LESLIE: Joe in New York is on the line and looking for some help with excessive dust in his home. How can we help?
JOE: I seem to have a problem with excessive dust in the house. I know I dry-dust the wood floors every week and there’s a significant accumulation of dust on the mop head. And after about two weeks, there’s a slight dust film on some of the wood furniture. But I still had to wonder if maybe it is – it’s my heating system or maybe something else. I have a forced-air heating system but I also have an Aprilaire house HEPA air-cleaning system with that. I change that filter once a year, just before the heating season when it really – when I’m really using it. And I tried to use higher-quality air ducts – pleated air filters for the return ducts, which I change about once every one to three months, depending on how much use I get out of the heat or the A/C. But I guess the question is – I hate to call somebody and have duct-cleaning. I’ve heard so many negative things about duct-cleaning not really being the issue.
TOM: Yeah. And I don’t know if it’s the issue in this case. You have – the Aprilaire filter that you have right now, is it the one that’s really thick, about 3 inches thick?
JOE: It’s like an accordion-style. You take it out of a box, you pull it out of the bottom and then it’s like an accordion. And I know when I take it out, it’s not – it doesn’t look dirty, in terms of brown, but there is a lot of white particles that I guess – I don’t know, maybe that’s where the filters traps it.
JOE: But when I take it out and shake it, it’s a lot of the whities (ph) and white filters.
Now, I do know that the return-vent filters – they’re pretty dirty when I pull them out. So, there’s something going on there. I don’t know. I’ve also seen advertised these electrostatic register-vent filters. Will that help if I put – you know, can you cut them and put them into the individual vents?
TOM: Before I went there, I would probably upgrade the static filters I have right now. I think you could be a good candidate for an electric air cleaner. That would be mounted to the return side of the ducts. It’s actually a combination of media filter and electronic charging grid.
TOM: And what it does is it charges the excessive dust particles so that they stick to the grid more efficiently.
JOE: Oh, wow, OK.
TOM: And if I did that, I might have the ducts cleaned at the same time, just to kind of check that box.
TOM: But I agree with you that it’s rarely – you rarely have to do that unless you’ve done some kind of remodeling in the house that’s caused a lot of ducts to …
JOE: Yeah, this is – the house was built about 18 years ago. It’s a fairly new house, so the whole system was built in back then.
TOM: Yeah. Yeah.
JOE: So, I’m OK. And it’s a ranch house.
TOM: I would take a look at the Aprilaire Model 5000 Whole-House Electronic Air Cleaner.
TOM: And there’s another one by Trane – it’s called CleanEffects – that’s also equally good. Trane CleanEffects or the Aprilaire 5000. Both of those are very good whole-house air cleaners and I think you’ll notice a difference.
JOE: And that would be an upgrade of what I have now, probably which is an older version.
TOM: Yeah, absolutely. Yep. Exactly.
JOE: 18 years old. And I guess it would be much more efficient then. OK.
JOE: Alright, great. Thank you very much. Appreciate it.
TOM: You’re welcome. Good luck with that project. Thanks for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.