As a public service, we’ve created this list of tips for hiring your next HVAC contractor to be sure you get the best results, especially for a major installation. Follow these tips and you’re sure to have a successful encounter!
- Research — Find out about license and insurance requirements for contractors in your area. You can read about HVAC licensing on the Ohio Dept. of Commerce Website. Ask any contractors you contact to provide their HVAC license number and be sure they have the proper insurance in place.
- Prepare – Before you make that first call to a contractor, check out your current system and write down the brand, model number and serial number. You might want to take a digital photo with your camera of the ID tag on your system. If you know the maintenance history, even better. Also make note of any rooms or areas that are consistently too hot or too cold. This will help potential contractors better understand your heating needs.
- Ask for Referrals— Ask friends, neighbors, and co-workers for contractor referrals, you can check out a local Facebook group for referrals, or you can go look at online reviews. Consumers tend to pay attention to online reviews as much as they do personal referrals now! You can Google “best heating contractor near me” to find local businesses that have high ratings. We recommend paying attention to the number of total reviews (indicates how long the company has been around) and the average review (on a scale of 1-5, 5 being the highest). The more reviews, and the higher the average, the better.
- Ask for References— Ask contractors for customer references and don’t be afraid to call them. Ask about how well the HVAC contractor did with the installation or service, if they were timely, left the house clean, if they were pleasant to interact with, and was the pricing fair with no surprises
- Search for Special Offers— Your home’s heating and cooling system is one of the largest purchases you’ll make. First, you can check for any available rebates on energy-efficient ENERGY STAR qualified heating and cooling equipment at energystar.gov. Next, you can check Angie’s List, Yelp and other online services for good deals in your area.
- Only Consider ENERGY STAR Equipment— ENERGY STAR qualified products are designed to meet strict U.S. Environmental Protection Agency energy efficiency guidelines. All equipment we offer is ENERGY STAR qualified, and offers significant long-term energy savings. Any good HVAC contractor should be able to show you calculations of savings for ENERGY STAR heating and cooling equipment.
- Expect a System Audit — The contractor should spend significant time inspecting your current system and home to assess your home’s HVAC equipment needs. Just know that a bigger heating or cooling system isn’t always better. A good contractor should size the heating and cooling system based on the size of your house, amount of existing insulation, number and condition of windows, age of the home, and more. If you have a forced-air system, a good contractor will inspect your duct system for any leaks, proper insulation, and will take airflow measurements to ensure it matches manufacturers’ specifications.
- Get Detailed Written Estimates— If you get bids from multiple contractors, be sure you compare apples to apple: compare total cost, energy efficiency and available warranties. The lowest price may not be the best deal on a new furnace system, if it’s not the most efficient. Over time, your energy costs will be higher, making the system costs much higher.
- Get the Proposal in Writing — Be sure to review all terms carefully before you agree to move forward with a proposal. If you have questions about any part of the proposal, ask before you sign. And it goes without saying that you shouldn’t agree to anything that’s not in the contract in writing! The written proposal will protect you my specifying project costs, equipment models, job schedule and warranty information.
- Finish with a Walk-Through Inspection – Walk through the install with the installation tech to be sure all the t’s were crossed and the i’s dotted. Make sure you know how to work your thermostat, locate the system’s air filters, and when your system should be serviced next.
Follow these tips to ensure you have the best experience with an HVAC Contractor, and you’ll be sure to have a successful encounter.
Of course, you could just save time and call the best nearby heating and cooling professionals at Pickerington Heating & Cooling. We’ve been servicing families in the Columbus area for more than 40 years. Check our reviews on Google, Angie’s List and Facebook, then visit our Instant Online Deals page to get the best price on your next heating or cooling service.
Looking for the best AC and furnace repair near you? Pickerington Heating & Cooling serves Columbus Ohio, Fairfield County, Franklin County, and surrounding communities to provide superior on-time service to our customers.
Use our online appointment form to schedule an appointment, or call (614) 837-4026 for more immediate service. We look forward to hearing from you!