Selecting an HVAC contractor is an important decision that shouldn’t be made without doing some investigating to be sure you’re making the best choice.
First, choose a contractor who will ask you about your wants and needs and actually listen to you. With that tidbit, they should be able to show you up to four options from which you can choose.
When they arrange your installation, is it when you wish to have it done, or when they can squeeze 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 do-it yourself affair and a successful installation requires a contractor that is skilled in a variety of areas, from load calculation to piping and quite a few 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 few other questions to help you make the best choice while finding your HVAC contractor.
Are they NATE-certified?
NATE (North American Technician Excellence) is the largest non-profit certification organization for HVAC technicians. Certified technicians have verified their knowledge in the HVAC industry by passing real-world and specialized tests developed by a committee of industry authorities. NATE-certified contractors have met the highest industry standards for knowledgeable installation and service. NATE certification will provide you peace-of-mind knowing your contractor has completed in-depth professional training.
Do they have references or referrals?
A professional HVAC company should be able to provide you with a list of recent customers that you can talk to and verify the quality of their company’s work. Talk to 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 view any customer complaints against a company. The ACCA is a non-profit organization of more than 60,000 professionals and 4,000 businesses. Contractors found on ACCA are sure to be serious about their work and will be able to provide referrals for previous work.
Another route is crowdsourcing referrals from your friends and neighbors or on your social media networks. These are usually the most useful recommendations because they are coming from people you know. You’ll find out who to check out and which contractors to avoid. If you’re on nextdoor.com you can literally ask for recommendations from people right next door. Contractors rely upon on positive word-of-mouth, so if someone you trust backs them it’s likely they’ll do reliable work for you too.
Are they properly licensed and insured?
Not all states require licensure for heating and cooling contractors, but practically all of them do. It’s easy to search online to determine if your state requires a license so you know whether or not to ask for one when receiving quotes from a contractor. The reason many 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 avoid any potential issues.
When is the best time to ask these questions?
The best time to ask questions and find an HVAC contractor is right now, before something occurs with your system. Get your furnace checked out while it’s running properly and schedule your routine maintenance.
Your family’s health, comfort and safety is our business at Hopper Heating and Air in Shelby. Our HVAC professionals would be happy to answer any and all of your questions. Call us at 704-233-7363. We look forward to becoming your partner in keeping your system running safely and efficiently.