Looking to leave the nine to five jobs and set up that startup which you have always dreamt of? Well, air duct cleaning is one of the fastest-growing cleaning services and is in demand. You will be tempted to try your hands on air duct cleaning business if you are a startup owner. Let us understand what air duct cleaning services are and what are the things to keep in mind to start off. We will also discuss why it is a profitable trade.


What is air duct cleaning?


Air ducts are like the respiratory systems of the homes, and hence cleaning is essential. Air duct cleaning is the method of removing dust and contaminants that accumulate overtime on the ducts. Duct cleaning consists of a rigorous cleanse of the several parts and coils in the HVAC system. The parts are made of grilles, fans, motors, registers, housing and air handlers. Cleaning services professionals use specialized equipments such as bowlers, vacuums and brushes to clean the supply, return ducts and intake of homes. HVAC units are known to become less functional because of dirty motors, cooling coils and air handling units. NADCA (National Air Duct Cleaning Association) suggests cleaning of air ducts every 4-7 years.


When is air duct cleaning necessary? 


·         Illness

Is your home making you sick? Family members, especially children, are suffering from allergies and prone to asthma or respiratory diseases? If yes, it is probably time to check and clean the air ducts of your home. 


·         Moulds or animals

If there is a considerable amount of mold seen inside the ductwork, it is necessary to clean the ducts and the airways. Also, if there is animal, bird or insect infestation, it is a mandate to clean the ducts.


·         Renovations

If the house has been through renovations or remodeling recently, it is a good idea to clean the HVAC system and the ducts.



Setting up the air duct cleaning business


Now we know what air duct cleaning is, also when and why the cleaning services would be necessary. It is time to take a look at the step by step process of setting up an air duct cleaning Houston company.


·         Research and find a company which has excellent pieces of equipment. They should also be able to provide enough support and training.


·         There is nothing wrong in having high goals, but it is important to understand your limitations and start small. It is ideal initially to start with residential services and then add commercial services to your expertise. 


·         It is essential to attend a training program or a workshop to understand the equipment and their operations. This will give you an idea what sort of equipment you need for specific functions of air duct cleaning. In-depth training will teach you about the pros and cons of the business, precautions, cleaning processes, job estimations and marketing. They will put you through the classroom as well as on the job training. In the last leg of training, you will actually be cleaning air ducts on your own.


·         Spend a few days cleaning air duct of your home and homes of friends and neighbors. This will help you gain perfection at the job as well as some first-hand marketing.


Why air duct cleaning business is profitable for startups: 


·         Minimal startup cost

 The startup cost for setting up a residential air duct cleaning services can be as low as $5000. The amount mentioned is inclusive of equipment and paperwork. 


·         Essential Services

Every home has an air duct which is bound to get dirty and clogged with time. Cleaning is necessary to keep the air fresh and ensure the family members are in good health. Especially homes that have household members with breathing issues will call on the air duct cleaning services regularly.


·         Less supply/More demand

Since the concept is relatively new and not all house owners have the knowledge, expertise or time, air duct cleaning can be a lucrative business.


The new business concept means lesser competition and being more in demand. If you can create goodwill initially, raking in the profits would not be a problem after the initial phase is over. Statistics projects that air duct cleaning business would see a growth of 15% in the decade 2016-2026. This is mostly due to real estate activities forecasted to take place during this time.


·         One man show

In this trade, it is possible to be the sole owner and the worker at the same time. This will save you labor costs and additional paperwork. 


·         No office space required to begin with

It is also worth mentioning that you do not need much space to run the air duct cleaning business or rent an office. You can literally run your office from your garage or mezzanine floor. After you get some recognition and the business grows substantially, then you can hire workers to do the job.


·         Growing awareness

With growing concerns about the environment and the quality of the air we breathe, the air duct cleaning business is experiencing an unexpected boom. If you can add this service to your existing business, it will boost your new customer database. It will also give existing customers more services to choose from.


·         High-profit margin

With minimal heads and working space, air duct cleaning business has the potential to provide net profits of 50 to 70 per cent every year. The investment required for this business is very little, except for the equipment.


You can charge anything between $450 to $1200 per cleaning service. The charges depend on size and accessibility of the systems,  climatic zone and the degree of contamination. For example, duct cleaning for a commercial business differs from those of industrial plants. Before deciding on the right tools, you should learn more about professional air duct cleaning for specific areas.


It is important to ensure the safety of the workers while performing the cleaning. Never compromise on the equipment. With good quality equipment, it is possible to eliminate the errors and minimize the chances of an accident. This would also ensure you don't have to repeat jobs which will save your margins. It is vital to follow NADCA's guidelines and NAIMA's recommended practices for cleaning services.