Helping to clear the air is his speciality

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, June 26, 2002

Usually the company that installs heating or cooling systems is not the company that cleans those systems out.

Tony Anthonisen wanted to change that.

Anthonisen opened Anthonisen Duct Cleaning and Fireplaces in May, a business that installs heating and cooling systems and cleans out the dust that collects because of those systems.

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Anthonisen said there is only one other business in Austin that offers the service. "It was a need I could fill."

That, and Anthonisen and his wife, Julie, needed a way to support their seven children. Three are biological, two are adopted and two are foster children. The oldest is 20 and the youngest is two years old.

Anthonisen most recently worked for Greenman Heating Refrigeration and Fireplace Design and has been working in heating and cooling most of his life. In the Army, he put cooling systems in vehicles with computers and in officer's buildings. He graduated from heating and cooling training in 1987.

Duct cleaning takes anywhere from 4 to 6 hours and is usually done in the spring or fall when people are switching from heating to cooling or vice versa. Anthonisen also suggests that the ducts be cleaned after renovations to the home or if a small fire had started in the home. The service costs about $300, depending on the size of the house.

"Multiple levels make a difference," Anthonisen said.

He recommends that duct cleaning be done every other year.

People with asthma or allergies should also consider duct cleaning. Julie and two of their sons have asthma and she said the duct cleaning helps.

"It makes a big difference," Julie said.

"From a health stand point it's a good thing to have it cleaned," Anthonisen said.

Anthonisen Duct Cleaning and Fireplaces is a true family business. Anthonisen's employees are his 20-year-old son, who helps him with installations and cleaning and his 15-year-old daughter, who helps with some of the clerical work. But he plans to hire more employees soon.

Anthonisen uses multiple brands of heating and cooling systems. They buy cooling systems from Woodruff Company and will soon have Train air conditioners available. They plan to use Empire fireplaces and Abatement Technologies makes the duct cleaning equipment. Anthonisen will also sell and install filter products, electronic air cleaners and humidifiers.

Anthonisen has had four clients so far. Until the end of June, he is offering a 15 percent discount on any central air conditioner. For being open almost two months, Tony and Julie think so far the business is going well.

"It's a little early to tell how things are going to go," Julie said.

Anthonisen has lived in Austin for 15 years and in that time has met many people. He said that will help him better meet his customers' needs.

"I've done this for awhile and have gotten to know a lot of people in this town and I kind of know what they want," Anthonisen said. "Whatever anybody else is doing, I do a little bit more."

Anthonisen Duct Cleaning and Fireplaces is located 607 1st Ave. SW. For more information call Tony at 438-1235.

Cari Quam can be reached at 434-2235 or by e-mail at