Don’t Get Left in Cold: How to Find the Right Heating and Cooling Repair Specialist
There are few more urgent home emergencies than a failure in your heating and cooling system. Whether it’s summer time and your air conditioning is on the fritz, or your pipes are in danger of freezing in winter and the heat won’t come on, if your system is in need of repairs it is important to find help, and find it quickly. Unfortunately, finding the right HVAC specialist near Ballwin, MO, is not always as easy as simply calling up the first result on Google. It’s essential when hiring a repair specialist to be sure that you are dealing with a professional who will not just do the job quickly, but will also do it well and at a fair price.
Research Your Problem Before Calling
You’re not an HVAC professional, that’s why you’re calling one, but that doesn’t mean you can’t do your part to get the best possible results out of your repair. If your heating and cooling system is not working, try searching online with the symptoms you are currently dealing with, and have a look at the unit based on what your research finds. While it’s not recommended to try any complex repairs yourself, like opening the unit up and poking around inside, looking for signs of common problems will help you to have a better grasp of what you’re dealing with so that your service technician has a better idea of what to expect when they arrive.
Don’t Take Their Word For It
When dealing with a service professional you should always ask about their experience to get a better understanding of their time in the field. Simply having done repairs near Ballwin for a long time isn’t enough to know that you’re going to receive quality treatment, however. Not every technician is dedicated to staying with the time, so a repair professional who is still doing things the way they have for several decades may provide worse service than a newer professional with the latest skills. The best way to know for sure that you’re getting a professional you can count on is to get outside opinions. There are many ways you can get honest feedback about a repair company.
Always insist on using a professional with current licensing. This ensures they meet the professional standards required to provide quality service.
Ask for references from prior customers. If a technician does not have any satisfied customers to point in your direction, the odds aren’t great that you’ll be the first.
Speak with friends who have had similar experiences, and ask who they used for repairs. If they were satisfied with the service they received, that’s a great lead for a professional you should call up.
Read online reviews on Google and Facebook. People tend to leave comments most frequently when their service is either very good, or very bad, so you will likely be able to find documentation if there are any reasons for concern with a particular company.
Pay Attention to Emergency Servicing Options
If a problem occurs with your unit during warm or cool months, it may be uncomfortable but manageable. At the height of summer, or the bitterest days of winter, it can be a real emergency where you need service and you need it fast. Although emergency service can come with a premium, you may be able to set up an emergency service contract which guarantees a repair technician within a set time-frame. This ensures you aren’t left in the lurch when disaster strikes.
Get the Right Estimate
It’s important to know what you’re looking at when it comes to repairs. Although unforeseen complications can occasionally arise during a repair, having an accurate estimate helps you to be prepared for what you’re dealing with. Never accept an over-the-phone estimate as final. If the technician hasn’t seen the problem, they can’t be sure there aren’t other issues which will send your prices up once the work has gotten started. With an in-person estimate written down, you’ll be best-situated to choose the right technician, and unlikely to be surprised when the final bill comes.
The Lowest Price Isn’t Always the Best Deal
There are many companies in the greater St. Louis area, and you don’t want to settle for the wrong one. It can be tempting to think that the lowest price is automatically the best offer, but that’s not always the case. It’s important to use everything you’ve learned above to make the right choice. Simply going for the lowest-possible price isn’t the right decision if the reviews of prior companies don’t add up. You may save a little money now, but you’ll spend more in the long run when the subpar work is not up to snuff and your unit breaks down again.
Get the Newest Units for Best Results
Ideally your repairs will require only the replacement or adjustment of a part or two. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. Heat pumps or air conditioning units need to be replaced entirely, and when the time comes for that, you would do well to choose a newer model to replace it. Unless your unit died almost immediately after purchase, it’s unlikely a like-for-like replacement will see you getting a state-of-the-art system, so don’t settle for replacing your old unit with just another copy of it. Modern models are more energy efficient, helping to save you money every day you use it.
If you are in need of heating and cooling repairs in St. Louis or its surrounding communities, keeping these tips and tricks in mind will help to make sure that you receive the kind of quality service you deserve. Your home’s temperature control is not a system you want to settle for second best with, as an uncomfortable home is an unhappy home. When you take a careful assessment of your problems, hire a company you can count on, and get a deal that makes sense for your situation, you can be sure that you got the best possible HVAC specialists near Ballwin, MO, to fix your unit.
4 Things to Look for When Choosing an HVAC Company
Choosing a professional heating and cooling company can be a bewildering mess – there’s many to choose from and often little credible information available. But there are effective ways to find a reputable operation: good but realistic online reviews, a strong local presence, and a top rating with the Better Business Bureau are all signs that you might be on the right track.
Here are 4 ways to find a company in the Ballwin area that will prioritize your satisfaction over profit.
Start With Real Reviews From Local Customers
Nothing should be more important to a top-quality heating and cooling company than customer service and satisfaction. Yet even with unprecedented access to information, people still don’t know who to trust. Fake reviews are a bane of the modern world. They plague many sites and are often used by corporate shills or people with an axe to grind. Fortunately, there are a few simple tricks you can use to evaluate online reviews and choose a good outfit.
Look at their wording; is it natural, or full of brand-speak? Does it actually describe the product or service? When people use deception, they tend to avoid the subject at hand, so fake reviews may veer away from the product itself. They may discuss the setting (vacation, business trip) or how it impacted someone other than the reviewer, although overall, fictitious reviewers seem to use the words “I” and “me” more frequently than honest ones.
Truthful reviews tend to avoid using overly effusive praise and are very sparing in their use of all-caps or exclamation points. They use more nouns and less adjectives and adverbs, instead paying closer attention to the product or how it impacted their lives. Fake reviews often contain clumsy keyword insertions, over-the-top adjectives and buzzwords taken right from the company website.
To help combat this, use review sites where you can quickly investigate the credibility of the reviewer, like Facebook and Yelp. On those sites you can look at the reviewers’ other posts for red flags. You can also do a Google search for unusual phrasing or wording that seems odd; just copy it into a Google search, and if it turns up elsewhere, that could be a major warning sign.
Fake negative reviews can come from people with an agenda or competitors looking to damage a reputation. They can also be a double-fake, starting with what seems a bad review, only to turn dramatically positive. Watch out for terse reviews with no real description of a problem, or that contain angry and pointless insults.
Most of these points are not automatically evidence of fake or misleading reviews. The best approach is to consider the totality of the picture, weighing the factors against each other, to get an overall impression. If you know how to spot false information, chances are your gut feeling after a reasonable examination will give you the best answer.
The Advantages of a Family Owned and Operated Business
St Louis and the surrounding communities have seen their share of less responsible heating and cooling companies. When choosing an HVAC company, a good sign is an established, family-run business. Not only are they usually more experienced, they have more hands-on control of the day-to-day operations. And as members of the community, they are often more careful of their reputation and more responsive to their customers.
The core values of family-owned and operated companies also become well-established after a decade or two. Teamwork, stability and shared values typically increase as the years go on. As they build trust within the community, they also generate more within the company itself.
It’s not unusual to hear stories about a family-owned business going far above and beyond expectations to satisfy their customers; since they share the same community, friends and even families, they are willing to make more sacrifices, and since they have more flexibility they can work closely with customers to quickly resolve issues. And for emergency service, nothing can beat a family-run operation.
Real-world Experience Makes All the Difference
Working on heating and cooling systems means dealing with nearly non-stop surprises and unexpected issues; nothing ever seems to go as planned. Having many years of experience – as well as a team with a wide range of skills – means they will be much more capable of fixing problems and creating innovative solutions on-the-spot, before they become the customer’s problem as well.
Experienced technicians will also be qualified to work on both legacy and new equipment, and should be very conversant with modern energy efficient technology, such as heat pumps. Double-check their website to be sure they can work on your brand of HVAC, or that they are familiar with the brand you want to install.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask Questions
Hey, it’s your money – don’t be intimidated into avoiding questions that you should ask. Only deal with companies who offer a free estimate and are happy to answer any questions you have. You should never feel pressure to buy; heating and cooling companies that are honestly interested in customer satisfaction will give you time and space to make an informed decision before committing to major repairs or installations.
Some questions you should consider asking include:
Are their technicians certified, and is the business licensed?
Do they guarantee their estimated price and 100% customer satisfaction?
Do they have a regular office staff who can handle questions, complaints or emergencies?
What maintenance contracts do they offer, and how much are they?
Are there additional costs, such as permits and inspections?
How long is the warranty, and does it include all expenses?
Are there any discounts or rebates?