Heating, ventilating, and air conditioning systems are big investments for homeowners. Since they have such an obvious effect on their comfort in their own home, they’re going to seek you out when there are major problems. But if they are proactive, they may come to you seeking advice on whether their HVAC system just needs maintenance and tweaks, or a major upgrade.
We all know the wear and tear an HVAC system goes through over the year, and how detrimental it can be to its performance. As HVAC professionals, we all understand these issues, but we put this blog together to help you create an outline of what to ask.
Here are seven questions to ask your client when they consult about changing their system:
1. How Old Is Your HVAC System?
The average lifespan of an HVAC system is about 15 years. Air conditioning may last for 10 to 15 years and furnaces for 15 to 20 years. The lifespan could be lesser if a system is not maintained properly. Older the system, the worse the performance. Though some systems run well beyond the average lifespan, it is always better to plan for a new system before the old gives out to wear and tear.
2. Does Your HVAC System Provide Enough Heat And Coolness?
If the home is too cold or too hot, it could be a signal that the HVAC system is not performing well. An efficient system will evenly heat and cool the home; an aging or poorly-configured system can make the living space uncomfortable. If tune-ups are not resolving the problem, you might want to suggest they replace their HVAC system.
3. Is Poor Air Quality Playing Havoc With Allergies Or Just Leaving You Uncomfortable?
Managing indoor air quality is a major function of an HVAC system. It provides enough ventilation, holds humidity at an acceptable level and filters harmful particles out of the air. Improper maintenance results in poor air quality which can cause allergies. If the residents are experiencing poor air quality and it can’t be fixed with new filters or minor changes, it may be time to replace the HVAC system. Modern systems come with enhanced ventilation control to solve air quality and airflow problems.
4. Are Your Energy Bills Too High?
The increase in energy bills could mean that an HVAC system is using more energy than it is supposed to. An energy audit may be the best option. Even if you, as an HVAC technician, feel qualified to conduct one, it might build more trust and a stronger ongoing relationship if you recommend an impartial third party to do the audit.
Older systems are inefficient and use more energy. Newer systems do a better job using less energy. If the system cannot keep the energy usage to an optimum level, maybe it's time to upgrade to an energy-efficient system.
5. Are Repairs To Your HVAC System Becoming More Frequent?
Have you been getting too many calls to repair the client’s system recently? Though it seems cheaper to keep fixing it, a series of repairs can be expensive. Remember, even if you might make more in the short term, in the long run it’s better to build a stable base of happy clients. If they are calling for a repair every few months, you might want to suggest that they upgrade their system. Replacement may seem expensive but it will give a good return on investment in the long run.
6. Is Your HVAC System Producing A Bad Odor?
Don’t set out to scare the client, but be sure to cover all bases, including potential dangers. Gases trapped in the flue can be the culprits. These gases are harmful. Find the source and advise the client if it can cause health hazards. If the problem persists, they may want to replace the system.
7. Does Your HVAC System Go Bump In The Night - Or Any Time?
Some noises are common with HVAC systems. But loud and strange noises may sometimes point to serious problems. Diagnosis can be tough if the system gets “shy” while you’re there, but hopefully the homeowner can help, as these 80s car owners did.
A new HVAC system offers more comfort and reliability. If you give good advice about upgrading their system at the right time, you stand to gain a satisfied long-term client. And if there's anything we missed, be sure to let us know!