Whether a homeowner lives in an area that is warm all year long or they only have to deal with beating the heat for a few months of the year, an air conditioner is an important addition that can help a home stay cool and comfortable. As with a furnace or water heater, many DIYers don’t have the knowledge or experience to deal with air-conditioning units. This is why hiring a reputable air conditioner repair and installation company is recommended to keep the system running efficiently. These trained professionals can complete routine maintenance or replace the old air conditioner with a new, efficient AC unit. Homeowners will want to consider this list of the best AC installation companies for repairs, installation, and ongoing maintenance of the home’s air-conditioning system.
- BEST OVERALL: One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning
- RUNNER-UP: Aire Serv
- ECO-FRIENDLY PICK: Dr. Energy Saver
- ALSO CONSIDER: The Home Depot
What to Consider When Choosing One of the Best AC Installation Companies
Air conditioners are responsible for keeping the home cool and comfortable during the hotter months of the year. For this reason, it’s essential for homeowners to take their time finding an AC installation company with the products, services, and support that they are looking for instead of settling for the first appealing company that comes up in an internet search.
Service Area and Scheduling
When looking for an AC installation company, customers can find local air-conditioning contractors working only in a few towns or larger companies with many different locations nationwide. While local AC installation companies are effective for homes or businesses in that specific city, these contractors may have limited staff, services, products, and schedule availability. For customers looking for air-conditioner services that they can book around their busy schedule, a more prominent AC installation company with a broad service area and a large number of air-conditioning or HVAC technicians may have more flexibility and availability. Some companies may be willing to travel outside of their typical service areas for an additional fee, so make sure to ask for a breakdown of the pricing before deciding on an AC installation company.
Customers will also want to be aware of how a company schedules its appointments. Some projects may require an on-site consultation, necessitating scheduling more than one appointment. Almost all companies will be able to schedule appointments over the phone, but some may allow customers to schedule appointments online as well.
When an AC unit fails and the outdoor temperatures are quickly heating the home, it’s necessary to find an AC installation company available for emergency repairs. Living without an AC during the hot summer months is downright uncomfortable, and excess heat can be a health hazard for some sensitive populations. Customers will want to have a reputable company on call when the AC needs emergency repair or replacement. But customers will want to keep in mind that an emergency service appointment may come with an associated emergency fee. It’s recommended to ask for an up-front cost breakdown before agreeing to hire an AC installation company.
The variety of brands available for customers depends on the AC installation company. Some contractors have a small stock of AC units available for immediate selection, and ordering a different brand may be considered a special order that could increase the installation cost. Customers may also encounter AC installation companies with restrictions on the brands they will install and service. Customers will want to check with the company before hiring to ensure that there aren’t any restrictions preventing a technician from working on the AC system.
When choosing a new AC unit, it’s important to be selective. Customers can research a range of products and brands to find an air conditioner that suits their needs and budget. But customers will also want to be receptive to the AC professional’s opinions and expertise.
Licensing and Insurance
Whenever a homeowner hires a professional AC installation expert to work on their home’s systems, it’s important to verify that they are trained, certified, and insured according to local and state regulations. Some states, like Wyoming, have no license or insurance requirements for HVAC technicians. But California, on the other hand, requires multiple licensing exams for contractors to work in HVAC.
Additional certifications or specialized training beyond the basic regulations are a sign that the company invests in continuing education to increase the technicians’ knowledge and experience.
Another key factor to ask about when researching AC installation companies is whether there are any guarantees. Many companies will offer to guarantee the work they do. However, this doesn’t necessarily extend to the unit itself; a manufacturer warranty typically covers these. But if the problem with the new AC unit is caused by faulty wiring or improper installation, this work may fall under a company guarantee. To ensure that a homeowner doesn’t end up paying twice for a service, it’s a good idea to take the time to ask and fully grasp the extent of the labor guarantee.
Customer support should be a top priority for any service-based business. Suppose customers cannot get clear information about the pricing, licensing, insurance, services, service area, or products from the customer service team. In that case, it can be difficult to hire that company confidently. It’s more likely that the prospective customer will try a different company that can provide them with the details they are looking for, so there aren’t any surprises before, during, or after the service appointment.
Top-tier AC installation companies tend to differentiate themselves from less well-known contractors with experienced customer support staff that can help explain the booking and scheduling process, give a clear understanding of the offered services, and respond calmly and professionally in emergencies.
Our Top Picks
The AC installation companies below have been selected as the top air-conditioning repair and installation companies based on service area, customer support, scheduling, emergency service, available brands, and overall value.
Why It Made the Cut: One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning ensures high-quality, reliable service from its background-checked technicians—and the service is free if the technician isn’t on time.
One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning values its customers’ time, and that’s why it guarantees free service if the technician doesn’t arrive on time. The company prides itself on having reliable workers that have passed background checks and drug tests, and this can provide an extra layer of confidence and comfort for the customer.
To further set customers’ minds at ease, this company provides a 2-year warranty on service work, and customer service can be reached by email or phone. However, the website can be somewhat difficult to navigate, especially for mobile phone or tablet users. But with some patience, this shouldn’t prove too large an issue. Additionally, customers can get discounted services if they sign up for the Home Comfort Club annual maintenance program.
- Service area: 35 states and Washington, D.C.
- Scheduling: Online, phone
- Emergency service: Yes
- Guarantee: 2-year warranty
- Customer support: Phone, email
- Free service if technician isn’t on time
- Background checks and drug tests performed for all technicians
- Discounted services offered through the Home Comfort Club annual maintenance program
- Relatively long warranty length of 2 years
- Website is somewhat user-unfriendly
Why It Made the Cut: With Aire Serv, customers get notified via text when technicians are on the way, and homeowners can take advantage of free heat gain and loss evaluations.
Aire Serv is available to customers in 39 states and Washington, D.C., and customers can book online or by phone. One standout service Aire Serv offers is its free heat gain and loss evaluations, highlighting any areas of the home that are susceptible to getting too hot or cold. This service is important in determining a home’s energy efficiency.
Prospective customers will want to note that Aire Serv has a relatively short warranty period of just 60 days, and any problems beyond this period are the customer’s responsibility. Customers will receive an “on my way” text when the tech is headed over, allowing the customer to go about their day as usual while waiting for a technician. Additionally, Aire Serv offers discounted services for anyone who signs up for the Advantage Plan annual maintenance program.
- Service area: 39 states and Washington, D.C.
- Scheduling: Online, phone
- Emergency service: Yes
- Guarantee: 60-day warranty
- Customer support: Phone
- Free heat gain and loss evaluations
- Technicians send “on my way” text updates
- Discounted services offered through the Advantage Plan annual maintenance program
- Relatively short warranty length of 60 days
Why It Made the Cut: Homeowners can invest in a new AC unit, whole-home insulation services, or even a comprehensive home energy audit with sustainably minded services from Dr. Energy Saver.
Prospective customers can find Dr. Energy Saver locations in 25 states, but they should reach out to the local branch because the exact services, scheduling, and customer support options vary by location. One factor that makes Dr. Energy Saver stand out is the comprehensive range of whole-home heating and cooling services offered, including home energy audits, installation, repair, maintenance, and whole-home insulation. While energy audits and insulation might not seem immediately pertinent to AC installation or maintenance, they actually work together. The energy audit can highlight any areas of heat gain or loss through the home, insulation services can address those areas, and improved insulation can benefit a home’s HVAC system. And an HVAC system that runs better means less wasted energy and more savings.
- Service area: 25 states
- Scheduling: Varies by location
- Emergency service: Varies by location
- Guarantee: Varies by service
- Customer support: Varies by location
- Comprehensive home energy audits
- Whole-home insulation services
- Emergency services, scheduling, and customer support options vary by location
Why It Made the Cut: The Home Depot’s AC installation services are available in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., and customers can opt for virtual or in-home consultations.
The Home Depot, primarily known as a home improvement retailer, is also a convenient HVAC service provider for many homeowners across the country. Along with its nationwide service area, The Home Depot provides flexible financing options, ranging from short, no-interest payment periods to 120-month repayment periods. Customers can book virtual or in-home consultations to find the best option for their air-conditioning system and get up-front pricing. Most locations have 24/7 emergency services for pressing HVAC emergencies, but this is not the case for every branch, so it’s recommended to reach out to the local customer support staff for clarification about services offered at the specific location.
- Service area: 50 states and Washington, D.C.
- Scheduling: Online
- Emergency service: Varies by location
- Guarantee: 1-year warranty on installations; 90-day warranty on labor
- Customer support: Phone
- Flexible financing options
- Virtual and in-home consultations offered
- Nationwide service area
- Emergency services vary by location
Selecting One Hour Heating & Air Conditioning means customers can count on reliable service, and the technicians will be on time or the service is free. Though, for customers more interested in a free heat gain and heat loss evaluation, Aire Serv may be the right option.
How We Chose the Best AC Installation Companies
For the purpose of selecting the best AC installation companies, it was necessary to research a wide range of reputable companies that offered AC repair, maintenance, and installation. The initial search focused mainly on AC installation, but many customers tend to need ongoing AC and HVAC maintenance, as well as repair services, to keep the new air conditioner working for years to come. With this in mind, the companies chosen for this list all offer full HVAC services.
The service area also played a big part in the selection process because if a company was not available to customers, then it isn’t really an option, so the top choices have broad service areas in order to cater to a wide range of customers. Scheduling methods, licensing, insurance, and customer service also factored into the selection. If all other factors were essentially equal, priority was given to companies that had clear emergency service protocols.
Before You Hire One of the Best AC Installation Companies
When looking for a reliable air-conditioning service, it’s not enough to sit down and do a quick search for “air-conditioning companies near me.” Proper research is necessary for finding a reputable AC installation company to work on an air-conditioning system or to install a new air- conditioning unit. Depending on the company, homeowners can find a range of services, prices, and products, like heat pumps or inverter AC units. All this information can be confusing, so it’s helpful for customers to be clear about their priorities and inform themselves about the options available so they can comfortably discuss their home’s needs with an HVAC contractor.
Homeowners can start by narrowing down the selection to the AC installation companies that offer the service they need, then move on to product selection. Homeowners will want to take their time finding an AC unit that meets their needs and a company that can install the product. To keep costs low, it’s a good idea to compare quotes from several companies and select the option that is the most attractive based on service, product, customer support, service area, scheduling, and overall cost. It’s also smart for customers to ask for a detailed breakdown of the costs and fees before hiring an AC installation contractor to make sure the business is transparent.
Cost of Hiring One of the Best AC Installation Companies
When it comes to hiring one of the best AC installation companies, costs can vary wildly, depending on the type of service required and if any new equipment is being installed. Typically, customers can expect to pay between $75 to $200 for regular air conditioner maintenance. Depending on the company, customers may be able to set up an annual or semiannual service plan with a fixed rate.
However, the cost to install a new central air conditioner is significantly higher than the cost of regular maintenance, ranging from about $3,800 to $7,500. For customers replacing an old central AC unit or installing a new air conditioner, it’s helpful to research several different products to find an air conditioner that suits the household’s needs. Similarly, it’s important to find a reputable AC installation company instead of opting for the cheapest contractors that come up in a search for “heating and cooling companies near me.” Also, it’s a good idea for customers to ask the customer service representative for clarification on pricing before agreeing to hire a company. This will help avoid surprises when it comes time to pay the bill.
The Advantages of Using One of the Best AC Installation Companies
It’s not recommended to delay AC system repairs or replacing an old unit. Regular maintenance addresses simple issues like dirt, dust, and clogged filters. But the longer the AC unit goes without maintenance, or the longer a homeowner puts off replacing a unit that’s beyond its useful years, the higher the energy costs will climb. Trained HVAC pros can repair the system, complete basic maintenance, or complete an air-conditioning replacement. Whether a homeowner is replacing an old air conditioner with a new unit or simply keeping the current AC unit properly maintained, they’ll benefit from improved indoor air quality and enhanced home comfort with a system that responds quickly to temperature changes.
- Regular AC maintenance keeps energy costs low.
- Trained professionals can assess the HVAC system and suggest repairs or upgrades.
- New or well-maintained units improve indoor air quality and home comfort.
For those still unsure about which AC installation company is right, take a look at these commonly asked questions below. They should help provide a better idea of what to look for in an air-conditioning installation company.
Q. What is the best company for AC installation?
Customers can feel comfortable choosing any one of the above best AC installation companies. If these companies are not available in a customer’s area, they can try searching for the “best air conditioning installation near me” or “AC installation near me” to come up with a list of local companies. Doing thorough research and clarifying any confusing details will help avoid any hiccups before deciding to hire a new air-conditioning contractor.
Q. Is an inverter AC unit better than a non-inverter?
When a homeowner is considering an AC unit installation or AC replacement, it’s a good idea to think about the type of air conditioner and HVAC system. Inverter AC units have a controllable compressor unit that allows them to adjust the speed and temperature at which the air comes out of the air conditioner. This compressor unit improves efficiency and performance over non-inverter AC units—though inverter ACs have a higher initial cost. For homeowners looking for a lower AC unit replacement cost, a non-inverter AC unit is a good option. They have a standard compressor that only has two settings: full-power or off. Due to the AC unit running at full power whenever it is on, these models tend to use more electricity.
Q. Which is the best split AC unit?
When looking for a split AC unit, customers can count on one of the best ductless air conditioner units for quality and reliability.
Q. Do inverter AC units consume more electricity?
Inverter AC units have a higher initial cost, but this is because they are designed with a controllable compressor unit that adjusts the fan speed and cooling temperature to match the home’s needs. While a non-inverter AC unit will run at full speed whenever it is on, inverter ACs actually save electricity by running at varying speeds and cooling levels based on the ambient temperature.
Q. Which AC unit is the best?
There is a wide range of air conditioners available, including portable options, window-mounted air conditioners, or whole-home air conditioners. To find the best air conditioner for a home, homeowners can start by researching one of the best air conditioner brands or best HVAC brands.
Q. Which AC unit consumes the least amount of power?
Cooling the home while keeping costs low is a difficult balancing act, especially during the hottest months of the year. This is why finding an AC unit with a low power consumption level is important. Homeowners can take a look at this list of the best energy efficient air conditioners to find a product that is suitable for their home.
Q. How can I reduce my air-conditioning bill?
If homeowners want to reduce their air-conditioning bill, then they can take steps to keep the home cool without relying on the AC unit, including planting shade trees around the home, covering the windows, and using the microwave or outdoor grill for cooking instead of the oven or stovetop.
It’s also recommended to have the AC unit regularly serviced so that it is running at top efficiency. Homeowners can also check the windows and doors for gaps or cracks that could be leaking cool air to the outdoors. If a homeowner doesn’t already have a smart thermostat installed, it’s a good idea to hire an air conditioner installation professional to install one for a better temperature balance throughout the day.