How to Choose the Right Commercial HVAC Professional
When you have an important commercial HVAC job to be done, you want to hire a contractor who is knowledgeable, reliable and professional. The following brief overview can help you understand and apply the best methods for hiring the right commercial HVAC professional.
Reasons to Hire a Commercial HVAC Professional
At base, the reason to hire a commercial HVAC professional is to ensure you have a qualified individual or team on the job who will do it correctly. There are, however, several other reasons why hiring a qualified contractor is the best idea in most cases.
- Professional knowledge: A qualified commercial HVAC professional will have the range of experience and technical knowledge to do your job correctly, even if some unexpected snags occur.
- Proper installation: Your HVAC equipment will be installed correctly in accordance with local codes and requirements. It will also be installed to work at its highest level of effectiveness and efficiency.
- Safety: A qualified commercial HVAC professional will ensure your heating or cooling system is installed to operate safely. This is particularly important, for example, when dealing with heating equipment that burns volatile fossil fuels.
- Security: When your contractor enters your commercial facility, you want to be assured that there are no risks of theft or taking of proprietary information.
Choosing the Right Commercial HVAC Professional
As you conduct research and make your decision about which commercial HVAC professional to hire, apply the following evaluation procedures.
- Ask to see licensing documents: Commercial HVAC professionals must be licensed by their state. For any contractors you’re considering, ask to see their licensing documentation. Most legitimate contractors will be happy to demonstrate their qualifications, including proof of licensing and insurance. If someone balks on showing you their state licensing information, remove them from your list of candidates.
- Ask for references: Get a few references that include other commercial clients who have worked with your contractor candidates. Again, contractors with happy customers should have no problem supplying this information. Call the references and ask about the candidates performance.
- Check for professional memberships: Many professional contractors stay connected with the industry through membership in professional organizations. This can be a sign of a contractor who wants to support the industry and be informed of the latest trends. Some of the more important HVAC industry trade organizations are the Air Conditioner Contractors of America (ACCA) and North American Technical Excellence (NATE).
- Ask for bids: Ask your contractor candidates for written, itemized bids for your project. This will help ensure they are actually serious about the job. Make sure to understand whether the bid is an estimate or a fixed price quote and what conditions could exist to increase or decrease the amount of the bid. Bids should be created after the contractor or his representative has performed an in-personal evaluation of your job site and the scope of your project.
- Ask to meet important personnel: Before choosing a contractor, ask to meet important personnel who will be working on your project, such as foremen or lead technical experts. Make sure the meeting is set up on a current job site. This will give you the chance to observe the conditions on the site and see how the contractor and his employees are taking care of things.
- Get a written, signed contract: Once you have chosen a contractor and secured an acceptable bid, get a detailed written contract signed by both you and the contractor. The contract should spell out clearly what the project consists of and what is expected from both you and the contractor. Contracts provide important legal and financial protections for everyone involved in the job.
Our goal is to help educate our customers about Plumbing, HVACR, Fire Protection and Alarm Systems in Mechanical, Commercial and Residential settings. For more information on how to choose the right commercial HVAC professional, and to view projects we’ve worked on, visit our website!