Summer is the perfect time to get your house a new air conditioning system. A newer model might give you more efficient performance that might lead to energy savings, and an upgrade from a window air conditioner to a central air unit will help keep your entire house nice and cool. But before you agree to purchase just any air conditioner or hire any contractor to install it, there are some important questions you should keep in mind. Here's what to ask your contractor prior to an AC system installation.
Is the Contractor Licensed and Insured?
Every homeowner should want to see two key pieces of documentation from any A/C contractor they hire. The first is that the contractor is properly licensed for air conditioning work. There are sometimes handymen out there who will advertise air conditioning services, but they aren't properly licensed for the work. If you want to ensure proper installation on the first try, stick to a seasoned and licensed professional for all of your A/C work.
The second piece of documentation you should ask for is a copy of their liability insurance. A new central air installation will require some significant changes to your house. If damage occurs during installation or the contractor is injured, you need to know they have their own insurance to cover the damages.
Inquire About Warranties for Both the A/C and the Actual Installation Work
All new A/C units should come with a decent warranty allowing you to get free replacement parts or a whole new unit if yours is defective or breaks down through no fault of your own within a certain length of time. That said, you should also ask your contractor about what kind of guarantee or warranty they offer on their work. In other words, if you discover a problem with the A/C that can be attributed to a mistake made during installation, you need to know that the contractor will come back out to the house and fix their mistake at no cost to you.
Are Any Special Permits Needed?
For extensive work, like putting in a central air system into a house that has no suitable ductwork or other important components already installed, you may need to get a special permit from your local city or town. There could also be additional requirements from your local homeowners' association that you might have to follow. Most A/C contractors are familiar with the laws and regulations in their area, but make sure you look into this yourself so that your new ac system installation doesn't cause any problems for you down the road