Due to leakages, poor maintenance, and improper installation, HVAC systems efficiency is reduced by up to 30 percent. With El Paso households paying an average of 11.11Â¢/kWh for electricity, this will cost you more on the utility bills and also possibly shorten the equipment's life. However, having a qualified HVAC contractor checking out your heating and cooling equipment regularly can help reduce this cost by up to 20 percent. When in search of a good HVAC contractor in the city, do not just accept any recommendation, ask the following question to be sure you are making the right hire:
- Are You Licensed to Practice as an HVAC Contractor in the City of El Paso?
- How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other HVAC Contractors in the City of El Paso?
- Do You Comply with the City of El Paso Building Code for HVAC Work?
- Will You Get the HVAC Permits as Required by the City of El Paso Code?
- What Kind of HVAC Services Do You Offer?
- Do You Offer Emergency HVAC Services in the City of El Paso?
- Do You Carry the Necessary Insurance Policy for HVAC Contractors in the City of El Paso?
You need to ensure the HVAC contractor you want to hire is properly licensed before commencing any HVAC-related project within the City of El Paso. Section 18.02.104.6 of the El Paso City Code mandates that all HVAC contractors looking to work in El Paso must obtain the appropriate license from the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulations (TDLR). Note that these contractors are typically to undergo additional local registeration with the city before they can offer their services to its residents.
There are two kinds of HVAC licenses issued by the TDLR, and they are the Class A and Class B licenses. Contractors who obtain a Class A license can work on HVAC units of any size, while contractors with a Class B license can only perform work on air-conditioning or refrigerating units of 25 tons or less and output of 1.5 million btus per hour. Per section 1302.255 of the Texas Occupations Code, to be eligible for an HVAC license, applicants must be at least 18 years old and have at least four years of practical experience in air-conditioning and refrigeration work under the guidance of a licensed air-conditioning and refrigeration contractor in the previous six years. Alternatively, applicants must have held a technician certification for the previous year and have at least three years of practical experience in air-conditioning and refrigeration work under the supervision of a licensed air-conditioning and refrigeration contractor.
If you wish to confirm your HVAC contractor's license, you can utilize the TDLR license data search portal or contact the Department at (512) 978-4504.
Contractor rates for HVC work in the City of El Paso differ depending on the contractor, the scale of the job to be done, the cost of the necessary permits, as well as the difficulty of the work to be done. Comparing price estimates from at least 3 other contractors is a good way to get the most favorable rates for your HVAC project and also avoid being scammed by fraudulent contractors.
An HVAC Contractor in the City of El Paso earns an annual average wage of $34,570. The table below provides a cost comparison of the mean hourly wages for HVAC contractors in El Paso against those of HVAC Contractors in the rest of the State of Texas as well as other major cities in the United States:El Paso HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$16.62Texas HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$23.73Los Angeles HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$31.31Chicago HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$29.31Houston HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$26.40Detroit HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$24.55Philadelphia HVAC Contractors Mean Hourly Wage$28.80
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
The El Paso Mechanical Code regulates all HVAC-related activities that take place in the city, and any HVAC contractor you wish to hire should have adequate knowledge of the relevant provisions of this code. The Code aims to maintain the minimum requirements and standards to ensure the public health, welfare, well-being, and safety of the citizens of El Paso. Per Section 18.02.115 of the El Paso City Code, any person, firm, or corporation who is found in violation of this Code or who fails to adhere to the requirements of the Code is guilty of a misdemeanor and is liable to a fine of $2,000. In order to avoid these Code violations and attendant penalties, it is essential you hire a licensed HVAC contractor familiar with the provisions of the Mechanical Code.
You can contact the El Paso Planning and Inspections Department at (915) 212-0104 to get more information or make inquiries concerning the specific requirements of the city's mechanical code for your HVAC project.
Before the commencement of the erection, installation, alteration, repair, or replacement of an HVAC system, homeowners are required to ensure they obtain the relevant permits. However, not all HVAC works require a permit as some are exempted from this requirement, and they typically include work involving portable HVAC units, appliances, and equipment, as well as portable fuel cell devices that are not joined to a fixed piping system and are not interconnected to a power grid.
The department responsible for receiving and reviewing permit applications in El Paso is the Planning and Inspections Department. Permit applications can be made to this department via its Online Permitting Portal. Per city law, applicants will be required to provide details of the proposed work, such as the general description of the work and its location. Depending on the nature of the proposed work, the submission of drawings, specifications, diagrams, or any other necessary information that may be requested by officials of the Planning and Inspections Department at the time of the application may also be required. Finally, once the required HVAC permits have been issued, building officials may inspect the HVAC work at various stages to ensure that it complies with the requirements of the city code.
Queries and additional information related to the City of El Paso's permitting process can be directed to the Planning and Inspections Department at (915) 212-0104.
HVAC contractors in the City of El Paso provide a wide range of HVAC services. They offer installation, repair, and replacement services for HVAC systems in both residential and commercial buildings. When looking for a qualified HVAC contractor in El Paso, it is critical to make sure they will be able to deliver the specific service you require. The reason for this is that not all HVAC contractors are capable of providing all HVAC services. For example, an HVAC contractor who only specializes in split system installation is unlikely to have the requisite competence and ability to install a hybrid split system.
HVAC services in El Paso typically cost between $150.00 and $450.00. Below is a list of HVAC services and their cost estimates:A/C installation cost$1,869.00 - $9,347.00Forced air furnace cost$1,703.00 - $2,037.00A/C repair cost$90.00 - $770.00Central AC replacement cost$4,690.00 - $12,370.00
Due to urgent HVAC concerns that must be fixed as soon as possible, you may require the services of an HVAC contractor near you. Defective fans and heat exchangers, faulty thermostats, and freezers are common examples of these types of problems. These problems typically demand immediate care, and ignoring them will make your home uninhabitable and contribute to unnecessary energy consumption, which will raise your electricity bill.
However, when searching for emergency HVAC contractors in El Paso, it is important to ensure that you end up with a duly qualified one. To this end, it is advisable to get referrals to these professionals from trusted sources like close friends and relatives, or from reputable third-party websites like the Better Business Bureau. Always verify that the HVAC contractor you intend to hire possesses a valid state-issued license, request references from them that can vouch for their service delivery
Per state requirements, all HVAC contractors in El Paso must carry general liability insurance before they can legally provide their services to interested parties in the city. The minimum acceptable amount for this insurance depends on the class of license that the HVAC contractor possesses. To this end, Class A licensees must have a minimum of $300,000 in property damage and bodily injury insurance coverage per occurrence, while Class B licensees must have a minimum of $100,000 in property damage and bodily injury insurance coverage per occurrence.
Always request proof of insurance from your intended HVAC contractor and contact the contractor's insurer to authenticate any documentation or information that the contractor provides. You can also contact the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation at (512) 978-4504 to get additional information on state-mandated insurance requirements for El Paso HVAC contractors.
In February 2021, a local Austin newspaper published a report urging residents of the city to take precautions against fraudulent contractors in the city that typically take advantage of the cold weather to carry out HVAC-related scams against unsuspecting homeowners. You can avoid falling victim to the actions of fraudulent HVAC contractors in the City of El Paso by recognizing certain red flags, such as:
- Insistence on oral estimates and contracts
- Unsolicited offers of free or discounted HVAC system inspections and repairs
- High pressure sales tactics
- Requests for full upfront payments, usually in cash
Nonetheless, there are certain steps you can take to avoid being a victim of these scams, and they include:
- Checking with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulations to see if your HVAC contractor is properly licensed. This can be accomplished by using the TDLR license search portal.
- Requesting references from potential contractors. You should avoid hiring any contractor who can not supply you with references.
- Avoiding contractors that do not have verifiable local business addresses
- When looking for reputable HVAC contractors, you can use websites like the Better Business Bureau.
- Insisting on written contracts for the job and properly reviewing these contracts before signing. Note that you should never sign contracts that have blank spaces in them.
- Inspecting the completed job and ensuring that it was done according to the terms of your contract before making final payments
If you believe you are the victim of an HVAC scam, you can file a complaint with the TDLR. This department can also be contacted at (512) 463-6599 to get more information on its complaint submission and resolution process. Alternatively, you can file a consumer complaint with the Texas Attorney General's Office's Consumer Protection Division. This complaint can be filed by filling out a complaint form, which is available in both English and Spanish, and mailing it to:
- Office of the Attorney General
- Consumer Protection Division
- P.O. Box 12548
- Austin, TX 78711-2548
Your complaints will be received and examined to determine the best form of resolution. If the aforementioned authorities are unable to come to a resolution that satisfies you, you may consider filing a small claims case against the relevant individual or business. Residents of El Paso can file a small claims lawsuit at the El Paso County Justice of the Peace Precinct 4. It is crucial to note that in a small claims lawsuit, you cannot request more than $10,000 as compensation. Finally, before proceeding with your lawsuit, you should seek legal advice and assistance from an attorney.