Fighting Off HVAC Mold: A Short Guide
The quality of indoor air is crucial to the well-being of all residents. Depending on your area of residence and the season, your Bay Area home will either be humid or dry. Extreme humidity and very dry weather are both inconvenient and harmful for the house and for your health.
For houses in regions where humidity is high, the HVAC system can provide relief and give you cool, conditioned air. But even if the air in your house feels dry, there will be a lot of moisture in your HVAC unit. This can lead to growth of harmful mold or bacteria, that causes health and respiratory issues.
It is important to tackle humidity and ensure that your HVAC system is clean and mold-free.
Here are some measures you can take to fight off HVAC mold.
- HVAC inspection
Bi-annual or quarterly HVAC inspections are useful to detect any mold growth in your system. The HVAC technicians will check that the drains are not clogged, and that the filters and ducts are clean. If you ignore HVAC maintenance and inspection, you may not come to know about a serious issue in the system until it is too late. Regular inspections can help detect mold growth as soon as it begins. This can be treated immediately so that only healthy, clean air is circulated around the house.
- Checking of ductwork and drainage system
The design of your HVAC system also plays a crucial role in fighting off mold growth. If the ductwork is too complicated, with many corners and turns, it is difficult to clean it and mold can begin to grow in areas where air does not pass easily. If drains are clogged, there may be some amount of condensate that goes back into the system, causing high moisture content inside. The system design must be able to maintain a balance of incoming and outgoing air. Sometimes, you may be required to reroute the ductwork or shift the position of a vent or a fan for better air circulation.
Make sure you get the ductwork of your house checked by an HVAC professional before installing a new system or replacing the existing one.
- Regular cleaning
Even if your system is new, it requires timely cleaning. If you are using your system after a long gap, it is important to clean and disinfect it before running. Make sure that your HVAC maintenance contract includes preventive maintenance and servicing to help you deal with any mold growth and potential issues.
- Using filters
Installing an air filtration system or special filters that remove pollutants from air are good options. This is especially helpful for homes where there are infants or senior citizens, with low immunity levels. Installing HEPA filters and regularly cleaning the air filters can ensure good air flow, reducing humidity, and mold growth.
- Prevention treatments
Chemical biocides can be used to control the growth of mold inside HVAC systems. Corrosion inhibitors and antifoaming agents are also provided by certain HVAC companies.