Summer months are approaching, and the last thing you want is for the air conditioning to stop working in the middle of a sweltering day. Good HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) contractors are in high demand during the summer, so now is a great time to make sure everything is working and catch any potential problems before temperatures heat up.
If you're looking to tune up your AC or buy a new unit, don't rush into it -- research carefully ahead of time to find a quality contractor.
BBB processed roughly 7,000 complaints about heating and air conditioning businesses and contractors last year. Common complaints included failure to perform work as contracted, failure to issue a refund and surprise charges.
A Missouri consumer paid a contractor to install a new AC unit at his property in August 2022. The unit worked for a couple days, then stopped working. The consumer was unable to get a response from the company after contacting them through several outlets to ask them to fix the unit.
While finding a reliable contractor can be overwhelming, BBB is a great place to start the search. At BBB.org, you can find plenty of BBB Business Profiles for HVAC contractors or search BBB's Accredited Business Directory for accredited HVAC businesses.
BBB's tips for working with HVAC contractors:
Get recommendations from trusted sources. If friends or family had a good experience with a contractor, you likely will, too. You can check the BBB Business Profiles of any recommendations you receive to get an idea of their track record.
Research the company's background and licensing. Visit BBB.org to see a BBB Business Profile and BBB Customer Reviews on any service company you plan to hire. Learn more about the company's reputation and any history of complaints. Always confirm the company is licensed and insured.
Compare prices and service packages. Get at least three estimates for any air conditioning repair, maintenance or replacement. All bids should be in writing and should provide a full description of the services to be provided and the materials to be used. You can use BBB's Get a Quote service to request quotes from trusted Accredited Businesses.
Review warranty coverage. Find out if the company offers any type of warranty or guarantee, and make sure you understand the terms and conditions of the coverage. Check the warranty on your current air conditioning unit to determine whether any repairs or replacements are covered.
Ask about energy efficiency. Many new air conditioning units are manufactured to be energy efficient. Look for the ENERGY STAR label on energy efficient products that may cost a little more up front, but could help you save money on energy costs over time. Some models may even be eligible for a tax credit -- your HVAC contractor can help you verify this and can provide the Manufacturer Certification Statement for the equipment you plan to purchase.