When it comes to fixtures and appliances around the house, no one wants any trouble. If we get a laundry machine, we just want it to work. If we get a new fence built, we want it to be a quality job. And nowhere is this more relevant than when it comes to our heating and cooling systems, especially if we’re about to upgrade to something else.
A ductless heating system can be a great, energy efficient addition to a home that can provide years of reliable comfort, and even increase your property value, but only if it’s done right. Doing it right hinges entirely on the team you hire to install it. So how do make sure you avoid a bad team that does a poor job, or worse yet, a scammer just out to part you from your money? Here are the signs you should look out for.
1. Heed Warning Signs
Before anything else, you should check to see what kind of online reputation the potential company you’re thinking to hire may have. This should now be “hiring practice 101” for 21st-century homeowners. Plenty of professional and user-based reviews now exist on the Internet for different companies, and HVAC experts are no exception.
If you find nothing, or very little about a company that may be a bad sign, or simply an indication that the company is new. But if you see a lot of bad reviews from unsatisfied customers with specific grievances, take these seriously, and don’t wave them off as “just jealous,” or it could be you writing the next angry review.
Additionally, be wary of installers who are not certified master installers.
Also be sure that they are:
– “Local” – Knowing they know the area and the environmental factors that can impact installation is essential
– “EPA certified” and hire “licensed electricians”
– “Licensed, bonded, and insured”
2. Don’t Jump On A Bargain
The adage, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is,” holds a lot of truth when it comes to HVAC experts and quotations for jobs. If you’re looking at different candidates and seeing some variance of a few hundred dollars between job quotes, that’s normal. But if you meet someone who tells you he can do it for 50% less, or even lower, this is not your lucky day.
A company making such a low offer does not have some magical connections that allow them to charge less for labor or equipment and still make a profit. They are either not quoting you on the same scope of work, or there is something fishy going on that you should avoid.
3. Do Not Pay Everything Upfront
This is another big warning sign. It’s typical for a company to ask for a deposit, with the remainder paid upon completion of a job well done. It is very abnormal—and unprofessional—to ask for the payment of the entire job before the work even begins.
It is also both unprofessional, and unethical, to ask for that money in strictly cash terms. If a company isn’t even willing to entertain a check, let alone a credit card payment, and works on a strictly cash basis, get far away.
4. Nothing Can Be On Paper
Usually, legitimate companies will leave a “paper trail” that both you and the company can refer to. This will consist of written cost quotations, lists of parts used, cost of labor, and other documents such as warranty information. If a company you talk to refuses to commit anything to paper—not even an email—and insists everything is done verbally, they are trying to avoid creating anything that could be used in court as evidence in a dispute.
For more information on ductless heating installations by trusted and experienced professionals, contact Alpine Ductless today.
Visit our Ultimate Guide to Ductless Heating and Cooling in the Pacific Northwest for more valuable articles like this one.