If you are new to a region, state or town, there are all kinds of aspects of your life to figure out — new doctors, dentists, churches, schools, which grocery store you prefer, where to get your haircut, the list goes on…
However, if you are a homeowner or business owner, there is another factor that is almost as important as your health — it certainly can play a role in your health — and that is finding the right contractor to handle your heating and air conditioning needs. And if you’re moving to a specific area, like the Atlanta GA suburbs, there are literally dozens and dozens of options to fulfill your needs.
Finding the right heating and cooling company holds a big key to your comfort, not only in keeping you from sweating through hotter months — a guarantee during an Atlanta summer — or freezing through winter, but also in keeping you healthy during heavy pollen seasons and keeping your skin properly moisturized and preventing it from drying out.
Not only that, the right heating and air contractor will help you save money over the life of your home or business ownership by selecting the best air conditioning/heating systems for your living/working space, the amount it is used and your individual needs/desires from an HVAC unit.
That is because, with all of the recent developments in HVAC technology, it is not simply a matter of selecting an air conditioning unit that cools fast or finding a heating system that maintains a level temperature — of course those are important factors — but it is how you arrive at those answers, and ensure a strong service contract that can make the biggest difference in your HVAC system.
Therefore, before you select an HVAC contractor and service company, you need to take time and do some research to ensure the absolute best pick for you.
So, how do you do go about selecting the right heating and air service?
If you move to the metro Atlanta, GA area, these are things you can ask/check with any perspective HVAC system service contractor to make sure you are getting the right choice for you:
First off, it is a great idea to ask some basic questions of all heating and air conditioning services:
QUESTIONS WORTH ASKING
How long have you been in business?
Any contractor that has been around for some time shows that it not only knows what it is doing but is likely able to keep customers happy with excellent service. Also, Atlanta has grown and changed tremendously through the years, so longevity will give you an indication of a dynamic company that knows how to change alongside the needs of its customers.
Can you show me any referrals/reviews?
Check to see if there are happy customers in the metro Atlanta area. Air conditioning and heating are unique to the regions in which you live. In Atlanta, you’re likely going to need service that knows how to deliver strong and reliable cooling, as we live in a hot, humid region for many months of the year. With that in mind, it’s also a good idea to canvas your new neighbors and co-workers and see what they have to say — word of mouth can be worth its weight in gold and you may get much more out of that than any internet referral. (Yes, Google, referrals are trustworthy too, but talking face-to-face with someone will tell you much more in body language and voice inflection.)
What kind of service contracts do you offer, and are there emergency/24-hour service options that will go anywhere in the metro Atlanta area?
Should your HVAC fail on a sweltering Friday night in August or, heaven forbid, during a holiday with loads of family piled into your home, you want to know that — should you desire it — you will not have to wait for service to repair your heating and cooling unit. Ultimately, you want to know that you can guarantee service whenever you need it. And you also need to know that they pride themselves on being available. Check the company website; are there prominent prompts to “contact us” at any time? How much do they talk about jobs and service they have completed in Atlanta area (specifically look for evidence that they know the region so it’s not just some vague reference to Atlanta but to municipalities within the metro area such as Lawrenceville, Buford, Flowery Branch, Norcross, etc.).
Getting the answers to these kinds of questions will also give you an idea of their customer service style, just how friendly and open they are and what kind of people you are dealing with in general.
However, that is not the end of your research. (And, yes, we get it; this is not fun work. But, when you consider the costs of air conditioning/heating, it is well worth it in order to get the most out of this sizable purchases.) There are plenty more questions to ask whenever you contact any heating/air conditioning provider. And these will get much more detail out of any perspective HVAC company in the Atlanta area.
How do you ensure that whatever heating and air conditioning system your company installs will fit my exact needs?
The technological changes that have taken place in the heating/air industry over the last 20 years are stunning. The result of these advances are that heating and cooling units can much more efficiently heat and cool your home and/or commercial property. However, it takes an in-depth knowledge of these improvements (and how to service them) in order to make sure that a company can provide a home/business with the most efficient heating and air conditioning system (and therefore provide the most cost-effective option).
So, ask them what steps they take to ensure efficiency and how they measure efficiency. Do not let them tell you what you need. You tell them what you are after and see how they respond.
How will you present your quote and what all is covered in the quote?
No HVAC service contractor in the Atlanta area that is worth its salt will give you a quote for a system over the phone. If a heating/air company does not ask to come out and take a look at your house, then do not even continue with them.
If they are willing to come to you and provide a quote in person then make sure that EVERYTHING involved in the install is included in the quote. That means not just the big parts like the new air compressor, but all components of the system, right down to plumbing/electrical pieces (such as fittings, pipes, valves, connectors, dampers, safety switches that connect to the equipment need to be updated to match the specifications of the new system). If they do not replace every part of the HVAC system you are set up for service problems down the road.
Any quote should detail EVERYTHING needed to complete the installation.
What kind of training and experience does the salesperson have who will be preparing the quote?
Certainly, you should expect any HVAC technician or service/repair person to be up to date on all of the technology and developments in the heating/air conditioning industry. However, the person preparing the quote will need plenty of knowledge on their own. That is because whoever writes up the quote will be telling the installation technician what to expect and what the job requires. That means that if the estimate/quote is written up incorrectly, you will end up with the wrong heating and cooling system.
In fact, it is not uncommon in the industry to find homes/businesses with mismatched units because they were either improperly sized when installed or improperly charged. Many also were inefficient due to poor air flow — which is a big point to keep in mind. Proper heating and cooling is almost as much about ductwork and air flow as it about the furnace or cooling unit you install. So, before you trust installation to just anyone, make sure their entire team has knowledge of the field.
Which equipment/manufacturers do they install?
Companies that install/service just one manufacturer are naturally limited in the options they can provide. Therefore, it is best to work with a company that offers multiple options. It is also a good idea to do some quick research on the brands they utilize. Industry leaders like Carrier, Trane, Daikin and York have been at the forefront in the HVAC industry for some time and can provide both efficiency and dependable air flow. There are certainly a number of other quality names in the industry, but make sure you do research on them before you go with a name you’ve never heard of.
What do your guarantees cover?
Almost all HVAC companies will offer a guarantee of some sort on parts and labor. But what really sets the best apart is to what length those guarantees go. So make sure that you know EVERYTHING that is covered under warranty and for how long.
Is your company licensed and insured to work in Atlanta or in my municipality?
Ensuring a company is licensed is straightforward — any reputable company will have licenses available for viewing (just make sure that license is current and covers any work you need completed).
However, if a company is not insured then you are potentially opening yourself to liability when a contractor comes to work on your home or office.
Insurance protects the company, their employees and you, the home/business owner, in the event that there is an accident that causes bodily injury or property damage. Without insurance, you could be liable. Their company policy should include workmen’s compensation and liability — in amounts high enough to protect everyone.
How do they help clients maintain their HVAC systems AFTER installation?
Regular maintenance is just as important to your heating and air conditioning systems as maintaining your car with regular oil changes and tune-ups. In fact, professional maintenance is so important that manufacturers require it to keep many warranties in force. With that in mind, make sure they remind you to, “contact us,” should you experience ANY problems. In other words, it is not a good idea to have a company provide a one-time service/installation and then leave you to your own devices.
If you are struggling to find the right answers to these questions for heating/air conditioning installation and service companies in the Atlanta, GA, area then please contact us today.
Conditioned Air Systems has provided quality home and commercial comfort in the Atlanta area for four decades. That includes all-encompassing service contracts and the comfort of knowing that we will come to your aid no matter the hours of the day or what repairs are required.
Contact us now at 770-536-7509 and we will always be happy to answer any questions you have concerning our products and practices. And know that we work with clients throughout the Atlanta, GA, area and throughout northeast Georgia — have done ever since we opened our doors in 1983.