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Old 02-02-2010, 06:37 PM
 
1,646 posts, read 4,664,163 times
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We moved into a five year old house. I was wondering if AC / furnace tune ups are generally worth it. I hear ads all the time on the radio for tune ups at bargain prices. But I have no intention of calling those companies. It's been my experience that such companies use "tune-ups" as an excuse to come in and "find" all sorts of problems to try to fix.

But if there are reputable companies that do tune ups, and they really are worth it, I'd pay the money. Any input?
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Old 02-02-2010, 06:51 PM
 
Location: Jacksonville, FL
3,974 posts, read 3,351,233 times
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I'm not exactly sure what the commercials mean by "tune-up", but having a professional check out the system every couple of years is a good idea for several reasons. A short list would be slow freon leaks, exposed or fraying wires, clogged or bent fins on the outside unit, build-up on the inside a-coil, and clogged drip-trays. Admittedly, a lot of this stuff can be repaired by a moderately handy homeowner, but the freon or wiring needs to be checked out by someone who knows what they are looking at.

It's definitely a good idea to get a reputable a/c man out to take a look at it, just like it's a good idea to get a mechanic to check out your car every couple of years.
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Old 02-03-2010, 10:02 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
11,661 posts, read 26,758,670 times
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IMO, a furnace check to inspect the firebox & flue, and replace the nozzle on an oil burner is a must every year or two. A properly maintained AC though, if regularly cleaned (both coils) and cooling properly, is overkill.
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Old 02-03-2010, 12:07 PM
 
8,535 posts, read 9,836,271 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coolcats View Post
We moved into a five year old house. I was wondering if AC / furnace tune ups are generally worth it. I hear ads all the time on the radio for tune ups at bargain prices. But I have no intention of calling those companies. It's been my experience that such companies use "tune-ups" as an excuse to come in and "find" all sorts of problems to try to fix.

But if there are reputable companies that do tune ups, and they really are worth it, I'd pay the money. Any input?
It's like the 2 rooms a hallway carpet cleaning for $39.95...It will probably end up costing you $250.00...

Ask a neighbor for the name of their AC person...
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Old 02-03-2010, 12:22 PM
 
Location: Far from where I'd like to be
25,391 posts, read 31,712,866 times
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With a gas furnace, you can fudge a little and have the furnace cleaned. lubricated, etc. every couple of years. With an oil furnace, an annual cleaning is essential.

If the technician suggests a part needs replacing, ask him/her to show it to you so you can see for yourself. Ask him or her to show you how the thing works, and ask them what's included in the service. Feel free to grill the technician until you're satisfied with the answers. They don't seem to mind.

I've never had your experience of a technician wanting to rip me off or make unnecessary repairs. A few companies I haven't been crazy about their service; I just never called them back the next year. If you don't like a technician, don't call that company back the next year. Not a big deal. Ask your neighbors who they use, and research online.
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Old 02-03-2010, 12:56 PM
 
Location: North Beach, MD on the Chesapeake
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I have a maintenance contract with my oil supplier that includes a yearly tuning. The contract also includes parts replacement at no charge, emergency service, price lock, and budget billing.
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Old 02-03-2010, 05:15 PM
 
Location: Knoxville
3,328 posts, read 10,707,347 times
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I inspect a lot of homes that should have had a tune up. The a/c coils are very dirty, and many times, there are things that are not working like they should.

While tune ups for cars are almost a thing of the past, oil changes are not. Most people realize the importance of having the oil changed every so many miles. It's kind of like that with HVAC units. The need cleaning and minor adjustments after so many hours use.

While there are oil change places that try to add on when you go in, there are also plenty of honest shops where you get what you pay for. Same goes for HVAC contractors. Some are honest, and some try to add on services.
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Old 02-04-2010, 07:32 AM
 
1,139 posts, read 1,480,697 times
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Depends on what a "tune-up" really is.

I had a company come in and clean my ducts and the air exchangers. I think it was due to a lack of maintenance by the previous owners.
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