Can you clean your own air ducts?

Summary: Air duct cleaning is vital to help purify the air you breathe every day. According to the National Air Duct Cleaners As...
Air duct cleaning is vital to help purify the air you breathe every day. According to the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA), air is re-circulated around 3-8 times an hour in your home. So, when your air vents look dirty, that dirt holds contaminants that are circulated through your home multiple times a day.
Getting contaminants out of air ducts is important for all homes, and according to NADCA, it’s especially pertinent if you or your family members:
Have pets
Have allergies
Have asthma
Smoke cigarettes
Complete home renovation or remodeling projects
Recently experienced a water damage emergency
All of those factors and more go into your indoor air quality, or IAQ, which is the air quality in or around buildings, and most importantly, your home. Living in a home with poor IAQ can lead to immediate and long-term health effects.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) immediate effects can be irritation of the eyes, nose, throat, headaches, dizziness and fatigue. These health effects are treatable and can go away. In cases with asthma and allergies, the symptoms may become more severe or agitated.
The EPA also notes that sometimes the treatment is simply eliminating the person's exposure to the source of the pollution. Keeping your family and friends safe from these harmful pollutants can help eliminate immediate and long-term health problems.
So, where do you start? A good place to start improving your indoor air is by cleaning your air vent covers as dust and other fine particles build up around the grates. This step is absolutely safe to do by yourself and can be added to your weekly or monthly cleaning list.
There are a couple of different ways to clean the dust in between the grates of your vent cover:
Dust the cover
Use compressed air to push out the dirt
Run your vent covers through the dishwasher
Repaint to give a fresh look
Soak in a bucket of hot, soapy water
Dust buildup is a pervasive, but natural problem that every home deals with. Along with cleaning vent covers and replacing filters, here are other ways to help reduce dust levels in your home.
Vacuum regularly and if possible, use a HEPA-filtered vacuum that helps capture more particulates.
Dust frequently especially in areas that collect more allergens like blinds, drapes, and upholstery.
Place heavy-duty doormats outside of entry doors to prevent contaminants from coming inside. For the best results, use durable, rubber mats.
Reduce static electricity by keeping humidity levels around 45% in your home. Static attracts dust and can make it more difficult to clean up.
Don’t use fabric softener or dryer sheets on cleaning rags or microfiber cloths. This reduces their ability to pick up dust.