There are bound to be questions in your mind when you are considering repairs to your current HVAC unit or buying & installing a new one. The manufacturers may promise you Earth and sky, but your HVAC service provider will tell you the truth behind these tall claims. Many of us feel that the question may sound stupid or that we will not get a truthful answer, so we refrain from asking them. To answer the most pressing queries you may have, here is a list of 10 questions to ask HVAC service providers. We try our best to answer them truthfully and to your satisfaction.
10 Questions To Ask HVAC Service Providers
1. Is regular maintenance really worth it?
Speaking strictly from experience, people who invested in regular maintenance of their HVAC unit suffered a far lesser number of breakdowns as compared to those who didn’t. However, you need not necessarily take our word for it. Ask any of your friends or relatives or for those matter neighbors, who have a maintenance contract. They will tell you how well their HVAC unit is cared for and how they don’t have to worry about replacing worn-out parts, tuning, and cleaning of the unit.
All is covered for a price, and at the end of the day, they enjoy the fruits of a perfectly efficient unit. Compare their answers to those who decided that maintenance was a wastage of time and money. You will find that these people had to go back and forth to keep their unit functioning. Even then, there were no guarantees that it was functioning efficiently. So, our answer is a resounding Yes! Regular maintenance of the unit is definitely worth the money spent. Consider it as an investment that increases the life expectancy of your AC.
2. Can HVAC cleaning be done by the maintenance personnel?
The maintenance staff can do the regular duct cleaning of the HVAC unit. This includes getting rid of dust and debris from around the unit, cleaning the coils, etc. Nonetheless, keep in mind the fact that your system attracts bacteria, mold, pests, and rodents. Maintaining the hygiene of the HVAC system, therefore, becomes imperative. As such, you need to get it professionally cleaned at least twice a year. The professional cleaners use EPA approved chemicals to get rid of all the buildup. They also use chemicals to prevent the easy occurrence of the same problems in the future. Your regular maintenance crew is good for checking the unit for efficient functioning, but they will not bee able to clean and disinfect it thoroughly.
3. My unit breaks down quite often, should I get it repaired or buy a new one?
1. If your HVAC unit is more than a decade old, you should replace it with a new one.
2. If your unit uses “Freon” or R-22 as refrigerant, buy a new one because R-22 is not being produced anymore. Only recycled R-22 is available in the market, and that is very costly.
3. If the faults arise due to lack of maintenance, get it repaired and ensure that in future, you take care of its maintenance.
4. If the cost of repair is very high, or if the technician advices to change the outdoor or indoor part of the unit completely, think about buying a new one. If the repair cost is bearable, you can get the problem rectified.
4. How long will the repair last?
This is the main concern after a repair job is completed. Since it is your unit, you have every right to know the answer. The answer will also help you make the best possible choice if a similar problem arises in the future.
5. How long does a new AC truly last?
A regular AC lasts for about 10 to 15 years, but that is under ideal conditions. If your AC is exposed to salt air, smog, and corrosive chemicals, its life expectancy drops accordingly. Additionally, neglecting the maintenance will also cut a few years from its life. Failing to address the AC problems and letting them compound will also shorten its lifespan. Ultimately, you can’t do much about the natural elements, but other than that, how long your AC lasts is up to how well you care for it.
6. Is there any way to cut down the AC bill in summers?
If you improve the energy efficiency of your AC unit, you can cut down the bills. The first step is to by an AC that has good star-rating or good SEER rating. Secondly, invest in regular maintenance of your AC. Third, change the air filters regularly and keep the coils clean. These few things will bring down your electricity bill drastically.
7. Are there any special rewards or rebates you can claim?
Most customer-centric companies recognize and reward their loyal customers through special service or discount coupons or rebates. As a loyal customer, you should ask your HVAC service provider whether they offer any such options.
8. How should I pay for the work?
If the work is long drawn out, you may want an option where you can pay as each milestone is achieved. If the work is a simple repair, you can pay upfront. But if it is a complicated one, you may want to talk about paying part upfront and the remaining after a few days once you are convinced that the repair will hold.
9. Who will do the work?
For your own safety, you have every right to know beforehand who will be doing the housecall for the problem you have lodged a complaint.
10. How much experience does the person attending your complaint have?
Your HVAC unit needs proper handling by a technician with requisite knowledge and experience. You can, therefore, check the credentials of the technician beforehand and ask for an experienced replacement or buddy to accompany them.
It is the customer’s right to ask questions, and it is the duty of the service provider to answer them satisfactorily. Hopefully, we have managed to answer the most pressing ones, and the remaining can be answered by your HVAC service providers.