Introduction: How to Clean HVAC Ducts
How to Clean HVAC Ducts
Unscrew each HVAC grille in your home and set aside. This will allow you access into
your HVAC ducts.
Plug your wet/dry vacuum cleaner into the nearest outlet to the first HVAC grille. Using
a flexible hose attachment, slowly push the hose into the duct. Work it in and out to
remove as much as the dirt as possible. Screw each HVAC grille back into place.
Measure the length of your vacuum cleaner hose to get an idea of how deep you were
able to clean the ducts from the grilles. Go into your basement and transfer that
measurement on to the duct trunks. You will be able to identify where each grille is by
where the duct runs penetrate up through the basement ceiling.
Cut access holes into the duct trunks in your basement with snips. The access hole
should be big enough to work the vacuum cleaner hose through the duct and also to
enable you to take a peek inside with a flashlight. Position the holes in locations that
allow maximum reach both ways with your vacuum cleaner hose, while minimizing the
number of holes you need to make.
Vacuum out the ducts through these holes.
Cut sheet metal patches that are 2 inches in diameter larger than your access holes. This
will allow 1 inch of overlap on all sides of the hole. Fasten the patches to your HVAC
ducts with sheet metal screws.
Caulk around the sheet metal patches with a silicone sealant to make them airtight.
Tips & Warnings
• If you have a complex HVAC system with long, twisting duct runs you may want to contact a
professional duct cleaner to clean your ducts. These complex duct systems will be challenging
to clean with standard vacuum cleaners.
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