What to Consider When Looking for an HVAC Contractor
Is your HVAC system at least 10 years old? You likely have to replace it in one or two years’ time. Otherwise, you just have to keep it great running condition by hiring the right maintenance services. In both cases, you’ll need to hire an HVAC contractor, so make sure all the essentials are covered before you decide whom to hire.
License, Insurance and Experience
Considering that your HVAC system is probably the priciest equipment you have at home, you need assurance that anyone who touches it is appropriately trained. Thus, you need no less than a licensed and experienced contractor, as well as an insured contractor who keeps you safe from liability when there’s an accident on the job. Because not all HVAC experience is the same, however, take time to know about your specific prospect’s background.
Although longevity by itself guarantees nothing, it does speak of stability, which indicates that the contractor is doing something right. As well, ask your prospect what other credentials they may have, such as a North American Technician Excellence (NATE) certification, which indicates that their education and experience are current.
Moreover, inquire if they carry your equipment’s brand and whether they have technicians who are specially trained for it. Keep in mind that every system and manufacturer is unique, and only someone with the right knowledge and training can give you optimal results.
If you intend to have an HVAC system installed, find a contractor that will thoroughly evaluate your home before recommending the best heating and cooling solution. At the end of the evaluation, they should provide a written and itemized quote where you can easily compare costs, warranties and energy efficiency rates with other estimates from other contractors.
Don’t make the mistake of hiring an HVAC contractor just because they are the cheapest. If someone is charging way below the usual – and this goes for most products or services you’re considering – you can bet there’s a catch.
When you talk to client references, you can get those important feels as to how your potential relationship with the contractor can play out. Maximize those calls by asking the right questions. For example, did the contractor complete the job within the agreed deadline and budget? Did they clean up their mess after the installation and did they respect the homeowner’s property? Did they test the system after installation to ensure maximum efficiency?
Consumer Relations History
Visit the Better Business Bureau website to find out the kind of complaints registered under the HVAC contractor’s name. You can also look at online reviews and ratings, but be sure to stick to independent consumer websites for credibility.