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  1. #1

    Finding the right HVAC pro

    OK... I searched but did not find how to best find a contractor to investigate relacing my (gas) york heat/ac unit.

    Is there some info, list or questionnaire people recommend as all I've learned so far is "having the right people is perhaps more important than having the right equipment".

    For what it is worth I live in Ellicott city MD outside Baltimore..
    Thanks for any advise

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    Houston Texas
    Posts
    6,321
    Send out a blast for Robo you are in his old stomping grounds and he could inform you of a quality contractor.

    Barring that ask friends and acquaintances who they used and what their experience was.

    Do not go by what you hear from the BBB or Chamber of Commerce they have ulterior motives.

    The best judge of a contractor ultimately will be your own instincts. Pick several contractors ask obvious questions ask them for references of current/recent and older customers. Contact the references don't just take their word. Ask the references and find out how the install went and how they have maintained the system since and how they handled any problems that occurred.

    Ask question like what their procedures are regarding the install. Tell them you want a written scenario. They should have down that they perform a Manual J load calculation not necessarily before the proposal but at least before they do the work. They should purge with nitrogen while brazing the copper line set replace the line set if installing R-410A system. They should be using a micron gauge to verify proper evacuation and will evacuate to at least 500 microns preferably down to 300 Microns.

    They need to state what materials they will use i.e. sheet metal or ductboard, hard pipe or flex duct.

    They need to provide a detailed evaluation of the work needed and proposed with model numbers. Ask for options basic system, upgraded system and premium system. They should be able to explain the differences the benefits and short comings of each option.

    A contractor should offer you choices not tell you what you should do. That does not mean they should not have an opinion and recommend what you should do.

    When you ask for a break down of their procedures do not prompt let them tell you. When prompted they may tell you what you want to here but mat not in fact perform that level of expertise.

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