Duct Cleaning vs Duck Cleaning

Duct Cleaning or Duck Cleaning?

Hello, folks! Adam Oldfield here, your friendly neighbourhood President of Vacu-Man, with another blog to clear up a bit of confusion. You see, in our line of work, we’ve encountered a funny little mix-up more times than you’d think – duct cleaning and duck cleaning. Yes, you read that right. Duck. As in quack-quack.

Here are the 3 main differences between Duct and Duck

Feathers vs. Airflow

  • Ducks are full of feathers, while ducts are full of…well, air. And while a duck uses its feathers to keep warm and fly, a duct uses air to keep your home warm (or cool) and to ensure good ventilation. So, remember, if it quacks, it’s a duck. If it doesn’t, you might want to get your ducts cleaned!


  • When it comes to maintenance, ducks and ducts couldn’t be more different. Ducks groom themselves using their beaks in a process called preening. Ducts, on the other hand, can’t clean themselves (no matter how much they might want to). They need a little help from experts like us at Vacu-Man.

Taping Troubles 

  • Here’s where things get a little sticky (pun intended). Did you know that duct tape was originally called “duck” tape? But let’s be clear: duct tape is perfect for fixing a myriad of things, from broken pipes to damaged tools. Duck tape, on the other hand, is absolutely not for fixing your ducks, no matter what those mischievous minds on the internet might suggest! Trust us, your local vet will thank you!

It’s pretty comical to think that amidst the world of HVAC maintenance, furnace check-ups, and duct cleaning, there are folks out there who stumble upon our site while on a quest to give their feathered friends a good scrub down. And while I’m sure there are businesses out there that specialize in duck cleaning (Ducks Unlimited comes to mind, with their innovative use of Palmolive soap), that’s not exactly what we’re here for.

So, let’s clear the air, shall we? The kind of cleaning we do at Vacu-Man has a lot less to do with ducks and a lot more to do with the air you breathe. Ducts, you see, are conduits or passages used in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems to deliver and remove air. The needed airflows include, for example, supply air, return air, and exhaust air. Ducts commonly also deliver ventilation air as part of the supply air. As such, air ducts are one method of ensuring acceptable indoor air quality as well as thermal comfort​.   So, you can think of us as the champions of your home’s air quality, striving to keep it fresh and clean. Sorry, Daffy, but you’ll have to look elsewhere for your spa day.

Now, for a bit of history. Vacu-Man started back in 1979, and my father Steve Oldfield managed to build this one truck operation into a thriving business based on two simple principles – doing it better than everyone else, and customer referrals​​. I joined the family business at a tender age, washing trucks at 12, and by 14, I was working alongside my father cleaning commercial, industrial, and residential homes throughout Hamilton, Burlington, and Oakville. After a stint in marketing, radio, and advertising, I returned in 2018 to take over the business from my dad, who now happily builds and fixes the trucks part-time and works with quotes and estimates for all customers​.

We pride ourselves on being a family-owned business that hires gas technicians to properly clean and service the ducts and furnaces. That’s how we’ve earned the trust of our customers over the past 40+ years​​. And it’s this commitment to quality and service that we bring to every job, whether it’s a small home or a large commercial operation.

And while we’re on the subject of ducks, it’s worth noting that back in 1980, my dad actually used a duck on our business cards. A little nod to the confusion between ducts and ducks, perhaps? So, in a way, you could say we’ve been in the duck cleaning business after all – just not in the way you might think!

If you’re in the Burlington, Hamilton, or Oakville area and in need of some serious duct cleaning (or just want to chat about ducks), give us a call or visit our website, VacuMan.com, for a free estimate. We may not clean ducks, but we sure clean ducts like no one else!