How Dirty Air Ducts Can Affect Your Health

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Dirty air ducts are not only an eyesore for your home, they also emit dangerous particles into the air. Even if you don’t have allergies, dirty air can make you sick over time. The black particles in the dirt are made up of many different things, including drywall dust, bug droppings, and cigarette smoke among other pollutants. All these different types of dirt that come into contact with your air ducts can produce harmful effects on your health. This article will give you some insight into the dangers of dirty air ducts.

1) They cause respiratory problems

Respiratory problems can be quite serious, so the risks of dirty air ducts should not be taken lightly. Dirty air ducts often promote the emission of particles into the air, and these particles can end in your respiratory organs through inhalation which is the most common way for all harmful particles to enter your respiratory system.

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The most dangerous pollutant found in dirty air ducts is mold. Pure Airways air duct cleaning services have stated that one of the most common symptoms of mold exposure is respiratory problems. Approximately, one square foot of dirt covered by a layer of dust will contain 50-100 mold spores. These spores are likely to remain for 40 months in the air ducts which can cause a multitude of health problems.


Some respiratory problems that can be developed like this are illnesses such as asthma and bronchitis, allergies, infections, and even pneumonia. Dirty air ducts can also increase the risk of developing lung cancer.

Dirty air duct

2) They can affect the immune system

Dirty air ducts are also a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses. This way, all kinds of bacteria can easily spread from person to person through the air we breathe. People who suffer from immune system problems, such as cancer patients, children, and the elderly should be particularly concerned about their health when this type of exposure is encountered.

3) They can cause allergies and irritate existing health problems

If dirty air ducts can affect healthy people, imagine what they can do to those who already have allergies. Dust, animal hair and dander, and other debris in dirty air ducts, as well as bacteria and mold spores, when released into the air, can cause extreme reactions such as itching of the eyes, nasal congestion, sneezing, throat irritation, skin rashes, headaches, and even nausea. Furthermore, people suffering from existing health problems like asthma and bronchitis can be aggravated.

4) They can cause infections

When harmful particles that are all over dirty air ducts get released into the air through your heating and cooling system, they can cause infections not only in the respiratory organs but also in open cuts or wounds. The most common infections seen in people exposed to dirty air ducts are pneumonia, tuberculosis, and chronic bronchitis. Also, through an open wound, the harmful particles can enter your bloodstream and cause many internal infections.

5) They can cause eye and ear infections

Similar to how dirt and particles from dirty air ducts can enter your open cuts or wounds, these pollutants also have an easy time entering into your eyes. Once they are there, they can obstruct your vision and cause many infections. Eye infections caused by dirty air ducts are usually conjunctivitis and pink eye.

The tiny particles are not only harmful to your eyes, but they can also pass through your ear canal and cause ear infections. Ear infections can be extremely painful and can result sometimes in hearing loss or issues with balance.

6) They can also cause you to lose your sense of smell

Your ability to smell is critical when it comes to different everyday activities like cooking and enjoying scented candles. When dirt released into the air through dirty air ducts blocks your olfactory senses, you begin to lose this sense over time. Sense of smell gets back to normal once exposure to the dirty air is minimized.



This article showed you how dirty air ducts can affect your health in many ways. Inhalation of particles emitted from dirty air ducts is the main cause of sickness, even if you are not allergic. Not only are they an eyesore for your home, but also dangerous, so it’s best to have them cleaned.

Doctors and health experts suggest that homeowners have their air ducts cleaned every 1-2 years to ensure there is no build-up of any harmful pollutants. It could help to keep your family safe from anything potentially dangerous bacteria or mold spores, and also aid in reducing any respiratory problems associated with dirty air ducts.



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