You’ve had your eye on the new 2017 Chevy Tahoe for a long time. You’ve checked out the latest edition of Consumer Reports and the Kelley Blue Book to be sure you’ll get a good deal. When you visit the dealership, you “kick the tires,” take it for a test drive and ask about financing.
You also ask what parts are covered by the warranty.
If you’d put so much time and research into purchasing a car, why wouldn’t you put the same amount of effort in selecting an HVAC system? After all, it’s your home’s most expensive component!
A quality, efficient HVAC system not only helps you stay comfortable during the humid, oppressive Triangle summers, but it also lowers your energy bill.
Always carefully review any warranty before you purchase a new unit.
HVAC Warranty Checklist
The Boy Scouts weren’t thinking of HVAC when they chose “be prepared” for their motto, but the proverb holds true for purchasing a new system. When selecting a unit, remember:
1. Be sure the warranty covers both parts and labor.
Usually this only applies to units that were installed by the dealer. If you purchased a house with an HVAC system already installed, you can call the manufacturer’s customer service number. They can confirm whether or not they were the installing dealer. If you bought a new home, speak with the builder.
2. Is there a “warranty processing fee?”
Even if parts are under warranty, some dealers may charge a processing fee. Depending upon your dealer, this fee may be negotiable.
3. Be sure you understand the length of the warranty period.
If you’ve purchased a home, calling the manufacturer or installer should let you know how much time is left on the warranty.
4. Know which contractors are covered under the warranty.
If you’ve installed a new HVAC system, the installing dealer may only honor the warranty if no other contractor has serviced the unit. Many companies adopt this policy for quality assurance.
5. Identify any paperwork or registration you need to file.
Some warranties require you to register paperwork or fill out an online form. Be sure you understand the requirements and deadlines. You don’t want to accidentally void your warranty!
6. Does the warranty include installation?
A reliable manufacturer’s employees are expert technicians and installers. Therefore, most reputable ones will stand behind their installation. In addition to a manufacturer’s warranty, the contractor should cover any accidental damage that occurs during installation.
7. Understand how the warranty will address serious issues.
Sometimes, the unexpected happens, and if your air conditioning stops working in the middle of August, you can’t sleep in a house that’s 95 degrees! Does the warranty cover the cost of a hotel if your home is uninhabitable due to a major failure? How soon can you expect technicians to start repairing your unit?
8. Know the finer points behind a “lifetime guarantee.”
A lifetime guarantee should be just that—assurance and peace of mind for the long haul. Be sure to review all aspects of one of these guarantees.
Always keep up with paperwork
Be sure to keep all documentation, receipts and invoices in a secure place, just in case there is any confusion. When trusting your home and comfort to someone else, you need assurance that the company is working with you in the most honest and forthright manner possible.
If you’ve experienced multiple problems that have not been adequately resolved after several service calls, do not be afraid to get a second opinion—it may save money in the long run.
Wouldn’t it be nice to buy only one HVAC system for life?
The Allen Kelly Elite unit offers a lifetime guarantee, and if the unit doesn’t result in a 25 percent reduction on your energy bill, Allen Kelly will pay the difference. (Certain restrictions apply to the Allen Kelly Elite Unit. Call 919-779-4197 for more details.)
HVAC repairs are inconvenient, and, depending upon the problem, expensive. A good investment in a new system may cost more upfront, but it more than pays for itself in energy savings and peace of mind.
Betcha didn’t know that!