What to Look for in an HVAC Technician
With the internet and YouTube, many homeowners think they can DIY their way out of just about every home problem. However, issues with your heating and cooling systems must be handled by a professional HVAC technician.
Working on an HVAC system yourself can be dangerous. Repairing HVAC systems typically involves working with hazardous chemicals and high voltage electricity. Plus, if anything goes wrong during your repair, you could create worse problems for your HVAC system.
When turning to an HVAC technician, it’s important to choose the right company or individual. Here are a few things you should look for in an HVAC technician.
1. Proper Licensing
Choose an HVAC technician who has a state license to work in HVAC technology. To obtain a license, an HVAC technician must pass a state examination.
In Virginia, there are three levels of HVAC licensing: journeyman, master, and contractor. A journeyman must have two years of experience in the HVAC field and a degree from a two-year program in HVAC technology—or its equivalent. A master must have one year of experience as a journeyman. A contractor must register his or her business with the state.
Before hiring an HVAC technician, check the status of his or her license on a state government website. Hiring someone without a license can put your home and safety at risk.
Keep in mind that an HVAC license qualifies people to work with heating, cooling, and refrigeration systems, but not with plumbing. If you need plumbing work completed as well, the technician needs a plumbing license.
2. NATE Certification
North American Technician Excellence (NATE) is an independent organization that tests and certifies HVAC technicians. Having a NATE certification means that an HVAC technician has proved that they know how to repair a wide variety of HVAC issues. It provides an added stamp of approval to their HVAC license.
When you hire an HVAC technician with a NATE certification, you know that you’re hiring an experienced and qualified technician who can complete complex and intricate HVAC jobs.
3. Liability Insurance
The next step is to make sure the HVAC technician carries general liability insurance. If something goes wrong during the repair process and the technician damages your property, the technician’s insurance should cover the damage.
If the technician doesn’t have liability insurance, they may not be able to pay you back for the mistake, and you might be left with a messy and expensive problem.
4. Trusted Brands
HVAC technicians typically sell appliances for a specific brand. It’s a good idea to hire an HVAC technician who is familiar with your HVAC system’s brand and has the parts and expertise to repair it. If you’re planning to buy a new system and you prefer a specific brand, you’ll want to find an HVAC technician who sells appliances in your preferred brand.
If you don’t have a specific brand in mind, it’s a good idea to choose an HVAC technician who represents a wide variety of brands. If a technician represents just one brand, he or she is limited in the products they offer. The more brands they offer, the more options you have—and the more likely you are to get a product that fits your requirements and price range.
5. Extended Warranties
The next thing you should look for is an HVAC technician who offers long-term warranties on their products and services. Warranties ensure that if something goes wrong with your new HVAC system (or your newly repaired HVAC system), the HVAC technician will return to repair it at no cost to you.
The length of the warranty sometimes depends on the product itself, but typically lasts at least one year. Before you work with an HVAC technician, make sure they offer warranties of at least a year. Prioritize technicians who offer longer warranties, such as five or ten years.
6. Positive Feedback
One of the best ways to verify an HVAC technician’s qualifications is to pay attention to what other people say about him or her. Look for unbiased reviews on third-party sites.
You can increase your likelihood of finding the right HVAC technician on review sites by searching for specific services you need. For example, you could search for “air conditioning repair” or “furnace installation.” That way, you can find someone who has proven to do well in the precise kind of work you need.
Finding a great HVAC technician may take some time, but it’s time well spent. Once you find a great HVAC technician, you won’t have to scramble to find a new one every time a problem arises. You can call a trusted technician who is familiar with your system, and he or she can solve the problem in no time.
Don’t try to fix your HVAC problems yourself. Use these guidelines to find a competent HVAC professional you can rely on.
If you live near Dale City, VA, count on C.B. Lucas Heating & Air Conditioning. We are licensed and insured and carry a variety of trusted brands, so call us today.