Skip to content
Home » HVAC Facts & Tips » How to Clean Your Ductwork

How to Clean Your Ductwork


The integral parts that come together to make your home or company’s HVAC system aren’t always easy to understand. Ductwork is one such part that plays a crucial role that isn’t as easy to grasp as an air conditioner or even a furnace’s part in your HVAC system. It’s even harder to figure out how it should be maintained. In this month’s blog post, we’re going to be covering the basics of ductwork and how to clean it. Here at Partney Heating and Cooling, we specialize in a variety of things that include ductwork cleaning and if cleaning your ductwork yourself sounds a little too risky for you, give us a call! For those of you who would like to DIY it though, this blog post is for you! 

What Is Ductwork?

Ductwork, to put it simply, is a system of metallic or non-metallic ducts that are connected together to transport something. When it comes to HVAC systems, they always transport air. The air can be heated air, filtered air, cooled air, and more. Air is classified differently when it comes to ductwork systems as each duct has a specific task that helps your HVAC system to work efficiently. Depending on the type of ductwork you have or the health of it, your system can work to its best ability or… not so much. You can read more about ductwork in our blog post “When Should You Replace Your Ductwork?” here

Ductwork on a Ceiling

How Does Ductwork Work?

Ductwork may sound complicated to figure out, but once you get the hang of it, it isn’t. Ductwork takes air from your air conditioner or your furnace and distributes it. When you turn your thermostat up or down, air from your vents rush up to greet you as your ductwork is used as transportation for it. Ductwork, in all its complexity, is just a hallway for air to go up and down. It’s designed to be sealed and help maximize the efficiency of your HVAC system by transporting air quickly and without losing any of its heat or coolness in the process. When in doubt, just remember that ductwork is made to transport air. 

Ductwork Parts

Tools Needed for Cleaning Ductwork:

  • Hvac Brush

 The first thing you should use is an HVAC brush. While you will be using a high volume vacuum cleaner the most, the brush will help you separate any clumps of dirt and dust that may build up in your ductwork. Some common buildup that you may find in your ductwork is dander, drywall, dust, dirt, and more. We also recommend you clean your ductwork even if your building or house is new construction as different materials can clog your ductwork. 

  • High Powered Air Compressor

The second thing you should use is a high powered air compressor. After breaking up the buildup in your ductwork as much as you can, it’s important that you use an air compressor for the buildup you were unable to break up using the HVAC brush. The air compressor is the perfect tool for picking up anything that your HVAC brush was unable to get. 

  • High Powered Vacuum

After breaking up any buildup in your ductwork, it’s crucial that you clean it up. That’s where a high powered vacuum cleaner comes in. Carefully using a vacuum cleaner, clean up the buildup to reduce the spread of airborne contaminants. 

HVAC Ductwork

Steps for Cleaning Ductwork

  1. Turn off your furnace and air conditioner.
  2. Open up an already created ductwork entrance.
  3. Seal off your vents to prevent buildup from escaping.
  4. Using an HVAC brush, start to clean your ductwork.
  5. After using an HVAC brush, use an air compressor to reach any previously unreachable buildup.
  6. Use a high powered vacuum to clean up the loose buildup.
  7. Close up the ductwork entrance.
  8. Unseal your ductwork vents.


We hope this month’s blog post taught you how to clean your ductwork and if you have any questions, leave them in the comments below. Besides having the right equipment and knowledge to clean your ductwork, please keep in mind your safety. Not everyone can clean ductwork and sometimes it can be more of a hassle than it’s worth. If you need quality ductwork cleaning done, call us! We’ll have your ductwork looking great in no time! 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *