You come across some… interesting things in the duct cleaning business. While most air duct cleaning jobs reveal years of dirt and dust, some workers have stumbled upon some much stranger items. From the disgusting to the dangerous, you’d be surprised just what can get caught in a home’s air duct system. Here’s a sampling of some of the strangest finds documented.
Last year, a well-known duct cleaning company published a list of the oddities workers have pulled from dirty air ducts around the province. One experienced technician noted that he’s found a few controlled substances, from crystal meth to crack pipes to marijuana.
In addition to drugs, some duct cleaners have come across firearms stashed in ductwork. A duct cleaner once found a .44-caliber pistol in one of his client’s ducts. Apparently, air ducts make good hiding places when you want to keep some of your possessions out of sight of the authorities, or out of reach of children. Of course, it’s only a good hiding place until you need someone to help clean the air in your home.
The remnants of past meals
Duct cleaners often find food-related debris in ductwork, which can sometimes be the result of thoughtless construction workers who toss their garbage into the vents while a house is under construction. That debris has included a multitude of Tim Horton’s coffee cups, food wrappers, chicken bones, half-eaten burgers, and even empty beer bottles.
That’s right, we’re talking bodily waste here, and not just from the bodies of animals. While it’s not too surprising for a duct cleaner to see droppings left behind by mice or perhaps even raccoons, would you ever think to find human feces in air ducts? Some cleaners have had the misfortune of finding dried human waste in air ducts. The culprits could be those who built the house, and who didn’t have the time or the will power to hold it – or …
Occasionally, a family pet goes missing, and the owners eventually come to terms with the fact that it found its way out of the house. But did it really ever leave the house? Not in the case of one duct cleaner who found a dead iguana in the air duct system. At least the homeowners were able to give their pet a proper burial. Other duct cleaners have cleared dead spiders, rats, mice, and even a small fox from the ductwork of their clients.
VHS tapes and CD’s
One of the strangest hauls from an air duct is a collection of videocassettes, discovered by a duct cleaning company in Scarborough. The company was called to examine a family room vent that didn’t seem to be letting in any air. After breaking a hole in the drywall ceiling and cutting a hole in the duct, the crew pulled out a remarkable 45 VHS tapes and 19 books. On another job, while working in the kids’ room, a tech found a stack of heavy metal CD’s; Megadeth, AC/DC, Pantera, etc. Wonder why they needed to be hidden there?
When did you last have your vents checked?
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