Hiring the right HVAC technician is an important decision to make in maintaining your home’s heating and cooling system—and, more importantly, your comfort at home. Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) technicians are trained to repair and install the equipment that makes up your home’s heating, cooling, and air filtering system, from furnaces to humidifiers and air conditioners to water treatment systems.
If you’ve noticed a problem with your home’s HVAC system, it is important to hire an experienced and licensed professional with a consistent, positive reputation before the issue gets worse, and more costly. While in the GTA it might be as simple as heading to Smile HVAC to hire affordable, quality service, those in other locations may need to do a little more digging.
To help you find the best service around, here are our 6 top tips on how to choose the right HVAC technician for your home.
- Don’t Pick the First Option
Chances are when you find out there’s a problem with your heating and cooling system at home, you want a fix as quickly as possible. But not giving yourself options to choose from could leave you picking a technician with low-quality service, leading to poorly repaired equipment that will cost you more time and money to fix sooner than you expect.
First, ask around from family, friends, neighbours—anyone you trust to give you a good recommendation—what services they have used in the past. Do an internet search of HVAC technicians in your area for a more comprehensive list. Once you have a pool of contenders, you can use the following tips to narrow down your choices.
- Research Each Company
The company your HVAC technician works for says a lot about the training, reputation, and quality of work you can expect from the technician. When searching company websites, look for:
- how long they have been in business (a long-running business may indicate more seasoned professionals and customer loyalty from good service)
- what services they offer (more experienced companies will offer a fuller range of services)
- if the company is properly certified and its technicians are licensed
- awards they have received, and
- ratings and reviews they display on their site
While a company gets to choose what information appears on their website, noting what does appear (certifications, licenses, services, awards) can give you an idea about their legitimacy, professionalism, and the quality of the services they provide.
- Read Reviews
A company can tell you all the good things it wants about itself on its own website, but it is more meaningful to hear about previous customers’ experiences when you are deciding if you would like to become a customer as well.
One way an HVAC company may try to share its merits though is through testimonials. They may be from real people and can let you know about the best the company has to offer, but for reviews from people not linked to the company, it is sometimes best to look for customer reviews through third party websites like Google and Yelp.
Reviews will tell you about the experiences of previous customers and give you a less marketed insight into the quality of work, customer service, and professionalism you may expect of the technicians you are thinking of hiring. Read through a few reviews of any one company to get a general sense of how customers experienced their service.
- Compare Prices
Depending on the work that you need to have done, HVAC servicing can cost anywhere from under a hundred dollars to upwards of a few thousand. Ask your social network what they have paid for similar work in their homes and compare company price lists online to find out the average price of the service you need. This way, you will be better prepared to make sure you will not be overcharged, and you will be able to determine a price that is comfortable for you. On the other hand, if a company is offering its services at a very cheap rate, this may be a red flag if it means a lower quality of work.
Check as well if the companies you are looking at have different payment options that will help you make the financial decision that is best for you.
- Ask About Services
It stands to reason that if an HVAC technician does not offer the services you need to repair, install, or service your heating and cooling system, they are not the right technician for you. It is a good idea to get on the phone and ask if the problem you need to have fixed is a service offered by a technician at that company. It is also important to tell your potential technician the brand of your HVAC equipment. If they don’t have the necessary parts or knowledge to fix your specific unit, it is better to know before you hire them for the job.
- Get a Quote
This is the final step of trying to find the right HVAC technician for your needs. Whatever the prices listed on a company’s website, you won’t know for sure how much a job is going to cost you until you get the technician to assess the situation for themselves. This is also a great chance to vet the technician yourself and determine if they are someone that you will want working for you in your home.
It is a good idea to still have a few companies on your list at this point to get a quote from. Once you have this information to compare, you have all the information you need to make the final decision and hire your perfect HVAC technician.