By Greg, Pacific Aire Comfort Advisor
Most people would probably agree: There is nothing easy about hiring an air conditioning and heating contractor, especially if you’re new to an area or have never hired one before.
But by following these 10 tips, you can make the job easy and take a load off your mind at the same time:
- Ask for referrals from family members, friends and neighbors. Learning the names of companies to avoid can be as helpful as finding those people who have had a positive experience with an HVAC contractor.
- Insist on a NATE-certified contractor, or one who has passed extensive HVAC tests and has achieved North American Technician Excellence status, like many technicians at Pacific Aire Heating & Cooling.
- Gather relevant information about your HVAC system before the contractor arrives, including owner’s manuals and maintenance records. Make a list of any problems you are experiencing with your system.
- Ask contractors for the names of their satisfied customers, as well as those who have “stirred the pot.” Your goal here is to find out how the contractor resolved complaints.
- Find out about license and insurance requirements for contractors. The California Contractors State License Board can be reached at 800-321-CSLB.
- Look into special offers or rebates at Energy Star.
- Refine your search for HVAC products to those endorsed by Energy Star, or those that have met strict efficiency standards.
- Expect that a NATE contractor will spend time assessing your home’s heating and cooling load, or how much energy your home consumes. He or she also will assess how large of an HVAC system your home requires. A thorough contractor will also inspect your duct system, identify air leaks and faulty insulation and make repairs -- at your direction.
- Compare proposals and warranties, being sure that every aspect of the job is itemized. The proposal should include the scope of the work, any equipment to be installed, the duration of the project and its total cost.
- Ensure that a work contract is signed -- and in pen.
At this point, your process of hiring an air conditioning and heating contractor should lead to Pacific Aire Heating & Cooling. We've expertly served hundreds of homeowners in the areas surrounding San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys since 1990.