When you buy an HVAC system, you have to take into consideration the quality of the manufacturer’s warranty. HVAC systems are prone to fall apart and break down after several years of regular use, which means that having a good warranty could potentially save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars in the long run. Similarly, replacing a faulty part or paying for necessary maintenance if the need arises, will be a much simpler task if you have a solid warranty.
There are a few things you should be aware of when looking at an HVAC system’s warranty. The first of these and arguably the most important is the number of years that warranty covers. Some warranties only cover your purchase for a few years when in actuality HVAC systems should last up to 20 years in some cases. A warranty that lasts for a decade is most common, while the ones that only last for 5 years or so are usually not long enough to cover the HVAC system for the entirety of its lifespan. If you find a warranty that last 12-20 years then you can be sure that you have gotten the best in terms of duration.
Also be aware that some warranties offer lifetime protection, but they may only cover manufacturer faults, not cost and labor for normal wear and tear. In other cases, they might cover labor costs but only after the first year. Be sure to read the fine print and inform yourself of the terms before purchasing.
The duration of the warranty may differ depending on the particular part that has to be replaced. For example, some warranties offer extended 20 year coverage for critical parts such as the air conditioning compressor or the furnace heat exchanger, but only offer limited warranties on other minor parts. Ask your HVAC system provider if the warranty duration extends to the entire unit or varies across different parts.
Some retailers will try to offer you an extended warranty, which will offer coverage for a much longer time than the standard warranty, usually at a much higher price. An extended warranty can be a good idea if you feel you will have your HVAC system for many years to come. Alternatively, if the sale representative seems pushy about getting the extended warranty this could potentially reflect badly on the product’s quality.
The standard warranty on an HVAC system can become void for a variety of reasons. Some warranties do not provide coverage if you installed the furnace yourself or through an uncertified independent contractor, for example. So pay for a professional installation if this is the case with your warranty. In other cases the warranty may become void if you fail to register your system within an allotted amount of time, so be sure to take a few minutes to register post installation if necessary. You should also schedule and provide proof of annual maintenance, since neglect of an HVAC system could also make manufacturers wary of providing coverage. Lastly, if you are going to replace anything on your system be sure to do it with officially licensed parts, since use of unapproved parts could also void your warranty.
The standard warranty on a good HVAC system should be more than enough to cover use for several years, but it is important to be aware of the variety of warranties that exist so you can be sure you have purchased the best one for you and your loved ones.