If Your Home Is Really Dusty, This Could Be the Problem

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Dust is one of those annoying things we all have to deal with, but if your home is ​especially​ dusty, there may be a particular reason why. Over on TikTok, user @mechanicallyincleyend, who works in the air-conditioning industry, talks about an issue that might be causing all of those particles to make their way into your home.

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"Too much dust in your home, but don't know where it's coming from?" the TikTok creator says. "As an air-conditioning professional, we see this all the time when registers are not installed properly." Note: A register is essentially the same thing as a vent, but it has the ability to adjust the airflow direction.

To ensure that your register or vent was installed properly, simply unscrew it from the wall. If the surrounding area is uncovered and drywall and insulation is exposed, that means there is more to be done. "The air current can cause vibration that will knock insulation and loose drywall into the air," writes @mechanicallyincleyend.

Essentially, because the surrounding drywall and insulation weren't covered with foil tape, the HVAC's air current could be blowing even more dust into your home. Fortunately, there's an easy fix for this.

How to fix an HVAC register that wasn't installed properly:

"One of the things you can do yourself is remove the registers and tape up the connections to make a nice, clean seal," @mechanicallyincleyend says in the video. They add, "Do not use duct tape for this. Duct tape is not for ducts."

Instead of duct tape, you'll want to use a foil tape that is specifically made for HVAC systems. "Apply the tape first to the drywall and then lip it over the drywall so that you don't have any overlap when you put the register back," the TikTok user says. Then, poke holes in the foil tape where the screws will go, drill the register back in place, and seal the edges with caulk.

As for the dust itself, you can try these cleaning hacks for getting rid of the pesky particles around your home.

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Anna is a Los Angeles-based writer and editor who covers lifestyle and design content for Hunker. She's written for Apartment Therapy, the L.A. Times, Forge, and more. She previously worked as the lifestyle editor at HelloGiggles and deputy editor at So Yummy. Her email: anna.gragert@hunker.com