Ventilation Installation Cost

How much does it cost to install ventilation?

Enhancement and improvement costs

Heat recovery ventilation

A heat recovery ventilator (HRV) circulates fresh air into a building while retaining the heat of the indoor air and using that to warm up the fresh air. This can help you save on heating costs during the winter. Units average $600-$1,000+. The cost to purchase and professionally install an HRV is typically $1,200-$1,550.

Energy recovery ventilation

Energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) work by the same principles as HRVs, but with the added benefit of cooling. In the winter, the heat of outgoing air is retained and transferred to the fresh air coming in. In the summer, the cool outdoor air lowers the temperature of the warm air coming in. This helps you save on heating and cooling costs throughout the year. Units usually cost $1,025-$1,200. The average cost to purchase and professionally install an ERV is $1,530-$1,830.


Installing filters in your home’s ductwork is important for maintaining your indoor air quality. A high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filter uses mesh screens to filter out dust, mites 1, and other air particles from the air as it passes through your ventilation system. A professionally installed HEPA air filter costs $800-$1,000 on average.

Building management systems

Building management systems (BMS) are technology devices that allow you to control the utilities of a building, including ventilation systems. They simplify the control of ventilation systems using both software and hardware.

The cost of a BMS is usually based on the square footage of a building, and is highly influenced by factors specific equipment used, installation complexity, and the integration of other systems. The average BMS cost is $2-$3 per sq. ft. of a building’s floor space. So to install a BMS in a 2,500 sq. ft. building would cost around $5,000-$7,500.

Additional considerations and costs

Sick building syndrome

According to the World Health Organization, about 30% of all buildings are afflicted with SBS: Sick Building Syndrome. SBS results from a lack of ventilation which creates poor air quality, and this leads to the poor health of those who regularly spend time in the affected building. People suffering from SBS typically report symptoms like headaches, respiratory and skin irritation, and feelings of general malaise. By properly ventilating your home, you can ensure the health and general well being of yourself and the rest of your household.


Certain ventilation types may be more suitable for some climates than others.

  • Night purge ventilation: climates with far lower nighttime temperatures than daytime temperatures
  • Heat recovery ventilation: consistently cool climates
  • Energy recovery ventilation: climates with warm summers and cold winters
  • Wind-capture devices & other natural ventilation systems: climates with frequent breezes and wind
  • Fans (all types): mild climates

Smoke filtration

If you or a household member smokes indoors, or you frequently engage in other activities that produce smoke (Ex: lighting candles & incense, cooking), then installing ventilation systems to clear out the smoke pollution is very important for your health and your home’s structure. Paint, wallpaper, and other materials in your home can be stained and damaged by smoke residue, and people can develop respiratory problems, as well as other serious health issues. Smoke filtration systems cost anywhere from $1,000-$3,000. Some models are portable.


If your mechanical ventilation system includes heating, cooling and humidity control, then it is considered a Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system. It typically costs $7,200 to professionally install an HVAC central air conditioning system.

Regulations, inspections & maintenance

Your local Board of Building Standards may have specific regulations in place regarding the level of ventilation your home must have, and the installation of new ventilation systems. You may be required to obtain a permit for new installations, and ventilation-related permits usually cost $100 or less.

Having your ventilation system regularly inspected and maintained is needed to keep it running well. Professional inspectors will check for proper temperature control, pollutant levels, and the presence of mold and mildew. They will also check if the equipment is properly maintained. Typical inspection fees are $50-$100.

Maintenance fees depend on the type of ventilation system you have. An average HVAC maintenance visit costs $70-$100, while cleaning your ductwork costs $300-$500.

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Remodeling Terms Cheat Sheet

Definitions in laymen's terms, cost considerations, pictures and things you need to know.
See full cheat sheet.
1 Mites: Small, often microscopic invertebrates that mostly live in the soil or water. Some mites are parasitic and live on plants and animals.

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