Dealing with Dead Rodents in Your Ductwork

Dealing with Dead Rodents in Your DuctworkDead rodent in clean ductwork? Well, now you know what that unexplained odor pervading the entire house is all about. Because every breath you take inside your home is air that continuously circulates through the HVAC system, nothing diminishes indoor air quality like the image of a dead rat slowly decomposing somewhere in the depths of your ductwork.

Can you handle this yourself? More importantly, do you really want to? Most HVAC service techs have done this unpleasant task before. A qualified professional has the tools required, as well as the expertise needed to locate the remains and effectively seal the entry point. Consider these necessary steps:

Locating the dead rodent.

It’s probably going to be hard to find and even harder to get to. Because duct branches are all interconnected, simply following your nose can be deceptive and locating remains may be a lengthy process.

Getting it out.

The span of ductwork inside a house is routed through areas that make accessing it very difficult to the typical do-it-yourselfer. Some duct segments are reachable only through the attic or by entering the crawl space. Others are enclosed within the voids inside walls.

Sanitizing the area.

Personal protection from bacteria associated with rotting rat remains is important. Rubber gloves and a face mask are recommended After removal and disposal, the area where the deceased rodent was located will need to be effective sanitized, as well, to eliminate potential contamination of air circulating through the ducts.

Sealing access.

Other invaders are certain to follow if you leave an opening in the system. Pinpointing the point of entry—whether it’s a loose joint between segments, a hole caused by rust or even a place where a rodent has gnawed though vulnerable material—requires the right tools as well as patience and rat-related experience. The good news is: sealing holes that allow rodent access also stops leakage of conditioned air, boosting system performance and efficiency.

Clean ductwork means healthy indoor air quality. For professional rodent removal contact Paitson Bros., your source for qualified HVAC service since 1922.

Our goal is to help educate our customers in Terre Haute, Indiana about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Guide or call us at 812-645-6859.

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    By Jeff Paitson
  • About Jeff

    Jeff Paitson Jeff Paitson is a third generation business owner who continues to run the business with the same values that have been passed down from previous generations since 1922.

    Jeff’s belief is that the business belongs to Jesus Christ; therefore 10 percent of the company’s profits go toward the Maryland Community Church.

    Jeff is a Terre Haute Chamber of Commerce member and in his spare time, he enjoys photography.
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  • About Ethan


    Ethan Ethan Rayburn is a lifelong resident of Terre Haute and a 2005 graduate of Purdue University.

    An Eagle Scout, Ethan spent four years as a non-profit executive with the Boy Scouts of America before joining Paitson Bros. as a comfort advisor and later General Manager. In that role, Ethan has brought a renewed enthusiasm for customer care, integrity, value, and service to Paitson Bros. Heating & Air Conditioning.

    Ethan enjoys singing and was a member of the Purdue Varsity Glee Club. He also enjoys playing and coaching soccer, spending time with his family and two young boys, and volunteering his time and resources with his church, Terre Haute First Baptist Church, which he has attended from a very young age.
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