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Author: laura | April 18, 2019

The Truth About Duct Cleaning Costs in Milwaukee

When you’re investing in air duct cleaning service for your home, you deserve to know exactly what you’re getting for your money.  Do you want a cheap quote and empty promises, or a fair price promised right up front … and the most thorough cleaning you can get in the Milwaukee area?

1. Vent Counting vs. Flat Rate Pricing

Right from the start, you deserve to know that there’s two very different ways companies charge for air duct cleaning services. If you’re asked to COUNT registers and cold-air returns, a red flag should go up.  Whole-house air duct cleaning can mean many different things to different companies:

Capital Heating & Cooling uses what’s known as “flat rate” pricing.  Which means, we give you one price upfront that is determined by:

• the size of your home
• the location and size of your HVAC systems
• and the amount, configuration, and condition of your duct work

Flat rate is also the pricing model recommended by other industry experts like NADCA (National Air Duct Cleaning Association) and the EPA (US Environmental Protection Agency).  The EPA lists the typical cost of residential air duct cleaning between $450 and $1,000, depending on your situation and the services you need.


2. Truck Mounted vs. Portable Equipment

The second indicator of  professional duct cleaning, which is represented by a professional duct cleaning price, is the type of duct cleaning equipment being used.

Watch this scam alert video on how some companies lure you in with a low price and leave you with an empty wallet!

Watch this video to learn the top 4 things that effect the cost of your duct cleaning.

duct cleaning equipment cfms

Portable Duct Cleaning Equipment

Low cost, lightweight, and economical are all words you can find online to describe portable duct cleaning equipment.  While this sounds great for a disposable raincoat, it’s not exactly what you’re looking for when it comes to professionally removing years of buildup from inside your ducts.

Now in all fairness, there are times when a truck mounted duct cleaning system won’t reach and portable equipment may be the only option because it can be brought into a building, allowing the vacuum to reach the duct work.  But so can your vacuum cleaner, hence how carpet cleaners also advertise “air duct cleaning” services.


Portable duct cleaning equipment costs as little as $600 and features a shop vac like vacuum that uses only only 2500 cfms of suction power (which is definitely not enough suction to clean your ducts in a normal reasonable fashion.)  If this is your only option, it may be better than nothing but you’ll have to make a few sacrifices such as the extra time that’s needed to zone off the ducting and only small sections of duct work can be cleaned at a time.

duct cleaning coupon

So, who uses portable equipment?  Typically companies that want to add on a service but not invest in a commercial grade system.  For example, a carpet cleaner that wants to “sell duct cleaning”, but doesn’t want to face the super high start up costs, the extensive maintenance and repair bills the high operating costs and the time it takes to set up and take down all the hoses on a truck mounted system.

Truck Mounted Duct Cleaning System

A commercial grade system such as the truck mounted, uses over 5 times the suction power of portable equipment and specialized tools all operated by highly trained indoor air quality specialists.  Our modern duct trucks run upwards of 12000-13000 cfms with 15” of static pressure. (For the carpet cleaners reading this a “truck-mount” in the duct cleaning world isn’t a carpet cleaning unit sitting out in the van running a 2” hose and if your telling your customers you have a truck-mount for duct cleaning then you should be ashamed.)

NADCA says that when used properly, both types of equipment can get the job done correctly.  However, comparing the suction power of each type alone – it’s simply common sense that a truck mounted system provides superior, more professional results.  The indoor air quality specialists at Capital Heating & Cooling are professionally trained per the National Air Duct Cleaning standards:


Monster Vacuum Truck are state-of-the-art vehicles each cost over $100,000 and use over 12,000 cfm of negative pressure to within the HVAC system, in order to control the spread of contaminants during the cleaning process.   A heavy duty hose that’s 8 inches in diameter carries the contaminants away from the home.

duct cleaning access tools

Access tools are devices used by our technicians to create entry points in the duct work for cleaning and inspection. Entry points range from small holes for our whipping devices to the larger hole that connects to our  8 inch diameter vacuum hose.

duct cleaning inspection tools

Inspection tools are used to evaluate the build up of debris and contamination inside the air ducts, monitor the cleaning process, and to provide before/after pictures to the homeowner.  You deserve to know what you’re paying for!

duct cleaning whip

Hand Cleaning Tools include simple brushes and a number of pneumatic agitation and cleaning devices.  Capital Heating & Cooling uses air whips to agitate and drive the debris from  inside the air ducts to the vacuum truck.

National Air Duct Cleaning Association logo

National Air Duct Cleaners are companies that are certified by The National Duct Cleaning Association because, even the very best equipment will not do a great job if it’s not operated properly.  Capital Heating & Cooling is a nationally certified duct cleaning company who invests a substantial amount of time and money to ensure the highest trained professionals operate our truck mounted duct cleaning systems.

Get a free duct cleaning estimate now, or call us at 414.384.4822 for more information.  It takes just a few minutes and it’s right over the phone.


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