The 3 Most Common HVAC Scams and How to Avoid Them

Most HVAC technicians are honest professionals. But there are some bad actors out there who do not have your best interest in mind. Fortunately, they’re fairly easy to spot. Watch for these three common HVAC cons.


1. "Your furnace has a cracked heat exchanger."

First, it's certainly possible for your furnace's heat exchanger to crack, especially if the appliance is older or hasn't been well-maintained. But you should still be aware that dishonest technicians will make this claim only to rush you into an expensive furnace replacement. If you hear this diagnosis from someone you don't know well enough to trust, get a second opinion. At the very least, ask them to show you the crack and then have them test for a carbon monoxide leak.

2. "It's time to refill your air conditioner."

In this scenario, the technician says that your unit is not working because it needs a refill of refrigerant. They behave as if an air conditioner uses up the refrigerant like a car uses gas. What you should know is that refrigerant flows in a closed system and you only need a refill if there is a leak. An honest technician would perform a leak test, fix the leak, and only then add refrigerant. This scammer wants to avoid fixing the real problem and charge you for costly refills.

3. "We're in the neighborhood."

Be wary if you get a cold call from an HVAC company offering a free inspection. They come to your home and try to convince you that some sort of expensive repair or replacement part is suddenly necessary. Their notoriously high-pressure sales style will include "limited-time offers" and requesting money up-front.

Bottom line: Before hiring any contractor, do your research. Most reputable companies are readily searchable online. Read reviews. Ask your neighbors. Or just call us. We’ve been in business serving Rochester and surrounding communities since 1947 and have thousands of happy customers. To schedule an appointment, call (585) 294-4881.