Air Conditioning Queries: Important Questions To Ask Your AC Contractor

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Much of the nation has switched off their air conditioning units for the season in preparation for fall. But in St. Petersburg, having reliable air conditioning year-round is a must. If you know you need new air conditioning installation in the near future, you’ll want to ensure that you’re working with the best air conditioning contractors available. Before you decide who to hire, you should ask your contractor the following questions:

Are you licensed and insured?
One of the most important questions to address when talking to your air conditioning contractor is whether they have proof of insurance and licensing. In many cities and states, HVAC professionals have to meet requirements for both educational training and on-the-job experience, which may include written exams, to receive valid licensing for their business. These companies may also be required to meet certain levels of bonding and insurance, including liability insurance. These policies protect homeowners in case of an accident during the course of repairs or installation. You’ll want your local air conditioning repair and installation company to take these regulations seriously.

How much experience do you have?
Before hiring an air conditioning company, you’ll want to find out how experienced they are in the industry and with your system in particular. Working with an established, well-regarded company will allow you to get a high-quality system that’s been installed correctly. Aside from what your contractor tells you, conduct your own research on reputable review sites and through the BBB. Once you’ve decided the company is reliable, you should follow up with inquiries pertaining to your system in general. Just because the business has been around for a few years doesn’t mean they’ll automatically know how to repair an older model or install a geothermal system. Be sure to find this out before making a decision and ask them to expand on any answers you feel are too dismissive.

What sort of air conditioning maintenance is required after installation (and can your company handle this, too)?
Shockingly, only 42% of homes that are equipped with central air have these systems serviced on a yearly basis. But this maintenance is extremely important. Not only will performing maintenance keep your home comfortable, but it can actually extend the life of your system and save you money over time. Most air conditioning contractors will install and service your system, but you may want to ask about signing up for their specific servicing program. This will make maintenance much more consistent and you’ll have peace of mind knowing that your system is in good hands.

What’s included in the estimate, and are there rebates available?
During your search for a new AC company, you should obtain estimates from at least a few different companies. Cost should not be your only consideration in this matter (after all, you get what you pay for), but for most families, it’s going to be a factor. Find out exactly what’s included in each estimate as well, including the scope of work, details, and completion dates. You should also ask your contractor about any incentives (federal or local) that may be available to you, such as rebates or tax credits. High efficiency systems are often subject to these types of incentives as long as they meet certain requirements. If you want to save money, you’ll probably need to ask for a bit more information.

In Florida, residents need to be cool and comfortable throughout the year. If you take a risk on a shady AC company, you won’t be able to just chill. By asking your air conditioning contractor these questions up front, you’ll make sure your system runs smoothly and will last for many years to come.

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