Choosing an HVAC contractor is an important decision that you shouldn’t make without doing some homework to make sure you’re making the correct choice.
First, choose a contractor who will ask you about your wants and needs and more important, listen to you. With that noted, they should be able to present up to four options from which you can select.
When they schedule your installation, is it when you want to have it done, or when they can fit you in? Will your contractor pull a permit on every job? Doing so will ensure it meets all of your local codes.
HVAC system installation is not a DIY job and a successful installation requires a contractor that is skilled in a number of areas, from load calculation to piping and a lot of steps in between. You could get the highest rated system, but if it’s not installed correctly you may not get top-of-the-line performance.
Here are a couple other questions to help you make the best decision while searching for your HVAC contractor.
Are they NATE-certified?
NATE (North American Technician Excellence) is the largest nonprofit certification organization for HVAC technicians. Certified technicians have proven their knowledge in the HVAC industry by passing real-world and throrough tests created by a committee of industry experts. NATE-certified contractors have met the highest industry standards for knowledgeable installation and service. NATE certification will offer you peace of mind knowing your contractor has undergone intense professional training.
Do they have references or referrals?
A professional HVAC company ought to be able to provide you with a list of recent customers that you can talk to and confirm the quality of their company’s work. Call their list of references and ask about their project and if they’d recommend them to you.
There are also official sources online such as the Better Business Bureau and ACCA (Air Conditioning Contractors of America). The BBB allows you to look at the consumer ratings of an HVAC contractor and you’ll have the ability to see any customer complaints against a company. The ACCA is a nonprofit organization of more than 60,000 professionals and 4,000 businesses. Contractors found on ACCA are sure to be serious about their profession and will be able to give referrals for previous work.
Another way is crowdsourcing referrals from your friends and neighbors or on your social media networks. These are usually the most valuable recommendations because they are coming from people you know. You’ll find out who to talk with and which contractors to avoid. If you’re on nextdoor.com you can literally ask for recommendations from people right next door. Contractors count on positive word-of-mouth, so if someone you trust recommends them it’s likely they’ll do great work for you too.
Are they properly licensed and insured?
Not all states require licensure for heating and cooling contractors, but nearly all of them do. It’s easy to search online to see if your state requires a license so you know whether or not to ask for one when receiving quotes from a contractor. The reason a lot of states require licenses is simply to protect you from using a company that uses less than qualified workers.
If you live in a state that requires licenses and the contractor you’re talking to doesn’t have one, it’s probably better to look elsewhere to help circumvent any potential issues.
When is the best time to ask these questions?
The best time to ask questions and pick an HVAC contractor is right now, before something occurs with your system. Get your furnace looked at while it’s working properly and schedule your annual maintenance.
Your family’s health, comfort and safety is our business at Kapaun & Brown in Marshalltown. Our HVAC experts would be happy to answer any and all of your questions. Call us at 641-812-2028. We look forward to becoming your partner in keeping your system running safely and efficiently.