When you are looking at a furnace replacement for your San Antonio-area home, there’s a good chance you’ll be interviewing more than one contractor. This is a good idea. When each prospective contractor arrives, be prepared with list of questions. Here are a few that you’ll need to ask.
- How will you size the furnace? Your contractor should do a heating load calculation using the industry standard method–Manual J. This method factors in many variables, including the orientation of your home, the number and size of your windows, your insulation and even the number of people living in your home. If your prospective contractor indicates that he’ll go by square footage alone or the size of your present system, look for another contractor.
- If you’re recommending a condensing furnace, where will the sidewall vent be located? Will the vent detract from your home’s appearance? The time to change the location is before installation begins.
- Will my furnace have sealed combustion, or will all the combustion be drawn from outside?
- How long has the furnace you’re recommending been manufactured? How long have you been installing it?
- How long is the warranty, and what does it cover?
- If the existing chimney is being used, will it need a liner?
- What kind of filter will the new furnace use? How often does the filter typically need to be changed? What is the cost?
- Do you recommend a programmable thermostat? Many contractors consider a furnace replacement an ideal time to upgrade to a programmable thermostat. Your contractor might also recommend zoned heating. It’s worth it to go over this option with the contractor, as a zoning system could add to your long-term savings.
- What ductwork modifications to you anticipate? Will you use Manual D to determine the size and design of the ductwork? Like Manual J, Manual D is the industry-standard method.
- Can you supply references? After the prospective contractor has left, call the references and make sure they were happy with the work that was done.
Expect that you’ll be needing a new furnace before the end of the year? Contact Beyer Boys. We’re the go-to experts for heating, cooling and air-quality service and systems in the San Antonio area.
Our goal is to help educate our customers in the greater San Antonio, Texas area about energy and home comfort issues (specific to HVAC systems).