The Importance of Keeping Your Ducts Clean

by | Nov 10, 2023 | Blog

Wondering why your HVAC system needs to be kept clean? We look at why and how you can do it with a DIY duct inspection camera…

Running a household can be a tricky job. It can feel like there is always something to do, to spend money on and your list can be never ending. This is why many people turn to DIY jobs for things that might otherwise require a professional. It’s easy to think you will give it a go yourself to save money, time and also have a project to focus on. While this might be true for some projects, with others you really just need to hire a pro to get the work completed. Ductwork is one such case. Your HVAC system works hard all year round and as such accumulates dust and dirt which can cause it to malfunction or not work as well as it should. In this article we explore how to know when your duct requires a clean, what you can do to maintain it as well as possible and other tips to follow.

What is the purpose of your HVAC system?

HVAC systems, short for “Heating, Ventilation and Air Condition” are designed to improve the air quality and maintain a comfortable temperature in your home. It will help to provide warmth in the winter, to improve the ventilation of your home and remove pollutants from the air, as well as cool the air in the warmer months. It’s an efficient and effective solution for maintaining a healthy environment to live in.

How do you know if your HVAC system requires work on it?

Your HVAC system is ideal for maintaining a comfortable temperature in your home and as such you want to keep an eye on it to ensure it’s in the best possible condition. This is why you want it to be maintained properly and to avoid anything happening to it such as wear and tear or damages before costs to repair start racking up. If you are wondering how to tell if your HVAC system is in need of repair, there are a few things to look out for. Below we look at some things to be aware of:

If your HVAC is making unusual noises 

If your HVAC system starts to make unusual noises such as clicking, whirring or anything out of the ordinary, this could mean that something isn’t working as it should.

If you aren’t receiving the desired effect (eg it’s not heating or cooling your property sufficiently)

If you find that you’re no longer receiving the desired temperatures from your HVAC and your rooms are either too warm or too cold, or it takes a long time to get to the temperature you’re after, chances are your HVAC is malfunctioning. 

If it is emitting an unpleasant smell

Your HVAC shouldn’t smell so if you find any unpleasant odors being emitted this isn’t a good sign. This could indicate you have a leak, a build-up of moisture that is causing mold to form, or it might be a burnt-out wire letting out a burning smell.

If your bills have increased

If your energy bills are going up yet you aren’t using your HVAC system any more than usual, it could indicate it isn’t working efficiently. This could be because more energy is required to make it work and reach the desired temperatures, thus causing a spike in your monthly payments.

If it is an old system that hasn’t been checked in a while

HVACs are a fantastic piece of equipment that are designed to last. While this is the case, its vital that regular repairs are undertaken to keep it in its best possible condition. Most systems have a lifespan of 15 to 25 years so if yours falls into this range, it’s a good idea to get it looked at and ensure it is working as it should be. 

How can you inspect your air ducts at home?

When it comes to inspecting your ducts, you want to make sure you do a thorough job. Prior to calling out a professional to do work on your HVAC system, it is a good idea to get a look for yourself and see what you might be dealing with. This can help save you money and the time of calling a professional out. But just how do you inspect your air ducts at home? Well, a HVAC Camera may be the solution.

  1. The first thing you need to do is ensure your HVAC system is turned on and running. Look at the vents and see if there is dust and debris flowing out. If this is the case then chances are the inside will be dirty and clogged which could be impacting its performance.
  2. Once you have either established there is a blockage, or if you just want a more thorough look, it’s time to get inside the system itself. To do this, you need to use a screwdriver to undo the vent grill, giving you a better look inside. It’s a good idea to use a flashlight here as it can be dark and difficult to see.
  3. If you want to take photos of the inside, you can use your smartphone or a camera with a flash to take photos that will show you what might be causing the defect. While this is a good method, it’s better to use a DIY duct inspection camera.
    This is specifically designed to make it easier to capture what is in your ducts and sort the problem. Some of the things you might see could be a build up of dust or even dead insects or rodent droppings. Either way, you should have an idea of what is causing the issue and be able to inform an expert so they can fix it for you.
  4. Depending on the situation you need to call a different professional. If you notice rat droppings or other signs of life, it’s vital you call an exterminator who can come and properly clean out the space for you. If it’s dust, debris and mold that you spot, you need to call a professional who can get a better gauge of what is going on and can sort it out for you.

What is a DIY duct inspection camera?


When it comes to inspecting the ducts of your HVAC system, you want to do so as thoroughly as possible. This ensures you don’t waste your money on getting someone out if there is a simple fix to be done. It also gives a better idea on the severity of the situation and what sort of repairs will be needed. A DIY HVAC inspection camera is essentially a self-levelling camera that enables you to see a live feed on a connected display. It shows areas of your HVAC that you wouldn’t be able to get into otherwise and means you can get a comprehensive view of any issues that are occurring.

Why is it so important to inspect your air ducts?


Inspecting your air ducts is vital for a myriad of reasons. If you don’t, you might end up with problems such as:

Mold – This can be unhealthy for you and your family to breathe in and might lead to you becoming ill and experiencing respiratory problems.

Larger energy bills – Having an inefficient HVAC system can mean that it’s using up more energy than you want and hikes up your energy bills. This added expenditure is occurring for no real reason and as such you want to sort out any issues that are occurring before you waste too much money.

Expensive and time-costly repairs – If you don’t regularly check and maintain your HVAC system then problems can escalate. When things are found early they are much easier and cheaper to fix. If left, over time they can get much worse and instead of needing small repairs can need much more costly ones and might even need the whole system replaced completely. This is bad news for your bank balance and also is inconvenient for your household which is being replaced as you could have to sit in the cold or warmth without the ability to regulate the temperature to a comfortable level.

Poor air quality – As well as mold, the general air quality of your home might deteriorate if dust and debris is constantly being expelled. This can cause respiratory problems and trigger allergy attacks all of which are not great when you want to spend time at home relaxing.

To conclude

Looking after your HVAC system is vital for improving the health of those in your home as well as keeping your living space at a comfortable temperature all year round. Whether you want to warm it up in the winter or cool it down in the summer, it’s a vital part of your home appliances. To find out more about maintaining your HVAC system and the best DIY duct inspection camera, get in touch with us today.

If you require any assistance selecting the right HVAC Camera for your specific application, please don’t hesitate to contact us at 931-362-3304 or email at