves Lives


Carbon monoxide is invisible, odorless and tasteless. On top of that, it does not effect you right away. Any level of carbon monoxide can eventually make you sick or put you at risk of death, but it takes time for it to build up in your bloodstream. As soon as you feel symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning, you only have a few minutes to get to fresh air and even then, you likely need emergency medical care.

A carbon monoxide detector will sound the alarm well before you reach this point. You will not see or feel anything, but carbon monoxide levels could be high enough that your body is already starting to react and will soon get sick.

Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning


The best way to prevent carbon monoxide poisoning in your home is with a combination of regular HVAC maintenance (to ensure there are no exhaust leaks) and regular checks of your CO detectors. Check the batteries monthly or better yet, get a model that plugs into the wall. Many homeowners go so far as to place two units on each floor to ensure they get an accurate reading.

Carbon monoxide is no joking matter – it is a very serious gas that can cause harm or even death if not properly detected. If it has been a while since you’ve had your mechanical equipment inspected, call us today to schedule service with one of our professionally trained technicians.