on the equipment. When heating or cooling equipment is installed wrong, or adapted to poor ductwork, you can lose up to 20% of its designed efficiency.
Heating and cooling equipment Installation is not a one-size-fits-all proposition, and in all practicality, is quite hard to price that way sight unseen.
No matter what a website selling equipment may say, to do your job right and guarantee your comfort and satisfaction, it is pretty much impossible to effectively pre-price an installation unseen because every home and system is unique. Unless your home is like every other home a contractor services, attempting universal installation pricing will inevitably lead either to you as the homeowner being overcharged to ensure the installer makes enough to cover the ‘unknowns’ of the job, or the installer being underpaid and being forced to cut corners which may be needed to do the best job possible. For the buyer, either way, it’s a less-than-desirable proposition.
If getting a good installation makes all the difference in how a system delivers (e.g., actual realized comfort, fuel bills and the life of the system), it makes little sense to buy high-efficiency equipment and then to skimp on its installation. Installation done right requires time, skill and the right materials, all of which factor into cost.
Delineating issues of liability, responsibility and customer satisfaction can be tricky for online HVAC purchases.
Up until recently, what has kept manufacturers from allowing direct sales, online or otherwise, is concern about do-it-yourself homeowner installations and the liability resulting from injury or loss of life or property. Believe it or not, even though today’s gas appliances are physically small and run quietly, for every 15 minutes a gas furnace runs, it unleashes more energy than 3½ sticks of dynamite! It’s definitely not something you want to have installed wrong—or to do yourself if you aren’t sure of what you’re doing.
The work-around for the safety concern of equipment being installed by unqualified ‘do-it-yourselfers’ by some websites selling equipment direct, is that to buy their HVAC equipment they may require buyers to select an installer from a short list of licensed contractors. What buyers may not realize is that often these