What is an HVAC contractor & what do they do?

HVAC contractors install, maintain, and repair HVAC systems. They can also help you determine the best HVAC systems for your needs.

If you live in a home with indoor heat and air conditioning, you know how important it is to keep the system working properly. 

Without HVAC systems operating at peak efficiency, life can become extremely uncomfortable quickly. 

That’s why hiring an HVAC contractor when your system begins acting up is so important. HVAC contractors have the training and experience to fix your HVAC system fast. 

But what does an HVAC contractor do and what kind of services do they offer? How do you choose an HVAC contractor? Keep reading to find out.

What is an HVAC contractor?

An HVAC contractor is someone who specializes in heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems. They are professionals who are licensed and insured to install, repair, and maintain HVAC systems in homes and businesses. 

HVAC contractors can help homeowners maintain their HVAC systems so they run efficiently and cost-effectively year after year. They can also help homeowners plan for and install new HVAC systems when their current system stops working correctly or no longer meets their needs. 

HVAC contractors are also responsible for making sure that all installed systems are properly maintained and operate safely. This includes making sure that all electrical work is up to code, that air ducts are properly sealed and filtered, and that gas lines are properly installed and capped.

What does an HVAC contractor do?

As we’ve said, HVAC contractors install, repair, and maintain HVAC systems. They can also provide HVAC maintenance and replacement services when systems break down and need to be repaired or replaced. 

Regardless of the service they provide, the main goal of an HVAC contractor is to keep you and your family comfortable. If your system is running at peak efficiency, you can expect to save on energy costs and have a reduced carbon footprint. 

When your HVAC system is not working properly, an HVAC contractor can help you get it back up and running as quickly as possible.

Here’s a look at the three main services that HVAC contractors provide:

1) HVAC maintenance services

Regular HVAC maintenance service can extend the life of your HVAC system, reduce your chances of needing expensive repairs, and save you money on energy bills. 

A trained HVAC contractor can inspect your system and identify any issues that need to be addressed. They can also make sure that your system is in proper working order. 

While you can perform some maintenance tasks on your own, HVAC contractors have the training and expertise that homeowners don’t have. They can do a more thorough inspection and address issues you may not have even realized existed. 

Common HVAC maintenance services include: 

  • Cleaning or replacing air filters. Air filters should be cleaned or replaced every month or as needed. Dirty filters can cause your HVAC system to work harder, resulting in higher energy bills. When filters are old, they can also pose a health risk to your family. 
  • Flushing your cooling system. Flushing your cooling system removes dirt, sand, and other debris that accumulates in the pipes of your cooling system. Keeping your cooling system clean reduces your risk of needing maintenance or repairs. It can also help extend the life of your HVAC system. 
  • Checking and maintaining electrical components. Electrical components such as circuit breakers and cooling fans are essential to keeping your HVAC system in proper working order. An HVAC contractor can make sure these components are working properly and that your system is protected from electrical issues. 

2) HVAC installation services

HVAC contractors also can help install new systems in your home or business. HVAC contractors have the experience needed to plan the best system for your home, install it correctly, and ensure it is operating safely.  

An HVAC contractor will work with you to choose a system that meets your needs and fits your budget. They can also help you navigate local building and zoning codes. 

3) HVAC repair services

HVAC contractors can also provide repair services for your existing HVAC system.

If your system breaks down and needs to be fixed, you don’t want to wait. The sooner you get your system back up and running, the less discomfort you’ll have to deal with and possibly less money you’ll waste on energy bills. 

Some HVAC repairs can be done quickly, while others may take longer. In some cases, it may be more cost-effective to replace your system than to have repairs done. 

HVAC contractors can help you decide what is best for your situation. They can also help you navigate any homeowner’s insurance that you may have that could cover the cost of repairs. 

4) HVAC replacement services

When your HVAC system breaks down beyond repair, it will need to be replaced. Some HVAC contractors also offer HVAC replacement services. 

Before choosing a new system, an HVAC contractor will help you assess your current system and determine what size you need and what type of system would be best for your home. 

They can also help you navigate the types of rebates and incentives that may be available to you when making your decision. 

Some HVAC contractors may even provide financing for HVAC replacements so you can spread out the cost over time.

How to choose an HVAC contractor

The best place to start your search for an HVAC contractor is through friends and family. Ask them if they’ve had a contractor or company that they’ve had a good experience with in the past.

You can also search for an HVAC contractor online. Checking contractor search sites like Angi’s List or seeing Google’s top recommendations for contractors in your area is a quick way to build a shortlist of candidates. 

Remember, not all contractors are created equal. Choose an HVAC contractor who has experience in your area and is knowledgeable about your type of HVAC system. 

Before choosing an HVAC contractor, make sure they are licensed and insured if required by your state, city, or local area. You can typically check to see if contractors are licensed and insured in your area by visiting the website of your state’s government. 

When you are interviewing contractors, make sure you ask the following questions: 

  • How long have you been in business? A contractor who has been in business for many years is more likely to be experienced and knowledgeable than someone who has just started out. 
  • Do you specialize in HVAC systems? An HVAC contractor who specializes in your type of system can help you make the best decision for your home. 
  • Do you have experience installing the type of system I’m considering? An HVAC contractor with experience installing your system can help you make sure it’s installed correctly. A contractor with these attributes can help you choose the best system for your home, install it properly, and maintain it for years to come.

Choosing an HVAC contractor may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be. Be sure to check out online reviews and talk to friends and family to narrow down your search.

Next, give the contractor or company a call to get an idea of their experience, pricing, and their projected timeline for getting the work done. You may even be able to get a free consultation or estimate.

Once you feel comfortable with a contractor, move forward with the project and give your HVAC system the love it deserves!