Everyone in Midlothian dreads the day that their Air Conditioning unit stops working, and even more so if they don’t have a trusted contractor they can turn to for advice. All things mechanical in this life eventually fail, and when your HVAC, or air conditioning system is no longer working how does a homeowner evaluate the different bids, options, and quality of the HVAC contractors they are obtaining quotes from? After all, isn’t HVAC equipment a commodity product, and shouldn’t it just be a “plug and play” situation to replace your Heat Pump or Air Conditioner?
Here are a few thoughts to consider:
Just most complicated things in life, there is always more than one way to solve a problem. HVAC contractors may offer you different equipment options and solutions when it comes to replacing your existing system. Don’t assume you should replace your equipment with exactly the same size and brand – there is most likely a wide range of options that are worth considering when it comes time to replace your HVAC equipment.
Price quotes can range significantly – just be sure you are compairing similar equipment options – especially with SEER rating/Furnace efficency rating, and multi stage equipment, as this can be a major difference in what contributes to different replacement cost quotes. Your contractor should be able to explain in easy to understand terms why he is recommending a particilar equipment option for your senario.
Understand why it is a good financial decision to replace vs. repair your existing equipment. If a contractor doesn’t evaluate why your existing equipment is not working, and is not able to communicate that to you- be a little leary. Just because your equipment may be ~10 years old does not mean automatically it should be replaced! You first need to understand why is is not working, and the likely root cause of the failure….or less you may be replacing another system within 10-12 years.
All HVAC contractors and technicians providing you with replacement equipment quotes should first understand if you have any air flow issues, before providing suggesting that you need your HVAC equipment replaced. Be a little concerned that the root cause of your equipment failure is not being properly addressed if any HVAC contractor first doesn’t evaluate the air flow of your current duct system when they come to provide a quote. Close to 50% of the jobs we quote on have some type of air flow issues and in many cases it is a minor issue to fix. Air flow is key to HVAC system longevity, and you need a contractor that understands the imporance of airflow.
Realize that a quality installation job takes time, and extra materials. Ask your contractor if he has included in their quote funds to cover “best practice” procedures. These are things like installing liquid line filter driers, installing secondary condensation overflow lines, or cut off sensores, brazing line sets while runing a very small level of nitrogen through them, pressure testing the system, ensureing a good vacumn is pulled, and measured with a micron gauge, air flow testing after the new equipment is installed, and setting the proper air speed for the blower motor). A quality installation for most split systems and post installation testing procedure can not be done in a half a day…regardless of how many helpers are on the job.
Contact Comfort Keepers HVAC about your questions on either repairing or replacing your HVAC system….or just for ideas on keeping your current system lasting longer and more efficent! We are here to help.