How To Clean The Air Ducts Of Your HVAC System

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The dust trapped inside the ducts present in your house can pose a real health hazard. So, you should keep cleaning those ducts on a regular basis to keep all the dust out. For this, you don’t require HVAC contractors as you can do it yourself.

Here are some useful HVAC duct cleaning tips that you can follow to properly clean the ducts yourself.

Get the Right Equipment Ready

To clean all the air ducts in a proper way, you’ll need to acquire some proper tools. If you have a proper intention to clean the ducts by yourself for a long period of time, then you can set aside some money to buy the right tools for the job. The tools required for duct cleaning are easily available, and are usually cheap. You can also rent or borrow if you can’t buy them right now.

Here are the tools you’ll need to acquire.


A long handle dust brush is the ideal choice here. You should prefer buying the brush with stiff bristles. The long handle will make sure that you can get deeper into the ducts.

Vacuum Cleaner

This one you probably already have in your house. A regular vacuum cleaner will work the best. A good quality hose would be required to help you reach all the hard to reach areas. Some heavy users even invest in a heavy-duty vacuum cleaner for the best results.


All the main parts of your HVAC system and its ducts are going to be fastened together with the help of screws, and you’ll need an appropriate screwdriver to unscrew them. You might have the right screwdriver already.

Paper Towels

These paper towels will come in handy when you will be cleaning the areas around the HVAC ducts. Also, you’ll be needing these to cover certain parts of the system while cleaning others.

A Furnace Filter

Furnace filters do their job by filtering all the air coming into your house from the outside. This filter can get clogged easily over time as the dust keeps settling inside it. Just remember to replace the filter after cleaning the ducts properly.

The Cleaning Process

Cover the Supply Registers

Use paper towels to cover the supply registers before starting the cleaning process. This will keep other areas of your home from receiving dust from the ducts that you’re cleaning. Pick up the grills, place the paper towel there and replace the grills in the initial position.

Turn the Fan On

You should turn on the fan before starting the duct cleaning process. The fan will circulate the air to make sure that the dust keeps flowing and doesn’t get a chance to resettle as you carry on cleaning. However, make sure that the heat supply is turned off when you turn the fan on.

Clean the Supply Registers

The dust also accumulates on the supply registers as it does on any other parts of your duct system. So, it is inevitable to clean the supply registers as well. Use a brush and vacuum cleaner in combination to properly clean the supply registers. Cleaning process is really easy, as you only have to pick the registers up and take out the dust by sweeping, make your long handle brush work here by going deep into the registers. The return air registers should also be cleaned in a similar way to get rid of the dust.

Turn the Power Off

You should use the fan early on in the cleaning process, and after a few minutes of usage, you should turn the power supply off. This needs to be done because you’ll need to gain access to main ducts, and doing that with the system still running can be risky.

Unscrew the Covers of Air Ducts

These covers are usually held in place by using screws, so, you’ll need to unscrew the covers by using screwdriver. Remove the covers to gain access to the inner ducts. While you’re doing this, clean every part that comes under your observation.

Use Vacuum Cleaner in The Ducts

The real test of your vacuum cleaner begins here. The hose of your vacuum cleaner should be long enough to reach the far and deep areas of the ducts. After following all these steps, you’ll have to replace the furnace filter at the very end. It is also recommended to get AC repair services McLean for scheduled maintenance or repair for better performance of your HVAC unit in summer.


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