Knowing how to perform basic maintenance on your air conditioner by yourself during periods of warm weather in Santa Rosa is certainly important, but it’s not the only thing your system will need to keep running. From time to time, you’ll probably find yourself dealing with a situation that calls for help from someone with more experience or specific skills than you have. That’s understandable, given the complexity of air conditioning technology and the sheer number of different parts in your system. Things wear out eventually, even when you’ve polished, cleaned or lubricated them for years.
If you experience significant issues with your air conditioner, your question shouldn’t be whether to call in a pro. Rather, you should ask yourself how you’re going to go about finding an HVAC technician in the Santa Rosa area whose work instils confidence. Knowing what to look for in your contractor is the first step since this will give you clues as to who you want to hire. The second step is knowing how to deal with the contractor you choose so that you can get the best work at your complete convenience.
What to Look for in a Santa Rosa AC Contractor
When it comes to choosing your AC contractor in Santa Rosa, you’ll want to keep an eye out for three main things: their level of experience, their prices, and their license.
Experience: The World’s Greatest Teacher
Nothing provides a professional in a skilled trade with knowledge or abilities the same way experience does—which is probably why many tradespeople still use apprentice style training instead of earning a degree (more on that later). The number of years a contractor has been in the business is often a much better indicator of the kind of service they’ll be able to provide since they’ll probably encounter most common problems within a few years. Those who have been around longer are typically equipped to handle even the most obscure or complicated issues and will be more comfortable working in difficult areas such as attics or crawlspaces—which are considered problem places by many technicians.
Is the Price Right?
One of the most common questions homeowners have when choosing HVAC technicians is what everything will cost when it’s all said and done. Unfortunately, costs can be particularly difficult to assess beforehand if you’re a homeowner who has never worked with a company before.
That’s not to say you can’t be aware of what your repairs should cost, though—and knowing those approximate figures will help you choose a contractor whose work is fairly priced. Just be advised that the acceptable range of prices for certain jobs varies considerably.
License to Chill
Once you’ve made sure that the contractor you’re looking at offers a fair price for their services, you’ll want to ensure they’re properly licensed and certified. Having a license is way more important than having a degree of some kind—in fact, a license is required for all HVAC technicians in California who work on jobs costing more than $500.
To earn the appropriate license, a contractor needs to have more than four years of previous experience in the industry, which must be earned at a level equal to or better than that of a journeyman. That means experience as a trainee or an apprentice doesn’t count—good technicians have to work their way through those phases of their careers before they can start accruing the experience necessary for their own licenses.
The Contractors State License Board issues a C-20 license to technicians who meet the minimum requirements. These licenses allow them to work on warm air heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems. Before you settle on a technician for your AC repair, make sure they have this license.
How to Hire Your Chosen Contractor
Once you’ve found an experienced, moderately priced and appropriately licensed contractor near Santa Rosa, you’ll want to call them and explain the nature of your AC problem. Usually, they’ll ask you a few questions so that they can get a clearer picture of what’s going on in your home. This is entirely normal and helps them offer a more accurate quote. Good contractors should be happy to provide you with a quote, but it never hurts to ask if you’re unclear on the price. They should be able to explain why they think the repairs will cost that much so that you can know you’ve chosen a capable company. If you manage to establish a longstanding relationship with a contractor, it’s worth enrolling in an annual service plan. This will typically net you a bit of a discount, and ensure that your AC is always looked after by a technician who is familiar with it. Contact us for more information.