How to Choose an HVAC Contractor in Columbus02/19/2016Choosing an HVAC contractor is an important decision that you shouldn’t make without doing some homework to make certain you’re making the right choice. First, select a contractor who will ask you about your wants and needs and more importantly, listen to you. With that noted, they should be able to show you up to four options from which you can choose. When they set up your installation, is it when you want to have it done, or when they can fit you in? Will your contractor pull a permit on every job? Doing so will ensure it meets all of your local codes. HVAC system installation is not something you can do yourself and a successful installation requires a contractor that is skilled in a variety of areas, from load calculation to piping and a lot of steps in-between. You could get the top-of-the-line system, but if it’s improperly installed you may not get ideal performance. Here are some other questions to help you make the best choice while researching your HVAC contractor. Are they NATE-certified? NATE (North American Technician Excellence) is the largest non-profit certification organization for HVAC technicians. Certified technicians have verified their knowledge in the HVAC industry by passing real-world and throrough tests created by a committee of industry experts. NATE-certified contractors have met the highest industry standards for knowledgeable installation and service. NATE certification will provide you peace-of-mind knowing your contractor has finished rigorous professional training. Do they have references or referrals? A professional HVAC company ought to be able to provide you with a list of recent customers that you can chat with and confirm the quality of their company’s work. Talk to their list of references and ask about their project and if they’d recommend the company. There are also official sources online such as the Better Business Bureau and ACCA (Air Conditioning Contractors of America). The BBB allows you to check out the consumer ratings of an HVAC contractor and you’ll view any customer complaints against a company. The ACCA is a non-profit organization of more than 60,000 professionals and 4,000 businesses. Contractors found on ACCA are sure to be dedicated to their trade and will be able to offer referrals for previous work. Another option is crowdsourcing referrals from your friends and neighbors or on your social media networks. These are normally the most useful recommendations because they are coming from people you know. You’ll find out who to talk with and which contractors to avoid. If you’re on nextdoor.com you can literally ask for recommendations from people right next door. Contractors rely on positive word-of-mouth, so if someone you trust stands by them it’s likely they’ll do good work for you too. Are they properly licensed and insured? Not all states require licensure for heating and cooling contractors, but practically all of them do. It’s easy to search online to determine if your state requires a license so you know whether or not to ask for one when gathering quotes from a contractor. The reason most states require licenses is simply to keep you from using a company that uses less than qualified workers. If you live in a state that requires licenses and the contractor you’re talking to doesn’t have one, it’s probably best to look elsewhere to help circumvent any potential problems. When is the best time to ask these questions? The best time to ask questions and find an HVAC contractor is right now, before something goes wrong with your system. Get your furnace inspected while it’s running as usual and schedule your annual maintenance. Your family’s health, comfort and safety is our business at Wolfe & Sons Inc in Columbus. Our HVAC pros would be happy to answer any and all of your questions. Call us at 614-451-0846 or you can simply set up an appointment with us online. We look forward to becoming your partner in keeping your system running safely and efficiently.