What to Know About Your HVAC Team Before Hiring

When your air conditioner or heater goes out, you’re looking for someone to fix it fast. You may not have time to ask three friends and search online reviews to find a good repair team.

But it’s critical to choose a good HVAC company. We often hear from people who end up with multiple visits and costly repairs. Avoid those headaches; here are a few things to keep in mind now so you can find the right team when you need them.

Licensing
Do not hire anyone who is not licensed by the Contractors State License Board. Always ask for their credentials and check them. Under the Clean Air Act, an uncertified person may not manage refrigerant. Keep in mind, though, that the North Carolina state licensing exam is taken with an open book. Once someone is licensed, they do not have to go back and update or re-validate that license. HVAC systems are always improving and becoming more advanced. For proper services and repairs, it is crucial to hire a professional not just with the right education but the right experience.

To ensure a contractor’s education is up to date, you can use North American Technician Excellence. Research contractor’s training, certifications, education, and experience is crucial in determining whether or not they are right for the job. It is not required, but contractors who have a computer education background are the most skilled. An unqualified individual could ruin your systems.

Insurance and Warranty
Insurance is important because it protects you, as a customer, against injuries and damages. You might hire a neighbor or local one-person HVAC repair team because it’s fast and often costs less. However, if this uninsured contractor is injured on the job at hour house, you might be held accountable for paying for his/her medical expenses. Make sure your contractor shows you proof of workers’ compensation, individual and general liability insurance. Furthermore, a contractor that offers a labor warranty demonstrates confidence in the team’s skills and technique.

Reviews
You can ask the team you’re considering for a few references; if they don’t have some ready, that’s not a good sign! Ask questions about the HVAC team’s timeliness, budget variability, manners, and whether the installations were effective. By conducting your own survey, you avoid getting reviews online that may be biased and untrue.

Reviews from friends or online services are often helpful, too, but with consideration. For example, Yelp reviews are filtered and usually show only vague, 5-star appraisals. Google Reviews are often somewhat better. Take a look at a company’s worst reviews and consider whether the review authors were valid or unfair. Check for registered complaints via the Better Business Bureau.

Process
Don’t take estimates over the phone. Your team should come out and evaluate the problem in person and provide you a written estimate. As they work, you can watch the process: are they measuring all the right factors? This includes square footage of the home, windows, R-value of insulation, duct system, insulations, and Manuals J, S, and D data. The best contractors carry and offer top brands of equipment. If a contractor attempts to replace your unit or system with the same model, this should be considered as a red flag.

We hope this helps you choose the right HVAC team. Contact us with any questions.