You should start here at ACCA, and that means you will find a contractor who has shown through membership that they are committed to regular education and quality standards. But that’s not where you should stop.
Once you have a list of local contractors, here’s how you narrow it down:
Ask your neighbors for referrals. Have they worked with a contractor before? Was the experience good or bad? We still think neighbors are a great source of information for homeowners everywhere.
We all read online reviews, but don’t rely solely on them.We all use online reviews for everything nowadays, from books to baby bottles! But we’ve also all learned that online reviews can be “gamed” either positively or negatively. You can start with online reviews, but take them for what they’re worth. We still believe talking to neighbors can teach you more about a contractor’s service than an online review.
Also, be careful of online contractor services that claim to be able to put you in touch with licensed contractors. Most of these services make their money by charging contractors for “leads,” and most of the best contractors in your area won’t participate in them.
Once you’ve narrowed down your list, contact the contractors and invite them to your house to discuss your system and your options. This is where, armed with the information we’ve provided you above on this page, you can ask the right questions and learn more about your contractor. You’ll need this information to make the right choice.
Does this sound like a lot of work? Sorry, but yeah, it probably does. There’s no quick and easy way to this decision. It’s too easy in most states to simply call yourself a “contractor” and start soliciting business, even if you’re not particularly qualified and don’t know how to run a contracting business.
That’s why we strongly recommend that you find the right contractor and develop a relationship with their company before something goes wrong. When your system breaks down in extreme weather, your first priority will be to get the system working as quickly as possible for your family’s comfort. This is when you can wind up spending a lot more money than you might want to.