shaing hands to make the deal

5 Tips on How to Choose an HVAC Contractor

Letting a contractor from any industry into your home or property is a massive step. Giving someone you don’t really know £1000s to complete highly technical and potentially dangerous work should not be taken lightly. 

We want to help guide you in the right direction, so you are better armed with the knowledge to help you choose the best HVAC contractor for the job. 

1. Be wary of anyone giving you a quote over the phone

It will be no surprise that no two air conditioning units are the same. Be cautious of any HVAC contractor that gives you an estimate over the phone without first visiting your home or building. There are a large number of factors to take into account that anyone pricing the work cannot see over the phone. It is always better to be face to face, so the extent of the proposed work can be looked at together. Looking at case studies of past work or looking through the internet is also crucial, so both parties know what options are available. 

2. Be careful of an HVAC contractor that replaces your old air conditioner with the same make/model as before

The average air conditioning unit can last 10-15 years. A properly trained HVAC contractor will recommend multiple options to bring your home up to date and increase the economic efficiency of your home.

If they try to sell you an older model, they are likely trying to get rid some of their own inventory. It is rare to have the exact system you need for your home in stock, and no not all AC equipment is the same. Choosing the correct size is a great deal more important than the make or model.

3. How experienced your HVAC contractor is, is not everything.

At CCP HVAC, we have masses of HVAC experience, look at our case studies and the clients we have worked. But we’d also be first to warn you that experience certainly isn’t everything! Be wary of any contractor who is telling you “we have been doing things this way for over fifteen years” because the HVAC business, like all technology, is continually changing. There are new and better technologies that decrease your electricity costs and are more efficient at cooling/heating. Be sure your contractor is up to date in the available cutting edge technologies, including the most up-to-date HVAC control units (a computer that runs your home or business’s AC system for you, programmable with schedules and preferences.) Experience can be valuable, but it shouldn’t be seen as everything. Our most talented technicians come from other industries and are highly skilled at what they do.

4. Your HVAC contractor should give you a formal written quotation.

Some people like to give you an estimate via a “verbal contract.” Although this can be accepted, should there be any concerns or queries later down the line referring back to a verbal conversation is not ideal. In short, always get it in writing. Most reputable HVAC contractors will give you a written estimate that they will adhere to throughout the project. It should include a full list of works to be done; the equipment is supplied, as well as the price and the payment terms. If during the duration of the project the scope of works changes then these changes must also be recorded in writing and kept with the original quote. We send out brochures with our quotes, so potential clients have info on the company and examples of the relevant works we have completed. 

5. Be Careful About Opting for the Lowest Quotation. It Could cost More in the Long Run.

It’s frustrating when we come across a property owner who just had a new HVAC system installed, and then they are needing to call us out to see why it is showing problems. I always tell people never skimp too much on something as technical as HVAC.

So how do bargain contractors afford to install new units for these super-low prices? Unfortunately, it’s simple as upsetting as it is, they are a contractor who is inexperienced and likely using un-trained employees. So, be cautious and do your research on a company before you commit. 

What should you do? Get multiple quotations, do some research, check reputable review sites, (if they are full of 5-star reviews then that could be a red flag). It is always a better deal, in the long run, to go with the reputable contractor, even if they are more expensive – and as we know, the real HVAC contractors always are as they are providing more.

The moral of this story, and if you forget everything else about this article, remember this: Put the effort in, and you will get it right the first time.

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