What Is Air Duct Cleaning?

Air duct cleaning plays a leading role in maintaining healthy and comfortable living and working spaces, and conserving energy.

Air duct cleaning is the process of eliminating dirt, dust, and other harmful contaminants from the air vents in your home or office, ensuring you’re always breathing good quality air.

What’s more, a cleaner HVAC system is a more efficient one. When your system needs to work harder due to a dust and dirt build-up, it immediately increases your energy bills.

If you’re in the process of arranging an air duct cleaning service, you might be wondering what to expect and how it all works. Let’s get into the process in a little more detail.

What Does Air Duct Cleaning Involve?

Air duct cleaning requires specialized equipment and products as well as the skills of an experienced technician.

At Air Duct Charleston, the techniques we use to clean your residential and commercial air ducts and HVAC systems are approved by the National Air Duct Cleaners Association (NADCA).

Here’s the process we follow:


A pre-inspection is always required before any work is undertaken. It involves an inspection of the entire air duct system, including any access points. Sometimes, cameras are used to see further into the ducts, which can help us pick up on additional problems.

Once we establish your system’s condition, we can decide on the best cleaning techniques and products to use.

Generating Negative Pressure

Several types of equipment are needed to thoroughly clean air ducts, including an air compressor, extension tubes, and duct brushes, but a specialized vacuum is one of the most important.

Before any real cleaning can happen, we need to make sure that any contaminated air stays in the ducts and won’t impact your living or working environment. This is where negative pressure comes in.

Negative pressure is one of the most effective air duct cleaning methods. A specialized vacuum uses suction power to create negative air pressure, which will extract any air from your HVAC system, taking any dust and debris with it.

The vacuum works in conjunction with your air handler, which is what circulates the air in your home or office, to turn your entire HVAC system into one large vacuum.

Sometimes, we may need to create a hole to attach the vacuum hose to the vent near your air handler, but this will be sealed after the cleaning is completed.

Deep Clean

Once negative pressure is applied, we can safely uncover each vent’s register, which will allow us to clean every duct thoroughly.

We will also clean any registers, grilles, diffusers, heat exchangers, cooling coils, drain pans, motors, and the air handling housing unit.

We make a point of only using non-toxic, environmentally friendly products during our cleaning process to limit your exposure to harmful chemicals. If it’s good for the environment, it’s good for you.

It should be noted that some inexperienced technicians will simply use an air compressor and disinfectant to clean ducts as quickly as possible.

However, without negative pressure, there’s a high chance that dust and other contaminants will reach the inside of your home and office. Not only does this leave you with cleaning to do, but you’ll end up breathing this dirt and dust in too.

Additional Measures

In addition to regular cleaning, we can also guide you in assessing if your air filters require replacement. To keep the air in your surroundings clean, replace your air filters every one to three months, depending on the specific filter type your system uses.

Installing Ultraviolet lighting is another option. UV lighting has been shown to slow down the collection and growth of harmful microorganisms. It can also reduce the number of times your air ducts need to be cleaned and increase energy efficiency.

Final Inspection

Before we leave, we consistently perform a final walk-through to make sure we haven’t overlooked anything and that your air ducts are as clean as they can be

It’s recommended that you schedule another appointment in another year or two to maintain your air quality.

Commercial vs. Residential Air Duct Cleaning: Is There a Difference?

Even though commercial and residential HVAC systems have a similar function and air duct cleaning achieves the same end goal, there are a few differences to be aware of.

HVAC system location

Most commercial HVAC systems are located on the roof of a building, while residential systems are located on the ground. Commercial systems are sometimes easier to work with because they offer more space.

Cost and complexity

As you might imagine, a commercial system tends to be larger and more complex than a residential one. Even though the bulk of the system is located outside, some components are housed inside the building. A commercial HVAC cleaning can take more time, depending on the design.

Equipment requirements

Even though we will need most of the same equipment for residential and commercial air duct cleaning services, there may be times when additional equipment is required for a larger, complex commercial system.

Knowledge and experience

Commercial HVAC systems require more knowledge and expertise to clean, which is why it’s important to choose an experienced team.

Book a Professional Air Duct Cleaning in Charleston, SC

We understand how dust, debris, and other contaminants can impact the health of your family and your employees.

Regular cleaning will not only keep colds, flu, and allergies but also ensure that your energy bills are more manageable.

Contact us today for professional and thorough air duct cleaning services in Summerville and surrounding area

Contact Us


Here at Air Duct Charleston, we’re always ready to assist you for your Air Duct and Dryer Vent Cleaning Service in Charleston, SC. We can help you with any Air Duct and Dryer Vent Cleaning Service, please call us at (843) 608-8042 or get a Free Online FREE Estimate