Should I run my A/C or Furnace if I have mold?

Short Answer: Not Recommended.

Long Answer: There are a few good reasons why this is the case, but, to start with, using your central A/C unit or furnace can cause airborne mold spores to travel further and further into your home, making it harder and harder to clean properly once you decide to remediate.

A central air unit is not too dissimilar from an air scrubber that we use on our mold remediation jobs: both create a strong vacuum in the home and pull air from one area in order to move to another. One of the main differences is that with an A/C unit, whatever goes through your vents and ducts has the potential to stay there for a very long time, possibly growing and spreading, even after you think you’ve cleaned all the mold from a home.

With an air scrubber, you’re instead dealing with a standalone unit with a very efficient, ultra-fine particle HEPA filter which we remove from your home after the work is completed. These units are completed sterilized before they are put back into service in another home, this way we avoid cross-contaminating someone else’s home.

While you may think that your central air conditioning unit’s filter will catch all these particles, that’s where you would be mistaken. Depending on the type of filter that you purchase for your A/C unit, you may only be removing particles as big as 3-200 microns (the size of a human hair), while mold spores and other small particles are typically as small as 0.3 micron.

Because of this, when a homeowner or tenant has used the A/C while airborne mold was present in the home, we always recommend that their vents and ducts are cleaned by a certified company, in order to eliminate the possibility of mold growth and to maintain the health and safety of the living things in your home.