Parker County Today August 2017 - Page 76

our opinions: ADVICE FROM AN EXPERT In The Comfort Zone A 12-Step Program to Saving You Money on a New AC System this Summer T his year, we merged quickly into the dog days of summer. We’re getting calls every day from homeowners who haven’t given a second thought to their AC unit — until it breaks down. Having air conditioning in Texas is a necessity for most of us, but if you are needing a new unit, these 12 steps will help you save money and live in increased comfort in your home. Step One – Advertising Roulette You start out looking online at various home-improvement websites, consumer input sites, or even in the local phone book, selecting the three AC companies that you want to give you a bid. A lot of people look at the ads and choose one with a big ad, one with a medium-size ad, and one with a small ad. Then the telephone portion of the process begins. Here’s your result: one answering machine, one of those dreaded auto- matic phone systems that says press 1 for this and press 5 then 4 then 3 until finally, you get to talk to someone who wants you to take off work so they can meet with you in the afternoon at their convenience, not yours. Last but not least, you get someone that wants to quote you a price over the phone without even seeing your home, or know- ing what you or your home’s needs are. They are just too lazy to give you the service you deserve. Quoting a heating and air conditioning system over the phone is like buying eyeglasses without an exam; maybe it will help or maybe it will cause more damage than good. 74 Step Two - The “bid” You finally make contact with three companies that deign to come out to your home. That’s when you wonder how in the world can three companies who looked at the same house give three such completely different bids? They all looked at the same house you thought, but you would never know it by the “bids” you have receiv