Lafayette Furnace Repair - How To Avoid Scams and Hire the Best Heating Repair Contractors
Do you need Lafayette furnace repair?Is your heat pump on the fritz?Are you overdue to have your ducts cleaned? Regardless of your specific needs, there are dozens of companies out there in the world vying to be the one who gets your business. So how do you, as a homeowner, sort through all the candidates and choose the best one? Here’s a hint: think it through. A poor furnace repair can be exceptionally dangerous, for a number of reasons: Out in the cold. Indiana winters can be bitter and unforgiving. Elsewhere in the country this is also true. You shouldn’t have to risk your family’s health (or your own) in a home that can’t keep you warm enough. Fuel leaks and combustibles. Most heaters – from natural gas to propane – use a combustible fuel. In natural gas furnaces, leaks are extraordinarily dangerous, and can lead to explosions. If you think your heater has a leak, don’t investigate it. Remove yourself to a safe location and turn that job over to professional heating repair contractors. Fire hazards. A heating system in need of repair could be a fire risk, and this isn’t just for gas heaters. Even geothermal heat pumps and air-sourced heat pumps can potentially run into issues with bad wiring or an overheating motor. Mold. Your HVAC system, whether it’s in cooling or heating mode, is always potentially at risk of mold growth in the ductwork. That is unsanitary, and unsafe to breathe. It presents a very serious health risk for you and your loved ones. If these and other risk factors aren’t enough to get your nerves up, it’s possible that you aren’t giving it enough thought. Furthermore, even if you are interested in making sure that your heating and cooling system is in peak condition, you still need to find the right contractors. That can be tricky. There are a lot of operations out there cutting corners to try to make a buck, and they always do it at the customer’s expense. Unfortunately, most people aren’t trained in heating and furnace repair, and so they can’t tell when a company is installing or repairing their furnace or heat pump incorrectly. That’s where we come in. This article is all about defending you against that kind of thing. We think that it’s important that those shady and unlicensed contractors be put out of business – there’s enough work around here to keep the reputable services busy. Dishonesty has no place, and we’d like to teach you how to recognize the red flags that mark a scam artist. They give all of us in the industry a bad name, and you deserve better. So before you fall pretty to aggressive salesmen, poor repairs, unnecessary scare tactics, we have a suggestion: Read on to find out more. HOW TO AVOID SCAMS Watch for “too good to be true” pricing.It’s competitive out there, and profit margins are shrinking, but if you’re looking for heat pump or furnace repair, and you’re being offered a price that is noticeably lower than the competition, you’re probably dealing with someone disreputable. Low prices like that usually come with strings attached. Perhaps the most common tactic employed by shady contractors is what we call the “bait and switch.” They bait you with an unbelievably attractive price for the work – the lowest bid you’re likely to receive. Then they hit you with the switch, which usually takes the form of unexpected additional charges, work delays that cause overtime, or specialized parts that must be ordered through them. Want another example? We’ve got you covered. Dishonest heating repair companies also engage in a much simpler method to increase their profit margins while offering you low prices: they cut corners. They do this by failing to obtain proper licensing and insurance, and by borrowing tools or trucks. Plus, by using subpar equipment, by illegally repurposing used equipment and passing it off as new, and by rushing through the work. Does that sound like something you want happening in your home? Yeah, we didn’t think so. Beware of contractors who give estimates without information. What do you think happens when a person calls a Lafayette furnace repair company and says “How much will you charge for my furnace repair?” Allow us to give you a hint: the honest company is going to say, “That depends.” That’s because it’s impossible – not just difficult, actually impossible – to give an accurate estimate for a job without seeing the specifics. There are too many variables that can’t be accounted for. Every job is different, every heater is different, and every contractor who says otherwise is simply not being honest. Off-the-cuff pricing typically implies either a person who doesn’t know what they’re talking about, or a person who is willfully misleading you in order to get your business. They have no regard for how you will respond when their estimate turns out to be wildly inaccurate. The easiest thing to do is simply to avoid the companies who offer quotes without a site inspection. Avoid contractors who use “rule of thumb” approaches. Lots of contractors swear by little “rules” that they use to estimate the size and power of heating and cooling systems for your home. The same holds true in scenarios where repair of a furnace or heat pump is involved. No one should be able to ask you your square footage and then tell you what equipment you need. No one should be able to make any assumptions about your home or your equipment without seeing it. And any contractor who does is, quite literally, dangerous. The equipment that heats your home is too sophisticated and too potentially hazardous to be trusted to anyone who will be cavalier about it. Learn to recognize some of the more common scams. There are things that shady contractors will say or do that should throw up some immediate red flags. Things like: Telling you a part is broken beyond repair even though there was no evidence of that, or that it was involved with the repairs you agreed to.Using technical jargon and condescension to sell you things you don’t need.Recommending tune-ups more than twice a year (we’ve heard of guys recommending them monthly, which is crazy. Once a year is almost always enough!)Offering to install a used part that they already have on their truck to “save you time.”Claiming affiliation with a reputable brand or company without evidence, such as a branded vehicle. Generally, if something is happening that sets off an alarm bell in your head, you should take it seriously. Now: On the topic of red flags, we’ve covered some ground. That’s great, and you can use all of that information to weed out some bad eggs. But it’s equally important that you know how to hire the very good eggs, instead of the just-okay ones. Here’s how you manage that neat trick. HIRING THE BEST They need to be licensed. Period. This is a no-brainer. There are “contractors” out there using borrowed trucks and offering unlicensed repairs. They draw you in with pricing or promises of fast work, but they leave you with higher bills, damaged equipment, or worse. Not all states require specific HVAC licensing, but local permits and credentials almost always apply. Also, heating and furnace repair technicians – especially those who deal with more than just furnace repair – have to handle refrigerant, which requires a certification from the EPA. With the growing demand for high quality contractors, many are seeking to capitalize by employing a “fake it ‘til you make it” approach to heating repair. Dealers and manufacturers don’t sanction these DIY handymen; and they are far too likely to skip important steps. Great contractors will not only have those things, but they’ll advertise that they have them on their website, and they’ll have them ready to show you on first meeting. They may even bring it up without being asked. Certifications are evidence of hard work completed in order to be the best, and contractors are proud to show those off. They also need to be insured. Great contractors are carrying comprehensive insurance. If they or one of their crew members is hurt on the job, that won’t be on you. If something goes wrong and your property is damaged, their insurance will cover that, as well. Insurance represents a company’s commitment to more than just heating, air conditioning, and furnace repair. It means they’re committed to safety; your safety, and their own. A company that isn’t carrying up-to-date insurance paperwork, or isn’t willing to prove it, should never be allowed to begin work. However, once again, the good guys aren’t going to make this hard on you. It’s a part of the initial conversation before work begins. At the inspection stage, a reputable company will make sure you know that they’re prepared to assume responsibility for everything that happens inside your home. Experience is important – but so is innovation. We recommend choosing a company or contractor with no less than five years of experience in the heating and air conditioning game. That’s important, because they’ll have the benefit of knowledge and the wisdom that comes from having done many tasks before. They’ll also have learned how to work around problems, and figured out how to roll with the many punches that come from working with such sophisticated machinery. However. It’s also important to make sure, as best you can, that the company you hire is innovative, as well. The technology in this industry is advancing quickly, and you don’t want a contractor who isn’t up to speed with the latest equipment. Homeowners using geothermal heat pumps or other cutting-edge technology will want to be absolutely certain they aren’t hiring an old dog and expecting it to do new tricks. There are companies out there who’ve been in business for thirty years or more. That’s a very fine selling point – unless you’ve been doing things the same way for that entire time period. This is a technology-driven industry. Hire experienced technicians, but also hire people who are hungry for knowledge and focused on staying on top of their game. Don’t work with companies who don’t guarantee their work. There are plenty of contractors, who offer attractive hourly or day rates, or even fixed job rates. That’s fine – we’re among them. That’s not where you run into trouble. Trouble rears its ugly head when you’re working with a very reasonably priced contractor who turns out not to have a satisfaction guarantee. If work is not done properly, you have to make sure you’re protected. Let’s say you hire a contractor because their quote was very reasonable, and all their paperwork seemed in order, and you got a good vibe. If they don’t offer 100% work guarantees, and a mistake is made, you’re still on the hook for that bill. Heck, you’ll have to pay them to come fix their own mistakes. That’s hardly fair, but it happens. It isn’t enough to just see a “Customer Satisfaction Guaranteed” badge on their website, either. Any agreement you sign must contain language that will ensure that your contractor will finish any AC, furnace, or heater repair completely, and that they will return to fix any errors made free of charge. It should also explicitly state that you will get your money back if they can’t live up to their end of the bargain. Check their references. You won’t be sorry you did. Online reviews are a goldmine. Sites like Angie’s List, the Better Business Bureau, and even Yelp can separate quality furnace repair from guys with vans who care more about your money than your comfort. Before signing on with a company, it is wise to Google them and read reviews from past customers. You may also ask them for references directly, as any company should be more than happy to provide those. Following up with satisfied clients is a great way to gain some real insight into an HVAC repair company’s methods. And don’t forget – when in doubt, you can always call Royal Comfort Heating & Air in Lafayette Indiana. Call us today at 765-588-4400 for fast reliable service and helpful answers to your questions!
Lafayette Furnace and Heating Repair - 8 red flags indicating You Need to Call For Service
Here’s a good piece of advice: Don’t wait on heating repair services. It would be difficult to understate the importance of Lafayette furnace repair and maintenance. During the inhospitable Indiana winter climates to which many of us are subjected, your heating system is quite literally saving your life. And guess what? By the same token, a malfunctioning furnace is capable of quite literally endangering your life. Because of the dangers associated with a poorly maintained furnace, you have to stay firmly on top of things. A furnace is a complex piece of machinery. Its components include motors, electrical wiring, fuel sources, and lots more that require a practiced and well-trained eye to service. And that isn’t really the part where people run into trouble. The most common furnace issues arise from people not being truly aware of when they need furnace repair in the first place. When a furnace starts to fail, the owners don’t always notice. That’s because some of the warning signs aren’t obvious. We at Royal Comfort Heating & Air would like to take this opportunity to help. In this article, we’re going to go over – in some detail – the many different ways that your furnace could be telling you there is something wrong. Many of these warning signs can also apply to heat pumps, geothermal heating, or even electric heat, as well. First off, before we get into specifics, though, let’s talk about when most failures happen. Extreme temperatures are the time to pay the most attention. In the dead of winter when it’s working hard, your furnace is, unfortunately, also under the most stress. You also need to watch for the period of the year where it gets turned on for the first time after its summer vacation. We also want to give you a little heads up about being proactive. Here’s a phrase to live by: There are no small problems in furnace and heating repair.. Big problems typically start small. If you ignore the little things, you could be facing an emergency before long. But alright! That’s enough of the ominous language. Let’s get into specifics, and make sure that you always know when it’s time to call for a Lafayette heating repair specialist. 1) When there is a new or unpleasant smell. Heat pumps are odorless; furnaces are occasionally not. But most homeowners should be tolerably familiar with the specific scents emitted by your furnace. Typically, the first couple of times it’s turned on during the winter, you’ll get a slight burning smell as dust and dirt accumulated during the off-season are burned away. Other than that, you may occasionally be able to detect a “heat” smell. However: Consistent and persistent burning smells are a bad sign. They could indicate serious buildup of sediment, blocked air intakes, clogged supply or exhaust vents, or worse. Left unattended, every single one of those things could lead to a fire. Furnace repair to locate and fix the source of smells will often entail accessing the internal workings of the machine, as well; that means this isn’t a DIY project. If you smell something burning, call a heating repair expert immediately and let them get to the bottom of things. 2) When your carbon monoxide detectors give you a warning. Most carbon monoxide deaths occur in homes that do not have proper monitoring. Sometimes, it’s batteries that haven’t been changed in carbon monoxide detectors. Other times, people choose to ignore warning signs and deliberately unhook them, thinking they’re like an oversensitive smoke detector that goes off every time you use the toaster. That could not be further from the truth. Carbon monoxide is naturally emitted during the combustion and burning of fuels in your furnace. However, this is always carried safely out of your home through an exhaust vent system when things are working properly. If there is an issue with that venting system, lethally toxic levels of this gas can gather in your home and endanger your families. Exposure is impossible to notice without working carbon monoxide detectors, as well, because the substance is odorless and colorless. Furnace repair technicians will always advise you – quite strongly – to install carbon monoxide detectors on every level of your home, and especially close to your furnace. If they ever give off that warning beep, you only have two jobs: Get your family somewhere safe, and call in the cavalry. 3) When your heater is making strange or alarming noises. Whether you have a geothermal heat pump or high efficiency furnace, whether you’ve got baseboard heating or a propane system, a little noise is part of the package. Typically, you’ll hear the little clicks or hums of the machine cycling on and off. Furnaces give off a peaceful deep rumble as they combust. Blower motors make a little noise when they begin operation. These aren’t necessarily cause for concern. On the other hand, when you’re hearing louder noises, or noises that aren’t a familiar part of your system’s daily operation, it could be a sign that something is seriously wrong. Oftentimes, those noises are your system’s way of telling you that it has a few components in need of replacing or repairing. A few examples: A blower motor has belts, gears, and bearings, which, if in need of lubrication or replacement, may squeak, grind, click, or screech.A misaligned pilot or gummed-up filthy burners may make noise even when the furnace is not active.Clicking sounds in the thermostat may (not always, though) represent damaged electrical relays or other connection issues.A whining sound may indicate ignition issues. None of these issues present a problem that a homeowner should feel confident taking on. Particularly in regards to furnace repair, it’s just too dangerous. Even for the skilled handyman or woman, it is not advisable to mess with a machine that operates on combustible fuels. 4) When your old thermostat settings don’t seem to cut it anymore. On particularly bitter evenings, it’s common to crank the thermostat up a bit. However, if your general settings – the ones you leave as default all winter long – aren’t cutting it, even though the temperature outside isn’t worse than usual, it could be a sign that there are problems in your heating system. Potentially, insufficient heating when your temperature settings are at their ideal could mean you’ve got a leak in your ducts, heat loss in the furnace or elsewhere in the home, or a problem with the furnace itself. That could be caused by fuel issues, air blockages, dirt buildup, or failing parts. In any case, those are all potential fire hazards. 5) When your furnace or heater is short cycling. A common issue with heat pumps, air conditioners, and your furnace is short or rapid cycling. This is among the most serious issues that can plague a cooling or heating system. Furnace short cycling refers to a system’s tendency to rapidly turn on and off throughout the day. If you’re wondering why this is a problem … Outside of the obvious annoyance and distraction that comes with the startup/shutdown noises, short cycling places an unwanted burden on the system. Furnaces use far more energy to start and stop than they do to hum quietly along mid-cycle. Essentially, this cycling issue will decrease the effectiveness, efficiency, and lifespan of your furnace and the components that make it work. If you’re wondering what causes short-cycling … Lafayette Furnace repair technicians point to the following common causes: Airflow restriction, most commonly caused by dirty air filters.Blocked intake registers, which can be caused by excess dirt or pet hair, as well as furniture, causing further airflow restrictions.Thermostat location issues, which can cause the system to misread the ambient temperature in your home.Overheating.Circuit board issues.An oversized furnace or heating systemThermostat connection issues.Faulty or fritzy inducer. And this list could continue on for a while. Sadly, it would only get more technical and jargon-filled, and that won’t help you. Even savvy DIY-oriented homeowners lack the technical expertise and hours of training required to understand all of the potential causes of cycling issues and how to diagnose and repair them. If your furnace is exhibiting signs of this hazardous behavior, you should call for heating repair today. 6) When your monthly energy bills are suddenly much higher than they used to be. Your monthly bills are perhaps the most effective bellwether of impending problems. Generally, there are only two reasons that your bills would increase that shouldn’t raise a red flag: your utility company is charging you more, or it’s colder and your system is running harder. If the weather is within the range you’re used to, and your energy providers are not extorting you, a marked and sudden increase in what you’re spending to heat your home each month should be considered a warning. If you’re seeing an increase without a rate change, you should have your system checked for other possible symptoms of failure or damage. 7) When you’ve got cold rooms and warm rooms in the same house. Uneven heating throughout your home is a surefire sign of airflow issues. Most commonly, the problem will lie somewhere in your ductwork – although there are other potential causes, as well. If you’ve got a cozy living room, but your bedroom is a frozen wasteland … well, that’s no way to live. Have a furnace repair technician come to your home and find out way. Perhaps it’s a furnace issue, or perhaps your home has developed a draft in that room. Either way, you can’t afford not to know. Why? Well, first off, because the most common solution among homeowners who neglect to call professional service companies in is space heaters. Space heaters are not intended to be a long-term solution and are exponentially more dangerous to use than your furnace. They’re also much more expensive. If you don’t believe us, check the warning label. You aren’t supposed to use electric space heaters at all while you’re sleeping, and they aren’t supposed to be within three feet of a wall or anything remotely flammable. They use a ton of energy, comparatively, because they’re not built for efficiency. They’re work-site solutions, not home heaters. Kerosene heaters are no better – they can’t be safely used indoors without a vented window nearby, which can nearly defeat the entire purpose. Instead of looking for band-aids, get stitches – in this analogy, that’s professional heating repair. They’ll inspect your heating and cooling system and your ductwork and find out why some rooms aren’t getting the heat they need – and you’ll save a pile of cash in the long run. 8) When it’s not working at all. This doesn’t seem like a point that needs to be made, but it does: Don’t wait. If your furnace actually stops working, you’ve got a good probability of a serious issue on your hands. This applies to heat pumps and electric heaters, as well, of course, but in the case of furnaces, the potential risks could be higher. Furnaces use combustible fuels and emit carbon monoxide. If it stops working, something is wrong, and trying to fix that on your own is risking fires and worse. Obviously, one major risk is going without heat. We here at Royal Comfort think you should never be forced to do that, especially in the cold Indiana winter. Why, when we offer 24-hour emergency service and quick responses, should you ever shiver in your own home? Now, before you panic: There ARE a couple things you should try before you call us. One, mainly, just because failing to do so could leave you feeling foolish. Go reset the breakers. Occasionally, they’ve been tripped by a minor power surge. You certainly don’t want to call a furnace repair contractor only to have them come out and flip a switch. They’ll even have to charge you the hourly rate – it’s a lose-lose scenario. However! If your breaker trips again after resetting and shuts your furnace off a second time, don’t reset it again. That’s a sign of a more pressing issue – and that means it’s time to call us. Remember: no one wants to get left out in the cold. That’s especially true when you’re in what should be the comfort of your own home. We've got skilled specialists standing by in the event you need service. Call us today at 765-588-4400 if you have questions or need a quick repair!
Furnace Repair Lafayette – Avoid these 9 Common Myths and Misconceptions
Lafayette AC Repair – 7 Things You MUST Know When Choosing an AC Contractor
ROYAL COMFORT HEATING & AIR SERVES LAFAYETTE, WEST LAFAYETTE, MONTICELLO, FRANKFORT, ROSSVILLE, BATTLEGROUND, & DELPHI INDIANA Choosing an HVAC repair contractor can be difficult... But it doesn’t have to be. In fact, it’s flat out not supposed to be. So what makes it so hard? We think it has a lot to do with the sheer number of people out there claiming to provide air conditioning service. But AC repair is a competitive industry, and it can be hoped that the cream rises to the surface. Your best friend when choosing the right hvac technician is research – but even that can be a daunting task. Oftentimes, you don’t even know what to research. That’s where this article comes in. Here’s what we don’t want for you: Wasted money.Wasted time.Poor performance from your HVAC system.Compromised efficiency in your HVAC system.Fear or nervousness in dealing with HVAC contractors. So how you avoid all of that? Read on. Here are the 7 things you absolutely MUST be sure about before you choose a contractor. Here’s a hint, before we jump in: we like making lists.
7 Heating & Cooling System-Killing Mistakes You Must Avoid (At All Costs)
ROYAL COMFORT HEATING & AIR SERVES LAFAYETTE, WEST LAFAYETTE, MONTICELLO, FRANKFORT, ROSSVILLE, BATTLEGROUND, & DELPHI INDIANA I’d bet most people don’t think about it, but the equipment that heats and cools your home carrier the highest energy cost of anything you own. It can account for almost three-fourths of your total energy costs, especially in the peak heating and cooling seasons. So why wouldn’t you do everything in your power to make sure you’re not spending too much? This article is the result of years of experience installing and repairing central air conditioning here in around Lafayette Indiana. Thousands of AC repair calls, working with other HVAC contractors, and I’ve figured out what I refer to as killer mistakes: mistakes that almost every homeowner makes, to their financial detriment, and to the ruin of their expensive HVAC equipment. Lafayette air conditioning repair shouldn’t necessarily be an expensive proposition. If you do everything right, your system should hum along pretty easily, getting the occasional tune-up, part swap, or overhaul. But nothing really ever goes according to plan, right? Sure. That’s generally true, in life as well as HVAC repair. But that doesn’t mean you should chalk misfortune up to fate. Your air conditioner is built to last 15 years, but these mistakes could have it failing in seven, or five, or even less. It isn’t fate when that happens – it’s almost always simple neglect. What you should do is read on, learn about the killer mistakes, and do what you can to avoid them at all costs. (By the way, when I say “all costs,” I mean thousands and thousands of dollars that you could put toward retirement, vacation, or that new flat screen TV. In case you were wondering.) So, without any further drama, here they are: The Killing Mistakes