What to Consider When Looking for an HVAC Contractor
Is your HVAC system showing signs of age? You may have to get a new one in about a year or two. Otherwise, you just want to make sure that you keep it running nice and smooth by getting 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
Given that your HVAC system is likely the most expensive equipment you have in your home, it’s a must that only well-trained professionals touch it. Therefore, you need a licensed contractor, who will have several years of experience in the industry and insurance that protects you from liability in case of an injury or accidental damage. Since not all HVAC experience is created equal though, spend time asking your particular prospect about his background.
Although longevity by itself guarantees nothing, it does speak of stability, which indicates that the contractor is doing something right. You should also ask whether they have a North American Technician Excellence certification or any equivalent certification proving that they are current in terms of their education and experience.
On top of that, know if they carry your brand and whether they have technicians who specialize in it. Remember, each system and manufacturer is unique, and you want no less than a technician who has the right knowledge and training for optimal results.
If you want an HVAC system installed, a potential contractor should provide a thorough home evaluation to determine the best heating and cooling solution that works for you. After the evaluation, they should give you a written and detailed estimate that makes it easy for you to compare costs, warranties and energy efficiency rates with other quotes you receive.
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.
Talking to client references provided by your prospective HVAC contractor gives you a picture of your potential relationship with them. To make those calls productive enough, ask the right questions. For instance, were they able to complete the job within the deadline and the budget? Did they take care of the mess following the installation, and were they careful not to cause any property damage? Did they test the newly installed system to ensure maximum efficiency?
Consumer Relations Background
Check with the Better Business Bureau to find out what complaints are registered with the contractor you’re considering. You can also look at online reviews and ratings, but be sure to stick to independent consumer websites for credibility.