Average Air Duct Cleaning Costs
The average air duct cleaning cost is $500 for an average-sized home. The average cost is based on a 1,800 square foot home. Most homeowners will pay between $400 and $1,000 to have their entire air duct system cleaned. How much you will pay to have your heating and cooling ducts cleaned will depend on a variety of factors, including the number of ducts, the square footage of the home/building, the number of furnaces, if there is any mold or mildew present, if there are any rodents or pests in the air vents and many other factors.
Why You Need HVAC Duct Cleaning Service
There are many benefits of air duct cleaning. Most people get their ducts professionally cleaned to improve the indoor air quality in a home. And when you improve your air quality, you can decrease your risk of experiencing allergies and asthma attacks while also decreasing your risk of getting sick altogether.
Keeping your air ducts clean and free of debris and gunk can save you money on electricity costs. A dirty air duct system can cause your heating and cooling system to work harder than necessary to regulate temperatures in your home or commercial building.
If you suffer from allergies, then keeping your air ducts clean can minimize irritants and allergies inside your home. Air duct cleaning can also get rid of unpleasant smells and odors.
Getting your air ducts cleaned every 3-5 years is advised and your ducts should be checked for mold and mildew. Mold can cause serious health issues and should be removed as soon as possible if you have it anywhere in your home.
If your home has a lot of dust, hair, and other debris in the vents then you should have your air ducts cleaned more often than every three to five years.
Factors That Affect Air Duct Cleaning Prices
There are many different factors that impact how much it will cost to clean air ducts. Here are a few of the most important factors that will affect how much your duct cleaning project will cost.
Size of the Air Duct System
The size of the air duct system that you need to clean will affect how much it costs. A small home with a few vents and an HVAC unit may only cost $200, but if your house has multiple floors or many different rooms then expect to pay more than double for cleaning those difficult-to-reach places. Larger homes can cost more than $1,000 to clean and large commercial buildings can cost a few thousand dollars.
Mold in the HVAC System
If there is mold or mildew in your HVAC system then you will pay more to have your ducts cleaned. Mold is dangerous and requires extra care when removing, so you have to be sure the mold is gone before your system can operate safely again.
It's very important to take care of any mold issue as soon as possible, as it can cause health problems for you and your family.
Number of Furnaces
The number of furnaces in your home will impact the cost of air duct cleaning.
If you live in an apartment building with only one furnace, then it would be a much cheaper job than if there were six furnaces in the house.
The more units that require servicing, the higher the price for professional services is likely to be for this type of service.
You should expect to pay about $300-$450 for each additional furnace that you have.
If the ducts are easy to access, you can expect to pay about $300-$450 (the average cost). This number increases depending on the location of the ducts, as well as whether they are in a hard-to-reach area.
If it is not possible for the technician to access your air ducts (due to high ceilings or crawlspace then), there will be additional charges.
Are There Rodents in the Vents (Mice or Rats)
If you have an issue with rodents in your vents, you should be prepared to pay a lot more. This is because you will need to hire rodent control and removal services. In some cases, duct cleaning technicians may be able to remove rodents with chemicals.
One way to detect if you have an issue with rats or mice in your ducts is to look for droppings. You should also watch out for dead rodents or food crumbs, as these are a sign that they have been living near the vents.
If you do suspect that there is an infestation of rodents in your air ducts, it's recommended that you hire a reputable company ASAP!
Custom Duct Systems
Custom-designed air duct systems may cost more to have cleaned. Custom designed systems can be more complex and much more difficult to clean. This is on a case-by-case basis, and just because you have a custom ventilation system doesn't mean that it will be more expensive to clean.
Damaged Ducts That Need to Be Repaired
If your air duct system has leaks or holes or other damage then you will likely also need air duct repair service. It may be possible to clean the air ducts before all of the damage is repaired, but it's important for a professional contractor to assess whether this will work.
If you do have larger holes or leaks in your system that need repair then if those repairs are not performed soon, dirt and debris can get into them and make them worse. This could require more costly repairs at a later date when they're caught up in the unit itself rather than just outside of it on its surface.
Air duct repair is not included in a simple cleaning job and will cost more. The average air duct repair costs around $150-$250 but duct work can cost much more if there's extensive damage.
If there's any special equipment required to clean or inspect the ducts (cameras, ladders) then you should expect to pay more to have ducts cleaned
A simple two-hour air duct cleaning will be less expensive than an eight-hour job with more complicated venting systems. The average time to complete air duct cleaning is only a few hours, so if it takes longer than a half-day or even multiple days your project costs will rise.
A thorough air duct cleaning process should take at least two hours. Professional service providers should clean the heat exchanger, air handler, drain pan, and coils.
How Dirty Your Vents Are
If your vents are already dirty, or you have pets in the house that shed hair and dirt into the ducts, then it's likely going to cost more. If there is a large buildup of debris then it will take more effort to completely clear the vents. If your property has visibly dirty air ducts, then it may cost more.
Larger cities with a high cost of living will usually charge more for air duct cleaning than small towns. This is because of the increased cost in labor and materials needed to service a city versus smaller areas. Here's a breakdown of costs for a few larger and smaller cities in the United States:
- Atlanta: $200-$450
- Houston: $330-$550
- Kansas City: $190-$425
- Los Angeles: $350-$650
- Omaha: $160-$400
- Phoenix: $300-$500
- Tulsa: $175-$350
Residential Duct Cleaning Costs vs. Commercial Air Duct Cleaning Prices
Commercial air ducts are usually much larger and more expensive to clean than a residential air duct system. You should expect to pay around 30-50% more per hour to have ducts cleaned in a commercial building compared to a standard residential home. Commercial systems often have custom fittings and components that cannot be cleaned with a typical air duct cleaning vacuum.
Ductwork inside commercial buildings is often inaccessible because of the way they're constructed. Commercial cleaners usually need scaffolding and sometimes elevators or ladders to reach these high spaces, which significantly increases labor costs over residential systems where there are no obstructions.
Duct Cleaning Costs by Square Foot
You should expect to pay around $.15 - $.30 per sq ft for air duct cleaning. Some companies prefer to price their jobs based on the size of the home or building in question. Costs per square foot will rise depending on the factors that we've listed above.
In some cases, the cost per square foot can rise to more than $.50 for complex jobs.
Air Duct Cleaning Cost Per Hour
The average air duct cleaning hourly rate is about $80 in the United States. Some professional air duct cleaners will charge as little as $50 per hour and others may charge up to $200 or more per hour.
Flat Rate & Tiered Service Duct Cleaning Prices
Many air duct cleaning companies will charge a flat rate for their services. The most common way that they charge flat rate fees is to base it off of square footage, and then they will adjust their pricing from there.
In addition to a basic flat rate, many companies will offer different service tiers or packages.
Projects That Should Be Completed at the Same Time as Duct Cleaning
Prior to having your air ducts cleaned you may want to hire an indoor air quality tester.
After your ducts are cleaned, your technician may recommend additional services depending on your unique situation.
It's also a good idea to get any air conditioning system maintained at the same time.
Dryer vents should also be cleaned and inspected at the same time. You'll find more information about cleaning dryer vents, and why it's so important in the next section.
Dryer Vent Cleaning Costs
The average dryer vent cleaning costs around $200. In some parts of the United States, you can have dryer vents cleaned for as little as $150, while it may cost more than $300 in other areas.
Dryer vent cleaning is very important as a clogged duct can lead to a fire. There are thousands of household fires each year due to dryer ducts. The National Fire Protection Association recommends that you perform dryer vent cleaning at least once each year.
Duct Cleaning Costs From Popular Duct Cleaners
There are many large, reputable duct cleaning companies. Hiring one of these duct cleaners can help you avoid some duct cleaning scams (more on that later). Here's a quick breakdown of a few of the biggest duct cleaners and their typical costs:
- COIT: $450 - $650
- Duct Doctor: $520 - $725
- Sears: $220 - $520
- Servpro: $190 - $780
- Stanley Steemer: $420 - $670
Duct Doctor Vent Cleaning Costs
Duct Doctor rates are around $520 to $725 for duct cleaning services. For dryer vent service you should expect to pay around $175.
COIT Duct Cleaning Prices
COIT is a dependable name when it comes to cleaning a residential or commercial air system. They also offer tile, floor, and carpet cleaning services as well.
COIT duct cleaning pricing starts at around $450 for air ducts and around $100 for dryer ducts.
Sears Duct Cleaning Rates
Sears rates start at about $200 to clean 8 vents, the access panel and main return. They have additional fees for mold testing, deodorizing, electrostatic filters and A-Coils.
Sears also charges around $150 to clean dryer ducts.
Servpro Duct Cleaning Service
Servpro is one of the largest companies offering mold remediation, water damage restoration, and air duct cleaning. Servpro duct and vent cleaning services start at around $200 for residential homes.
Stanley Steemer Vent Cleaning Prices
Stanley Steemer provides a variety of cleaning services for both residential homes and commercial buildings. Their air duct cleaning services are typically around $500-$600.
Air Conditioner & Furnace Cleaning Costs
Proper cleaning of air conditioners and furnaces is an important part of maintaining their efficiency and safety. If you don't maintain your air conditioner or furnace, it could lead to expensive repairs. Here's a breakdown of costs to clean popular parts:
- Furnace: $75-$250
- AC Unit Cleaning: $75-$200
- Heat pump: $90-$130
- Air handler: $75-$185
- AC condenser & evaporator coils: $115-$395
Signs That Your Air Ducts Need to Be Cleaned
Air ducts may need to be cleaned if they are dusty, dirty or smelly. You may also notice that your air conditioner is not cooling as well as it should or you're feeling warm in certain parts of the house.
If you notice any mold or mildew near any of the vents, take that as a sign that you need your ducts cleaned.
You should also get your ducts cleaned after any renovation or remodeling work is performed in your home, before moving into a new residence, if you can see dust blowing out of the vents, if your utility bill suddenly goes up a lot,
Reasons Why You Don't Need Air Duct Cleaning
If there are no signs of any dust, mold, mildew, rodents, insects or other debris near the vents then you don't necessarily need cleaning.
Some companies overstate the energy bill savings of air duct cleaning in order to sell their services more often to their customers.
Air Duct Cleaning Scams to Watch Out For
National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA) warns homeowners of common scams to watch out for when getting their air ducts cleaned.
Watch out for companies that offer low upfront rates and try to upsell you on expensive additional features. If you have mold in your vents, this can add lots of additional costs to your project, but you should make sure that you actually have mold in your vents - don't just take their word for it.
When dealing with a mold issue it's a good idea to verify with another company that your vents do in fact have mold in them.
One of the best ways to make sure that you are hiring a reputable company is to check their license.
If an air duct cleaning company doesn't have a license, any reviews online, and provides price estimates much lower than their competitors, then you should probably avoid hiring that company.
How Often Should You Get Your Air Ducts Cleaned?
You should get your air ducts cleaned every 3-5 years according to the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA). If you have smokers or pets in your household, then you should be getting it done more frequently.
Can I Do DIY Duct Cleaning?
Yes, it's possible to do your own air duct cleaning, but it's not easy. You need to find the right tools and all of that takes time and money. If you have any issues with your air ducts then you likely will not even notice if you aren't a professional.
If you have mold in your vents, you should not try to clean them yourself.
You also risk damaging your ducts when performing work yourself.
You can save yourself a ton of time and potential hassles by hiring a professional to take care of it for you. They will ensure that you are left with a completely clean duct system.
How Long Does it Take to Clean Air Ducts?
The air duct cleaning process takes about three hours on average. If you have a larger home, custom ducts, or a commercial building, then the process can take longer. Older homes, or homes with a lot of built-up debris and contaminants, will also need more time and possibly additional tools.
Is Cleaning Air Ducts Worth It?
It depends on the reason that you are getting your ducts cleaned. If you are looking to save money on energy costs or get rid of health issues, then it's likely not worth it. There hasn't been a conclusive study linking air ducts to reduced health issues, and the energy savings from air duct cleaning likely will not cover the cost of the cleaning.
If you are cleaning your ducts due to a large build-up of dust or debris in the vents, then that can actually help save costs on energy, and increase the cooling or heating performance of your HVAC system.
If you have mold in your vents, then it must be addressed and is absolutely worth the cost.
Rodents or insect infestations are another great reason to get your ducts cleaned.
Does Regular Duct Cleaning Prevent Health Problems?
While there has never been a study proving that cleaning air ducts more frequently will lead to fewer health care problems, it doesn't mean that having clean air circulating through your home is not beneficial to your health. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has studied health effects and duct cleaning but has been unable to prove efficacy.
Having rodents, excessive dust, mold or mildew in your vents can lead to health issues if they are not addressed.
Is Air Duct Cleaning a Waste of Money?
Air duct cleaning is not a waste of money when you are doing it for the right reasons. There have been lots of scams and companies charging for unneeded services, but that should not take away from the fact that HVAC ducts should be cleaned and maintained every 3-5 years to ensure that your home has good air quality.
You can get many of the same benefits of duct cleaning by replacing your air filter, which can catch a lot of air pollutants.
As a Renter, Can I Ask My Landlord to Pay for Air Duct Cleaning Service?
No, landlords are not required to get their air ducts cleaned. The only exception is if there is mold, insects or rodents in the ducts. If you suspect that any of these issues are present in your ducts you can hire an inspector to come out to take a look, and then your landlord will have to foot the bill to get the ducts cleaned if you do have an issue.
Compare and Get the Lowest Duct Cleaning Prices
Corkd helps thousands of homeowners get the best prices on air duct cleaning services near them. If you want to see how much air duct cleaning costs, or want to schedule service, Corkd can help.
Corkd is fast and completely free to use. To start comparing prices from the top air duct cleaners near you, simply complete the quick quote request form right here on this page. You will be contacted by a few of the top pros in your area in just a few minutes, making it easy to hire the right air duct cleaner for your project.