With a global market size of over $240.8 billion, it’s no surprise that the HVAC industry is one of the most important global markets. After all, everyone needs some help making it through temperature fluctuations year-round.
If you’re looking to make your store, office, or other non-residential building more comfortable this summer, choosing the right commercial HVAC company is critical. To pick the perfect professionals, you’ll need to know what important questions to ask prior to signing anything. Read on to learn some of these inquiries so that you can find the right HVAC contractor to fit your needs.
1. What Areas Do You Serve?
The first question to ask a potential contractor is where they conduct their operations. Even if you find good commercial HVAC companies, none of them will be useful to you unless they are willing to come out to your building. This is why the first question you ask should be whether the contractor operates in your area.
Provide them with your address and get specific information about whether they serve it. This is also a good time to tell them the type of commercial business that they would be visiting.
You can also look at your potential contractor’s website to glean this information. While it can’t hurt to verify that you’re within their area, looking online lets you know whether it’s even worth reaching out. This saves time and ensures that your search is both fast and fruitful.
2. Are You a Licensed Contractor?
All commercial HVAC services need a business license to conduct their operations. In fact, every organization needs this licensing if they want to operate legally. However, HVAC contractors should also have more documentation to prove that they can carry out HVAC jobs.
Missouri does not have state laws regulating HVAC licensing. Instead, technicians must apply for local certifications with their licensing boards.
There are different types of HVAC licenses that you need to conduct different types of business. HVAC journeyman contractors that supervise apprentices need different licensing than EPA HVAC contractors that work with refrigeration systems.
You don’t need to hire an HVAC company with this licensing, but you do need to ensure that they have an HVAC contractor license. This gives them the go-ahead to install units and conduct commercial HVAC maintenance.
Ask to see this licensing information prior to hiring a contractor. This doesn’t just prove that you’re hiring someone operating within legal boundaries. It also ensures that you’re hiring someone who has passed contractor certification exams and worked with HVAC equipment for 2+ years.
3. Do You Have Liability Insurance?
Commercial general liability insurance is important for commercial HVAC maintenance professionals. This covers all risks relating to potential physical hazards while working. Bodily injury and property damage are two of the most important coverage areas.
If you hire a contractor that doesn’t have this documentation, you might find yourself subject to fines or even a lawsuit. Asking to see these documents up front may be awkward, but it can save you money. Plus, any reputable HVAC service will be happy to show them to you- refusal to do so is a huge red flag.
Generally, you can prove that the HVAC company is authorized by the state to provide this liability insurance. You can also be even safer by calling the insurance company to confirm coverage validity.
While this may sound like going overboard, it’s extremely important that any contractors on your premises are insured. It’s best to be safe than sorry.
4. How Much Experience Do You Have?
Assuming that they are licensed, all MO commercial HVAC services will have at least 2 years of experience. However, this isn’t enough in most cases. You’ll want to hire the most experienced professionals to work on your commercial HVAC repairs and replacements.
You should never hire a company with fewer than 20 years of experience. These professionals will have made their mistakes well in the past and since learned from them. They can therefore provide you with quality assistance.
Luckily, those in St. Louis can invest in a reputable company that has twice this experience. This ensures that your repairs- and your new AC systems- will be of the highest caliber.
5. Do You Offer Financing Options?
Commercial HVAC services can become costly. You’re going to need maintenance on a lot of units (whereas residential services require fewer jobs).
The size of commercial spaces and the increased need for constant airflow also mean that you will need more frequent repairs and replacement. The units run more and therefore endure more natural wear and tear.
It’s important that you choose a maintenance professional who offers multiple financing options. You can enjoy competitive low monthly payments assuming that your credit is approved. This means quality care and comfort without too big a hit to your business’s budget.
Seasonal online coupons can also help you get the best possible deal. Make sure that you’re choosing a provider who actively works to save you money even while turning a profit.
6. Who Will Install or Maintain My HVAC Unit?
Almost half of American AC units are installed incorrectly within both commercial and residential spaces. This statistic is scary when you consider that many people opt for professional installation. Unfortunately, it also makes sense when you consider that many contractors outsource their actual repairs and installation.
These companies take your money, pay a third party, and have that less-experienced professional install your HVAC unit. If they do this for installation, they also likely pay third parties to clean and repair commercial clients’ units. It’s a cheap way to make money without putting in the work.
Make sure that you ask any contractor who will perform your repairs before hiring. Quality HVAC professionals will employ in-house technicians with the proper certification and training. They will be happy to prove this to you with valid paperwork and extensive conversation.
Hire a Commercial HVAC Company Today
Choosing a commercial HVAC company to keep your building comfortable can be a challenge. However, when you ask the right questions, the process becomes much easier and produces better results.
Now that you know some important inquiries when choosing an HVAC provider, it’s time to get started. At Anton’s, we’re committed to providing you with AC repair and replacement services all throughout the St. Louis area. Contact us with the above questions and more before scheduling your service.