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Reduce Hydro Costs With A Cleaner HVAC System
Hydro costs have been increasing steadily for more than two years. Energy bills are becoming more and more unbearable. The people of Toronto, and Canada in general, have been seeking alternative, inventive solutions to reduce hydro costs. Even though Toronto’s hydro company has repeatedly urged people to reduce energy consumption, this does not seem to help in the long term. That’s because charges and fees are increasing rapidly.
Everyone would like to see smaller energy bills by the end of the month, with lower delivery charges and adjustment fees. Both homeowners and businesses have expressed frustration with the unpredictable increase in hydro costs. Moreover, more and more small businesses and companies are moving away. Hydro bills are just too costly to maintain business in Toronto and even Canada for that matter. And since the local hydro company doesn’t seem to manage to deliver cost-effective energy, people need to find solutions and seek help elsewhere.
One alternative for reducing hydro costs that more and more Torontonians are trying out is to hire air duct cleaning professionals to clear and clean their venting systems. It’s a known fact that a cleaner HVAC system uses less energy. The more contaminated an air system is, the more energy it will use. The more air-handling components are affected, the bigger the electric bill will be. City Duct Cleaning is one of the Toronto-based companies that offer quality and professional duct and dryer vent cleaning services. They have been in the business for over two decades, forming a proficient team of professionals.
Why Cleaner HVAC Systems Helps Reduce Hydro Costs
Why and how would a cleaner HVAC system reduce hydro costs, you might ask? Energy consumption will increase by 10% if only one inch of soot clogs in the ventilation system. The reason for this is that steel surfaces are insulated by soot. Such steel surfaces are what make up a ventilation system’s components that transfer heat produced by the energy to the air that is blowing past it and into your ducts. Also, if your heater is clogged, then energy consumption will increase, too. Since we are living in Canada, a cold country, vent and heating systems must function almost all year long. So it is crucial to constantly have them checked and clean them if problems occur. Whether you like it or not, the hydro company will charge you even more.
Besides dropping hydro costs, cleaning and clearing your home’s ventilation system also comes with some important benefits. For instance, you will breathe cleaner and fresher air. Yes, unclogging the dusty vents will ensure that the air you receive is better. Now, you will pay less when the energy bill arrives and you will also have a healthier life.
Keeping your ventilation system clean and functional will assure you that the energy cost will decrease in no time. For a well-done work, you need to hire the best professionals in town. Here, at City Duct Cleaning, we offer the best services in Toronto when it comes to making your HVAC system cleaner and more functional. Whether you want to save money on hydro costs for your home or for your business, satisfaction is guaranteed with the help of qualified professional. Reduce hydro costs right now by improving your ventilation system.
How To Build Your Own Air Conditioner Using Just Plastic Bottles
Air conditioning that uses zero electricity? Sounds like it might be an interesting concept, but isn’t there always a catch? Here’s an innovative idea, especially when you consider that you would never need air duct cleaning, and you’d never need to worry about changing air filters or doing any maintenance either.
But would you really want something like this stuck in your window? It certainly wouldn’t do much for your curb appeal, and security would definitely be another factor that you’d need to consider.
Otherwise, its an amazing concept if it really works, and I’d be quite interested to see if the inventor has come up with anything else related to the HVAC field or anything that can save in energy costs.
Plastic bottles are usually destined for the recycle bin. But there are some very interesting upcycling things you can do with plastic bottles. Such as creating a zero electricity air conditioning unit!
Bangledeshi inventor Ashis Paul came up with the plastic bottle air conditioner, and it is already being used in over 25,000 homes in his country! Ad agency Grey Dhaka and Grameen Intel Social Business have contributed to these incredible efforts.
Really all you need to make your own Eco-Cooler is a board and a few plastic bottles.
First you cut the bottles in half. Then mount them into a grid through holes which are also bottleneck size. Now place the grid right over the window. The narrower top end should be facing inwards to the house.
Wind will blow through the bottles, and the result is cool air being funneled in.
It can reduce temps to up to 41F (or 5C). Not bad at all considering it doesnt cost anything to actually make!
The hope is that this project reaches as many people as possible. Hence the project will be put online for free.
Check out the informative video and the incredible initiative happening with this project:
Ebola Virus and HVAC Systems
With news of a recent outbreak of the Ebola virus in Africa, and fears that it has already spread to some areas of the United States, it would be prudent to warn anyone who may be concerned about their indoor air quality that there is currently no product that the HVAC industry offers that will reduce the spread of Ebola.
There are many excellent air filtration systems available, such as HEPA filtration units and Ultra Violet (UV) systems that kill mold, bacteria and odors, but they just have not yet made such a system that could kill off any disease that is transmitted by bodily fluids or by human contact.
A veteran’s administration hospital in Puerto Rico is ordering the emergency installation of multi hepa filters in the ward’s return air HVAC ducting to create an emergency Ebola quarantine ward.
This situation is considered an emergency and prompt attention is required. Delaying repair will create a situation where an outbreak of Ebola may happen to patient, guest or employees.
What they’re concerned about, is that there is going to be airborne Ebola in the ward, and the air ducts are going to suck it into the HVAC system and its going to spread it around to the rest of the hospital.
There are other experts who claim that HEPA filters are only good down to .3 micron sized particulates but the ebola virus is as small as .02 microns in size so it won’t really work.
So if you can’t be sure that you can entirely eliminate the virus from an HVAC system, what is the average person to do? At a minimum, avoid direct contact with infected people and incorporate regular hand washing using soap and water.
Additional information from the FDA… Unfortunately, during outbreak situations, fraudulent products claiming to prevent, treat or cure a disease almost always appear. The FDA monitors for fraudulent products and false product claims related to the Ebola virus and takes appropriate action to protect consumers.
•There are no approved treatments for Ebola available for purchase on the Internet.
•Experimental Ebola vaccines and treatments are in the early stages of product development, have not yet been fully tested for safety or effectiveness, and the supply is very limited. A claim that a product prevents, treats, or cures a disease requires prior approval by FDA.
•Consumers are warned to beware unapproved products sold online and in retail stores claiming to prevent or treat the Ebola virus and other conditions, such as cancer, autism, Parkinson’s and heart disease. Consumers who have seen these fraudulent products or false claims are encouraged to report them to the FDA.
Proper Duct Cleaning Involves More Than Just Cleaning the Ducts
Proper Duct Cleaning Involves More Than Just Cleaning The Ducts
We hear many questions about furnace duct cleaning. Our children have allergies and get colds. How can we determine if the ducts need to be cleaned? How can I compare the various duct cleaning companies?
Some families can benefit alot by having the furnace ducts cleaned and other families will notice no significant difference.
Only your physician can tell you what is causing your children’s problems. If poor indoor air quality, molds, etc. are suspected, then duct cleaning may help.
Duct cleaning can also improve the efficiency of your furnace and air conditioner. Proper duct cleaning is more than just cleaning the ducts. It also involves cleaning the furnace blower, heat exchangers, cooling coils and condensate pan. With these elements clean, air flows more efficiently throughout the entire system.
All ducts are going to accumulate some dust over time. This generally is not a problem that always requires cleaning unless your family experiences health problems. A duct cleaning company can inspect the furnace ducts to show you how dirty they are. This is often done with a video camera in the ducts, or by visually checking the air vents and any related heating components directly.
If mold is present anywhere in the entire duct system, then you should absolutely have them cleaned. It is sometimes difficult to determine if ducts contain dust or mold because they look very similar. To be certain, a lab can check it for you. This usually involves touching a piece of tape on an inside duct surface or taking a swab and sending it to the lab to be analyzed. The testing often costs about $100.
There are several methods to clean ductwork. The best method is using an extremely powerful vacuum outdoors in a truck. A long hose is run to the furnace area and attached to the ducts. From the air vents, mechanical brushes, air jet brushes or air snakes knock the dust loose inside the ducts while the entire system is under suction.
Another excellent method uses a smaller vacuum unit located inside your house near the furnace. It should have a HEPA exhaust filter so the dust from the ducts does not get into the room air. A third method uses a rotating brush attached to a vacuum nozzle. The brush and nozzle are run through the ducts. The result of this type of cleaning is questionable at best. If someone showed up at my house to clean the ducts and all they had was a regular vacuum cleaner and a spinning brush, I’d send them packing. Use a truck-mount system for best results, or, if your HVAC system is not accessible by truck, your second-best option is a portable vacuum system. But you should always choose a company that uses high-pressure compressed air either way.
It is very important that you don’t just shop for price for your duct cleaning. There are actual huge differences in the quality of the work performed. A poor duct cleaning job can actually be worse than none at all because it stirs up the dust in the ducts. Look for companies who use truck-mounted equipment and compressed air. The assortment of air tools they have at their disposal are what we now call “industry standard”.
Also make sure that your duct cleaning contractor will be cleaning the fan, the air filters, any and all coils, and all system compartments. Some companies always include this in their work while others may have an additional charge. If any duct cleaning company tells you that you don’t really need these items cleaned then do yourself a favor and call someone else. If one component is left uncleaned, it may recontaminate the entire system.
If you’re looking for a quality duct cleaning job for your home, call City Duct Cleaning Inc. today!
Indoor Air Pollution
There are two main types of air pollution;
1. Particulates (air pollutants that have mass) dust, dander, pollen and cigarette smoke.
2. Volatile Organic Compoundes (VOC’s) which are gases from chemicals that are released into the air by various household materials and liquiteds.
Some sources can be included but not limited too are:
1. Carpets – may emit VOC’s, trap dust, home for microbial organisms
2. Cigarette Smoke – Contains 40 know carcinogens
3. Dry-Cleaned Clothing – may emit chemical used in the dry-cleaning process
4. Furniture – pressed wood may emit formaldehyde
5. Household Dust – most dust is too small to see
6. Mattresses & Pillows – homes for dust mites, trap dust
7. Pets – shed dander, carry bacteria, odors
8. Stuffed Toys – trap dust, may emit VOC’s
9. Air Ducts – can contain molds
10. Wall Paper – mold and mildew can form between paper and walls
11. Air Freshners – may emit VOC’s
12. Household Cleaners – may emit VOC’s
13. Personal Care Products – may emit VOC’s
14. Toilets – source of odors and mold
15. Showers & Tubs – mold and mildew
16. Cabinets – pressed wood may emit formaldehyde
17. Plants – source of pollen and dust, home for microbial organisms
18. Upholstery & Drapes – trap dust and odors
19. Wood Stoves / Fireplaces – product fly ash and smoke
20. Radon Daughters – The radioactive decay products of naturally occuring radon gas that can become attached to airbore dust particles.
Air Duct Cleaning Is Energy Efficient
Most people clean their air ducts to improve the quality of air in their home. Not a bad idea at all if you ask me as an air duct cleaning business owner and overall lover of clean air. What many people do not know is that you can improve your energy efficiency as part of the process. All you need to do is choose the right company and they should assist you in this process. Here are a few ways the right duct cleaning company can help.
When your technician is making his way around your home during the duct cleaning process he can spot all sorts of things that will help you and your energy usage. The first is what is called a boot connection seal. This is where your ductwork meets the floor register. Around each of those connections is typically a small gap. Sometimes the gap is as small as an eighth of an inch. Keep in mind that even if it is that small and it is at every register you will eventually end up with something equivalent to a several inch gap in your system. Not only does that reduce the energy efficiency of your system but it also pulls in large amounts of dust outside the living space of your home. The best thing your cleaning company can do is seal these gaps with a caulk or expanding foam product. Duct tape works well, too. You will love the difference.
The other energy savings comes at the spot of your filter. This time we’re not talking about gaps but the quality of your filter. If you have a lesser quality filter that tends to clog sooner rather than later it might be a good idea to make a change. The reason for this is not to have just another thing to sell you but it just makes sense. For starters when your system’s filtration is clogged, your system must work harder and longer to get the air to where it needs to go. This will shorten the life of your furnace as well as increase your energy bill. You can still use the cheap filters if you like but just make sure they are changed on a regular basis. No one likes a clogged filter, especially your furnace.
Your air duct cleaning company should be able to help you with both of these potential energy hogs. If they are not able to help then you probably chose the wrong company. If that is the case you can make these suggestions to your service provider or even handle the work yourself.
Fire Restoration Duct Cleaning
Since our inception, City Duct Cleaning has been very much involved in the restoration of fire and flood damage in homes and businesses in the Greater Toronto Area.
The air vents and diffusers in the photos below look like regular dirty vents that you’d see almost everywhere. But these particular ones came from a duct system that was serving an office area that had a recent bad fire.
These vents smelled very bad because of the smoke, and in fact, they were so sooty that we choose to gather them up and bring them back to our office to clean them, rather than doing it on site.
The back of the diffusers were completely smoke damaged, and so were the grills. But we cleaned, disinfected them and shined them up so perfectly that the customer thought we were brining back new ones instead of the ones he originally had.
Judging from the amount of soot that we found on these air vents, you can imagine the state of the air duct systems and the HVAC units, which were thoroughly sooted out. We cleaned that all up like new too, but that’s our specialty. We love doing this kind of cleaning.
If you ever have the misfortune to experience a fire or flood damage in your home or place of business, you can request City Duct Cleaning Inc. to take care of your air handling systems if you are in the Greater Toronto Area. The entire cost of our service is something that your insurance company will usually pay for completely, as air duct cleaning is a normal procedure in the remedial of fire and flood damage claims.
Birds Nesting In Your Exhaust Ducts
Birds nesting in your exhaust ducts are a fairly common occurence in the Toronto area. Every exhaust vent leading to the outside of your home needs to have some kind of bird screening either over it or inside it to protect your systems and your home.
There is a new type of exhaust vent cover on the market that we have had a lot of success with, and this is a really good idea.
It is made of heavy duty plastic so it will not rust, and it can be easily opened by any human who can reach it. This will allow for cleaning of those exhaust systems at any time in the future.
Being able to open it in this way is good because most exterior exhaust grills are caulked in place, or screwed to a brick wall with plugs. That’s ok when they are there, but once you remove it, as we normally have to do to clean out the pipe, it is just that much harder to re-install. But these new screens make it so easy!
Birds nesting in your exhaust systems can cause huge problems for your home. Sometimes you can hear them chirping while you are inside the home, and you know at that point you will be having some kind of problem. Bird nests really stink, too. They piss and shit inside your pipes and you just do not want to have this in your house.
The nests can also block your venting systems, and this is not a good thing either. Check all the exhaust openings on your home. For your own good and that of your family, you need to make sure these are all protected with some kind of screening.
These cages we’re talking about are easily visible but they look good. Some vents have screening inside them, and the screen cannot easily be seen from the outside. Be careful when installing screening inside your own air vents. Do not use a window screen, especially on a dryer exhaust vent. A window screen is too fine. You should be using 1/4″ chicken wire. This is way less likely to get clogged with lint.
If you have birds in your exhaust vents already, you could try to remove them yourself, but this is not always easy to do without the special equipment that we do it with.
We have been to a customer’s home recently who had a previous duct cleaner in to remove a bird’s nest. He took one out and they thought that was good, but the homeowner later discovered that she still had a problem.
She called us this time, and when we arrived we found two additional nests in that same pipe. We had to remove the custom screen he had sold her. It was a total custom job and he really didn’t do a bad job installing the screen… only he didn’t clean out the pipe properly. And he obviously did not check the air flow through the pipe once he thought he was done cleaning it. That’s what happens when your air duct cleaner shows up in his Honda Civic with only a shop vac. He borrowed a coat hanger from the homeowner and borrowed a ladder from the neighbor.
This happens many, many times. In some cases we are the 3rd or 4th company that some home owners call in to clean their dryer ducts. One lady spent well over $1000 on other duct cleaners before she finally got us there, and of course, we cleaned her dryer duct system perfectly!
It is strange that none of the other guys even brought a ladder even though she did mention on the phone that her exhaust vent is on the 2nd floor. Hmmm… and nobody else used an air snake, either.
We have said it many times, and this still applies… we are the problem solvers when it comes to bird’s nests in vented duct systems. You will not save money by calling the cheapest company you can find.
Our pricing is reasonable but is not guaranteed to be the cheapest out there. We will do the job right or we will come back and do it again for free. If you need this problem solved, call us first!
Is this MY Washroom?
What you can’t see, can definitely hurt you.
This is a typical washroom exhaust duct, which has not been duct cleaned for years.
The air won’t exhaust properly, causing the washroom to smell and the duct motor, duct housing and duct exhaust run will get clogged!!!
If you want to save money and have your exhaust ducts work efficiently, call City Duct Cleaning for a professional cleaning.
If you live in a condo, you may find that your washroom exhaust is actually served by the laundry exhaust fan. If this is the case, then the entire system will be cleaned all at once. But if your system is not configured that way, it is still cost-effective to also have us clean out your dryer vent system at the same time while our equipment is there.
It is not relevant what floor you live on. To clean these systems we use a portable electric vacuum system and also use compressed air. We run an air hose from our truck up to whatever floor you live on, that way we will be cleaning your system with high pressure air from the truck… way better than you could get from any portable system.
Watch this video to learn more about bathroom cleaning and maintenance problems you could encounter if your ventilation fan gets a little dusty. Sometimes all you need is a good cleaning to improve the longevity of your bathroom appliances and if that’s the case, then what you waiting for?
Cleaning your washroom exhaust fan regularly would definitely help with the overall indoor air quality of your home. But it might be a good idea to remove the cover and vacuum the fan and the housing before trying to blow the thing.
Also, if you can remove the fan, usually this is fairly simple and requires taking one or two screws, then you can clean off the blades of the fan and stick your blower inside the now exposed exhaust duct. That pipe leads directly outside.
Once you get everything cleaned out and put back together, run the fan and check its operation and check for new noises.
The final step would be to leave the fan on, then go outside and make sure that the flappers on the exterior vent are open. If they are, then you’re good to go.
Cleaning of your washroom exhaust fans normally takes only about 10 minutes and should be done about every 3-4 months. And whenever the bathroom grill looks dirty, take it down and wash it!
The same procedure basically applies whether you are in a house or a condo.
If you are not able to do this yourself or just don’t feel like it, you can ask for this service to be added for a minimal cost the next time you get your air ducts cleaned.