How to Choose a Contractor

How to Choose a Contractor

Buying a new furnace or central air conditioner is important decision. However, even if you buy the right equipment but you don’t have a good contractor that will know how to install it then it won’t do much for you. The equipment won’t work properly and can even be a hazard for you. That is why there are some things you have to consider when choosing your contactor. Let’s take a look.

How to Choose a Contractor

  • If you have already worked with someone in the past and you are happy with the work they did it might be a good idea to call them again. If not then try to contact some of your friends or relatives and ask if they have someone to recommend.
  • Make sure to check Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA) or the Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors’ National Association (SMACNA) websites. They have listings of contractors that provide heating, ventilation, cooling and refrigeration services so you can search the ones that are close to the place you live. Before you make your choice confirm that the contractor is certified by North American Technician Excellence (NATE) and/or cooperates with ENERGY STAR.
  • Don’t accept phone estimates. Instead ask the contractor if they can come and see the project first hand. This is the only way you can get the final price.
  • If you expect the contractor to advise you on the equipment then look for someone who has a lot of experience and expertise. For the high-efficiency equipment you will need a contractor that keeps track of the latest technology and can recommend the best solution for you.
  • A good contractor will ask to see your home and then give an estimate what is the best choice.
  • Most furnaces and central air conditioners are not suitable for the objects they heat/cool. Usually they are not big enough for the area they cover mainly because most of the buildings over the years have gone through renovations but the equipment remained the same. Your contractor needs to able to see this issue and propose furnace / cooling system that corresponds to the size of your home.
  • The chosen contractor should discuss the issues you have with your current systems and try to find suitable solution to avoid that with the installation of the new equipment.
  • Since most people decide to install new equipment not only to increase the efficiency of their home, but also to save some money on their utility bills, the contractor you hire should be able to give you an estimate of the annual operating costs of the new equipment you plan to use.
  • When choosing a contractor always look for their proposal in writing. Ask them to give you a written offer that will cover the equipment they plan to install, describe the work they will do and how much will all that cost you at the end of the project.
  • Get more offers and never go with the lowest one. Don’t let the price be a deciding factor as it might end up costing you a fortune. If the bid is too low it might mean that the contractor is not up to the task or has not calculated all expenses required to install the new equipment.
  • Visit the company the contractor works for and see how legit it looks. If they have been or plan to stay in business for a long time, they would invest in their office, be professional and treat you with respect. If this is how you would describe the company, then they might be the perfect choice.

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