You’re sitting at home on a cold winter day when you realize your heater isn’t working properly. Or maybe your air conditioner konked out right at the peak of summer’s heat. Either way, you know it’s time to call in a professional Durham heating and air conditioning company for repairs or replacement. But how do you choose the right company for the job? Reading online reviews should be an important part of your selection process.
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Do Your Research Before an Emergency Hits
Don’t wait until you have an urgent HVAC situation to start researching companies. Take some time after moving into a new home to search for local heating and cooling contractors to have a list handy for any future issues. As you compile options, go online to check out reviews for each company under consideration. Pay attention to star ratings on sites like Google and Yelp to gauge customer satisfaction levels. Then take time to read the actual comments, noting common positive or negative themes.
Verify Credentials and Experience
When reading reviews, keep an eye out for mentions of specific technicians and their expertise. An HVAC company with a solid crew of NATE-certified professionals with 5 or more years under their belt is often a good bet. Reviews that praise technicians by name for providing exceptional service can give you confidence in that company’s personnel. Also, note if feedback references fair pricing, guarantees, warranties, or positive experiences getting estimates. Companies that clearly explain costs and stand behind their work get high marks in detailed reviews. Several years serving your local area also signals a contractor who understands local climate considerations and customer needs.
Watch for Red Flags Like Hidden Fees
While no contractor is perfect, you’ll want to watch for some worrying complaints in reviews that could indicate broader issues to avoid. For example, many negative reviews about crews showing up late, making a mess, or not finishing a job may signal disorganization or unprofessionalism. Also, be cautious of complaints citing unexpected costs or prices higher than estimates. Shady billing practices, cheap parts, and attempts to oversell equipment can tarnish a company’s reputation quickly. Taking note if multiple people complain about something similar can help you dodge potential headaches.
Check Complaint Resolution Satisfaction
Pay attention to how various heating and cooling companies respond to negative reviews online. Do they apologize for mistakes and offer to make things right? Or do they lack responses completely? A pattern of ignoring issues or failing to resolve customer complaints should make you cautious. On the flip side, contractors who clearly make an effort to address problems and satisfy unhappy customers can give you more confidence that they stand behind their service, even when things don’t go perfectly.
Trust Your Judgement Too
At the end of the day, even contractors with mostly glowing online feedback have at least some negative mixed in too. So use your best judgment based on patterns in reviews rather than panicking over a single complaint. If a company checks off most of your boxes and the majority of feedback paints the picture of a reliable, experienced local business that stands behind their technicians’ work, then they’re probably worth calling for an estimate or service appointment.