To make the process of replacing your home’s HVAC easier, the ModHVAC Calculator offers system recommendations and a quick estimate of your replacement costs to save you the guesswork. To use the tool, just slide the bar in the green box to match your home’s square footage. Then enter your city and state below and click Calculate Cost. Seconds later, you’ll be provided with a set of options for your new HVAC unit.
HVAC Repair and Installation Buying Guide for Oakland, CA
Installing a new HVAC system in Oakland provides more than comfort year-round. With a new system, especially one with a high energy efficiency rating, you’ll save money each month on your utility bill and increase the value of your property.
What You Need to Know Before Buying an HVAC System in Oakland
Here’s a short list of things to know and prepare for prior to purchase:
- Where to buy HVAC systems
- Choosing the appropriate HVAC system
- Permit requirements by the City of Oakland for new HVAC installation
- Hiring a contractor
- Payment options
Where to Buy HVAC Systems in Oakland
Large retail and home improvement stores are one source for finding quality, name brand HVAC systems. Smaller companies also offer a variety of HVAC systems, and some sell one brand only. Many HVAC dealers offer financing and in-house certified contractors. If they don’t provide their own installation personnel, they may contract with outside HVAC installers that are reliable, have a good reputation, and have the necessary license.
Choosing an HVAC System for your Oakland Home
Whether you’re having a new system installed for the first time or you’re replacing an old system, you need to buy according to the size of the building as well as the climate for Oakland which generally runs in the mid-40s to the high 70s, year-round.
A contractor will estimate the size based on the square footage of your property. You do not want to purchase a system that is too large or too small because it will operate inefficiently and cost you more money over time. It’s also important to understand the different ratings such as the Heating Season Performance Factor (HSPF) and the Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER). Note that the higher the system is rated means a higher initial cost, but you’ll see a decrease in your monthly bill which makes up for the initial cost in time.
Permits for HVAC Installation in Oakland, CA
Permits are usually required in the City of Oakland for HVAC systems. You can visit the permit center located at 250 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, second floor, to apply for a permit. If applicable, you may be able to acquire the permit over-the-counter immediately. This will be determined at the time of application.
Finding a Certified Contractor
The City of Oakland requires property owners to hire licensed and certified HVAC contractors. When researching for a contractor, there are several things you can do to ensure you hire a qualified installer. First, don’t assume just because someone is advertising themselves as a HVAC specialist that they have the required credentials to do the job. If you use an installer that does not carry the proper license and something goes wrong with the system, you may find your warranty is null and void. You also run the risk of your insurance provider canceling your policy. Before signing on the dotted line, check the credentials of the contractor. You can do this by using the search tool at the Contractor’s State License Board website. It is also recommended that property owners check with the local Better Business Bureau for any outstanding lawsuits and open or past complaints.
Financing a New HVAC System
Once you know how much money will be required for both the equipment and the installation cost, you can budget accordingly. You may find help with financing at the particular store where you purchase the HVAC system and also check at the Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) website for statewide companies that offer financing for home improvement projects. Some programs include new HVAC systems. The website includes a search tool to find programs in your area. You can also check the Energy Efficient Programs in California website for additional financial programs. Information is also available for the U. S. Department of Energy programs that include offers for tax credits, financing and rebates.
A new HVAC system can be a hefty investment. With this in mind, take your time to ensure you buy the right system that will accommodate the size of your property. Following the suggested tips can help make the home improvement project a success from start to finish.