It is usually many years before homeowners have to deal with replacing their heating or cooling equipment.
So here are some tips on what homeowners should look for to avoid costly mistakes:
- Choose a reliable contractor with a valid State Contractors License. Check with the Contractors State License Board at 1-800/321-CSLB(2752) or http://www.cslb.ca.gov/.
Also check with The Better Business Bureau at http://www.bbb.com/
- Make sure they have an actual business address.
- Make sure that building permits are obtained. A licensed contractor is required to obtain the proper permits, and when work has been completed, an inspector should come by to check to see if the work was done properly, and that it conforms to local building codes.
- There are general accepted installation practices and guidelines. A reputable contractor will check and explain things like supply duct sizing, intake air opening(s), refrigerant piping sizes, new vent pipe requirements, duct testing, new electrical circuit and new wiring requirements.
- The higher the efficiency rating of the equipment, the lower your future energy costs will be, provided that the previous items are correct and all of the equipment matches. It’s that simple!
- Freon R-22 is scheduled for a gradual phase-out. It can still be used, but most contractors have begun installing cooling equipment with new refrigerant (R-410a).
- Make sure everything is written on the contract.
- Never pay with cash.
Get educated, it can save you more than just money!