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Commercial Air Duct Cleaning: How to find Projects to Bid On!

Posted by Peter Haugen on Mon, Aug 01, 2016 @ 09:40 AM


As a commercial air duct cleaning contractor you are always looking to find projects to bid on. You need to continually bid on a fair number of projects because you will only win some of these. It’s these “wins” that keep your crews busy and the revenues coming in. 

Through our own experiences (when we were a commercial air duct cleaning contractor) we found the following three activities to be most productive in finding projects to bid on:

  1. Existing Customers
  2. Mechanical Contractors
  3. Project Plan Vendor

Existing Customers: Existing customers are always the best place to start because you already have a relationship with them and they have a degree of trust in you. You want to cultivate this relationship so you become their “go to” air duct cleaning contractor.   You want them to call you first so you can discuss and understand the project and then offer them a set of solutions via your project specifications and bid that coincides with your strengths and preferred cleaning methods   

Maintaining a relationship takes some effort. You need to stay in touch via a newsletter, phone calls, and some social interaction (like taking them to lunch, seeing them at the local ASHREA chapter meetings and local association trade shows, etc).   

 Mechanical Contractors:  Mechanical contractors are the largest group that can hire you as a sub contractor to provide the air duct cleaning services required on their projects. Others include Environmental Consultants, Architects and Engineering firms etc. Develop a list of all the Mechanical Contractors in your area. Set-up appointments and meet them face to face, tell them of your capabilities and experience, and ask to be put on their list of approved air duct cleaning contractors. Once you are on their approved list you will be notified and asked for a bid on all their projects that require air duct cleaning services. You want to put as many Mechanical Contractors as you can into the “existing customers” category. And then develop those relationships so you can become their “go to” air duct cleaning contractor.

Project Plan Vendors:  Project Plan Vendors can be very helpful. They offer, through a subscription, information and mechanical plans on commercial renovation projects in your area. On these projects, you would check the Mechanical Section in the bid documents to see if they included any air duct cleaning or air handler cleaning/refurnishing requirements. If there was a requirement, you would get the project specification and mechanical blueprints on these projects to use in your estimating. Plus, they have a list of plan holders. The plan holder list will likely include all the Mechanical Contractors that are considering this project. Make sure these are on your master Mechanical Contractor list.

Here are two Project Plan Vendors:

Summary:  Using these three methods you should be able to find out about up-coming projects.  By doing good work and developing these relationships over time you should be able to find enough projects to bid on and win to keep your crews busy and the revenue coming in!

If you have any questions please contact Peter Haugen at phaugen@vacsysint.com, 855-Vac-Systems, or 952-808-1619. 

Additional Resources:

Intro to  Commercial Air Duct Cleaning Guide   Going from Residential to Commercial Air Duct Cleaning  Guide


Tags: commercial air duct cleaning, finding projects to bid on