It's never fun to wake up and realize that your HVAC system isn't working properly. Because if you're going to take time off from work, you want it to be for something exciting, and dealing with your broken HVAC unit is far from it.
And once you get a technician out to your house, how do you know if they're legit or not? What are some basic HVAC questions that you can ask to make sure you're dealing with a professional?
If you're asking yourself these kinds of questions, wonder no longer, because we're here to help! In this article, we'll tell you a few important questions you should ask your HVAC company, including a few you probably haven't thought of before.
Now then, let's get started!
Are You Licensed and Insured?
Regardless of what kind of service you need, it's a good idea to first confirm that the people working on your HVAC system are qualified to do so. So if you're working with a company for the first time, check to see that they're both licensed and insured before they get started.
Not sure what kind of licenses your local HVAC company should have? Angie's List offers a neat license checker tool that lets you look up what licenses HVAC companies need in your state.
Do You Run Background Checks on Your Team?
Oftentimes, the first technician that you encounter, or the owner of the company, isn't going to be the person doing the actual work on your unit. For instance, if you have a technician come out to your home, and your furnace needs to be replaced, a new team will most likely be handling that job.
Regardless of who steps foot in your home, you want to know that you, your family, and your home are safe and secure. That's why it's a good idea to confirm with someone, like an office staff member, that your HVAC company does routine background checks.
How Long Will This Job Take?
Depending on what kind of service you need, you could be seeing a lot of your HVAC company until the job is completed. So if you're getting ready to schedule a big repair, or an entire HVAC system replacement, check to see what the estimated timetable is.
Larger repairs and replacements can often take days, and even weeks, to complete. But as long as you know in advance what kind of timetable you're looking at, you can plan accordingly, or even schedule something while you're on vacation if the technicians don't need to enter your home.
What is Your Payment Process?
It's a good idea to confirm the price of your job with your HVAC company and get it in writing before things get started. And a huge part of understanding how much something costs is knowing when the money is actually due.
Some companies will require a down payment on larger jobs, while others will expect the money to be paid in full upon completion. So ask questions, and confirm when the money is due, to avoid being surprised with a bill one afternoon.
Also, most HVAC companies offer some kind of financing, especially for larger jobs. If this is something you're interested in, ask about it before things get started, so you can confirm that you meet the financing requirements.
Do You Offer an HVAC Maintenance Plan?
Your HVAC system is a lot like your car, as it also needs routine maintenance in order to continue working properly. And the good news is, your HVAC company should offer a maintenance program that you can sign up for so you can receive multiple maintenance visits each year.
Again, this is extremely important and something you should sign up for regardless of how old or new your HVAC system is. In fact, not getting routine maintenance done on new units can even void the warranty, which isn't something you want to have to deal with.
Routine maintenance on your HVAC system can also prolong the life of older systems, and help prevent major repairs, which of course is a good thing.
What is Included in Your HVAC Maintenance?
Before you sign up for an HVAC maintenance plan, it's a good idea to ask some questions and confirm what all is included in that plan first. Of course, each company is different, and there isn't a one size fits all plan that everyone has.
But you should get things like multiple visits, coil cleanings, filter changes, and a thorough inspection of your system.
Some plans also include other perks, like primary service in the case of an emergency and discounts on repairs and replacements. You should be able to get something in writing that details everything your HVAC plan includes, so ask for that document if you're interested.
Is My Unit Sized Correctly?
Believe it or not, HVAC units come in different sizes, depending on the space that they're trying to heat or cool. So if you're having issues with your house reaching or staying at temp, you may have an undersized unit that's struggling to keep up.
This is something that a technician should be able to answer for you pretty easily, so feel free to ask if you think that might be your issue. And if it is, be prepared to replace both your unit and your ductwork, as a bigger unit often needs bigger ductwork to work properly.
How Does My Ductwork Look?
Speaking of your ductwork, it's something you should ask about each and every time you have a technician in your home. Having an idea of how old your ductwork is, and what kind of shape it is in, can help you prepare for an inevitable replacement down the road.
If you need to get your unit replaced, and you've got older ductwork, ask about a bundle deal that includes a discount on getting both done at the same time. That can help you save a few extra bucks along the way, which is always a good thing.
Are There Any Tax Credits or Rebates Available?
Did you know that there are various tax credits and rebates that are available to you when you replace your unit or ductwork? As we just touched on briefly, any kind of savings is a plus, which is why it's wise to ask about these credits and rebates if you need to replace your system.
You may be surprised to see how much money you can get back, too, and what kind of options it can open up for you. And if you're trying to decide on repair versus replacement, that money back can be the thing that makes the decision that much easier.
What is My Warranty?
If you're getting any kind of repair done, or a complete replacement, ask your technician about what kind of warranty comes with it. Like tax credits and rebates, warranty lengths can be something that can help you make a decision to repair or replace your unit.
Also, if you do get your system replaced, ask about extended warranties and what kind of options are available. You can often pay a bit extra a get a few more years on your warranty, which is something worth considering.
Last but not least, make sure you understand everything that is included in the warranty, and more importantly, what's not included. And remember, without routine maintenance, that warranty you paid for is null and void, so make sure to sign up for a maintenance plan ASAP.
Important HVAC Questions to Ask Your Company
Well, there you have it! Those are a few important HVAC questions you should ask your HVAC company during their next visit!
Remember, if you've never dealt with a company before, it's important to ensure that they're both licensed and insured. That, combined with routine employee background checks, can help you feel safe and secure with a stranger in your home.
You should also consider asking about, and signing up for, a routine maintenance plan. They're a great way to prolong the life of older units, as well as keep newer ones under warranty. This will also help you develop a relationship with your HVAC company, which can be nice when you do finally need to make a major repair or replacement.
Having an idea of how long a job will take, and when the payment is due, is always a good idea. And confirming that your unit is sized correctly, and your ductwork is in good shape, is something worth asking about, too.
Having issues with your HVAC system? Not sure if it's working properly? Schedule an appointment with us today, we'll be glad to assist you!
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