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What Can I Expect to Pay for Ductwork Installation?

What Can I Expect to Pay for Ductwork Installation?

The average cost of ductwork installation is from $1,400 to $5,600.¹ You can expect to pay $25 to $55 per linear foot.2 No two ductwork replacement projects are identical, as every home has different requirements. If it’s time to replace ductwork in your home, here’s a breakdown of the installation costs to help you plan for an upgrade and budget accordingly.

How Much Does a Duct Cost?

The average ductwork project costs $3,500.¹ Most homes with a central HVAC system have a network of ducts; installation costs about $270 to $500 per duct.² You can expect the typical HVAC duct to last about 10 to 15 years. After that, air ducts tend to become leaky, blocked, and otherwise in poor condition such that the efficiency of your entire heating and cooling system declines.

What Affects Ductwork Installation Costs?

If you’re planning to install or replace ductwork in South Carolina, many factors impact the project’s total cost. We’ll look at a few of these below:

  • Home Size: Installing ductwork in a small 1,000-square-foot home can cost as little as $1,400. In a 2,000- to 3,000-square-foot home, it can cost from $2,800 to $6,700, while the same project in a 4,000-square-foot home can cost as much as $9,000.¹
  • Ductwork Location: The location of each duct must be con class=”list-item-layout”sidered, whether the project entails a complete or partial ductwork replacement. For example, ducts in walls or ceilings cost $1,000 to $4,000 to replace, ducts in basements cost $1,800 to $3,100, ducts in attics cost $2,200 to $5,600, and ducts in crawlspaces cost $3,000 to $7,300 to replace.¹
  • Number of Ducts: The more ducts to be replaced, the more materials needed and the more labor involved. While these costs add up, your HVAC contractor may offer a bulk discount if replacing multiple ducts simultaneously.
  • Duct Material: Material can significantly affect the ductwork installation cost. Flexible, non-insulated ducts cost $1 to $3 per linear foot; insulated ones cost $2 to $4 per linear foot. Fiberglass ducts range from $4 to $6 per linear foot, while sheet metal is the most expensive at $7 to $13 per linear foot.
  • Ductwork Insulation: Insulation adds to the cost of the project, but you can see long-term savings from increased energy efficiency. Air duct insulation costs $800 to $2,000 on average (with labor and materials), and about $1 to $8 per square foot. Fiberglass and flexible mineral wool cost less than rigid or foam board fiberglass insulation.¹
  • Permits: Air duct installation and replacement is a major home improvement and often requires a permit. If replacing air ducts in your existing HVAC system, a permit can cost $250 to $1,500.¹
  • Mold/Asbestos Abatement: Older ducts can have mold problems or asbestos, which must be addressed before new air ducts are installed. An asbestos test and inspection can cost up to $700, while asbestos removal can cost as much as $2,200. Mold inspection and testing can cost up to $650, and mold remediation can cost as much as $6,000.¹
  • Drywall/Ceiling Repair: To access ducts, an HVAC tech may have to open walls and ceilings, which must be repaired after the ducts are installed. Repairing drywall costs from $150 to $325 and ceiling repairs can range from $300 to $1,200.¹
  • Ductwork Add-Ons: Vents cost about $250 to $500 each. The number needed depends on the size and layout of your home; however, the more vents added the lower the system’s efficiency. Sometimes, existing ducts will be cleaned, which can cost up to $500, while sealing existing ducts can cost as much as $2,700.¹
  • Duct Armor: Duct armor is a spray-on sealant that creates a rubberized duct liner to help coat, seal, and restore old ducts. It can stop air leaks, stabilize old fiberglass ducts, and eliminate smoke odors after a fire. However, restoring old ductwork this way isn’t cheap; it can cost $5,000 to $30,000.¹

Do I Have to Replace All of My Ductwork at Once?

You can replace only part of your ductwork to address specific issues or when renovating one section of your home. It helps focus your improvement efforts without overspending. Partial replacement can be effective if only certain ducts have developed problems.

Are There Opportunities to Save on Ductwork Installation?

Installing new ducts can strain almost any homeowner’s budget. Here are ways you can potentially save:

  • Compare quotes from multiple local contractors
  • Install insulated ducts that improve energy efficiency
  • Bundle ductwork installation with other home improvements
  • Have your ductwork maintained regularly
  • Schedule duct sealing to limit energy loss and prevent damage

When Should I Replace My Ductwork?

Ductwork can last 10 to 20 years before it needs replacement. Consider replacing air ducts if upgrading to a larger or higher efficiency HVAC unit. Also consider new ductwork installation for reasons such as:

  • Rising energy bills
  • Reduced airflow
  • Unbalanced heating/cooling
  • Vibration noise
  • Increased dust
  • Pest infestations
  • Mold and other odors
  • Damaged air ducts

Call Waldrop for Ductwork Installation

At Waldrop, we provide high-quality ductwork repair and replacement services in Greenville and Spartanburg Counties. Our NATE-certified technicians can help weigh the decision to repair or replace air ducts. When providing ductwork installation, they aid in the planning process and help customers find monthly specials, family service plans, and financing options that help save over the life of the system. To learn more about or schedule ductwork and other HVAC services in Upstate South Carolina, call (864) 536-0887 today.


  1. https://www.angi.com/articles/air-duct-replacement-cost.htm
  2. https://homeguide.com/costs/cost-to-replace-ductwork
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