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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Clevedon, Somerset, U.K.
    Posts
    4

    Suggestions on how to find installer ??

    Ok, cards on table:
    I'm an engineer with fair knowledge of electrics & hydronic systems (we call it central heating)...A little about cooling.... (Not a thing we really need here)...
    I live in UK which doesn't help, but am coming to Florida January.
    Our STR villa in Florida is about due a replacement heat pump system.
    Presently 14 year old Carrier 2.5ton.
    I've spent hours on this forum (& others) & have decided Amana 18seer would suit. Like warranty, scroll compressor.
    Know that good instal critical.
    Question: How do I find a decent installer ??
    Have worked for a corporate most of my life & know that, even though there are good & bad employees, it's a toss up whether the guy you get is any good & you can never be sure that you'll get the same guy next time...
    Would prefer to employ a one-man-band, usually a lot more concientious about workmanship & rely on word of mouth for business.
    Watched last contractor replace contactor in condenser unit last breakdown, did a fair job but then he decided to check freon... top off schrader valve (you probably use different name) pressed in pin - "hiss" - Yup, plenty of gas .... I don't want that guy near me again !!!
    Any suggestions how to find the "right" guy ??

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    West Palm Beach
    Posts
    172
    If you tell us where in Florida your villa is I am sure you will get some help with your question.

    Failing that, when you get here ask your neighbours who they use.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Clevedon, Somerset, U.K.
    Posts
    4
    Lindfields, Kissimmee...
    Tried home owner's forums but had one reply...
    Unfortunately, am only 'over' for 2 weeks, so will have to arrange instal from this end in advance so can be there for the actual 'fix'...

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Office and warehouse in both Crystal River & New Port Richey ,FL
    Posts
    18,836
    Call or email contractors in the area,asking if they can and will do a ManualJ,S,and D,all from www.acca.org


    Keep trying until you find one that can and will.

    Nate certified contractor might help too. www.natex.org

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Clevedon, Somerset, U.K.
    Posts
    4
    Thanks, Dash, Have tried you suggestion, zero replies to date... Are all the hvac guys overworked, won't reply to UK queries or just don't like email ???
    Only response so far from Service Magic - Sears. but REALLY don't like the idea of sub-contractors, bit too impersonal.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Arkansas
    Posts
    292
    There is a National Comfort Institute company called Refrigeration & Electric Service Inc. in Winter Haven. Don't know if they can take care of you but they have the training to establish comfort.

    http://www.nationalcomfortinstitute.com/

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    West Palm Beach
    Posts
    172

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    15
    Good suggestions all. Unfortunately, you pay your money and you take your chances. At least that has been my experience. Like you, I moved to a new area and needed HVAC. So, I asked around. Here is what I got.

    HVAC #1 recommend: Missed 2 appointments without even a phone call to say I'm not coming.

    HVAC #2 recommend: I left numerous voice mails, no response whatsoever.

    HVAC #3 recommend: This guy actually came out. Barely looked at what I had. Didn't even look at the duct work. That made me nervous.

    HVAC #4 recommend: These are the people I used and 1 week later I'm having issues. Said he would come check it yesterday and no show no phone call.

    Let me preach a little here. I'm self employed and I do no adverstising and I have all the business I can handle, because I do what I say I will do. Period. 90% of my business is referred. If I tell you I'll be at your house next Tuesday at 10:00 am and I'm not there, send flowers, I'm dead.

    Lesson for any HVAC guy starting out trying to make it. Be honest, do good work and do what you say you will do. You won't have much competition.

    Off my soap box now.

    David

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Posts
    2,263
    Good Post. I am that small guy. I try to always get to my appointments on time, if I am running late I call ahead and let the customer know. Keeping in touch shows that you care.

    As for finding a good contractor, ask around. Do you have a phone number of any of your neighbors? Call the local hardware store and ask about the small guys in the area. If you are a small guy like me you often have to make quick parts runs because you do not have the luxury of a parts guy to run and get stuff for you, and your stock is often what you have on your truck and not much else...
    I r the king of the world!...or at least I get to stand on the roof and look down on the rest of yall

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tucson Az
    Posts
    76

    this is an easy one...

    I'm an HVAC field Rep. I work for Sears, I'm the guy that comes out to your home "on time", gives you a free quote and try to earn your business.
    For a year now, I've seen plenty that can go wrong. Sears has stood behind our products for decades.
    a no brainer
    Rich

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Office and warehouse in both Crystal River & New Port Richey ,FL
    Posts
    18,836
    Quote Originally Posted by diesel65 View Post
    Great outfit,I've heard of them,give them try.
    Last edited by dash; 12-08-2007 at 04:57 PM.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Dallas TX
    Posts
    2,216
    1 out of 10 contractors are considered a "legitimate" contractor. Meaning they will do the work they say they will and do everything you expect. You end up paying more but getting exactly what you pay for. It boggles my mind to think why people always go with the low ball bid time and time again when they end up with what we like to refer to as the wall of shame. Honestly if there was a way you could get referrals from your neighbors here in the states I would say that is your best bet in addiciton with checking NCI, NATE, your local Better Business Bureau, and ACCA.

    On a side note think about this for a second. In order to get 3 legitimate bids you would have to call up 30 contractors. . . mmmm fun. Something also you might try is asking the local library in Florida for a air conditioning contractors out of the 1987 yellow pages book and see how many are still in business. The ones still in business would be a good start.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tucson Az
    Posts
    76
    Quote Originally Posted by dash View Post
    rReat outfit,I've heard of them,give them try.
    Amen brother,
    you get what you pay for

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