The BuildClean unit pulls air from all sides, first through a prefilter and then through a HEPA filter, before clean air is discharged thorough the back side (not shown). The prefilter will eventually load and cake up with coarse particles. The general recommendation is one prefilter per job, assuming the job is a major remodel that lasts 30 to 45 days, while the HEPA filter inside the unit is good for about 5,000 hours of operation, according to BuildClean.
The BuildClean unit pulls air from all sides, first through a prefilter and then through a HEPA filter, before clean air is discharged thorough the back side (not shown). The prefilter will eventually load and cake up with coarse particles. The general recommendation is one prefilter per job, assuming the job is a major remodel that lasts 30 to 45 days, while the HEPA filter inside the unit is good for about 5,000 hours of operation, according to BuildClean.

The packed aisle around the BuildClean booth was a veritable mosh pit during JLC Live, as attendees wanted to learn more about the dust-control system designed specifically for remodelers doing dusty work in occupied homes. The system is as much a marketing tool that can be used to sell a job to homeowners concerned about dust as it is a dust scrubber, says Brain Paich, business development manager for BuildClean. If the homeowners previously had remodeling work and had a bad experience with dust getting into the living space, Paich explains, and a contractor can walk up and demonstrate that he has a solution for that, he just set himself apart from everyone else bidding on that work.

Given the insidious nature of jobsite dust, any one could be the contractor who lets dust get into occupied living space. "It can ruin the experience for the homeowner, and ruin you reputation," says Paich.

A flexible vent duct can be attached to the exhaust port. While optional, using the vent duct is the only way to get the work space under a negative pressure, which is what you want to keep dust from migrating through the barrier (e.g. Zip Wall) you erect between the work space and the living space in an occupied home.
A flexible vent duct can be attached to the exhaust port. While optional, using the vent duct is the only way to get the work space under a negative pressure, which is what you want to keep dust from migrating through the barrier (e.g. Zip Wall) you erect between the work space and the living space in an occupied home.
When set on "auto" mode, a dust sensor on the BuildClean unit senses the particulate concentration in the surrounding air and adjusts fan speed accordingly. The unit will also step up the fan speed as the pre-filter becomes caked with dust, so you are able to maintain a constant rate of airflow without having to fuss with the unit through the course of a job.
When set on "auto" mode, a dust sensor on the BuildClean unit senses the particulate concentration in the surrounding air and adjusts fan speed accordingly. The unit will also step up the fan speed as the pre-filter becomes caked with dust, so you are able to maintain a constant rate of airflow without having to fuss with the unit through the course of a job.

The heart of the BuildClean system is a 38-pound unit, which acts as an environmental air filter to pull airborne particulates out of a work space. It must be used in concert with a plastic barrier to isolate the workspace from the living space. You wan to maintain negative air pressure in the workspace to keep dust-laden air from migrating into the living space The unit pulls air through a circular prefilter, then through a HEPA filter, before it exhausts the filtered air through a 6-in.-dia. flexible duct out a window or door. (Seal around the hose with cardboard and tape to maintain negative pressure in the workspace.) One unit can reportedly depressurize a 20' x 30' x10' sealed workspace.

Cost: $1,030 per unit with HEPA filter; $66 for the vent hose; $23 per prefilter; $150 for the HEPA filter, available direct from BuildClean.com. To cover the cost, BuildClean suggests adding a line item in the bid for each job. It's a value add that can be pointed out when presenting the bid, further drawing attention to the level of service provided.