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When the temperature drops, the last thing anyone wants is their oven to stop working. But when it does, you need a reliable contractor – and quickly.
Good heating companies are in great demand in the colder months. So don’t be surprised if you can’t fix the problem right away. Instead of getting overheated, you need to find companies before signing a contract for repairs or replacements.
BBB is a great resource for finding trustworthy contractors. At bbb.org, consumers can find hundreds of BBB business profiles for HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) companies. You can also search the BBB Accredited Business Directory for heating companies that have committed to upholding the BBB Standards for Trust.
BBB Business Profiles are rated from A + to F and show whether a company has complaints and how the company reacted to the complaints. Many contractors also have customer reviews that show how they have provided services to their clients.
Nationwide, BBB received more than 3,700 consumer complaints about HVAC contractors last year. Common complaints include poor quality work, contractors who never finish the job, and billed costs that weren’t discussed in advance.
A Pacific man told BBB in November 2019 that he had hired a local HVAC contractor to replace his oven and air conditioning. He said the company billed him more than $ 1,000 on top of the original offer for both units, claiming they had to replace a part that was essential to the furnace’s operation. The man said the company actually never replaced the part so he couldn’t use his oven. The company did not respond to the man’s request for a refund.
BBB recommends consumers consider the following when looking for a heating company:
Find out about the company’s background and licensing. Visit bbb.org for a BBB business profile and BBB customer ratings for each service company you want to hire. Learn about its reputation and the history of the complaints. Always confirm that the company is licensed and insured.
Compare prices and service packages. Get at least three estimates for heater repair, maintenance, or replacement. All offers should be in writing and include a full description of the services to be provided and the materials to be used.
Check the warranty coverage. Find out if the company offers any type of guarantee or warranty. Make sure you understand the terms of coverage. Also, check your current stove’s warranty to see if repairs or replacements are covered.
Ask about energy efficiency. Many new stoves are more energy efficient than others. Find the ENERGY STAR label to learn about products that cost a little more upfront but save energy over time. Some models can even receive a tax credit. Ask your HVAC contractor to review the tax credit and provide the manufacturer certification statement for the equipment you intend to purchase.
For more information, please visit bbb.org or call 573-886-8965.
Michelle Gleba is the Mid-Missouri regional director for the Better Business Bureau.
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