Failing to clean your heating duct registers can reduce the efficiency and lifespan of your heating system. This translates into greater energy consumption and utility costs.
According to Dave Toht, author and retired contractor, the Environmental Protection Agency has not officially connected dirty air ducts with health problems, and likewise, there is not any evidence that an unclean register significantly increases the level of harmful particles in the home. However, keeping the registers and vents clean improves airflow, which in turn boosts the overall effectiveness of the system.
There is a chain reaction effect to having a dirty register. Yancey Lowe, General Manager of Utility Service Express, points out that a clogged register means more dirt and dust for the filter to catch, which reduces the life of the filter, and the filter is vital to keeping the heating system in good working condition. Therefore, cleaning a dirty register is a good idea to maintain efficiency.
If possible, remove air duct registers and clean the grates thoroughly with a brush. For seriously clogged vents, use a soap and water combination or another cleaning solution as necessary. While the register is open, vacuum the ducts as far as your vacuum can reach. If the grills are in the ceiling, use a broom or long-handle brush to remove the dirt.