You never want to risk voiding a warranty on any high-value item, and this includes air conditioners, furnaces or other HVAC items in your home. There may be several things that could void such a warranty, from allowing HVAC filter buildup to reach a dangerous point (and damaging components as a result) to not scheduling standard maintenance within the guidelines of the manufacturer.
To ensure you’re never at risk of voiding a warranty that protects such an HVAC item, it’s important to understand the kinds of warranties available. Here are some basics on this and a few other important considerations for HVAC warranties.
HVAC Warranty Types
There are at least four kinds of HVAC warranties out there, including all of the following:
- Manufacturer guarantee: While this isn’t technically a warrantee, it functions in similar ways and deserves mention here. It involves a promise from the manufacturer that a given piece of equipment was made properly. Many such agreements are implied, not directly written, and usually allow you a replacement if parts show up faulty.
- Manufacturer warranty: A manufacturer warranty, on the other hand, covers specific parts or components and generally has an expiring time range. If your AC condenser, for instance, has a 10-year warranty and fails during this period, you will be able to get it replaced for no additional charge. However, if it fails later than this, you will be responsible.
- Labor warranty: Certain individual HVAC companies also provide labor warranties, which ensure installation is performed correctly. These will not cover manufacturer defects but will allow for re-installation at no charge if something goes wrong in an area related to your original installation.
- Extended warranty: Sometimes available from either manufacturers or installers, these warranties come at an extra cost and go above and beyond other types.
Important Related Details
Warranties will differ between manufacturers and HVAC companies, so it’s important to consider a few areas when purchasing any new HVAC materials or equipment:
- “Lifetime” warranty: In some cases, this is a misleading term you should clarify. Which lifetime is being referenced – yours, the part, the home? You want to be extremely specific with whoever is offering the warranty so you understand exactly what it covers.
- Transfer: If you sell your home or are buying a new one, you have to find out whether a warranty for a given HVAC component can be transferred to the new owner.
- Voiding: All warranties will generally have regulations that dictate they are voided if certain requirements are not met, or if certain negative behaviors take place. Most voiding clauses relate to regular HVAC maintenance and homeowners not attempting repairs that should be done by professionals.
Access: Ensure you understand the ins and outs of your warranty and know how to access it if a need arises for doing so.