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The Basics of Commercial HVAC Service Agreements

hvac system

HVAC equipment will not function as designed unless it is properly maintained on a regular basis.  Have your HVAC equipment regularly maintained and its components will work properly, ultimately preventing frustrating, uncomfortable and expensive breakdowns.  Fail to have your HVAC system maintained and its components will endure considerable wear and tear much sooner than expected.  However, if your business is like most, it does not have the experienced HVAC personnel or the time necessary to perform truly comprehensive HVAC maintenance.  In other words, it is in your interest to obtain a service agreement through a reliable vendor.  The service agreement details a maintenance schedule, parts replacement, oversight and priority in terms of service calls. 

The Different Types of Commercial Contracts

No two HVAC service contracts are exactly the same.  There are four primary types of HVAC service contracts.  The attention necessary to keep the HVAC system in tip-top shape determines which type of commercial HVAC service contract is best.  Preventive commercial HVAC service contract agreements provide tune-ups at specific times of the year.  This contract has the potential to cover consumables yet it does not have to include this nuanced coverage.  If there is a service contract with a local utility provider, it might even include a reduced operating rate or a rebate.

Full-service contracts include replacement equipment, hvac repair, system parts and maintenance for a flat rate.  HVAC commercial service contracts that are of the labor-only variety includes the time invested by the technician yet consumables, replacement equipment and parts are covered by distinct costs that are on-demand.  Inspection contracts encompass ongoing checkups yet do not include repairs or maintenance necessary to correct any issues that arise in terms of system functionality. Certain commercial HVAC service agreements also include services that are meant to help you plan ahead for potential installation or equipment upgrades.

The Length and Service Coverage of Contracts

HVAC service agreements are similar to every other type of contract in that they specify exactly which party will provide and receive the services, what services will be provided, when those services will be provided and the location of the services.  The details of your unique commercial HVAC service agreement might include language that states you are to receive certain services from HVAC technicians with a specific number of years of experience, a certain type of licensure or certain training.  The agreement should also pinpoint the following:

  • Equipment covered
  • Locations covered
  • All options
  • HVAC brand
  • Serial numbers
  • Model
  • Age  

Even the price to be paid should be explained in a detailed manner that considers consumable supplies ranging from air conditioner coolant to filters and potential discounts for other services and/or parts added to the system.

Service Availability and Timing

Truly detailed HVAC service agreements will explain exactly when service will be provided to prepare the system for use.  Commercial HVAC equipment requires that much more service than residential HVAC systems as it is used at a higher frequency.  The contract must detail the specifics of this service including the frequency at which the contractor provides routine service as well as the priority level of the requests for assistants, especially in the event of an emergency.  Some contracts are detailed to the point that they delve into the amount of time allowed between the request for assistance and the technician’s response on business days, weekends and even holidays.  Furthermore, if there is a charge applicable for service provided in off-hours, the service agreement should explain those additional charges.

Temperature running high, call the Doctor!