Let’s face it, an HVAC system is a significant investment in your indoor comfort, and it makes sense to protect your system. Some pèople hire unqualified people to work on their HVAC systems, and this can lead to poor quality work and even damage. So, it’s important to hire the right HVAC company, and this will involve a little research. Before you hire anyone to work on your HVAC system, here are seven key questions that you need to ask first.
- Do You Have Experience?
This may seem obvious, but you really need to hire an HVAC company that has at least a few jobs under their belt. A less qualified company may not have employees with the experience and up to date knowledge to work on your heating and cooling equipment. A brand new company may have been formed by qualified people that have struck out on their own, and this can be hard to confirm without asking more questions. Don’t be shy about asking where the HVAC technicians have worked before and make a few calls to confirm that this is true. In the majority of cases, it’s a better idea to hire a local HVAC company that has been in business for at least a few years.
- Do You Have Credentials?
A well established HVAC contractor will have proper certification to ensure that they provide high quality work for their customers. Many HVAC companies are involved with an organization called HVAC Excellence that was established in 1994 to improve work through continuing education and validation. There are three other organizations that many HVAC companies belong to; they are the ACCA (Air Conditioning Contractors Association of America), RESNET Energy Smart Contractor, and NATE (National Association of Technical Excellence). All of these organizations are great ways to find qualified HVAC technicians. But, if your prospective HVAC company has any or all of these credentials, they should be up to date.
- Do You Have the Required Licenses?
Every state requires specific licenses for HVAC contractors to work on heating and cooling systems. This is important to ensure that the work is carried out safely, and the equipment is safe to use. Every HVAC company working in your area should have these required licenses, and they should have liability insurance. This is essential to protect your property and the HVAC technicians if something goes wrong.
- Do You Provide a Written Estimate?
Every homeowner likes a bargain, getting a lower price is great, but are you really getting good value for money? In many cases, an HVAC company that comes in with a lower estimate could be hiding a lack of experience or offering less for the money. It’s a good idea to get a few written estimates before you choose the right HVAC company to work on your home. Don’t just look at the price; take the time to look at what each company is offering and what is included. The price should be a secondary consideration, and finding the most qualified technicians needs to be a priority.
- Can I Check Your References?
Before you get hired for a job, your potential employer will ask you for references. When you’re the homeowner, and you want to hire an HVAC company, you are the employer, and it makes sense to ask for references. The HVAC company should have some material for you to check, and there are verified online directories that have plenty of additional information. Another good source of information on any service provider is your own family, friends, and work colleagues. If you ask around, you could find out a lot about local HVAC companies, and a personal recommendation from someone you trust is worth a great deal.
- Do You Have Reviews or Testimonials?
The best HVAC companies will have a website with a testimonial or review page where you can read about previous customers’ experiences. There are often contact details to check the testimonials or reviews for their veracity. This is important because a less reputable company could fabricate any testimonial or review to make their company look better than it actually is in reality. That being said, there are also online directories where you can verify how good or bad any company is, and this should factor into your thinking when choosing a local HVAC company.
- Can I Ask a Few Extra Questions?
Any good HVAC company will be more than happy to answer any extra questions that you may have. After all, they have nothing to hide, and they want your business. A less reputable company will not enjoy answering questions, and the answer may be vague and unhelpful. In this section, let’s look at some extra questions that can help you to choose the right HVAC company to work on your system.
- Can I have your street address? Never do business with any company that cannot or will not provide you with a physical location.
- Will you guarantee the quoted price? This is important; some less reputable HVAC companies will attempt to jack up the price later for something they “missed.” This could be a genuine mistake, but why should you pay for their incompetence?
- Do you have an office? If you have any questions, concerns, or problems, it’s a good idea to have a point of contact. A dedicated office staff demonstrates that you’re dealing with a professional HVAC company.
- Do you hire subcontractors? A less reputable HVAC company may hire subcontractors to carry out the work. Generally these “middle man” companies should be avoided, and you need a professional HVAC company with skilled and experienced in house technicians.
- Do you remove old equipment? Some HVAC companies charge hidden disposal fees to remove old equipment, and others don’t. Make sure you know which first to avoid an unexpected bump in the price later.
If you ask these questions, it will be easier to narrow your search for an HVAC company that you can trust to get the job done right. If you want to learn more, contact your local professional HVAC company for extra help and advice.