Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ category

Pollution & Professional Exposures For HVAC Contractors

November 25th, 2020

While HVAC Contractors are traditional contracting risks, they have become the focus of growing pollution related claims over the last several years. HVAC system installation, maintenance, and repair can create pollution conditions such as poor indoor air quality and mold. Daily jobsite operations could disturb in-place asbestos, lead, or other contaminants. Materials and equipment brought to the jobsite may spill or leak while in transit or in use during contracting activities.

HVAC Contractors also have professional liability exposures which may not be obvious to the insured since contracting is the main focus. E&O claims could arise from: (1) jobsite modifications in which malfunctions may create a direct professional responsibility for the contractor, (2) supervision of subcontractors, and (3) actual design work performed, specifically when the contractor has a perceived responsibility to comment on design aspects that he knows to be poorly developed.

The exposures described above are usually excluded from General Liability policies, so it is important for HVAC contractors to have comprehensive coverage that will protect them from potential claims and thus help secure the future of their businesses. Beacon Hill’s programs division, PartnerOne Environmental, has a number of products that can effectively address the coverage needs of this class of business:

Contractors Pollution Liability

Contractors Pollution Liability insurance (CPL) is coverage designed to protect from third party claims for damages caused by “Pollution Conditions” arising from the insured’s covered operations. This coverage is applicable to all types of tank contractors and is important because these pollution claims may not be covered via the General Liability form.

How does Contractors Pollution Liability coverage work?

· Generally designed to address the coverage gap created by the CGL pollution exclusions.

· Policies usually written to provide coverage for operations performed “by or on behalf” of the insured.

· Coverage is provided for the insured’s operations away from their own premises.

· Base policies can be written on either a Claims Made or an Occurrence basis.

· Mold coverage is usually offered as an endorsement to the CPL insurance policy or coverage part.

· Mold is usually on a Claims Made form.

· Mold coverage may have a sub limit of liability, as well as its own deductible.

Contractors Pollution Liability/E&O

The Contractors Pollution Liability/E&O policy provides coverage to general contractors, construction managers, and various trade contractors who could potentially have both Pollution and Professional claims; Contractors Pollution Liability/E&O provides coverage for Professional exposures for contractors. This coverage is important because these professional exposures are generally excluded from General Liability and monoline Contractors Pollution Liability policies.

Job site modifications made

HVAC contractors are often presented with installations that do not work exactly as planned. In these situations, contractors will often tweak the plan at the site to make the system work. Pollution conditions arising from these changes create a direct professional responsibility for the contractor.

Actual design work performed

Many firms provide true design services as part of their corporate profile. This can range from doing all of the design work for the project, doing some design work relative to an aspect of the HVAC system, or simply having a perceived responsibility to comment on design aspects they know to be poorly thought out. The last element is the most difficult to control and manage for HVAC firms.

Supervision of subs

Proper selection and supervision of subcontractors is a professional exposure most contractors share that is generally excluded from CGL and basic CPL policies. Many HVAC contractors do not use subs at all, so this will not be an issue for them. For those that do however, the exposure can be significant

6 Tips for Choosing the Right Commercial HVAC Contractor

November 3rd, 2020

Businesses are always in need of having their HVAC systems serviced, repaired or replaced. To maintain quality performance of their HVAC system, finding a reliable professional is essential. However, with an array of options in the market choosing the right commercial HVAC contractor can turn out to be a challenging find.

If you are finding trouble making a sound choice, the following tips can help you through.

Tip #1 Take References

Getting references from other businesses, colleagues is one great way of coming across reliable choices. It gives you first hand information of the customer service being offered, the quality of work to expect and help quickly come across credible options that would in turn save you time.

Tip #2 Check Out Online Reviews

Online reviews are another great source for digging deep into the potential names. Visit pages like Super-Pages, Yellow Pages, Yelp and Angie’s list to come across relevant reviews. Using your better judgment while reading reviews would provide you information you are looking for to make a worthy choice.

Tip #3 Visit their Website

Reviews alone do not suffice; do check out the website of the contractor. An informative and updated website that caters to the needs of its customers speaks for the credibility of the contractor. At the end of the day, the in-depth pages, videos and blogs would give you confidence in your choice.

Tip #4 Price and Value Comparisons

As HVAC systems are complex, going for cheap prices is not an advisable route to choose. One should go for value comparison instead of making price the prime focus for choosing a HVAC contractor. A commercial HVAC contractor may be offering you low prices and saving you money, but in the long-term you would end up paying more due to poor services.

Tip #5 Go for the Licensed, Bonded and Insured

Make sure to pick on a commercial HVAC contractor with license, bonding and insurance. As these are basic forms of protection offered to the customers, they should not be ignored. Not having a license is an assured sign of trouble and lack of knowledge and credibility on part of the contractor. Whereas, bonding compensates you for stolen items and insurance compensates you for any injuries or damage to the property.

Tip #6 Relevant Experience in HVAC

Your commercial HVAC contractor should have relevant experience in installation, repairs and maintenance of commercial HVAC systems in order to give you good service. Picking on an experienced contractor would save you the trouble of rework, time and money wastage.

Why Hire a Licensed HVAC Contractor

October 27th, 2020

When upgrading or installing your heating and air-conditioning system, it can be tempting to look for the cheapest contractor in hopes of saving money.

Chances are, if you do, you’ll be hiring someone who is unlicensed, and this can cause a host of problems when installing your HVAC (heating, ventilation, air-conditioning) system.

Your HVAC system is arguably one of the most important components of your home. This is how you heat your home in winter and cool it in summer. It’s one of your home’s most significant expenses and has a major effect on your home comfort.

Most jurisdictions, including Ontario, require or encourage their HVAC contractors to be licensed. Becoming licensed ensures that a contractor meets minimum standards for technical knowledge, experience and respect for safety. Licensed contractors are also usually monitored by a government agency or industry association and unsafe companies can lose their licences if they perform shoddy work or cheat their customers.

A shoddy HVAC system can be expensive to run, dangerous to your health and reduce the resale value of your home.

In Ontario, the Electrical Safety Authority, an independent industry watchdog, reports that since 1988 at least 100 people have been killed by electrocution in homes because of improper and unsafe work and there have been at least 3,000 electricity-related fired each year because of poor workmanship.

While it’s not illegal for you hire an unlicensed contractor and pay them cash, it can be very difficult to get your money back if something goes wrong. Even worse, homeowners can be held legally responsible in some cases if they hire an unlicensed HVAC contractor.

For one, licensed HVAC contractors are required to obtain the necessary building and work permits from the local government office, depending on the type of work they are doing in your home. Most unlicensed contractors don’t bother with this paperwork. But many homeowners don’t realize that when a contractor skips the necessary permits, it’s the homeowner that can be fined, not the contractor.

Licensed HVAC companies are also required to have some form of insurance to cover injuries to workers and damage to your home. Few unlicensed contractors have this kind of insurance. If an unlicensed contractor, or one of its employees, is injured while working on your HVAC system, as a homeowner you can be held legally responsible for the worker’s medical expenses, lost wages and the cost of pain and suffering. You will also have to pay for any damages to your home, or to the company equipment.

Sometimes your homeowner’s insurance won’t cover damages to your home that are performed by an unlicensed contractor – especially if you haven’t signed a written contract.

It can even be difficult to take an unlicensed contractor to court since they typically won’t sign a contract with you and it can be difficult to prove to a judge that any problems in your home were a result of the contractor’s work. Many are fly-by-night operators who disappear as soon as the work is done, making them tough to track down.

While a licensed contractor may seem more expensive, they can save you significant amounts of money in the long run, by filing the proper paperwork, having the right insurance coverage, and having the necessary knowledge and experience do safely install the best HVAC system for your home.

HVAC Contractors

October 15th, 2020

If you are building a house, you probably need an HVAC contractor or an expert in heating, ventilating and air conditioning systems and products. A certified and experienced HVAC contractor will help you decide what kind of HVAC equipment you need and determine the practical and resource-efficient systems.

When choosing the right HVAC contractor, consider the company profile. First, you need your contractor to be very efficient at what they do. Otherwise, you will have problems that are difficult and expensive to fix later on. Second, you must choose with insurance coverage. They must be able to pay you in case they break something while installing your HVAC. Remember that your HVAC equipment and the system that support them are among the most important features of your home or office. And they are also the most difficult to change. So be very careful with your choices. When in doubt, always consult a construction expert. You may also canvass for contractors online. Most sites offer complete information about their HVAC contractors and staff.

Old houses that need renovation need to be seen and inspected first by a licensed and certified HVAC contractor. This may be the perfect time to take down the old system and introduce a more modern but cost-effective alternative.

And if houses need HVAC contractors, then commercial and residential buildings and facilities also need these kinds of professional experts. While the electrical engineer, the civil engineer, the architect, and designer may already have talked about the blueprint, they will need to consult with an HVAC expert. Because of his knowledge and skill, the HVAC contractor has a lot more to contribute to the design and implementation of the plan. On your end, you can be assured that nothing will go wrong with your HVAC system. It is also important for you to befriend the organizers, as they will most likely be the ones responsible for the maintenance of your equipment and system.

Selecting an HVAC Contractor in the State of Georgia

September 26th, 2020

In the highly competitive arena of Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning (HVAC), there is absolutely no reason to have to compromise when selecting a contractor to build your project. When making the selection of an Atlanta HVAC contractor, there are several requirements they should be able to fill without question.

Given today’s litigious environment, one of the first items on the table should be licensing, bonding, and insurance. Your contractor should be licensed to do business in the State of Georgia, and they should be bonded and insured to $2,000,000 for general liability. But even if there is adequate insurance, you don’t want a project delayed or to have the overhead of accidents or injury, so you will want to check the safety record of your contractor. The Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC) of Georgia does a good job of monitoring the safety record of contractors in Georgia. Your contractor will be a member of ABC and they will have information on their record for safety. Your HVAC contractor should also operate as a certified drug-free workplace.

You will want some assurance of competency. This can be accomplished by checking to see if all the HVAC contractor’s technicians are certified by North American Technician Excellence (NATE). The NATE is an independent body providing certification for HVAC technicians. Your contractor should also be able to provide in-house engineering and construction design services so you are not having to deal with yet another party to perform these functions. The selected contractor should be able to provide a lifetime guarantee for workmanship and should provide a 100% satisfaction guarantee in writing for the completed work.

It is hard enough to get a building project off the ground without being nickled-and-dimed to death for engineering and design just to get some cost estimates. This is another reason your contractor should have in-house engineering and design capability. They should earn your business by submitting a project estimate free of charge, but unless they have this capability in-house, such a proposal is not going to be very meaningful.

Also remember that there is no reason why the buyer or tenant should ever have to look outside for ongoing service. If your contractor will also be providing a competitive service package for continued, regular maintenance of the HVAC and mechanical systems, you can be further assured that the design, installation and workmanship are of high quality. Whether this is for a residential or commercial property and the contractor will be providing ongoing service, you want them to be flexible as well, offering flexible maintenance agreements and having the capacity to provide service calls 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

By checking to make sure that your HVAC contractor can meet all these criteria, you will ensure that your building project can go smoothly and the occupants of the building will be happy with the finished product long into the future. The HVAC and mechanical systems have a big impact on the satisfaction of the end user, and success with this aspect of the project will have a lot to do with the HVAC contractor you select.

A Guide on How to Select the Best Commercial HVAC Contractors

June 2nd, 2020

Knowing how to identify the best commercial HVAC contractors is very important. It ensures that your heating unit is always functioning properly all the time. A HVAC system plays a very important role in a company. It makes the indoor environment in the premises of your company suitable for the employees to work in. This enables them to perform their duties effectively. Perhaps, you have been having problems with the heating unit of your company. Maybe your HVAC system is no longer functioning like it used to when you installed it. You may have also heard some noises coming from your air conditioner. These are signs of a problem in your heating and cooling unit.

Determine your system problem

If you have noticed any of the signs mentioned above, you need to contact a commercial HVAC contractor. Determining the problem of a HVAC system is not easy. It requires professionalism and experience. One has to be knowledgeable about the structure of the system and how it functions. A professional contractor will identify the problem and devise the appropriate solution. Among the common problems of HVAC systems include; frozen coils, non-functioning outside units, faulty outside fans, wiring problems and low refrigerant. A professional commercial or industrial HVAC contractor will identify any of these problems and fix it appropriately. Some managers of company premises detect signs of problems in HVAC systems but they do not take them seriously. It is important to note that if a problem in the HVAC system is not dealt with at its early stages, it keeps worsening. Eventually, the company will incur unnecessary expenses in fixing a problem that has been left to escalate. Therefore, to avoid unnecessary expenses that come with replacing damaged parts of a HVAC system, it is crucial that you have problems of a HVAC system fixed at their initial stages. To get the best solution to the problems of the company’s HVAC unit, you need services of the best commercial HVAC contractors.

Research companies by reading reviews online

Today, there are many firms that offer HVAV repair and installation services. They all promise clients quality services. To get good HVAC contractors you need to invest your time and effort. Do not rely on what a company promises you when you go for its services. Instead, do your own research to determine whether a company is capable of giving you the kind of services that you are looking for. Reviews written by clients of different companies can be a good source of information to guide you in choosing the company to get your services from. Clients who are satisfied by services offered by a company write positive reviews about it. However, if a client is not satisfied by the services offered by a company, they will express their dissatisfaction in their reviews. Before you hire HVAC contractors, it is also crucial that you consider their professionalism and level experience.

Call and gauge their professionalism over the phone

Many companies that offer HVAC repair and installation services claim to have the best technicians. They also promise potential clients efficient and professional services. However, you may not confirm this by reading information disseminated via their websites or even clients’ reviews. As such, you should call the company to learn more about their services. Gauge their level of professionalism through a telephone call. You should also inquire whether they are certified by the relevant bodies. Many HVAC certified contractors deliver professional, efficient and reliable services. Basically, by taking your time to do some research you will find the best commercial HVAC contractors who will come up with a lasting solution of the air conditioner of your company.

Don’t Let Unlicensed HVAC Contractors Make a Mess At Your Home

March 17th, 2020

Although unlicensed HVAC contractors appear to work cheaper than a bonded, insured and licensed air conditioning companies, the long-term risks may not match the promise. The problems are simple yet complex. When homeowners hire HVAC service work from questionable contractors, the typically final experience may end up like this:

Inferior workmanship resulting in shoddy equipment performance
Incomplete or downright deceitful troubleshooting reports
Unreliable A/C services, including substandard A/C installation
Unexpected cost increases or poor long-term HVAC equipment reliability
AND more.

TIP! Before hiring for A/C install or A/C services in your home, ask the contractor for proof of insurance. Even licensed HVAC pros can make a mistake. But consider the damage an uninsured electrical error can do to your home.

Dealing with untrained back-door cooling and heating service techs may seem like a slick way to save on upfront money, but in a heartbeat such preconceived out-of-pocket savings can explode into a massive financial nightmare. Air conditioning technicians, so-called, who work outside the law also tend to ignore HVAC industry-accepted service and installation regulations. 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.”

TIP! Get multiple bids before deciding on which HVAC company will install or repair your heating and cooling equipment. Most homeowners know better than jumping on the highest bid, but you should also be wary of any super-low bits.

Choose Reputation Over Low-price Unlicensed HVAC Contractors

In the air conditioning industry, a good reputation is paramount to the word-of-mouth advertising, and word-of-mouth advertising is the core of established customer trust. Modern A/C associations, along with reputable A/C installers, have had about enough of the damage unlicensed HVAC contractors are doing to the reputation of the industry. Proper licensing is a must-have component of quality HVAC services.

According to “Hiring Licensed Vs Unlicensed Contractors” from the Arizona Yavapai County Contractors Association (YCCA) out of Prescott, homeowners are free to choose who they will hire: licensed or unlicensed. However, the foreword from YCCA is simple: “Beware!” In fact, YCCA Executive Director, Sandy Griffis, says that contractor licensing does not assure technical skill, proficiency or even a measure of competence. “However,” Griffis continues, “… 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 you originally bargained to face
Hiring a licensed air conditioning contractor provides better protection than any after-event legal remedies
Most licensed A/C contractors are competent, dedicated, financially responsible, and well trained
By practicing licensing and a well-crafted regulatory system, the law of the land promotes individual safety and reliable construction practices.

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 caught-in-the-aftermath homeowner, choosing an unlicensed A/C company may mean a risky venture for the sake of possible money savings. Yet in recent years, the number of complaints filed with the Arizona Registrar of Contractors has been on a constant upswing. The cost of scamming affects legitimate contractors, society as a whole, and you.

Arizona residents can report unlicensed HVAC contractors via forms on the website of the Arizona Registrar of HVAC Contractors.

Unlicensed HVAC Contractors Miss The Mark

YCCA says that most homeowners could prevent construction problems just by knowing their existing home improvement rights and then by taking personal responsibility for the project. Informed consumers make better buying decisions. Working with reputable air conditioning contractors helps ensure that you do not become the victim of unscrupulous or unlicensed HVAC contractors.

TIP! If you are having a new HVAC unit installed in your home, do not forget to check the condition of your existing ductwork. Even the best of the best energy-efficient air conditioning equipment will fritter away energy in a home where the duct work needs serious repair.

Protect yourself. Avoid working with unlicensed craftsmen, so-called. Don’t get scammed, get cool. Licensed 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 cooling and heating service techs. Construction licensing may not be the ultimate scam solution, but it can help you find a principled and reliable A/C contractor. Furthermore, the heating and cooling industry is evolving, reaching beyond heating and cooling and stretching into the arena of indoor air quality (IAQ). Expect the demand for knowledgeable HVAC techs to be on the rise..

Hi,

rmharrington is a professional HVAC content writer working exclusively for http://americancoolingandheating.com. rmharrington is equally skilled for communicating with A/C technicians, HVAC product engineers or the home/business buyer in need of reliable A/C related details. Most valuable skill: The ability to research, comprehend, evaluate and discuss matters of importance to homeowners and the HVAC community, including technical details, system comparisons and best-choice system applications.

rmharrington also creates exclusive content for other home improvement companies, as well as a web development company and his own Christian web site..

Thank you again.

Marketing, Promoting and Advertising Your Business

February 28th, 2020

One thing that goes without saying in today’s business world, is that regardless of the nature of your home based business, a website is an absolute MUST. Whether you have a product or service to sell, whether local or global, your business will go nowhere fast if you don’t have an online presence. If you need internet marketing help, you’ve landed on the right article. I’ll give you some home based business marketing ideas that will help you promote your business successfully.

The first step is choosing a domain name and getting it registered. You can build your own website (if you have the time) and host it yourself or you can have everything done by another company (if you have the money). Either way, you have many options and tools at your disposal that can align with your business plan and budget. Also note that you can still start your own home based business even if you don’t have a product or service to sell. There are thousands of individuals and companies that have products you can sell for them while earning a commission, called affiliate marketing.

Of the many business marketing strategies known to man, internet marketing is, hands down, the best strategy to use for promoting a home based business as it is the cheapest method and has the potential for reaching millions of people all over the globe. Driving traffic to your site through online resources is like killing two birds with one stone. You can tackle print advertising by writing articles and publishing them to directories and ezines and by submitting ads to the many available (and most of them free) classified ad sites. Online media advertising encompasses writing press releases and distributing them to press release sites. One of the biggest and most popular online advertising trends today is via social media advertising through sites such as Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn where you build relationships with your customers. Forums and communities are also great ways to build relationships which helps promote your home based business in the long run. Simply Google your market or industry with the word ‘forum’ or ‘community’ behind it and search for one or two that seem to be the best fit for you.

All of these methods of online advertising contribute to search engine optimization (SEO), which is to say improving your online visibility and escalating in the search engines like Google, Yahoo and Bing. Your goal is to claim the #1 spot in the organic search results (the results on the left, not the right side which are paid ads). This is where your traffic will come from. If you are 800 in the list of search results, no one is ever going to see your site because very few people have the time or patience to scroll through 800 search results. Research shows that people typically won’t even scroll past 4 or 5 search results, let alone 800.

Can you grasp the importance of internet marketing for any business? If you are new to the internet marketing phenomenon and don’t know exactly where to start, there are many great programs or systems online that walk you through every aspect of marketing your online business. A lot of these systems were created by online entrepreneurs who have spent thousands of their own dollars trying to figure it all out over the years and finally DID. Their sacrifices have made it easier for newbies to become successful at their own online home based business. If you are new to running your own home based business, I recommend you find a great system (do your research, read reviews, ask questions in forums) and start marketing your home business from there. Don’t waste the time and money that so many of us have in going it alone, without a proven system, as it will just set you back further and hinder your progress.