The weather outside is frightful but duct cleaning makes it less painful for the carpet cleaning industry.
Author: David Hart
The weather is either cold or getting colder and, for most companies, this means a major slowdown in carpet cleaning.
This, however, does not have to mean that business has to slow down! In fact, with very little investment and training, you very well may find yourself generating more revenue this winter than you ever thought possible. Winter slowdown of carpet cleaning (except in the most southern, warmer states) is a given. But that is when the duct cleaning business truly experiences growth. With home furnaces running and recirculating all the dust and debris that has collected in the ductwork, it is a perfect time to promote your duct cleaning services. Duct cleaning is an add-on service that has been of interest to carpet cleaners for decades. Profit potential and industry parallels (homeowners who are conscientious about the cleanliness of their carpets are good candidates to become duct cleaning clients as well have prompted carpet cleaners to add duct cleaning to their service menu.
A simple Google or Yellow Pages search of your area will reveal that there are a fraction of duct cleaners compared to carpet cleaners. And, with an elevated level of interest in indoor air quality, more and more homeowners, builders and small business owners are turning to duct cleaning professionals to get their dirty ducts cleaned. If you have built a client base with carpet cleaning, you have a perfect opportunity to promote your duct cleaning services. A letter or post card to your existing clientele is an easy, effective way to successfully advertise your duct cleaning. Offering duct cleaning to your clients during a carpet cleaning appointment is also a very effective marketing strategy, as you can easily give them a quote for getting their ducts cleaned right then and there. And, figuring that you carry your duct cleaning equipment in your carpet cleaning van you can very easily double or triple the invoice during that appointment. Home builders, real estate agents and home inspectors are great sources for referrals. Many builders are now having the ducts cleaned as soon as they finish building a home. Heating and cooling installation companies in your area can be a valuable resource for referrals, as well. Our company has made a habit of providing a free duct cleaning for the owner or manager of such companies in order to show them the quality of our work and in the process, we have been repaid many times over with referrals from these individuals and their companies.
How difficult is duct cleaning?
Many carpet cleaners, although confident in their carpet and upholstery cleaning abilities, find themselves reluctant to learn how to perform a new service. The truth is that duct cleaning provided you have good equipment couldn't be simpler. By loosening the dust and debris in the ductwork with an agitation device (compressed air blast ball, brushes or whips) and providing a vacuum system to remove the loosened debris, duct cleaning is a very easy procedure to learn and perform. Recently, there have been some exciting breakthroughs in duct cleaning, with the focus toward making duct cleaning readily available for carpet cleaners.
How profitable is duct cleaning?
Along with being very easy to learn and perform, duct cleaning can be extremely profitable, yielding $250 or more per hour. For example, a medium sized house with 14 supply registers and two cold air returns will yield about $465. A house this size, being cleaned with a modern duct cleaning system available to carpet cleaners, will take around 1½ hours for a single operator, and 1 hour for a team of two. This equates to between $310 and $465 per hour! Just as a stain guard application is an easy, profitable add-on to carpet cleaning, dryer duct cleaning can be a very simple, lucrative service to offer as well. With profits ranging from $45-$90 (and taking 5-10 minutes to perform), asking your client if they would like their dryer duct cleaned is a very worthwhile question to ask! "Free dryer duct cleaning; a $90 value, when you schedule a home duct cleaning" is also a very attractive pitch in your advertising.
With the winter months being the "busy season" for duct cleaning, carpet cleaners can enjoy full schedule bookings year-round by adding duct cleaning to their menu. With very minimal monetary and time investment, you can be up and running in the duct cleaning business, earning impressive profits.
David W. Hart, founder and CEO of RamAir Industries, is a 25-year veteran in the carpet and duct cleaning industry. He invented the RamAir ClearView Duct Cleaning System, which is now available for purchase in more than 500 locations in five countries. He also owns and runs Guarantee Cleaning Services, Inc. in Bend, OR. Visit his websites at www.ramair.co and www.guaranteecleaning.com.