How to Clean Out Your HVAC Duct Before Winter

How to Clean Out Your HVAC Duct Before Winter
  • Opening Intro -

    Homeowners should try to clean their HVAC ducts at least once or twice every year.


Over the course of a few months, these passages will start to collect dust, mildew, pollen, dander, and many other contaminants that no one wants to breathe in. Luckily, cleaning HVAC ducts is a relatively easy and straightforward project as long as you take your time and do the job right.

Remove and Clean the Registers

Depending on the size of your home, you might have dozens of registers that need to be removed and cleaned. Most floor registers can be pulled up without any tools, but ceiling and wall registers typically require a screwdriver. If the registers are metal, then you can put them in your dishwasher and clean them on the highest setting. Painted registers should be washed by hand.

Use a Drill and Vent Brush

Vent brush kits are relatively inexpensive, and they will make this project much easier. These kits generally come with various heads that can be attached to the end of a cordless drill. Once the brush is firmly attached, you then need to reach as far into the vent as possible before turning the drill on. You must be very careful during this step so that you don’t lose the drill or brush in the ducts.

Vacuum the Duct

After the dust has been dislodged, you can then suck it up with the longest attachment that you have for your vacuum. Throughout this process, you should have a protective mask on at all times. Even if you don’t see any visible particles in the air, cleaning the ducts will kick up many different allergens and irritants. You must immediately take a short break if your eyes or throat become irritated.

Wipe the Duct Down

The final step is to wipe down the walls, roof, and floor of the duct with a damp cloth. A good microfiber cloth should lift up any gunk that is still clinging to the metal. Once the duct is clean and you don’t see any more dust, you can then put the clean register back in place.

You may want to ask for help from a company like Laroc Refrigeration-Metal Division if you want to make sure that the duct is completely clean.

Find top-rated, duct and vent contractors

Replace the Air Filters

Air filters are your first line of defense against airborne irritants, and you might need to replace them as often as once every few weeks during the winter months. At the very least, you should inspect the air filters every few days to make sure that they aren’t clogged or damaged. Regularly changing the air filters is one of the easiest ways to improve the efficiency of your HVAC system and keep your ducts clean.

The cold winter months can be incredibly hard on your respiratory system. That is why you should do everything in your power to improve your home’s indoor air quality. In addition to cleaning the air ducts, you also need to seal up any cracks or pinholes that will allow allergens into your home.

Bestsellers in Home Remodeling:

AMAZON: HVAC filters



directory photos forms guide

Helpful article? Leave us a quick comment below.
And please share this article within your social networks.

facebook linkedin pinterest

Amazon Affiliate Disclosure: is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to The commission earnings are used to defray our cost of operation.

View our FTC Disclosure for other affiliate information.

Categories: Heating and Cooling

About Author