Winter heating season is just around the corner and that means a new crop of com artists posing as HVAC contractors, all aimed at getting your hard-earned dollars. We want to help you avoid these HVAC scams so you can keep your major investments protected and your home warm and comfortable, and of course, we want to make sure you never get ripped off by an unscrupulous contractor.
Common HVAC Scams
When it comes to HVAC scams in the Maryland and Washington, DC area, there are a few common warning signs to look out for, things that police see repeatedly:
- Door-to-door HVAC salesmen. Not all contractors who knock on your door unsolicited are HVAC scam artists, but you should be wary of such a solicitation. Many door-to-door salesmen are just passing through and more likely to take your money without finishing (or even starting) the job than someone with a bricks-and-mortar store and ties to the community. They may also try to convince you that you have a major problem (requiring an expensive repair) that you don’t actually have.
- Telephone solicitors. Reputable HVAC contractors rarely use telemarketers. These callers will often send someone out to your house who will find an expensive issue with your heating or cooling system, whether you need that repair or not.
Tips for Avoiding HVAC Scams
While there’s no absolute guarantee, there are a number of things you can do to dramatically reduce the chances that you’ll be taken advantage of by an HVAC scam artist, such as:
- Deal locally. Working with an HVAC contractor who has a proven track record in your area virtually eliminates any chance of a scam. Such a contractor has built his or her business on referrals from satisfied homeowners and isn’t about to risk the entire business for a quick buck.
- Ask for contact information. Be very wary if the person you’re considering working with doesn’t have business cards, a logo on their truck, and a physical address and phone number that can be verified.
- Ask for the old parts. If a contractor says he is replacing a part, ask to see the part he took out of the system. That way, he is less likely to claim to have made repairs he didn’t actually make.
- Get a second opinion. Grabbing the first contractor that you find when you have a problem with your furnace isn’t necessarily the best plan. Getting a second opinion can validate their claim that repairs must be made.
Need an HVAC Contractor You Can Trust in MD or DC? Call Michael Bonsby HVAC!
Michael Bonsby Heating and Air Conditioning has been helping Maryland and Washington, DC homeowners with their heating and cooling needs for more than 20 years. We’re not just HVAC experts; we’re your neighbors. When you work with us you’re not only keeping your money in the community, but you have the support of a local business, one whose reputation is at stake and has your best interests at heart. To schedule an appointment, call us at 301 990-7970 or contact us online today.