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The Hood Magazine

Can We Just Vent About Kids, Lost Legos and Dust?

Oct 03, 2020 09:55AM ● By The Hood Magazine

By:  Foley's Heating and Cooling

Believe it or not, your home’s HVAC system is entitled to some TLC as it is largely responsible for making your house livable. After months of pumping cool air throughout, it will soon turn the corner toward warming breezes. Before that happens, you might take a look to see how dirty the vents and register coverings have become. While it is recommended to periodically have your ductwork cleaned by a professional, cleaning the vents, register covers and immediate duct area goes a long way to minimizing airborne irritants.  

If you go for the quick swipe of the vacuum wand and/or brush each time you vacuum you are only scratching the surface. Chances are you need to remove the coverings and give them a good brush and/or wash. Once removed, take the shop vac and vacuum the ductwork as far as you can reach. Oh, and be sure to turn off the blower prior to these steps, as you wouldn’t want to catch a face full of dusty business while going about your business. While vacuuming did you happen to hear what sounded like a foreign object getting sucked up? Read on... 

Any household that includes little people crawling around realizes quickly that they have a way of getting into a myriad of things and places we’d rather they avoid. It’s easy to remember to childproof cupboards and drawers, stairways and outlets, but how about your HVAC vents and registers? While it might be merely a nuisance to retrieve food items and small toys from having been slipped into the slotted void, those items can be detrimental to the efficiency of HVAC operation. Vents and openings can also be dangerous for little ones.  

If your vent and registers coverings are not secured, make it a priority to complete this task. If screws are not an option then consider using velcro or adhesive. If a child is able to remove the covering it certainly becomes more of an inviting drop zone for toys and it can also be a hazard for getting a tiny foot or arm stuck. Sharp edges of ductwork should be covered if any are exposed. Speaking of sharp edges, the vents and register covers themselves might be sharp, especially metal ones. Consider replacing these with wood or plastic versions.  

Once all coverings are secured, you might find that determined tots are still able to wedge items between the fins or slots. In order to collect those items, consider attaching a piece of screen or breathable dryer sheets to the underside of the vent.