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10 Ways to Spot Quality HVAC for High End Residential Properties

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When you’re managing high end residential properties, quality is something that’s always on your mind. Homeowners not only expect it, but demand it, not only from the systems and furnishings in their homes, but from the service providers that take care of them.

When it comes to quality HVAC, chances are you’re not an expert. So let us guide you through some of the important features to look for in a quality equipment for the luxury homeowner.

Choosing a quality HVAC service provider, whether it’s for installation, repair, or ongoing maintenance, is really not much different. To get the quality service you need and expect, it’s all about knowing what to look for. That can be especially challenging in a large metropolitan area like New York City, where there are so many players in the market. We’ll help you evaluate who stands head and shoulders above the rest, wherever you are searching for quality residential service.

Signs of a quality HVAC system for high end residential space

Based on our 60+ years of servicing the high end residential HVAC market in NYC, here’s what we see as the most important features homeowners want.

1. Premium comfort
When you forget to think about your HVAC is when you know you’ve got a reliable, high quality system. The best systems are designed to provide customized comfort throughout the space and in all weather conditions. For the high end residential space, that often requires special features, such as:

Zones. Multi-use spaces like luxury residential properties have heating and cooling needs that vary throughout the space. For example, cooling may be needed for a party in the living and dining rooms, while heat might be needed in a bedroom where children are sleeping. Independently controlled zones, as well as systems that can provide both heating and cooling simultaneously, make the space consistently comfortable.
Humidity control. To improve indoor air quality and protect expensive furniture and finishes from damage, humidity levels need to controlled within recommended ranges. In the summer, dehumidification is needed, and in the winter, humidification may be needed.
Air purification. Especially in NYC’s historic brownstones and in new construction where VOCs are a concern, high end residential homeowners want air purification to give them added peace of mind about indoor air quality.

Related article: Top 6 Air Conditioner Improvements NYC Homeowners Want

2. Smart controls
Another sign of a quality HVAC system is the convenience of smart controls. Today, homeowners can control their lights, their TV and even their appliances from their smartphone. Naturally, they don’t want to have to walk downstairs to the thermostat to adjust the temperature.

The best smart controls provide more than convenience, however. They can also provide reports about energy usage and contribute to reducing those expenses.

Related article: Smart Thermostat Reviews: Nest Learning & Honeywell Wi-Fi

3. Quiet operation
Here’s another area where high end residential homeowners expect better quality HVAC: they won’t put up with excessive noise. The fact is, some brands and some types of systems are louder than others. Also, the design of the system impacts the noise experienced by homeowners. For example, it’s smart to avoid putting air handlers close to a bedroom whenever possible. That’s one reason you must choose an installer that’s experienced with high end residential spaces (more on that to come).

4. Concern for aesthetics
Since we haven’t yet seen an air conditioning unit that comes in different colors or looks all that aesthetically pleasing, it’s all about being out of sight. The best choices for high end residential HVAC in NYC include systems that are designed to fit into small spaces. Smaller air handlers and ductwork, and even ductless AC systems, don’t require homeowners to give up their gorgeous high ceilings, or damage plaster walls or antique moldings.

Related article: Ductless AC System? Think VRF for Comfortable NYC Spaces

5. Reliability
This is something we don’t really need to explain to those managing high end residential properties: there is zero tolerance for breakdowns! When systems don’t work as expected, you’ll be expected to make it right, and FAST. So look for brands and systems with high ratings for quality HVAC & reliability.

TIP: Regular preventive maintenance also contributes to system reliability. Learn more: 8 Ways AC Preventative Maintenance Keeps the Repairman Away

6. Energy efficiency
Those who don’t know better might assume that high end residential homeowners aren’t all that energy-conscious. They would be wrong! Especially in NYC, which has some of the highest utility rates around, people care a great deal about energy expenses. What’s more, they also care about doing the right thing for the planet and reducing consumption.

What does this mean for choosing a high quality HVAC system? Luxury property owners want high efficiency equipment, so be sure to look for the best energy efficiency ratings.

Related article: Understanding HVAC Energy Efficiency Ratings

Learn more about the best HVAC systems for NYC luxury residences: get your copy of The Ultimate Guide to Air Conditioning for NYC Luxury Residential Spaces.

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Signs of a quality HVAC contractor

A quality HVAC system is as much about the service as it is the equipment. Here’s how to make sure you’re choosing a quality provider:

7. Technical expertise
Did you know that New York does not require HVAC service providers to be licensed? That means you must look for other proof of technical quality, such as industry certifications and a company that provides ongoing training for technicians.

Related article: Your Hairdresser Has More Licensing Than Your NYC HVAC Vendor

8. Fast results
It’s not just how quickly an HVAC technician arrives that matters. What’s more important is how long it takes until the problem is fixed. Here’s what poor quality HVAC service looks like: they promise 2 hour response time. But that 2 hours turns into 4 days until the system is fixed because it takes so long to get a part. Or worse, they don’t fix it right the first time and you have to call them back to try again.

A high quality HVAC service provider gets to you quickly, diagnoses the problem immediately, has the parts on the truck and gets your system back up in one visit.

9. Care of furnishings and finishes
This is about more than wearing booties to keep the rugs clean. It’s about experience working around quality furnishings and finishes, and working with care to make sure nothing is damaged or compromised.

10. Commitment to customer service
You’ve probably dealt with companies that are more concerned about their own bottom line than making sure the customer is happy. Quality HVAC service isn’t about rushing through an installation or repair job to get to the next appointment. It’s about doing what it takes to solve problems and exceed expectations. We’re all about this one here at Arista.

Read more: NYC Luxury Property Managers: How to Choose an HVAC Service Company