What to Consider When Looking for an HVAC Contractor
Is your HVAC system at least 10 years old? You may have to get a new one in about a year or two. Otherwise, you just need to ensure it keeps running nice and smooth using the right maintenance services. In either scenario, you’re going to have to work with an HVAC contractor, so make sure you study the essentials before you choose which one is best .
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. 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. As the HVAC experiences of different contractors can vary, take time to ask your prospect about theirs.
Longevity by itself is no assurance of a good job, but it shows that the contractor is stable, and only good contractors achieve stability in the industry. 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.
On top of that, know if they carry your brand and whether they have technicians who specialize in 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’re planning on an HVAC system installation, your prospective contractor should thoroughly inspect your home before deciding on a heating and cooling solution that works best for you. 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 choosing an HVAC contractor on price alone. If something is offered at a rate way lower than standard – and this is true for most kinds of products or services – there’s always be a catch.
Talking to client references provided by your prospective HVAC contractor gives you a picture of your potential relationship with them. Make sure those calls will be productive enough by asking the right questions. For instance, were they able to complete the job within the deadline and the 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 Background
Check with the Better Business Bureau to know what complaints are registered against your prospective contractor. You can also look at online reviews and ratings, but be sure to stick to independent consumer websites for credibility.