Your HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems are perhaps the most valuable and important investments under your roof. If you’re installing or repairing anything from a carbon-monoxide (CO) detector to a water heater or a high-efficiency heat pump, use these tips for choosing a heating and cooling contractor with whom you’ll be happy to do business for many years.
Detail the job that you need done
The first step is to write down what your current project, for which you’re hiring a contractor, entails. Furthermore, make notes of related problem areas in your home, where you feel you may be suffering from air leaks, energy loss or issues with your HVAC components. You also can organize your utility bills from the previous year, and have ready any service records and recent work performed, in case your contractor requests that information.
Ask for references
Friends, family and work colleagues can be good sources for choosing a heating and cooling contractor. Call at least three contractors for estimates, and make sure the estimates are free for new installs or replacements. Request three references from each contractor. Then, contact each of the references, and ask these helpful questions:
- Did the contractor finish your work on time and on budget?
- Would you hire this contractor again?
- Did the contractor later contact you to ensure your complete satisfaction?
Your first impression speaks volumes, whether if it’s over the phone or a technician knocking on your door. Is the technician’s appearance and manner professional? Is the company vehicle clean? Does the technician exhibit expertise? A contractor should provide you with information pertinent to your project, in regards to high-efficiency systems, new technologies, and energy-saving and home-comfort suggestions specific to your home’s design. If you are replacing your system did the comfort specialist or sales person throughly look at your system and advise you about the condition of your ductwork, electrical changes that might be needed, any code changes since the previous system was installed, and insulation needs as well.
Get it in writing
Make sure the estimate and final contract include labor, materials, scheduled payments, and proper permits, insurance, and licenses. Equipment guarantees and warranties should be in writing and the proposal should detail the brand and model numbers as well as the items they agreed to address with any installation. The contractor should discuss planned service agreements, and thoroughly explain extended warranties on major equipment purchases. The contractor should take the time to answer all of your questions to your understanding and complete satisfaction.
Choosing a heating and cooling contractor takes time and patience, but the long-term rewards are well worth doing a thorough job. Contact Powers Heating & Air today in the Fayette and Coweta County areas. We’ll be happy to discuss how our commitment to service and quality can benefit your heating and cooling needs.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in Peachtree, GA and surrounding areas about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems). For more information about choosing a contractor and other HVAC topics, download our free Home Comfort Resource guide.
Image courtesy of Shutterstock