COVID Checklist: Plan properly for a contractor visit

Even under the best of circumstances, a broken down furnace or air conditioner can be a real hassle. When combined with the challenges of social distancing and staying safe, when that furnace or heat pump isn’t conditioning the home but blowing out lots of room temperature air, that hassle comes with additional burdens.

Common practices like shaking the technician’s hand when they arrive or showing the salesman around your home are now not as safe as they were prior to COVID-19. Safe contractors are encouraged to change how they do business in these times. Don’t be surprised if the technician tells you ahead of time that they won’t be shaking your hand; or, if the technician does shake your hand, the person then quickly squirts sanitizing gel on their hands. It’s nothing personal; it’s what they should be doing to help keep your family safe while they are in your home – as well as keep their family safe when they go home at the end of the day.

Here at Power Moves we thought it would be a good idea to talk about how to keep your family safe if you need to have an HVAC contractor at your home. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) have created guidance to keep essential employees safe while they work. That guidance is also in place to keep their customers (that means you!) safe.

This is a quick checklist of best practices you can see if your contractor uses:

Company Policies:

– Contractor has a policy of keeping ill employees at home.

– Contractor prevents or discourages the sharing of tools between employees on the job site.

– Contractor offers virtual walk-throughs of the project when possible. When virtual walk-thoughts are not practical, contractor is allowed to maintain at least 6 feet of distance between employee and customer.

– Contractor has a COVID-19 Exposure Action Plan.

– Contractor provides employees PPE (gloves and eye protection) for when the employees clean the job site.

Employee Practices:

– Employees clean and disinfect any shared tools before and after each use.

– Employee wears PPE when cleaning the job site.

– Employee’s frequently used tools are cleaned and disinfected on a regular basis.

– Employees minimize ride-sharing to the job site.

– Employees wear masks while on the job site.

– Employees wear eye protection on the job site.

– Employees wear gloves on the job site.

– Employees sanitize the work area upon arrival, throughout the workday, and immediately before departure.

One last word when it comes to contractors cleaning up after themselves. Don’t be afraid to ask what type of cleaner they are using. You need to know so you can avoid using a cleaner with a different type of chemistry too soon. The last thing you want to do is use an ammonia-based cleaner where the contractor previously used a bleach-based cleaner.  

JF Miller Heating and Air Conditioning in Fort Wayne put out this statement sharing how they are adapting to the current COVID-19 conditions: