Grand Rapids Heating and A/C: Service, Repair, and Equipment Companies
This local page provides resources and information about A/C and heating service, repair, maintenance, and installers in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Included are Kent County and the surrounding metro areas. This information includes featured HVAC contractors plus a link to our handy printable grid to compare price quotes. Here you will also find sources of energy efficiency and equipment rebates, the ratio of hours of cooling and heating needed each year, HVAC schools or training and much more.
About HVAC service and contractors
The company you choose will make a big impact on your satisfaction and purchase of a new air conditioning and heating system. Why? They determine the size and type of equipment for your situation and they control the quality of the installation. If you have not yet seen them, in the navigation menu on top of this page you will find quick tips and expanded topics on two essential topics: how to select the right HVAC contractor and how to buy a new central heating and cooling system.
Due to relationships with their equipment distributors or ownership by a manufacturer, some air conditioning and heating contractors install a limited number of equipment brands. Many independents have a brand they prefer or for which they are dealers, but they will usually order and install any brand of new equipment you prefer to buy. However, most HVAC companies will repair and maintain any brand of central heater, furnace and air conditioner you have.
In addition to heating and cooling for indoor comfort and energy savings, an increasing number of HVAC companies perform air quality work such as air filters, dehumidifiers and humidifiers, ventilation and prevention of toxic carbon monoxide (CO) gas from your furnace. However, not all of them perform energy efficiency improvements to houses or buildings, such as the addition of solar screens or radiant barriers. If the service company you contact does not perform energy conservation improvements on homes or buildings, they should be able to recommend another Grand Rapids area company that does.
How to compare air conditioning and heating equipment price quotes
Air conditioning and heating systems are made of components or units, and these can be interchanged to yield many possible combinations of performance and efficiency. Additionally, based on the particular situation in your home or building, these components must be chosen and installed to accommodate them. For these reasons, comparing proposals, features, and prices can be confusing indeed.
To help you quickly sort through the maze of options, use our free and printer-friendly cost comparison organizer found in the navigation on the top of this page. If you get multiple price quotes, it will save you a lot of time and headaches. This grid allows you to compare the essential features “apples to apples” from contractor bids including: main components; equipment efficiency in SEER and AFUE; manufacturer’s and installer’s warranties; and equipment brand.
How the Grand Rapids climate and resources affect your HVAC needs and decisions
Local climates exert a major influence on the type of indoor climate control you need. On the heating and cooling list of the USA with 5 zones, Grand Rapids sits in cooling zone 1 and also heating zone 1. These require only 584 cooling hours but a whopping 4626 heating degree-days per year. As a relative comparison, the average home or building here needs almost 8 times as much heating as AC. Proximity to large bodies of water such as the Great Lakes can make a big difference. Be sure to rely on actual measurements and service from your heating and air conditioning service provider.
Grand Rapids is located about 30 miles east of Lake Michigan. The climate typically brings cold winters and warm summers. The three warmest months, June through August, have highs climbing to around 80°F. The coldest winter months of December, January and February bring average lows dipping to about 20°F. The record highs and lows, though set many decades ago, tell a story of extremes: high 108°F (1936) and low -24°F (1899). In spite of extremes, the climate here also has days in which you may not need to run your air conditioner, boiler or furnace due to temperature alone. However, more than heating and cooling contribute to comfort. Year round, the average humidity runs 83% in the morning hours and 63% in the afternoon and evenings. On these temperate days, a dehumidifier, whole house air filter or fresh air ventilation could make a major improvement in your indoor comfort and health.
Pollen, allergies and air filters in Grand Rapids
In Grand Rapids air filters are a necessity to some residents. Certain allergen producing plants can strongly influence what type of air filter you and your A/C system need. Some notable examples include the ragweed in the fall and other types of allergy producing grasses, molds and wildflowers. Go here for a daily pollen count and allergy forecast for the city and the surrounding metro areas.
Local utility and conservation providers
For the Grand Rapids area and state of Michigan, the DSIRE website offer(s) energy efficiency rebates and incentives from time to time. In many cases, your heating and AC company can coordinate all available energy conservation and rebate programs, from federal tax credits to local rebates and incentives.
The availability of specific fuels such as heating oil or natural gas can determine which HVAC equipment will give you the best combination of comfort and lower utility bills. Due to the long cold winters, where natural gas is available in Grand Rapids, consumers would likely choose a boiler or gas furnace rather than a heat pump. If natural gas prices were climb faster than electricity rates, this trend might change. In situations where a dual fuel heat pump makes the best choice, some of the factors that affect air source heat pumps include the average daily temperature, fluctuations in temperature, and humidity. Other local conditions such as solid rock located close to the surface limit the use of ground source heat pumps. For more information on this topic, go to the top of this page and visit the heat pump page under Expanded A/C and Heating Details.
How a whole house approach includes the “envelope” in the load calculation
If you plan to get price quotes to buy a new A-C and heating system, look for contractors who will insert the heating and cooling demands of the Grand Rapids climate along with the size and condition of your home or building “envelope” into an essential load calculation. For many reasons, a rule of thumb load calculation based only on square footage or using the same size system as the old one without verification should be avoided. This calculation requires considerable expertise, and is definitely not the place to cut costs or save time.
Resources for HVAC technical or vocational training in the Grand Rapids area
If you are interested in learning more about the technical aspects of air conditioning and heating in the Grand Rapids area, such as schools or courses to get training for a Michigan HVAC license, here are some local and regional educational and association links:
ASHRAE Western Michigan Chapter: The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.