Does Ductwork Mold Take Winter Off?

During the winter season on Long Island, it wouldn’t seem possible for mold to build up as dry heat goes constantly through your ducts. Your duct system is the guts of your furnace and cooling systems and must be kept healthy. While it’s true that mold is a bigger issue in the summer months, the winter season does not let homeowners off the hook when it comes to dangerous mold.

No matter the season, the inside of your HVAC system has its own micro-climate. There may be water leaks and humidity within your walls that are not obvious to the casual observer.  Because doors and windows are usually shut tight in winter, your family may be even more exposed to mold in the closed environment.

Mold in the New York area is such a big problem that a government  study  was funded to assess the extent of the issue faced by residents and propose some solutions. The report noted that mold is connected to serious symptoms of disease and discomforts such as allergic reactions, asthma attacks and skin reactions. If you or your family is suffering from allergy symptoms or even unexplained fatigue and tiredness, house mold could be the culprit.

The EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency)  recommends that you have your air duct system cleaned if “there is substantial visible mold growth…in your ducts or…other components of your heating and cooling systems.” The agency suggests that you have the system inspected by a professional to find and address the root cause of the problem. After your inspection and possible clean-up, think about signing up for a semi-annual HVAC maintenance plan to catch any problems, such as mold buildup, early. Remember that certain types of mold can be toxic. Act now to protect your family’s health and keep your home comfortable.

T.F. O’Brien services the Long Island, New York area.

Our goal is to help educate our customers about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).  For more information about preventive maintenance and other HVAC topics, please download our free  Home Comfort Resource guide.

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