Cleaning Ducts – Don’t Get Scammed!

Anyone Can Be Scammed

This is an actual picture inside my ductwork AFTER a scammer had cleaned it! I called references and thought I was being very thorough. If it could happen to me, it can happen to anyone. I figured out the scam while they were ‘working’ but not before they blew contaminated dust all over my house. Make sure you know everything they will do for you and what kind of equipment they will use. 

Ductwork and Hvac systems are a HUGE source of mold problems. To avoid mold, know that mold can and does grow on metal or flexible ductwork, cooling coils, condensate pans, and clogged condensate drains. Check your HVAC system and clean the ductwork every eight years at a MINIMUM depending on the situation. Flexible ductwork cannot be effectively cleaned, so avoid it if you can. The food source for mold is dirt and dust! So TOXIC MOLD CAN AND DOES GROW INSIDE DUCTWORK AND HVAC SYSTEMS.

Swab testing for mold inside ductwork is a good idea. Solutions may vary depending on the mold species you find.

See the Duct Cleaning Resources & Checklist

What To Do Next

Use only cleaning contractors certified by this organization if you can. The NADCA (The HVAC Inspection, Maintenance and Restoration Association) is a great resource and has a contractor search engine on its site, along with other helpful resources.

The best contractors will only do duct cleaning – no carpets, no upholstery, no remediation or other work. If you can find one that hospitals also use, that is a good sign. There still may be contractors that aren’t as good through this organization’s membership list, but at least it’s a start!

More Resources

Using Chemical Products in HVAC Systems

Ultraviolet Lighting Applications in HVAC Systems

Learn the facts of duct cleaning to avoid getting scammed

Learn even more in my Masterclass With Vito Moscato!

Get your questions answered!

Cheryl Ciecko, AIA, ALA, LEED AP, is a licensed architect who helps homeowners and building professionals create safe homes through online education to prevent mold, water damage, and poor indoor air quality. You can find her video masterclasses, online programs, and education subscription options at .

For detailed answers on your specific situation or building project, schedule your appointment for an individual consultation.


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The information contained in this presentation is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, prescribe, treat, or cure any disease, ailment or injury to the body. It is not medical advice. FDA regulations prohibit the use of medical claims in conjunction with the sale of any product not approved by the FDA. Statements made herein have not been evaluated by the FDA. 

Any products, techniques, and/or personal usage tips referred to are not suggested as a replacement for proper treatment from a licensed health care professional. I am not a licensed health care professional and the decision to use or not to use any of this information is the sole responsibility of the listener and/or reader. Everyone is an individual with different body types, different blood types, different body chemistries, and it is important to remember that what works for one person may not work for another person.