Check the Certifications for HVAC Contractors

Written by Anita Alvarez
Updated September 14, 2015
HVAC contractor on the job
Certifications help you determine the most qualified contractor for your job. (Photo by Duane Stork)

Finding a reputable contractor can be tricky, unless you look for qualifications that set the best apart.

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Are you looking to hire an HVAC contractor? Use a key HVAC certification to vet the options. Many manufacturers offer HVAC technician certification to dealers that meet specific guidelines outlined in the program, and looking for dealer certification is one of the best ways to determine whether a contractor's expertise is up to par.

Here is a guide to dealer certifications offered by some of the major manufacturers of heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration equipment.

Carrier

Carrier designates affiliated contractors that meet its stringent standards as Carrier Factory Authorized Dealers. Dealers that qualify promote Carrier's commitment to its motto: "Done. Right. Guaranteed."

Here's how this HVAC dealer certification works:

Done. When you hire an authorized dealer, Carrier promises the contractor will peform the job expertly, efficiently and professionally.

Right. Hiring a Carrier Authorized Dealer ensures the contractor will do the job correctly, every time. To earn the designation, the dealer's technicians must follow best technical practices, select the correct parts for the job and make decisions that are good for the environment — and the customer, too.

Guaranteed. You don't have to worry about a job gone wrong when you work with a Carrier Authorized Dealer. The manufacturer is so confident in its dealer program that it backs its contractors' work with a 100-percent satisfaction guarantee.

Lennox

Lennox, one of the leading manufacturers of heating and cooling equpiment, offers HVAC dealer certification only to dealers who meet the following criteria:

Service. Dealers must show responsiveness and attentiveness to customer needs at all times.

Products. Dealers must be familiar with and offer the best Lennox products available that meet local consumer demands.

Satisfaction. Lennox' Customer Service program, conducted by independent testing services, ensures that dealers with this HVAC dealer certification offer stellar customer service.

Lennox ensures that dealers meet these criteria through regular and ongoing evaluations conducted by indepedent service providers and manufacturer training sessions for its equipment. Choosing a Lennox dealer with the Premier designation ensures that your contractor will put your needs first, at all times.

Trane

HVAC contractors that sell Trane equipment must meet certain qualifications to earn the badge of Trane Comfort Specialist, but not every dealer will qualify and earn the designation of Comfort Specialist.

Here's an overview of the critiera. Dealers must:

Demonstrate a commitment to ongoing technicain training and education.

Exhibit top-quality customer service, verified by the manufacturer.promote industry-leading practices for installation and service.

York

Work with an expert dealer of York heating and cooling equipment by looking for the coveted York Certified Comfort Expert badge. The program's foundation ensures that the HVAC dealer certification ultimately benefits customers that choose to work with York dealers.

It's based on three primary components:

Guarantee. The manufacturer's York Certified Comfort Expert program offers consumer complete peace of mind, as it backs work performed with its comprehensive 100-percent satisfaction guarantee. This protects consumers and offers a recourse if you're not satisfied with the equipment's performance or installation.

Design and installation. To qualify, dealers must commit to ongoing training, staying up-to-date on technological advancements and new York equiment, promote the highest-quality HVAC equipment offered by the manufacturer and demonstrate a strong commitment to successful business practices in all facets of the dealer's business.

NATE certification. York requires that its dealers hold North American Technician Excellence (NATE) certification from the independent, nonprofit organization. In surveys, customers report higher levels of satisfaction with NATE technicians in multiple areas including equipment performance, comfort and efficiency.

Making the Best Selection

An HVAC dealer certification offers you a useful and meaningful way to select a contractor with whom to work. Examine the dealer's other qualifications closely, too, like technical certifications, technician training, industry associations and contractor-specific guarantees. Ask friends and family for recommendations, and be sure to compare contractors who have performed the same work that you require in your home.

Ultimately, spending time in the beginning of your hunt for an HVAC contractor vetting the options pays off. You'll know exactly what you're getting when you sign an agreement with the dealer, and your investment in the job will be time and money well spent.

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