When I moved into my first place, I couldn't believe how dirty everything was all the time. I found myself dusting and mopping continuously, only to deal with a fresh layer of grime later. After awhile, I realized that the problem was blowing straight out of my air ducts. My ventilation lines were so dirty that it was spreading grime through my house every single time the air clicked on. Fortunately, I called an HVAC contractor who was able to clean my vents to a gleaming shine. I know how big of a difference cleaning up your ventilation system can make, which is why I want to spread the word.
Does your home always seem dusty, even though you vacuum and wipe dust off your surfaces on a regular basis? It's definitely annoying to feel like you're always either cleaning up or living in the Dust Bowl. Thankfully, there are three common, hidden causes of home dustiness that are not terrible hard to address.
Your air filters are not working well.
Check your furnace to make sure it has an air filter in place. If there is no filter in the filter slot (which is usually located between the blower unit and the main air duct), then this is probably why your home is so dusty! Your HVAC system is sucking in dust from around the home, and then blowing it right back out whenever the heat or AC kicks on. If your air filter is dirty, this could also be a cause of dustiness in the home. Once it's clogged, it won't do a great job of trapping additional dust. Thankfully, air filters are only a few dollars apiece and are sold at most every hardware store. Slide a new one into place, and your home should be less dusty soon.
Your ducts are dirty.
If you've been in the habit of operating your furnace without a filter or with a dirty filter for a while, dust may have built up in your ducts. Dust can also accumulate in your ducts when your home humidity is high, leading to mold growth within the ducts. (The dust emitted is then mold spores and mold particles--yuck!) Most HVAC companies offer duct cleaning services. They will use a combination of high-powered vacuums and scrub brush-like attachments to clean the insides of your ducts. Then, any air emitted into your home will be clean and dust-free. You can expect to pay between $300 and $500 for duct cleaning, depending on the size of your home and the layout of your duct system.
The air is too dry.
If your air is too dry, dust will become suspended in the air more easily. When you vacuum or dust, it may get kicked up into the air rather than being lifted off of surfaces. You can correct this problem by having a whole-home humidifier installed. This device will add a little moisture to your air, which will help weigh down dust so that when you clean, you're actually picking the dust up. If you cannot afford a whole-home humidifier, just set up several portable vaporizers throughout your home and run them every couple of days to add more moisture to your air.
Contact an HVAC contractor for more help.