Why Is Air Duct Cleaning Essential After Water Damage Restoration? 

Last Updated on April 2, 2024 by SampleBoard

Are you or anyone from your family suffering from breathing issues or unexplained allergies?

And did you recently have a water leakage or outbursts at your home?

If yes, it's time to pay attention to your air ducts, not just your home's furniture, electronics, and other essentials. 

A flood or other water damage will likely degrade your home's air quality. When your HVAC is exposed to moisture, mold buildup can ruin the ducts and affect your health.

As mold and mildew can grow within 48 hours, just letting your HVAC system dry out itself is insufficient.

All parts, like coils, fans, or chambers, should be cleaned and disinfected to ensure a properly functioning system.

If cleaning is insufficient, you may also have to replace the whole system after you finish the process to avoid issues in the future. 

What Is Water Damage Restoration?

It's heartbreaking to witness any kind of water leakage, pipe burst, or flood inside your home, and cleaning it can be a big mess.

The restoration plan depends on the damage categories, which are as follows. 

Category 1

This damage includes damage from clean water, such as rain, melting snow, leaky pipes, sinks, showers, or bathtubs. These do not pose any risk after exposure and do not require disinfection, as the space quickly dries out.

Category 2

In this water damage, overflown water or urine from the toilet, washing machine, dishwasher, aquarium, or sump pump damages your property and thus needs disinfection. 

Category 3

This includes black water from sewage or drainage systems, which contains bacteria and viruses that pose health risks when exposed to such outbreaks. 

While Category 1 damage is less risky, you should not neglect Category 2 and 3 damages to prevent future losses.

Your home's humidity should be below 60% so that mold does not breed in your living space. After cleaning and sanitizing the whole area after water damage, you move on with the restoration process. 

Water damage restoration is all about repairing the water-damaged property, which involves water extraction, debris cleanup, drying and dehumidifying the whole area, sanitizing the affected space, and restoring the damaged items.

Water damage restoration is different from the water removal process.

While water removal means draining the water away from the damaged space, water restoration involves restoring the property to its previous shape. 

Here is a walkthrough for you to understand the overall restoration process. 

  • Turn off the water sources if you can, or hire a professional to turn them down if you can't do it yourself. 
  • To prevent electric shocks, turn off your home's circuit breakers. 
  • If you can, remove excess standing water from the area. 
  • Do not enter the damaged area if it is exposed to electrical appliances or wires. 
  • Never use a vacuum cleaner to remove water from the surface. 
  • Conduct repair works on floors, walls, doors, and windows. 
  • Clean carpets, rugs, and other furnishings.
  • Maintain a dry space and prevent mold growth in the future.

Water damage restoration is all about cleaning the water mess.

However, it can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on various factors like labor, the severity of the damage, and location, namely the roof, floors, drywall, and ceiling. 

When Should You Clean Your Air Ducts? 

According to US EPA estimations, 90% of Americans spend their time inside, and also states that the quality of air indoors maybe 2-5 times more degraded than outdoors.

Your air duct is the most significant source of impure air containing moisture, mold, pests, or other contaminants. 

Therefore, to maintain a healthy environment, you must conduct routine cleaning and maintenance work every 3-5 years. 

Consider cleaning your air ducts whenever you encounter one or more scenarios.

  • You recently had a flood outbreak.
  • You recently had a pipe outburst in your drainage system.
  • You have found evidence of pests and rodents in your duct space.
  • You or anyone in your family suffers from allergic conditions or breathing problems.
  • You have someone in your family who smokes indoors. 
  • You have a musty and moldy-smelling living area. 
  • You have many pets that shed frequently. 
  • You have recently moved to a new home. 

How Do Professionals Clean Your Air Ducts After Water Damage? 

It's always a good idea to hire a licensed professional to clean your duct, as you never know what pops up from that hidden area.

A professional completes the whole cleaning process in three steps: inspection, duct cleaning, and post-cleaning inspection. 

Step 1: Air duct Inspection

After you hire a professional to clean your air ducts, the process starts with a thorough inspection.

After checking all the access points, all the cleaning techniques will be decided based on the intensity of water damage in your air ducts.

Once the inspection is over, your air duct cleaning process starts. 

Step 2: Cleaning Process

During the cleaning process, your service experts create a negative pressure while using a vacuum unit to ensure that no dust particles, pollen, or debris spread around your home.

A well-experienced team of experts will focus on minor details and conduct each of the activities, starting from cleaning to sanitizing with the right tools and a powerful vacuum so that you get back a fresh and well-conditioned air duct, saving you from all the allergies and inflated energy bills. 

Step 3: Post-cleaning Inspection

After finishing the cleaning task, a second round of inspection is done to ensure that everything is up to the mark and no traces of water or dirt are missing. 

Once you clean out the duct area, you get many benefits, apart from peace of mind about breathing good-quality air.

You also reduce your energy bills, as your HVAC will not strain anymore to maintain your desired temperature.

Your health improves, and you no longer have to fight the constant repetitive allergies.

So, with clean air ducts, you save a lot of money that could end up in your HVAC repair costs, health costs, or electricity bills.