Crystal Air P.O. Box 1501 Weaverville, CA 96093 1-530-623-1000 California State License Board #762833
Heating, Cooling, GeoThermal, Hot Water &
Contractors, Codes and Requirements
Knowing what to ask and deciding on a contractor for the lay person with no mechanical background can be a difficult task but, by following a few simple consumer steps, you can make an informed decision
State License- In California, contractors must retain a license with the Contractors State License Board. Types of contractor licenses vary and the consumer should verify that the appropriate license for the work to be performed is held.
Insurance and Bonding- ask your contractor if they are licensed and bonded. This is important to protect you, your home and liability
Bids/Quotes for services- ask questions and if you compare bids, make sure you understand EXACTLY what you are or are not to recieve for your money and ask to have that in writing. A bid that is vague and does not spell out what will be provided may mean the work will be vague or that there is something being withheld from you.
References- ask contractors for references. However, good references do not guarantee consistent good craftsmanship. Most any contractor can drum up a few good references and will not share any bad ones with you. A contractor that can show they have up to date credenntials in terms of training and industry quality certifications is a better sign of dedication to quality.
Certifications, Training and Experience- Business owners with a long term goal invest in their future by updating their training and expanding their expertise. Ask potential contractors what accredidations they hold for their area of expertise and how long they have been doing the work you are buying.
Job Sizing- There are a lot of new codes and requirements for ensuring that your new Heating, air conditioning or ventilation install conforms to current energy efficiences and air quality standards. Contractors have calculations that they need to perform and submit to the local building department. Ask to see them as a means to ensure the calcualtions have been done.
California Codes for Heating Air Conditioning and Ventilation Installation
Title 24 part 6 of the California Code of Regulations has been around for a long time but, is continually updated. The codes and requirements therein differ for new home construction versus replacement of heating, air conditioning and ventilation.
Reputable installers will perform work within the letter of the law. This includes obtaining a permit when required and in many insallations, this means that the contractor for heating and cooling must perform calculations, submit the calculations in order to obtain the permit and in some cases, pay for an independent field inspection of their work.
What the consumer should know and ask for when selecting a contractor is:
Installations that require permits and submissions that are performed "boot leg" have serious negative ramifications for the home owner.
If you would like to edcucate yourself more on the full scope of Title 24 code, follow the link to the State of California website