When You Need a Dependable AC Contractor
When your need air conditioner installation, air conditioner maintenance, or AC repair, there’s a good chance you want it fast. You’re quite possibly uncomfortable in a building that’s too hot. If it’s a commercial property, the excess warmth is certainly not inviting to customers or clients. In addition, you’re quite possibly aware that malfunctioning AC can pose a health risk if allergens build up in the air to cause respiratory tract infections, asthma attacks, and flu-like symptoms.
Still, in your haste to get the AC problem attended to, you shouldn’t neglect the need to secure the services of a trusted AC contractor. Some, after all, are more skilled, professional, and even honest than others. You want someone who will do quality work at a fair price. Here are some pointers to guide you in the selection process:
Basic Attributes of a Trusted AC Contractor
Any reputable, professional air conditioning service should provide the following:
- Fair, competitive prices to suit any budget
- Same-day service (24/7 365 days a year if there’s an emergency)
- Expert technicians
- An excellent selection of all the top models for installation
- All makes and models serviced
- Work is guaranteed
That said, let’s look at the qualities of a fully reputable and professional AC contractor a little more deeply.
Your Trusted AC Contractor: The Prices
A reputable AC contractor will give you an estimate before starting work and won’t ask for any money before you have a complete understanding of how much the final bill is likely to be (and why.)
AC contractors vary as to exactly how they calculate their estimates. You could be charged by the hour, the job, or a combination thereof. Some contractors charge a trip fee simply for coming out to your home or place whether they end up doing any work or not. Some void the trip fee if you do end up giving them the job. (You’ll probably want to determine if there’s a trip fee before arranging a visit.) There could also be a charge for parts.
Your Trusted AC Contractor: The Workers
The technicians should be highly trained, experienced, licensed, bonded, and insured. They should have the expertise to analyze and address any problem and advise you on your options with an eye to helping you find an economical yet completely effective solution.
Your Trusted AC Contractor: Selection
As noted above, a professional AC service should be able to install, service, and repair all the various types of AC. The most common types of air conditioning are central air conditioning and window unit air conditioning. Portable air conditioners and split/ductless air conditioning are available as well.
Here’s a closer look at various types of AC:
- Central air conditioning is the most common kind of air conditioning found in a private home. One unit cools the entire house. Central AC is easy to use and maintain and considered the quietest option. It’s important, however, to select the proper unit for your home in consultation with a knowledgeable professional.
- As the name suggests, a window air conditioning unit sits in a window or possibly a hole cut in a wall. Also called a unitary system, it’s a self-contained system that can cool one room or even a couple.
- A portable air conditioner is a lot like a window air conditioner, but the unit sits on the floor instead of in a window. A portable air conditioning unit is noisier than the alternatives, but you can carry it around and use it anyplace there’s an electrical outlet. People occasionally use such a unit in a home that actually has central AC but also areas that are especially difficult to cool.
- A split/ductless air conditioner (also known as a packed terminal air conditioner) is a large unit meant for large buildings like condominium complexes, business offices, motels, hotels, and apartment complexes.
Here are some further notes on ACs:
You can reasonably expect central air conditioning to last 15 years or more. Window air conditioners often don’t last as long. 10-15 years is a reasonable expectation for such a unit. These estimates are predicated on the idea that the AC units are properly serviced and maintained.
Although seasonal maintenance is essential, there are things you yourself can do to help keep your AC running properly, minimize service calls, and extend the life of the system. Here’s a list of those:
- Make sure the thermostat’s set to cool
- Make sure the unit is turned on
- Make sure circuit breakers are on
- Make sure any outdoor switches are on
- Make sure the blower’s running (if not, it could well be because the furnace switch isn’t turned on)
- Make sure the vents aren’t blocked
- Change the furnace filter when needed; it needs to be clean
The newer the AC, the more energy efficient it’s likely to be, and more it’s likely to save you on utility bills. For this reason, some people replace older air conditioning systems even if the systems are still working.
These are some common issues that lead customers to call for AC repair:
- The AC won’t turn on
- The AC clicks like it’s going to turn on, but then it doesn’t
- Turning the air conditioner on throws the circuit breaker
- Although the AC is humming, the fan doesn’t run
- The unit’s running, but no air is coming through the vents
- The unit leaks water
- Although the fan operates, the compressor doesn’t
- Some rooms are cool, but others less so
- The air conditioning doesn’t shut off when the temperature reaches the desired level
- There’s ice on the unit or the lines
- There are leaves or grass inside the air conditioning
As noted above, some people choose to replace older AC units to reduce their energy costs. An old AC (one from before 2006) can in fact cost 20% more to operate than a newer one. But many others would like to put off buying a new system for as long as is reasonable. That said, here are some signs that it might be time to bite the bullet and make the investment:
- The heat pump or AC is more than 10 years old
- The furnace or boiler is more than 15 years old.
- Cooling is less efficient than it used to be
- Energy bills are going up
- There’s no programmable thermostat and the home is empty for long periods at a stretch
- You often need AC repair
- Your house is too humid
- There’s too much dust in the house
- Your AC is noisy
- Your home’s score on the Home Energy Yardstick is under five
Your Trusted AC Contractor: References and Reviews
A reputable air conditioning service can supply reference and will have good reviews on file with the Better Business Bureau or on Angle’s List.
Final Tips on Finding a Trusted AC Contractor
Never be shy about asking questions, and be wary of any air conditioning service that fails to meet the standards outlined above.
At 24-7 Plumbing, we’re confident that we meet and even exceed the standards. If you need air conditioning installation, air conditioning maintenance, or air conditioning repair in Westfield IN (or in the neighboring communities of Indianapolis, Noblesville, Fishers, Carmel, Zionsville, McCoordsville, Hamilton County, etc.), we invite you to give us a call.