Unlicensed HVAC contractors may work cheaper than a bonded, insured and licensed A/C service company, but are the upfront saving worth the long-term risks? Not according to Matt Bishop, Business Management Editor at the HVACR contractor’s HVAC news web center. When dealing with unlicensed air conditioning contractors, the typical homeowner experiences:
- Shoddy craftsmanship
- Deceitful troubleshooting techniques
- Unreliable A/C services, including substandard A/C installation
- Homeowner remorse over the entire venture
- AND more.
Homeowners who deal with under-trained cut-price heating and cooling service techs often find that preconceived cash savings easily shift into the range of costly mistakes. Air conditioning technicians, so-called, who operate outside the laws of the nation typically ignore industry-accepted cooling and heating equipment installation and service regulations, and the expectations of the homeowner. According to ACCA senior vice president of government relations, Charlie McCrudden, such individuals “…take advantage of lax enforcement of permitting rules, licensing requirements, and the Clean Air Act.” Furthermore, Mr. McCrudden says that the government is currently unable to track or control the problem. Too many individuals, McCrudden says, “… are posing as professional HVAC technicians.”
HVAC News Today: Reputation or Unlicensed HVAC Contractors
In the air conditioning industry, a good reputation is paramount to the word-of-mouth advertising that so often establishes customer trust. In HVAC News today, A/C associations and reputable Arizona A/C installers are pushing the drive to focus on identifying and curbing unlicensed air conditioning contractors. For the good of the homeowners, and the industry, proper licensing is a must-have component of quality HVAC services.
According to the Yavapai County Contractors Association (YCCA) out of Prescott, AZ, homeowners have the right to hire unlicensed HVAC contractors. However, the foreword is simple: “Beware!” Sandy Griffis, YCCA Executive Director, says that contractor licensing does not assure technical skill, proficiency or even a measure of competence. “However,” Griffis also says, “…hiring an unlicensed contractor is certainly a hazard.” Here are three primary points to remember:
- Unlicensed can mean low bids, but the financial and legal consequences may be more than your original bargain included
- Hiring a licensed Arizona air conditioning contractor provides better protection than any after-event legal remedies
- Most licensed AZ A/C contractors are competent, dedicated, financially responsible, and well trained
- The State of Arizona promotes safety, health public welfare, and reliable construction practices via proper licensing and a well-designed regulatory system.
For the legitimate Arizona air conditioning installation and service center that plays by the rules, the battle against unlicensed low-bidders means missed business opportunities and higher cost margins. For you, the Arizona homeowner, this may mean a risky venture for the sake of possible money savings. In recent years, the number of complaints via the Arizona Registrar of Contractors has climbed quickly and suddenly. The cost of scamming affects legitimate contractors, society as a whole, and you.
To report unlicensed HVAC contractors in your area, Arizona residents can use the Arizona Registrar of Contractors on-site tip form.
Unlicensed HVAC Contractors Miss The Mark
According to YCCA, most homeowners could prevent construction problems just by learning their home improvement rights and then taking personal responsibility for the project. Informed consumers make better buying decisions. Working with reputable Arizona air conditioning contractors is one path to ensuring that you do not become the victim of unscrupulous or unlicensed HVAC contractors.
Protect yourself. Avoid working with unlicensed craftsmen, so-called. Don’t get scammed, get cool. Licensed Arizona HVAC contractors follow sound business practices, including:
- Paying taxes
- Buying and maintaining yearly insurance
- Running background checks on prospective new employees
- Setting up a bonded practice
- AND More.
To gain a state HVAC license, the contractor must show experience and capability. The test is designed to eliminate shade-tree A/C service techs. And although the licensing is not the “end-all, be-all” solution to finding an ethical and qualified heating and cooling contractor, it does evidence attention to matters pertaining to quality and good business practices. Furthermore, the heating and cooling industry is evolving, reaching beyond heating and cooling and into the area of indoor air quality (IAQ) and extended home comfort performance. Proven A/C technical understanding and knowledge, and the assurance thereof, is more important than ever before.
American Cooling and Heating: Bonded, insured and licensed. For more information on unlicensed HVAC contractors, click here.