I have lots of my auditing customers who ask me about duct cleaning, and if they should do it.  It seems like the only way to get them really clean is with some sort of roto brush, but it also seems like that process is going to possibly do more damage than good.  Obviously this really depends on the duct system and the quality of the craftsmanship, but I was just looking for the Pro's opinions.  Thanks!

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"They are taken in by the return ducts and circulated around the home by the HVAC system. A regular duct cleaning can help reduce the number of these particulates building up and being pushed back into the home."

If they are circulating through the duct system and being pushed back into the home, what is the build up that needs cleaning made of?

Kristoff Irwin had an episode on his Positive Energy podcast about this. He interviewed a guy with the epa (i believe) who is also doing his own research actively on larger systems. 

Basically yes it does help but sometimes the cleaning can be more harmful. If you are cleaning with a solvent it will score the metal and fins in the coils. This creates more surface area in the ducts and allows them to get dirtier and the coil to be less efficient and allows more breeding ground for bad bacterias and debris. Thus making you want to clean them more often and just keep the cycle going. So good buisness for the duct cleaners. Not for your system.

They found a hot steam clean with a probiotic solution is best. The heat breaks down the crud and the probiotic solution coats all surfaces with a good bacterial that doesnt allow the bad stuff to adhere and fights it off. The guy had a large system in an industrial building that automatically sprays the probiotic solution for 15 min every week in the system. Hasnt had to clean it for 3 yrs now. He used to clean it twice a yr.

Yes I did say probiotic solution.

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