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  • Writer's picturesteve springs

When Rats Invade: How Rodents Damage Your AC Ductwork and Your Home's Air Quality

Introduction: Your home's air ducts are like the arteries of your HVAC system, carrying cool or warm air to every room. However, what happens when these vital pathways are infiltrated by unwanted guests? Rats, with their sharp teeth and insatiable appetite for gnawing on anything in their path, can wreak havoc on your air ducts, creating not only structural damage but also posing significant health risks to you and your family. In this post, we'll delve into the unsettling reality of rats in your ductwork, exploring how they get in, what damage they cause, and the potential health hazards they bring.

The Invasion: Rats are notorious for their ability to squeeze through surprisingly small openings, making entry into your home's ductwork relatively easy. Once inside, they find the dark, secluded spaces perfect for nesting and breeding. Your ductwork becomes their haven, offering protection from predators and the elements. However, their presence is anything but benign.

The Damage: Rats are not content with just inhabiting your ducts; they're also avid chewers, constantly gnawing on anything they encounter to keep their teeth from overgrowing. Unfortunately, this includes your ductwork. Their relentless chewing can lead to punctures, tears, and even complete destruction of the ducts, compromising the integrity of your HVAC system. Moreover, their penchant for nesting material and food sources can further obstruct airflow, reducing the efficiency of your cooling or heating system.

The Health Risks: Beyond the structural damage, rats bring another insidious threat into your home: their droppings and urine. As they move through your ducts, rats leave behind a trail of excrement, which can contaminate the air circulating throughout your home. This poses serious health risks, especially for individuals with respiratory conditions like asthma or allergies. Inhaling airborne particles of rat feces can lead to respiratory infections and exacerbate existing health issues.

Protecting Your Home: Preventing rats from infiltrating your ductwork requires a multi-pronged approach. Start by sealing any potential entry points around your home, paying close attention to gaps around pipes, vents, and utility entrances. Regularly inspect your attic and crawl spaces for signs of rodent activity, such as droppings, gnaw marks, or nesting materials. Consider installing rodent-proof mesh or screens over vents and openings to deter intruders.

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