Choosing an HVAC contractor is not always easy. After all, you probably don’t spend too much time thinking about your HVAC system unless something goes wrong—and at that point, you need service fast and can’t always take the time to research! It doesn’t help that there are a lot of so called “contractors” out there who aren’t true professionals, and are only interested in getting your money.
When you hire a good HVAC contractor, you get what you pay for. For instance, at Michael Bonsby HVAC & Plumbing, we pay all of our technicians fairly and pay for licensing, insurance, bonding, and safety equipment. Our employees also get continuing education so we are always up to speed on all the latest HVAC technology—all benefits that we pass along to you.
A good HVAC contractor will also be there for you year-round, not just when something goes wrong. We offer service plans to help you reduce your energy bills, and we never cut corners during a repair, replacement, maintenance, or install job.
Questions to Ask when Hiring an HVAC Contractor
Like we said above, it’s hard to take time to do thorough research about HVAC contractors when your air conditioner is broken and its 90F outside. Here are a list of questions you should always ask before hiring an HVAC company:
Are the company’s technicians NATE-certified?
NATE (North American Technician Excellence) certification is the HVAC industry’s standard for technician excellence. Becoming NATE-certified is not easy, and technicians who make it will have a qualifying set of core competencies that makes them trustworthy and reliable.
Does the company offer continuing education to your employees?
The HVAC industry changes rapidly, with new technology coming out all the time. A continuing education program for employees is a must for a company to keep up and be able to offer the best service.
Can the company provide local references?
Get the names of friends and neighbors who have used the company’s services, and then follow up with them. You can also search online for reviews, but remember that sometimes you have to take these reviews with a grain of salt—some customers may post negative reviews based on a single poor experience that’s not indicative of the company’s performance overall.
Does the company offer a service agreement plan?
Well-maintained equipment runs more efficiently and lasts longer. A service plan will keep your system running smoothly and may help you save money on your monthly energy bills.
Are the technicians properly licensed?
Proper licensing is a must for any HVAC technician. Remember every state, city, or county may have different contractor licensing rules, so make sure you ask for proof!
The Importance of Quality Installation
On our website, we talk a lot about the importance of quality installation. But did you know that “Quality Installation” actually means something? In the HVAC world, Quality Installation refers to a very specific industry standard called the “ANSI/ACCA Quality Installation Specification.” This standard includes a long list of steps we have to follow to make sure your HVAC system is installed perfectly to keep your family comfortable all year long.
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Not every HVAC company follows the principles of QI, and while the ones that do may cost more upfront, they actually end up saving you money over the long term as your system will last longer and be more reliable.
Click the link below to download a QI “score sheet” from the ACCA to help you determine the best contractor for your needs.
Choosing the Best HVAC Contractor
Ask your neighbors for referrals – do you know anyone who worked with a contractor before? What did they think of the work that company did? Your neighbors can be a great resource when you’re looking for a service company. If you notice the same trucks in your neighborhood at different houses, you may have a winner!
Read online reviews, but be careful – online reviews are great for finding information on just about everything. But as we mentioned before, it’s hard to judge a company based on a few customers’ experiences. You can start with online reviews, but take them for what they’re worth.
Contact the contractors to get quotes and figure out your options – now you can ask all the questions we mentioned above and try to find the best contractor for you!
At Michael Bonsby HVAC & Plumbing, we strive to provide the best HVAC services possible to all of our customers. For HVAC service in Maryland and Washington, DC, call us today!
For more information about getting the most out of your HVAC system, be sure to check out the ACCA homepage.