Find an HVAC Contractor Through HVAC.com

Posted by Will Housh on May 3

If you’ve never needed an HVAC contractor before, knowing how and where to find one can be a challenge. In most areas of the country, there are many heating and cooling companies to choose from. How do you determine who offers the services you need and the customer service you expect?

Need to find an HVAC contractor, but don’t know where to start? Luckily, you’ve landed at HVAC.com: the world’s leading heating and air conditioning resource site! In addition to the detailed heating, cooling, and indoor air quality resources we provide, we also connect consumers to local professionals, helping them find HVAC contractors locally.

Find HVAC Contractors Online

HVAC.com’s comprehensive online contractor directory allows consumers to search for local HVAC professionals. Simply enter your ZIP code to start your search. If you’re looking for something specific, such as a contractor who services your particular brand of heating or cooling system, you may enter keywords to customize your search.

With geo-targeting enabled on your web browser, you don’t even have to search – you’ll automatically find HVAC contractors in your area. We list them just below the search bar so you can quickly find a local professional who can tackle your heating, cooling, or indoor air quality challenge.

Find HVAC contractors’ company information and contact details by clicking on their listing in our directory. You’ll find the company’s address, phone number, and website for easy contact. Read the company bio to learn more about their business and the services offered. Check out the contractor’s social media channels by clicking the social icons.

HVAC.com Certified Contractors

With a list of search results on your screen, how do you begin sorting them to find HVAC contractors you want to work with? A great place to start is looking for the HVAC.com Certified Contractor seal.

The HVAC.com Certified Contractor seal tells you this HVAC company has met our strict standards for quality customer service and superior workmanship. The contractors in our directory are pre-screened, allowing us to assess the level of service and value they offer consumers like you, who depend on our directory to find HVAC contractors. When you see our Certified Contractor seal, know that directory listing is for a professional the HVAC industry professionals trust.

Find HVAC Contractors Now

Find a trusted, local HVAC contractor by using the HVAC.com Contractor Directory today. Search for professionals in your area, narrow by the services you’re in need of, and contact for installation, repair, or maintenance.


Source: HVAC.com

Can I Trust HVAC Quotes Online?

Posted by Will Housh on May 2

It’s no secret that HVAC projects can be expensive. Getting a quote from a qualified contractor is the only way to know for sure the cost of your project.

There are many blogs and websites which promote HVAC quotes online. They may publish prices for new heating or cooling equipment, or costs associated with common system repairs. While in some cases, HVAC quotes online can give you a ballpark price, there’s really know way of knowing if that price applies to your situation.

Don’t Look for HVAC Quotes Online if You…

  • Don’t know what you’re looking for. The average homeowner doesn’t know the ins and outs of an HVAC system – and that’s OK! Contractors don’t expect you to – that’s their job! To provide a quote for a new system or repair work, a contractor needs to assess your home or business, the comfort issues you face, and what type of equipment or repair is necessary. An HVAC quote online may not consider important installation or repair factors that increase or decrease price in your situation, making it inaccurate.
  • Don’t know what’s wrong with your system. Heating and cooling systems are complex – it will be difficult for the average homeowner to determine the problem and repair issue they face, in most cases. When looking at HVAC quotes online, you may think you need one thing, but when the contractor shows up, you need a fix entirely different – the costs are likely to be vastly different.

HVAC Quotes Online Aren’t Specific

A general HVAC quote online won’t be specific to your circumstances, which is the most important factor when designing a heating or cooling system. An HVAC quote online for a new air conditioner at $4,000 installed may sound like a good price, but do you know what it includes? Do you know what is needed to facilitate an efficient installation in your home?

The prices you see in HVAC quotes online are often for equipment only, and maybe basic installation – your installation could have additional needs. If your home requires a larger capacity unit or needs new ductwork to facilitate the new air conditioner, it’ll add more to the final price tag – there will be a big discrepancy between the HVAC quote online and the actual quote to make the equipment work for your home.

HVAC quotes online for common system repairs aren’t accurate either, for the same reason. The HVAC repair you face may be more complex, or other fixes may be needed in addition to the issue you read about on a blog.

Contractors are different, across the country. Markets vary, affecting the price. Certain climates need different HVAC equipment, which can affect the cost in your situation versus the generic quote you find online. There are so many variables in homes, businesses, and HVAC equipment – getting a personalized quote from a contractor in person is really the only way to accurately assess the cost of an HVAC project.

Be Honest with Your HVAC Contractor

One reason homeowners turn to ineffective HVAC quotes online is because they don’t want to waste a contractor’s time, calling them out to complete a quote when it’s more than affordable. It’s still wise to obtain a personalized quote from a real contractor – just be honest if the price is out of your budget.

Contractors are there to help you – they’ll work to find a way to get you the equipment and services you need, in many cases. Have a frank conversation about the cost – you may be surprised at what options are available. HVAC companies are constantly offering different specials, and may have a current option which fits your needs. Or, by knowing what you’re looking for and the price point, the contractor can use this information to get back in touch when the right deal for you is available.

Use HVAC.com to Find an HVAC Pro

Get HVAC quotes from a trusted source – an HVAC.com Certified Contractor! Use our Online Directory to connect with local heating and air conditioning professionals who will provide a customized quote, which considers your home and other individual needs – unlike general HVAC quotes online.

Visit our Online Directory today to find a local HVAC contractor!


Source: HVAC.com

Cost of HVAC Inspections for Homeowners

Posted by Will Housh on April 28

Before selling or purchasing a home, or even periodically while living in yours, it may be necessary to obtain an HVAC inspection. Performed by a qualified specialist, this inspection will tell you how your home’s heating and cooling systems are functioning, and if any repairs are warranted, as well as replacement.

Simpler HVAC inspections may be performed with your annual preventative maintenance service visit. It’s a great value for homeowners to have their systems assessed each year, to ensure proper functioning and efficiency. Inspections can provide a ‘heads up’ which alerts the owner of needed repairs, before operating the system does additional damage.

The cost of HVAC inspection ranges from contractor to contractor. Below, we’ll share with you the average cost of HVAC inspections, as well as what you’ll get for your money.

Cost of HVAC Inspection

In 2017, the cost of HVAC inspection averages $321. On the high end, an inspection may run you as much as $475; if your home is under 1,000 square feet, you could pay as little as $200 for an inspection. Be sure to verify the cost of HVAC inspection with your chosen contractor before the inspection begins, as prices do vary between providers.

What an HVAC Inspection Includes

An HVAC inspection is a thorough review and testing of your home’s heating and cooling equipment, as well as any whole-home indoor air quality systems.

Contrary to popular belief, the average home inspection does not include detailed testing of HVAC systems. While basic functioning is checked, furnaces, heat pumps, air conditioners, and other HVAC systems can still function with major malfunctions, in some cases. Your home inspection generally is not detailed enough to give you the full picture of how your heating and cooling systems are performing.

Every contractor’s process may be slightly different, so it’s smart to ask your preferred professional what they include in their cost of HVAC inspection. In general, HVAC inspections usually include the following:

  • Test the thermostat’s calibration
  • Check air filter
  • Inspect blower components
  • Test for correct airflow through units and home
  • Inspect electrical connections
  • Inspect quality of installation
  • Inspect areas where equipment is located
  • Inspect equipment condition
  • Inspect condenser and evaporator coils for air conditioning units
  • Evaluate system starting capabilities
  • Test safety controls
  • Evaluate temperature differentiation
  • Test refrigerant pressure
  • Examine condensate drains and drip pan
  • Examine heating and air conditioning equipment versus air handler for proper match
  • Evaluate heat pump heating mode and defrost cycle
  • Evaluate operation of backup heating source
  • Examine heat exchanger, ignition and burner assemblies
  • Test venting and clearances
  • Test combustion air
  • Test gas pressure and piping

Upon completion of your HVAC inspection, the technician will provide you with a completed report of all elements examined and their findings. They may also include recommendations as to performance and efficiency-improving repairs which will help your systems improve function. At this time, read over the report and take the opportunity to ask for clarification or more information on any points you need.

Find an HVAC inspector through HVAC.com

HVAC.com connects homeowners with contractors who provide HVAC inspections locally. Use our Contractor Directory to search for an HVAC professional in your area to access the services you need!

While you’re here, search our site for the answers to all your heating, cooling, and indoor air quality related questions! We’re the world’s top resource for HVAC knowledge.


Source: HVAC.com

Common Home AC Repairs for Residential Air Conditioning Systems

Posted by Will Housh on April 27

With temperatures heating up, homeowners are flipping on their air conditioners all across the country! This heating season, you may run into system performance issues which create the need for home AC repair.

If you find yourself in this situation, don’t panic! Common air conditioner issues can be corrected by your local home AC repair contractor. To get an idea of what you may be facing when you call, below you’ll find common home AC repairs contractors make every day.

Cost of Home AC Repairs

When their air conditioners act up, many homeowners envision money leaving their wallets to pay for home AC repairs. The truth is, air conditioning repairs may not be as expensive as you think! The average cost of home AC repair in 2017 is $325. The average homeowner will spend between $165 to $507 repairing common cooling system issues.

Common Home AC Repairs

If your air conditioning system is having trouble starting up, producing cool air, or keeping your home at a comfortable temperature, it may be experiencing one of the common home AC repair issues below.

Home AC Repair: Refrigerant Leak

Air conditioners contain refrigerant, which allows the system to run efficiently, releasing heat from the air to cool it. Air conditioners are charged with refrigerant upon installation; a poor charge or a refrigerant leak can cause the system’s refrigerant level to fall below the proper amount. To remedy this, the home AC repair which is performed is a refrigerant recharge, accompanied by fixing the leak if that was the source causing low refrigerant levels.

It is important that the technician performing your home AC repair charge your cooling system with the proper amount of refrigerant. The manufacturer will specify this amount – correct refrigerant charge allows your cooling system to perform efficiently and accurately.

Home AC Repair: Drainage Issues

An air conditioner’s cooling process produces condensation, which normally flows away from the equipment, causing no problem. If there is a clog in the condensate drain lines or drip pan, or if outdoor humidity levels are high, moisture may back up into your air conditioner. Excess condensation will increase indoor humidity levels and hinder the air conditioner’s performance. It could also cause damage to your air conditioner’s components.

To correct this issue, your home AC repair technician will inspect all condensate lines and the drip pan. The lines will be cleared of clogs, and may be treated for algae growth to prevent future clogs. If air conditioner components have been damaged, your technician will provide you with an estimate to repair this equipment.

Home AC Repair: Broken Compressor Fan

Your air conditioner’s outside unit is home to the compressor, fan, and condenser coils. These components work to release heat from the air, transferring it out of your home to produce a cool indoor climate. When the outdoor fan isn’t working correctly, the heat transfer process is hindered. Not only will this prevent your air conditioner from adequately cooling your home, a broken fan can cause the system’s compressor to overheat. An overheated compressor could trigger the air conditioner’s safety controls, turning your air conditioner off; overheating can also cause damage to the compressor itself, requiring home AC repair or compressor replacement.

A qualified home AC repair specialist will diagnose the issue preventing the outdoor fan from working properly. Your fan will be repaired or replaced if necessary, and the outdoor unit will be inspected to assess whether the issue has caused further system damage.

Home AC Repair: Frozen Condenser Coils

If your air conditioner’s condenser coils, which are located in the outdoor unit, freeze up, your system will not run properly. Poor airflow through your cooling system can cause ice to form on the coils. Obstructions are typically the cause – such as dirty air filters or blocked return air ducts. Low refrigerant could also be the cause, requiring a refrigerant charge. A home AC repair technician can diagnose the issue behind your frozen coils, resolve it, and safely thaw your coils to restore cooling in your home.

Find a Home AC Repair Contractor through HVAC.com

Are you in search of home AC repair? HVAC.com connects homeowners to qualified contractors serving their locale. Use the HVAC.com Contractor Directory and find a Certified Contractor in your area to provide the skilled air conditioner repairs you need to keep your home nice and comfortable this summer!


Source: HVAC.com

Choosing an HVAC Installer for Your New System

Posted by Will Housh on April 20

When shopping for a new heating or cooling system, homeowners do a lot of research on the equipment itself. Potential buyers investigate energy efficiency ratings and advanced features, which are huge selling points, distinguishing one system from another. Homeowners may even configure a payback analysis to determine how soon their new HVAC system will pay for itself, or work to estimate total monthly energy bills based on the prospective system’s energy efficiency.

All of the above is truly great to look at when shopping for a new system – but one critical element many overlook is that the HVAC installer you choose is just as important as the system itself! It doesn’t matter how many bells and whistles your new air conditioner or furnace comes with – if you hire a bad installer, those features won’t do you much good at all.

As you shop for new HVAC equipment, remember – shop for an HVAC installer as well. The one you choose will have a great impact on the heating or cooling system you purchase, as without quality installation, your new HVAC system will not do the job you expect of it.

Importance of a Quality HVAC Installer

Interviewing HVAC installers should be just as important as examining system efficiencies and features as you shop for new heating and cooling units. The performance and efficiency of any new system you purchase is pretty much in the installer’s hands – if installation is botched, your equipment will not offer the comfort and energy savings you banked on when you purchased it.

HVAC installers should always follow manufacturer instructions and industry best practices when installing new heating and cooling equipment. When installation isn’t up to these standards, many problems can result.

  • Bad HVAC installation inhibits efficiency. The efficiency ratings you reviewed when making your purchase decision are dependent on proper installation. Improper installation may cause your new unit to consume excess energy, raising your utility bills – all that money you invested in a high-efficiency unit won’t produce the benefits you expected.
  • Bad HVAC installation hinders performance. Your new heating or cooling unit may be prevented from delivering the hot or chilled air you expect. Installation issues which hinder performance place added stress on the system, as it struggles to do the job you’ve called for. Your home won’t be as comfortable as you’d prefer, which may trigger you to run additional systems or adjust thermostats, therefore spending more and more unnecessary energy.
  • Bad HVAC installation shortens system life. An improper install may force the system to perform under less-than-ideal conditions, stressing components to the point of breakdown. Over time, this added stress, generated by the initial bad installation, may lead the system to permanently break down well before you expect. This will leave you with unexpected replacement costs and a possible panic situation, should the system die suddenly.

Qualities of a Great HVAC Installer

In most areas of the country, homeowners have many options to choose from when in need of a heating and cooling contractor. Not all you’ll come across possess the right qualities and skills to ensure your new system is installed correctly. As you evaluate local HVAC installers, your final selection should possess these key qualities.

Brand Experience

If you’ve already determined which make of new HVAC system you’ll purchase, you want to select an HVAC installer with experience installing that brand of equipment. Experience and training teach contractors the ins and outs specific to a brand of equipment, allowing them to perform accurate installation each time.

Many equipment manufacturers have “qualified HVAC installer” programs for their brands. Qualified HVAC installers receive training and education surrounding the brand and its equipment models. This allows the manufacturer to ensure the contractor can properly install their models, and knows the pertinent information about their equipment which may vary from other brands.

These HVAC installers may also receive manufacturer-approved customer service, repair, and maintenance training, allowing them to provide not only accurate installation, but a superior customer experience and the services homeowners need over the service life of their system. Manufacturer training allows the brand to ensure the contractor is able to accurately match customers to the appropriate HVAC system for their homes, and answer any questions the customer may have about the brand’s equipment.

NATE Certification

The North American Technician Excellence organization, or NATE, is the largest non-profit certifying organization serving the HVAC industry. NATE certification shows that an HVAC installer holds the knowledge and skill to properly install heating and air conditioning equipment, utilizing industry best practices.

To obtain NATE certification, HVAC installers must pass NATE’s rigorous exams, covering certain types of HVAC equipment and services. To maintain certification, contractors must undergo continuous education every two years, to expand their knowledge of the field and stay up-to-date with the industry’s evolving innovations, technology, and practices.

Working with a NATE-certified HVAC installer presents many advantages to consumers. A NATE-certified technician has independently pursued certification to verify their knowledge and skill. They’re committed to expanding their understanding of the industry and its advances.

NATE-certified HVAC installers protect your new HVAC systems, offering high quality installation producing increased system energy efficiency. They get the installation job completed correctly the first time – NATE-certified installers have fewer callbacks than those without certification, producing fewer warranty returns.

Customers who’ve worked with NATE-certified technicians report a better overall experience, compared to working with non-certified HVAC installers. Customer satisfaction with the HVAC system as well as the installer. When searching for an HVAC installer, NATE certification ranks only contractor reputation among qualities consumers want when hiring an HVAC pro.

Find an HVAC Installer through HVAC.com

When it’s time to purchase a new heating or air conditioning system, use the HVAC.com contractor directory to find a qualified HVAC installer in your area! Search for HVAC installers with the qualifications you need to get the job done right. HVAC.com Certified Contractors have gained our seal of approval, and we’re confident in recommending them to perform the HVAC installation work you need. Your HVAC installer will utilize industry best practices while installing your new furnace, heat pump, air conditioner, or other system to ensure it performs to the efficiency levels you expect.

Visit HVAC.com to start your search.


Source: HVAC.com

Finding Local Air Conditioner Repair Contractors

Posted by Will Housh on April 18

It’s heating up across the country! Many of us have already flipped on our air conditioners for the first time this season.

The first hot day of the year can be stressful for home and business owners. When you set the thermostat to “cooling” mode, what do you do if nothing happens? Your air conditioner doesn’t fire up Maybe it does, but the air coming out is lukewarm. Or, your air conditioner makes an awful sound, or emits a horrible smell. These cooling system issues leave you thinking, “I need to find AC unit repair near me, and fast!”

Finding local air conditioner repair is easy, if you know the right places to look. A Google search for “AC unit repair near me” will turn up pages of options in most places. But, these search results don’t show who’s best for the job – just who has the best SEO.

Here are some great resources to help you pinpoint qualified local air conditioner repair. Find “AC unit repair near me” and know you’re working with a skilled pro!

HVAC.com Online Contractor Directory

HVAC.com is your one-stop shop for finding local air conditioner repair. Our free online contractor directory is home to HVAC contractor listings from across the U.S. Just type in your ZIP code to find HVAC pros in your area. You can even narrow down search results, which will help you find contractors with specific qualifications or who service certain brands.

HVAC.com is the top heating and air conditioning resource site in the world! As you search for a contractor, check out our Resource Center and the HVAC.com Blog to find answers to any heating, air conditioning, or indoor air quality question. Learn about the types of systems used in homes and businesses, how to vet contractors, and more which will best prepare you for working with the pros you’ll find through our directory.

Air Conditioning Contractors of America

A search for “AC unit repair near me” may lead you to Air Conditioning Contractors of America (ACCA). ACCA is the leading trade organization for heating and cooling professionals. ACCA represents HVAC pros throughout the country, providing technical, legal, and marketing resources for small businesses. They also work to develop industry standards that govern heating, ventilation, and air conditioning work throughout the country.

Home and business owners may search ACCA’s member database to discover local air conditioner repair contractors in their area. The ACCA Find a Contractor is free! Use it to identify local HVAC professionals serving specific market segments, performing all types of heating, cooling, indoor air quality, and building performance work.

Personal Recommendations

Aside from the resources above, your friends and family are a great resource. Ask them, “Do you know where I can find AC unit repair near me?” If they’ve used a local professional for HVAC work before, you’ll get a trusted, personal account of the experience – good or bad.

Turning to a source you know and trust is a solution many can rely on. Online review sites can be full of negative or glowing experiences – you don’t know who’s telling the truth on Yelp, you don’t know who they are! Your neighbor, coworker, or family member is someone you’ve built a relationship with. You trust their opinions on many subjects – local air conditioner repair is no different.

In your search to find “AC unit repair near me,” turning to the right sources will make your search a lot easier. Reputable industry sources and your own trusted advisors can point you toward professional local air conditioner repair contractors who deliver quality workmanship and an excellent customer service experience.

Use HVAC.com’s Online Contractor Directory to find a local air conditioner repair contractor today! Search your ZIP code to find HVAC.com Certified Contractors and other qualified professionals in your area who are available to diagnose and solve the cooling system problems you face, restoring comfort to your home or business in no time.


Source: HVAC.com

The Commercial HVAC Maintenance Checklist You Should Be Following

Posted by Will Housh on April 13

As a commercial business owner, facility costs account for a large chunk of your spending each year. Besides rent or mortgage expenses, energy costs are considerable – U.S. commercial and industrial facilities spend $400 billion on energy alone each year!

Lowering your energy spend generates savings that can be better allocated to other causes, such as expanding your business and generating new income. Looking for a place to start saving? Begin with your commercial HVAC systems.

Importance of Commercial HVAC Maintenance

HVAC systems, along with lighting, are the biggest energy consumers in the average commercial building. While there’s certainly something to be said for building automation systems and other technology which work to reduce energy consumption, maintaining your systems through commercial HVAC maintenance greatly impacts the amount of energy this equipment uses. Our Commercial HVAC Maintenance Checklist will show you the steps which need to be followed to keep your building’s HVAC equipment in top shape, consuming less energy and serving you longer.

Commercial HVAC Maintenance Checklist

Facility managers and maintenance departments can keep commercial HVAC systems running more efficiently through regular commercial HVAC maintenance. Use this commercial HVAC maintenance checklist as a guide to follow.

Preventative Commercial HVAC Maintenance

Not all businesses require the same needs from their HVAC systems. Customized commercial HVAC maintenance plans may be offered by your preferred contractor, which will provide the specific care your system needs to boost performance.

  • Performed in the spring for cooling systems, the fall for heating systems
  • This is a service which should be performed by a commercial HVAC technician. Preventative maintenance serves as a tune-up for your building’s HVAC systems, helping them run more efficiently throughout the season. Several steps will be taken to correct existing issues and prevent future performance problems and breakdowns – these steps generally include the following.
  • For outdoor components:
    • Coil and cabinet are inspected and cleaned
    • Drain pans and condensate lines are cleared of obstructions
    • Compressor is inspected
    • Fan motor and blades are inspected and lubricated
    • Control box, switches, wiring, and safety controls are inspected
    • Refrigerant level is measured and recharged if necessary
  • For indoor components:
    • Blower assembly is checked and cleaned
    • Belts are lubricated or replaced
    • Combustion blower housing is cleaned
    • Evaporator coil, drip pan, and condensate lines are cleaned and cleared
    • Burner assembly is inspected and cleaned
    • Ignition system is cleaned
    • Safety controls are tested
    • Heat exchanger is inspected
    • Flue system is checked for dislocations and wear
    • Control box, wiring, and connections are checked and tightened
    • Air filter is replaced or cleaned
    • Duct system is checked

Check and Change Air Filters

  • Air filters should be inspected every three to four weeks to ensure the filter has not become clogged with debris.
  • Changing of air filters should be performed every three to six months, per the manufacturer’s recommendation or as needed.
  • Maintenance staff should stay on top of air filter checks and changes, as restricted airflow through the HVAC systems hinders performance and increases energy consumption by this equipment. During periods of heavy use, you may find it necessary to replace filters more frequently.
  • Running your commercial HVAC systems with clean air filters can lower energy consumption by up to 15%.

Program Thermostats

  • Perform at the beginning of heating season and cooling season, and when temperatures hit the point of not using the systems regularly.
  • When it’s time to switch from one HVAC system to the next, or it’s time to not run it so frequently, it’s time to check the programming on your building’s thermostats to ensure settings are optimal for energy savings. Do this by manually programming your thermostats or through your building automation system; even if you’ve programmed heating and cooling schedules in the past, it’s still smart to recheck to make sure they still fit your needs and the same areas are still in regular use.

Periodic System Checks

  • Perform these monthly, or as needed.
  • Check thermostat operation. If your thermostats are not operating correctly throughout the season, your HVAC systems could be running more frequently than necessary, boosting your energy consumption. If thermostats are not working properly, have them repaired or replaced.
  • Check drip pan and drain lines. Clogs in your HVAC systems’ drainage lines can cause moisture to back up into your building, causing mold and mildew growth as well as the potential for damage. Make sure the drip pan and drain lines are emptying correctly and remove any obstructions that develop.

With proper commercial HVAC maintenance, your building’s heating and cooling systems can operate more efficiently year-round, generating notable energy savings for your business. Working with a trusted commercial HVAC professional, you can create a customized commercial HVAC maintenance checklist for preventative heating and cooling care tailored to the unique needs of your business.

HVAC.com connects commercial business owners and facility managers to local commercial HVAC contractors. Find an HVAC.com Certified Contractor who offers commercial HVAC maintenance services today through our Online Contractor Directory.


Source: HVAC.com

Find an HVAC Technician – Residential versus Commercial

Posted by Will Housh on March 30

Whether you need a new cooling system or a few repairs to improve the performance of your existing furnace, you need a skilled HVAC technician to do the job. If you don’t have a contractor you trust, it can be tricky to find an HVAC technician.

HVAC companies don’t all serve the same markets. Some offer residential services, some offer commercial, and some do both.

To find an HVAC technician, you may look in different places depending on the type of services you need. If you’re a homeowner needing service for your home’s heating and cooling systems, you’ll need a residential HVAC technician. If you’re in need of HVAC services for a commercial building, you’ll need a commercial HVAC technician.

Find an HVAC Technician

Contractor Directories

For both residential and commercial HVAC services, check a contractor directory. A contractor directory lists local HVAC contractors for consumers to search. Find a contractor specializing in the type of service you need. Check credentials, and even review customer testimony, depending on the directory.

Personal Recommendations

For both residential and commercial consumers, personal recommendations are great for finding HVAC technicians. Homeowners can look to family, friends, and neighbors who have used an HVAC contractor. Ask the trusted party about their experience, the customer service delivered and workmanship.

Commercial consumers may wish to ask other business owners for recommendations. If your business requires specific HVAC equipment to conduct processes, ask another business owner in your line of work. Facility managers may ask other maintenance professionals or those at sister sites of a parent company. Ask your trusted contact about the experience, payments, the level of professionalism delivered by the contractor, as well as their knowledge and workmanship.

Licensing Board

For your protection, find an HVAC technician who holds a license, if your state or local government requires it. Check your area’s licensing body for a list of licensed HVAC contractors, or to verify a contractor’s license.

Find an HVAC Technician: Residential

Homeowners who’ve never had to find an HVAC contractor before may find it hard to know where to start. The suggestions above are a good starting place; here are some additional references to help you find a trusted professional.

Real Estate Agent

If you’re new to your area, you may not know anyone to ask for local recommendations. In this situation, your realtor is a great resource. Odds are they’ve worked with local HVAC companies to aid their clients. Ask your realtor to help you find an HVAC contractor. Ask if there is a company they’d recommend, or if they can tell you which ones to steer clear of. If your realtor doesn’t have direct experience working with a local HVAC company, they likely have a trusted colleague who can assist you.

Find an HVAC Technician: Commercial

For business owners, facility managers, or maintenance professionals in need of commercial services, you may look elsewhere to find an HVAC technician. As you’re looking for commercial HVAC work, you don’t necessarily want to look to homeowner reviews to judge services – although these reviews can still tell you a great deal about a contractor’s professionalism and customer service.

Industry Groups

If your business is in a particular industry which uses HVAC equipment for processes, you may wish to work with a contractor who has specific experience working in your industry. To find an HVAC technician with these specific skills, you may look to trade groups in your industry. You may find HVAC technicians listed on the trade group’s website or in a trade journal.

Chamber of Commerce

Many business owners choose to work with other local business owners to support their local economies. If you wish to hire local, you may find an HVAC contractor through the chamber of commerce which you’re a member of. Members may even offer discounted services to other members and business professionals in the area, which can be a great advantage to you.

Hiring an HVAC Technician

For residential and commercial consumers, there are many resources out there to help you find HVAC technicians. Once you’ve found an HVAC technician, it’s important to evaluate the company to make sure it’s the type of business you want to work with. These HVAC.com resources will help you assess different HVAC companies and find the right match:

If you’re in need of residential or commercial services, you can find an HVAC technician through HVAC.com’s Online Contractor Directory. Or, let us find one for you – tell us about your project and we’ll have an HVAC.com Certified Contractor in touch with you shortl


Source: HVAC.com

Your Ultimate Guide to Installing a Central Air Conditioner

Posted by Will Housh on March 23

Installing central air conditioners is a popular spring project for homeowners and business owners across the nation. It’s the perfect time to do it – schedule installation in spring so your system is ready for summer!

If you’ve never had a contractor install a central air conditioner before, you’re probably unfamiliar with the process. Each HVAC pro’s process varies; the general steps consumers follow will be the same. This guide will walk you through the process as you plan your central air conditioner installation.

Learn the types of central air conditioners

Homes and businesses have equipment options when it comes to central air conditioning.

Split systems: This is the most popular type of central air conditioning system found in the U.S. It’s ‘split’ because it utilizes indoor and outdoor components. Inside is the air handler, which holds the blower and evaporator coil. Outside is what most people think of as the ‘air conditioner’: a metal cabinet which holds the condenser coil and compressor. Refrigerant lines connect the system. If you use a furnace for central heating, you likely have this sort of cooling system, too.

Heat pump: Heat pumps are another type of split system. Instead of a furnace and air conditioner, the heat pump supplies cooling in the summer and heating in the winter. It also has an air handler indoors, and the heat pump cabinet sits outdoors. Heat pumps can be air source or geothermal. Air source heat pumps extract heat from or release heat into outdoor air, depending on heating or cooling needs. Geothermal, also called ground source, heat pumps pull heat from or deposit heat into the earth to supply heating or cooling.

Packaged air conditioners: Packaged air conditioners combine electric air conditioning and a heat pump, or heating plus cooling equipment. These units sit on the rooftop or just outside the home or commercial building. They are often chosen for commercial applications due to their installation flexibility and small footprint.

Ductless mini-split air conditioners: Ductless systems are a great choice for cooling a home or business without ductwork. The other systems require ductwork to distribute cool air – a ductless system does not. Ductless mini-split systems have an outdoor air conditioner or heat pump, connected to air handling units placed in one or more rooms of the home or building. Control cooling delivered to each room or area separately of the other air handlers, offering greater control over energy use and temperature.

Other considerations to install central air conditioners

Depending on the type of central air conditioner considered, other factors may come into play.

New duct systems: If your home or business does not have existing duct work, you can choose a ductless air conditioner. If you want to go with another type of central air conditioner, you’ll have to have a duct system installed to work with it – this comes with extra cost and space considerations.

Duct system repairs: If your home or business does have a duct system and you want to install a ducted central air conditioner, the existing ducts may require repairs or alterations to support the new system. Air leaks can reduce air conditioner efficiency up to 30 percent, leading to energy loss and poor temperature control. Your duct system may require duct sealing to support the new air conditioner. Additional duct runs may need tied in to your existing system to facilitate your new central air conditioner installation.

Indoor air quality: Central air conditioners provide a certain level of dehumidification, but it may not be enough for your climate or indoor environment. Installing a whole-home dehumidifier to work with your air conditioner may be the best option for indoor air quality treatment in your home or business. If indoor contamination is an issue you face, a whole-home air purifier may be an add-on you want when installing a cooling system.

Finding HVAC contractors who install central air conditioners

Once you have an idea of the types of central air conditioners available and what you might like to purchase, start your search for an HVAC professional.

There are many ways you can go about your search for an HVAC contractor.

  • Ask trusted friends or family for contractor recommendations.
  • Search for a local HVAC contractor in HVAC.com’s online Contractor Directory
  • Let HVAC.com match you with an HVAC.com Certified Contractor
  • Use other online review sites or contractor directories to find local HVAC contractors

Meeting with air conditioning contractors

Once you’ve selected a few companies, contact them to arrange an estimate to install a central air conditioner. A trustworthy HVAC pro will guide you through the installation process. They’ll answer questions you have about system types, helping you choose the right option for your comfort and financial needs. They’ll perform cooling load calculations to determine the size of central air conditioner needed. Your HVAC pro will advise you as to other considerations needed for your new air conditioner to work optimally.

Choosing a central air conditioner installer

Once you have your quotes in hand, compare them and what they offer. Ask for itemized quotes which state the equipment so you know you’re comparing apples to apples. Check into warranty terms, for both equipment and labor.

After choosing the HVAC contractor you’d like to work with, contact them. They may want to meet with you again, or schedule a time for a sales representative to come pick up your contract. The contractor will inform you of the project’s timeline and schedule your installation. Your contractor may order the central air conditioner from a supplier first before scheduling specific installation dates.

Process to install a central air conditioner

On the day of your central air conditioner installation, expect a process similar to what’s listed below. Of course, the actual steps may vary between contractors.

  1. If your local government requires permitting for the HVAC work, either your contractor will obtain the permit or have informed you that you need to take care of it. In most cases, your contractor will do this for you.
  2. The contractor takes apart and removes the existing air conditioner.
  3. The contractor installs new duct systems or performs duct repairs.
  4. Prepare the installation site. This may involve setting a concrete pad outside to support the air conditioner, or installing rooftop supports for a packaged system installation.
  5. Your new outdoor unit will be positioned correctly. The contractor will install it and secure it to the site.
  6. If also replacing your air handler, install the indoor unit. While it’s a smart idea to replace both indoor and outdoor units at the same time, in some cases you may elect not to replace the air handler when you have a new outdoor unit installed.
  7. Connect the indoor and outdoor units. The contractor will determine the appropriate size for refrigerant lines, drain piping, and electrical lines. Some of these components link the parts of the split system.
  8. Connect the thermostat to the central air conditioner. You may have a new thermostat installed or continue to use your existing unit.
  9. Pull a vacuum to remove contaminants from the refrigerant lines and charge the new central air conditioner with refrigerant.
  10. The new cooling system starts and runs.
  11. The contractor will perform an installation inspection to ensure the installation was done correctly and the system functions properly.

Start your search for an air conditioning contractor

Buying a new central air conditioner is a major investment. Working with a skilled HVAC contractor, you’ll receive valuable guidance regarding system types, options, and efficiency levels available. The professional guidance you gain will allow you to select the right central air conditioner for your home or business. As you move through the installation process, feel free to ask your contractor for information or clarification along the way.

Kick off the project of installing a central air conditioner with HVAC.com! Search our Contractor Directory for a local HVAC pro, or have us recommend a Certified Contractor who can tackle your cooling project. Just complete these steps and we’ll set you up with a qualified contractor to quote your air conditioner installation.


Source: HVAC.com

HVAC Industry Trends with Will Housh of HVAC.com: R-22 Phase Out

Posted by Will Housh on March 14

The HVAC industry is constantly evolving, as we’re affected by developing technology and changing legislation. Some trends you may be aware of. Others, well – we know you’re busy, running a business and all! That’s where we come in.

On the HVAC.com Blog, we’ll discuss HVAC industry trends in a new monthly blog series. Hear what’s going on, get our take, and feel free to share yours in the comment section, or on social media!

As the R-22 phase out progresses, contractors must raise costs. The age-old debate of repairing versus replacing an air conditioning system comes into play. In the past, repair and a recharge would suffice. What does this mean for your equipment sales and repair approach?

The R-22 Phase Out and How It Affects You

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Montreal Protocol and Clean Air Act cut the amount of R-22 refrigerant in production, phasing it out in favor of more environmentally friendly coolants. R-22 is an ozone-depleting substance, as its hydrofluorocarbons are linked to ozone layer damage.

R-22 is on its way out. Only two more years until production will end entirely. Since 2015, each year we’ve seen a decreasing supply of the coolant. It’s driving up costs and forcing us to take a different approach to what was once a simple repair job.

Limited supply, increasing costs of R-22

In 2017, only 13 million pounds of R-22 will be produced. Next year, only 9 million pounds, and only 4 million in 2019. Starting in 2020, no R-22 will be made, nor imported to the U.S.

For HVAC contractors and their customers, the cost to recharge an R-22 air conditioning system has skyrocketed. R-22 costs climb as production dwindles. We’ve known about it for years, but are now feeling the impacts.

Some contractors prepare for the R-22 phase out by stocking up on refrigerant at today’s price. For these contractors, stocking up now secures product and stabilizes its price – until their supply runs out. This seems to be an ok strategy today, but some suppliers limit how much R-22 can be purchased by one company. Availability is becoming an issue.

Recharge versus replace

When faced with a leaking air conditioner refrigerant system, home and business owners must critically evaluate the remedy. The expense of recharging an R-22 refrigerant system has increased. Should a leak occur later, there’s no telling what the cost of the same repair will be. Supply and demand in action.

These customers will continue to face cost issues until they make the switch to an R-401A air conditioning system. Contractors are key when it comes to consumer education regarding refrigerant issues. Is paying $1000 to recharge an R-22 AC system the best decision? Would investing that money in a new system using readily available R-401A be a better choice?

No one wants to tell a customer the service that was affordable a few years ago has quadrupled in cost. We want to help customers better invest their money when it comes to their HVAC systems.

Replacing R-22 air conditioners with R-401A systems is the new alternative to recharging a system. With small leaks, recharging with R-22 isn’t cost prohibitive yet; if the system has completely lost its charge, the fix is quite costly. Retrofitting equipment with R-401A and other ozone safe coolant-containing refrigerant systems is another approach appropriate for some applications, particularly commercial.

Consumer education on the R-22 phase out

As the industry moves away from R-22, it’s important that we move our customers in that direction as well. For this choice, cost is a major player to the consumer. Today, replacing the system is still more expensive than recharging. It’s up to us as industry professionals to educate the consumer on the environmental issues with R-22, decreasing supply, and the end of its availability in just a few short years. While reclaimed R-22 refrigerant will still be available, it will be in high demand, and its cost will be high.

Ultimately, the R-22 phase out shows the evolution of our industry. New products are better, safer. It’s time to get rid of the old stuff – though it may not be a problem today, its potential is there. Just like the mercury thermostat of the olden days – new technology came along that was better, safer. Even though the stats weren’t necessarily causing a problem in the customer’s home, the potential for danger was there. Know better, do better, right?

Contractor sales opportunity

Obviously, the R-22 phase out gives contractors a great opportunity to upsell. Walk in to a repair, walk out with a new install. Government regulation, supply and demand, and environmental concern support replacement. When you educate your customers about this industry shift, they recognize the need to follow. It’s not simply upselling, but rather making the move now rather than later.

How is your company responding to the R-22 phase out? Perhaps more importantly, how are your customers responding? Are you leveraging the opportunity for new system sales, or devising a way to support R-22 demand?

Whichever way the industry is currently moving, HVAC.com offers the resources you need to run a successful contracting business. From marketing assistance to increase visibility to the hot leads that’ll increase revenue, let HVAC.com be your business toolbox. Sign up today to access our Contractor Command Center, your dashboard for success.

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Source: HVAC.com