Air Quality

Published on October 29th, 2012 | by Henri

0

Townhouse attracts excessive dust

Q.    We live in a townhouse that is four and a half years old in a far suburb of Chicago. We are experiencing a tremendous amount of dust in our home. Basically, I need to dust every day.

I was considering having my ducts cleaned but my furnace person told me that was a waste of money. He said that it wasn’t necessary, nor would it do any good in such a new home. He said that for a home 25 years old, it might be beneficial but not for ours. Most other people in my area are experiencing the same thing. The construction work is completed in my immediate area so I don’t feel that it’s construction work.

Also, I have this problem even in winter with all the windows and doors closed. The floors in my main areas are tile or linoleum so it’s not a carpet dust problem. I’ve tried higher efficiency filters on my furnace (as high as my furnace man recommends for my type of unit) and it hasn’t helped at all. What are your suggestions? Do you feel that the duct cleaning would be the way to go?

A.    The construction process of your townhouse and adjacent buildings has generated a lot of dust and dirt as all construction does. So I am not so sure that your furnace man is accurate in telling you that a townhouse that’s only 4-1/2  years old should not need duct cleaning, but that doesn’t mean that it does.

The fact that most other people in your area are experiencing the same problem can mean that they also suffer from the remnants of construction dust or that you live in an area prone to dust. Even in winter, average windows, though closed, can let a lot of outside dust in and I doubt that the builders of your townhouse development used the type of high quality windows that are much more airtight.

Consider having an electronic filter installed on the cold-air return of your furnace; it is expensive but it might solve your problem, as these filters stop over 90 percent of the dust and other particles that go through them.

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