10 Questions to Ask on Your Next Air Conditioning Estimate
Utility bills, other than your mortgage, are possibly the biggest expense of running your household. During the summer months, central air contributes to a large portion of your energy bill. The older it gets, the more expensive it will cost to run and maintain.
If the cost to run your cooling unit is becoming close to what the payments of a new one would cost while keeping the energy savings in mind, your may be interested in getting some estimates to replace your current unit. We urge you to get quotes from qualified, experienced, top-rated HVAC companies. Look for a company that is qualified, one that reveals the full scope of work and costs upfront, and one that is proud to share references. A quick check online or with the BBB is also strongly recommended.
Here are 10 questions to ask your potential HVAC company during the estimate stage.
1. What size or capacity of system will I need? Experienced HVAC technicians will be able to calculate the ideal sized cooling unit needed to effectively cool your home at the most cost efficient way possible. Not too big, not too small, but the best unit that runs at optimal efficiency to cool your home and its design.
2. Is my current ductwork suitable? During estimation, a good HVAC tech should be able to spot any issues in the quality and effectiveness of your ducts. They will look for leaks, design, and advise if you should have them cleaned prior to the new installation.
3. Can you provide proof your company is licensed, bonded and insured? Always ask to see the company's proof of qualifications. A qualified company should be happy to share their accolades. In our industry we also recommend being members of the BBB and HRAI.
4. Are there updated technologies I should be considering? Like everything else, the HVAC industry is constantly evolving. With today's innovations your heating and cooling system can be tied in with the rest of your home's smart technology. Always ask what the latest and greatest trends and products are available for convenience and cost savings.
5. How much will this lower my energy bill? Although an exact number is hard to give, an expert HVAC tech should have a rough idea how much less energy your new cooling unit uses - therefore revealing a cost savings. Of course this is dependent on user habits. Ask about SEER ratings and ensure the tech can easily explain the concept to you.
6. What brands do you offer and why? Ask about why the company has chosen to partner with that particular make of cooling units. Look for more that just "its the cheapest unit" - and make sure you are satisfied with the answer.
7. Do you handle any necessary permits? Ask if any upgrades to your home need to be done, and if any permits will be required to complete the work. Surprises are no fun. A qualified and experienced HVAC tech should be able to foresee all the obvious upgrades needed during the estimation process.
8. What types of payment plans are available? Ask questions about payment terms, purchase, lease, rent and what types of rebates or tax credits might be accessible during the upgrade. It is very possible that over the lifetime of your new air conditioner that the savings may pay for itself in the long run.
9. Do you guarantee your work and products? Most always you will receive a warranty on your AC unit, but also ask about guaranteeing the quality of work during installation. If something happens shortly after install, will they honour their workmanship? Make sure the guarantee is stated in writing with a timestamp.
10. When can you install and how long will it take? Ask for a timetable from start to finish. It is likely there will be multiple components to the job. Ask for, and ensure they have considered an effective schedule to get your new AC running in an effective amount of time.
There are many companies to choose from in the HVAC industry. From the initial meeting they will probably all seem great and make big promises. But as many people have found out, few can effectively carry out, to customer satisfaction, the 10 items stated above. At 4 Seasons Heating, Cooling & Electrical we are experts in the industry and strive for excellence in customer satisfaction. Our number 1 goal is to ensure the job is done right and we leave you happy, safe and comfortable.
We provide free, in-home estimates and are accessible 24/7. We would love the opportunity to quote on your new air conditioning unit.