How to clean vents and grates

clean vents and grates

At least once a year homeowners should have their home’s vents, grates, and registers cleaned. Many consumers pay a lot of money to have this done, but it is not that hard to do. Since all your airflow goes through the areas, it is important to keep the passageways open and clear. When lint, dust, and debris become stuck in them, this can slow down air circulation and your home may start to feel stuffy.

Give all vents and grates a good vacuuming, rubbing the dust brush against the grille of each one. You might want to run a dust cloth over them afterward to catch any tiny or clingy dust balls.

It helps to change your furnace filters every month. If you don’t, your house will get dusty and you will end up dusting the coffee tables, appliances, and just about everything else in your home that collects dust. You might have to dust twice as often as you usually do. Plus, you may have to spend your free time vacuuming all the floors and carpets.

When vacuuming isn’t getting all the dust-up, take out the vents and grates. Keep a vacuum sweeper handy when you remove them. Those on the ground possibly won’t have screws to remove. But the ones on the wall or ceiling should have two screws holding them in place. Before you take them out, lay an old sheet or a flattened cardboard box underneath.

There are dirt and dust around the seal, which, as you remove the vent or grate, will crumble and fall on the floor. After you remove the vents, see what it will take to clean them. Most of the time you will need to do more than just wash them. A good way to clean the covers is to let them soak in a degreaser solution for fifteen or twenty minutes to loosen the grime and dirt. Then take a brush and scrub them till they are clean.

If the vents were just painted, don’t let them soak in the degreaser solution very long or it will strip the paint. If they are not painted, you might want to think about painting them while you have them detached. Before you put them back in place, use a shop vacuum and a dust rag to reach inside and clean the area as far back as you can.

Turn the furnace off for a few minutes if you do this so you don’t have hot air blowing in your face. Be careful not to drop anything. You can buy supplies at the hardware store. The sales staff will advise you about the best degreaser solution to buy. If you have questions about a product’s toxicity, you can wear rubber gloves. Always read the labels for your protection and maximum product efficiency.

A little extra dusting and vacuuming can help make your home’s air cleaner and healthier. So before spending hundreds of dollars to call in the experts, give it a shot yourself. You will probably notice a difference in air quality right away. You also can run an air purifier using a HEPA filter to remove pollution, pet dander, and odors from the indoor air between monthly vent cleanings.

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