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9 Reasons Why Your House Is So Dusty

9 Reasons Why Your House Is So Dusty

Have you been cleaning your home and wondering, why is my house so dusty? Here are 9 reasons that your house is still harboring dust and what you can do about it. 

When it comes to the dust in your home, there are nine main reasons that your house stays dusty even after you clean. It could be your HVAC system, an old air filter, dust in your carpeting or furniture, pet hair, leaks in windows, improper dusting, or leaky ducts. 

Here are nine reasons why this is happening, and what to do to stop it from continuing. 

Reason #1 – Bad Air Filters

Having an air filter would seem to be a solution to your dust problem, not a cause. But if it is cheap and doesn’t do its job well, then it could be allowing lots of dust particles to be pushed into your home.

If you get ones that are cheaper, they might be lacking in their ability to catch really small particles. If so, then you will continuously have dust pouring into your home. 

You want to look at the MERV number rating that comes on air filters.

MERV stands for Minimum Efficiency Rating Value. It ranks how well the filter is at trapping small particles on a scale of 1 to 16. 1 being the worst and 16 being the best.

The cheapest options tend to have a MERV of 6 or lower.

We recommend spending slightly more for a MERV of around 11. These filters are designed to stop dust, pet dander, smoke, dust mites, lint, pollen, and mold.

Over time, you should be able to see a reduction in the dust with the use of a better air filter.

man changing air filter

Reason #2 – Dirty HVAC System 

Although you might have replaced the air filter, if you don’t clean the area around it, then dust that has already passed through could still be in the system. 

This can be especially bad if you have had a low MERV air filter installed for a long time!

So, even if you have switched over to a better filter, you should clean out the whole area to ensure particles are not being pushed into your home. 

Either spray a rag with water or a cleaning solution and then begin wiping down the whole area around the filter. This should take care of any little dust particles that could float back into your home. 

Reason #3 – Dusty Carpets 

You might not think about your carpet being dusty, but carpets hold onto a lot of things. There might be dust, dirt, dander, debris, and even small pieces of food!

Vacuuming the carpet every week or so might not get all of the dust out of it. 

There could be some particles that are stuck in the carpet, and when your kids or pets walk on it, it flies into the air. This can create a steady flow of dust that affects your house. 

Start vacuuming more often and you will likely see a difference in the amount of dust in your house. However, you want to make sure that you aren’t kicking dust up as you vacuum either. 

Having a vacuum with a good dust trap is the best way to do that. 

woman vacuuming couch

Reason #4 – Not Vacuuming Upholstery 

If you close your curtains at night and then fling them back open in the morning, this could be your culprit. Fabrics hold dust well, and if they are used by windows and open doors, then they have an elevated chance of getting dustier. 

The fix for this problem is a pretty simple one!

You can use a vacuum attachment to vacuum the dust off of the fabric. Just like with the carpets, you will get rid of any dust particles that have been hiding in the fabric and lower the amount that gets into the rest of your home. 

If possible, you can also throw them in the washing machine. Curtains, couch cushion covers, table cloths, and bedding are all things that can be easily washed. Give them a day or two to hang dry and you are all set!

Reason #5 – Pet Dander 

If you have pets that run around your home, as cute as they are, they might be responsible for the dustiness of your house. Pets shed hair often. You may not always see it, but it is there.

This isn’t dust, but it can mix with the particles and make them larger and more noticeable. If you have more than one pet, then this could be a major issue for you. 

To prevent this, you should get your pet groomed regularly or at least brush them multiple times per week. This will get all the loose hair off at once so you can sweep it up and toss it out. 

This will stop it from getting spread on the carpets and other areas of your home. 

Reason #6 – Unsealed Doors or Windows 

The doors and windows around your home typically come with some type of weather-stripping. Over time, these strips wear out and form gaps that allow pollen and dust through even when the door or window is closed

Tight seals reduce the amount of dust that is getting in and carried throughout your home.

To solve this issue, purchase caulking and put it in the area where the gap has formed. This will seal off that space and prevent dust from getting in. You can also purchase new weather stips for common areas.

broom sweeping up debris on floor

Reason #7 – Leaky Ducts 

Even if you have switched to a better air filter and cleaned the HVAC system in that area, you might still have some ducts that have collected dust over the years. These can eventually have leaks and allow that dust to go into your home. 

You might have to call in a professional to see where the leak is coming from since there are so many areas where it could be. The good news is that this typically isn’t a very expensive visit.

A simple test will show where the pressure is off, so they can tell you where to look. Once you know, if you are able to access it easily, you can fix the hole and the dust problem will be under control. 

Reason #8 – Dust Outside the Home 

If you live in a rural area where there is a lot of empty land nearby, or in a dry climate then every time you crack open a window, you may be letting more dust into your home.

It is not reasonable to tell you not to open your doors or windows, and you can’t fix this problem by yourself. So, instead, you can purchase an air purifier to help keep the indoor air cleaner. 

These purifiers can trap the dust so that it doesn’t move around the house, which can help cut down on the amount in the air. 

woman dusting top of bookshelf

Reason #9 -Improper Dusting 

You can try dusting your house a few times a week, but if the job isn’t getting done right, then you will continue to have this same problem again. 

So, make sure that you are doing the job correctly and you will see a reduction in the dust. 

When you are dusting, use a damp rag or a microfiber cloth. This will help keep the dust trapped in the rag so that you are not spreading it around. 

You also want to start at the highest point of where you are going to dust. If you are going to dust a dresser, start with the top and work your way down.

This will keep the dust from settling back down on areas you have already dusted. You should also start on the shelves that are highest in the room too so that the dust from those won’t get on the furniture after they are done.

Dust all furniture and décor first, then vacuum the carpet last. This will ensure that every last bit of dust is sucked up. 

Final Words On Why Your House Is So Dusty!

Dusting a house is a big job, and if you have to ask; why is my house so dusty, then you need a little help. So, use these tips and solutions to get the dust out of your home.

And, if you make some changes to the air filters, leaks, and add an air purifier, then next time you go to clean there will be very little to do. 

Lindsay Reed

Hi, I'm the founder of! I created this website to be a resource for everyone who wants to make the best home possible.