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AIR CONDITIONING AND HEATING CONTRACTORS
Belcher Insurance Agency specializes in insurance coverages for Air Conditioning and Heating Contractors (HVAC Insurance). While single operators/entrepreneurs may not have as much risk as a larger company, there are still liability and risk exposures. We work with small and large HVAC business owners to offer the protection and the HVAC Insurance that is needed to run a successful and secure business.
It can be confusing when you start thinking about everything that could go wrong, and how your business can be affected by damages – and then to think about what type of insurance you might need to protect yourself and your business. When heating, ventilation, and cooling technicians partner with the HVAC Insurance specialists at Belcher Insurance Agency, we shop top rated insurance companies to find the best value for the coverages needed and then customize an insurance package that meets your company’s needs so that you can rest assured your livelihood is protected.
There are unique risks in the Air Conditioning and Heating industry, and we can help businesses cover unexpected accidents and natural disasters. Our agents have access to the top-tier insurance providers, so that we can shop your insurance with multiple carriers to get you the right price. So you save time and money!
When business is booming, it’s easy to forget about the help you may need in an emergency. Commercial Insurance Agents with Belcher Insurance Agency understand the risks you face with your trade and keeping your customers’ homes and businesses free of water, gas and other dangers that pose liability exposure. Injury to you or your employees is also a possibility. Do you have workers’ compensation insurance? You may know that companies with more than 2 full time employees are required by law to carry workers’ comp insurance in Virginia. But do you know that if a business hires subcontractors to perform the same trade, business or occupation, or to fulfill a contract, the subcontractor’s employees are included when determining the total number of employees for coverage requirements. Executive officers also count as employees, although they may be excluded. (Visit Virginia Workers Compensation Commission FAQs to learn more)
An ideal business insurance plan for HVAC and refrigeration technicians accounts for liabilities, on-the-job accidents, equipment damage or loss, and business auto. Based on these needs, the following are typical coverages for heating and cooling professionals:
- BUILDER’S RISK INSURANCE
- GENERAL LIABILITY INSURANCE
- LICENSE BONDS AND PERMIT BONDS
- PROPERTY INSURANCE
- COMMERCIAL AUTO INSURANCE
- BUSINESS OWNER’S POLICIES
- PROFESSIONAL LIABILITY INSURANCE
- INLAND MARINE INSURANCE
- WORKERS’ COMPENSATION INSURANCE
- UMBRELLA / EXCESS LIABILITY COVERAGE
GENERAL LIABILITY INSURANCE
Business liability insurance covers losses arising from property damage or real or alleged bodily injury (that results in a lawsuit filed against your company), up to the limits of your policy. When you or your employees cause damage to others or their property, liability insurance not only protects you from the cost of awarded damages, but may also cover your legal cost. Business liability insurance may also cover instances when your business activity causes damage to a customer’s property.
Your policy can also protect you against libel, copyright infringement or wrongful eviction. For anyone owning a business, commercial general liability insurance is something you cannot do without.
There are many unique HVAC insurance coverages that HVAC businesses may not be aware of, and are a huge advantage for your business. Some of these are described below. Call one of our experts to find out if your business could benefit from these coverages.
HVAC EQUIPMENT BREAKDOWN INSURANCE
Equipment breakdown coverage protects against breakdowns caused by power surges, motor burnout, boiler malfunction and operator error.
Mechanical breakdown coverage covers mechanical and electrical equipment, computers and communication equipment, air conditioning and refrigeration systems, boilers and pressure equipment.
It can pay for:
- The cost to repair or replace the damaged equipment
- Costs associated with the time and labor to repair or replace the equipment
- Business income losses when a covered breakdown causes a partial or total business interruption
- Other expenses incurred to limit loss or speed restoration
- The cost to replace spoiled stock or materials
HVAC INSURANCE BUSINESS INCOME COVERAGE
There are also specialty coverages that we recommend for every business owner. If a business has a covered property loss and it is forced to close temporarily, business income coverage can help recover and replace lost net income. Business income insurance works in conjunction with your property policy and provides coverage for events beyond your control such as fire, wind, hail, vandalism or damage from vehicles or aircraft that may interrupt your business. Flood, earthquake or glass breakage are typically not covered in a business income policy.
HVAC INSURANCE POLICY TERMS
As part of our services, commercial insurance agents with Belcher Insurance Agency make it top priority to educate our HVAC insurance clients. There are many terms you will see in a commercial liability insurance policy and the following lists definitions for some of them.
Bodily injury and property damage liability
Examples of covered losses include someone being hurt from a slip and fall at your business; and property damage, such as a collision in the parking lot of your business.
Provides coverage for medical expenses to a third party as a result of a bodily injury by you, or the company.
Personal and advertising injury liability
Protects you against slanders or published content that violates a person’s right of privacy or copyright infringement.
A temporary agreement stating that an insurance policy is in effect, often used to protect the insured when the policy is in processing.
The portion of an insurance policy that stipulates the rights and duties of the insured, and the insurer for the policy period.
This is a restriction in your business liability insurance limiting and/or excluding coverage for certain potential catastrophic events, people, property or locations.
This is a period of time that insurance coverage continues beyond the actual expiration date. You do not want a policy to lapse! This will make it difficult to find an insurer to accept you, or they will charge you much for for coverage as they see you as a liability because you failed to carry insurance.
Restoring a lapsed or cancelled policy. Again, your insurance premium will be substantially higher if you allow your policy to lapse.
The probability of a covered loss occurring.
The measurement and economic control of risks that threaten your business assets.
States the main details of the insured, the business functions, any special terms or restrictions plus other details specific to the particular insurance and premium.
The insurance company’s right to pursue legal action against another party who is legally liable for the loss or damage to you and your business.
HVAC INDUSTRY REQUIREMENTS
Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation requires all contractors to have a license or permit bond from an insurance company before they will issue a license or permit. Additionally, when doing contracting work, you’ll sometimes need to provide proof of insurance coverage. This might be because the customer requires you to have General Liability Insurance coverage before offering a contract.
In order to provide proof of insurance coverage, you’ll need to show a Certificate of Insurance, which is the official document that your insurance agent provides. It certifies that your HVAC business has the necessary HVAC insurance coverage.
The Board for Contractors regulates individual tradesmen who engage in the trades of electrical; plumbing; heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC); gas fitting; water well construction; elevator mechanics; backflow prevention; and building energy analysis. Additionally, individual tradesmen may also be subject to local ordinances, laws, or other requirements imposed by other state agencies, courts, or certain localities.
There are many advantages HVAC business owners receive from having the commercial insurance agent experts with Belcher Insurance Agency working for you. We save you time and money! We treat you as a customer, not a policy. It is our duty to ensure you have the right protection for your business. When you’re ready to create a business insurance plan, or simply want a second opinion with your existing policy, just give us a call or stop by the office anytime. Agents are ready to serve you Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. After hour appointments are also available upon request. (276) 865-5144
*Source: Department of Professional and Occupational Regulations
“Apprentice” means a person who assists tradesmen while gaining knowledge of the trade through on-the-job training and related instruction in accordance with the Virginia Voluntary Apprenticeship Act
“Division” means a limited subcategory within any of the trades, as approved by the department.
“Electrical work” consists of, but is not limited to, the following: (i) planning and layout of details for
installation or modifications of electrical apparatus and controls including preparation of sketches showing location of wiring and equipment; (ii) measuring, cutting, bending, threading, assembling and installing electrical conduits; (iii) performing maintenance on electrical systems and apparatus; (iv) observation of installed systems or apparatus to detect hazards and need for adjustments, relocation or replacement; and (v) repairing faulty systems or apparatus.
“Formal vocational training” means courses in the trade administered at an accredited educational facility; or formal training, approved by the board, conducted by trade associations, businesses, the military, correspondence schools or other similar training organizations.
“Gas fitter” means an individual who does gas fitting-related work usually as a division within the HVAC or plumbing trades in accordance with the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code. This work includes the installation, repair, improvement or removal of liquefied petroleum or natural gas piping, tanks, and appliances annexed to real property.
“Helper” or “laborer” means a person who assists a licensed tradesman and who is not an apprentice.
“HVAC contractors” means those individuals whose work includes the installation, alteration, repair, or maintenance of heating systems, ventilating systems, cooling systems, steam and hot water heaters, heating systems, boilers, process piping, and mechanical refrigeration systems, including tanks incidental to the system. This classification does not provide for fire suppression installations, sprinkler system installations, or gas piping. A firm holding a HVAC license is responsible for meeting all applicable individual license and certification regulations. This classification may install backflow prevention devices incidental to work in this classification.
“HVAC tradesman” means an individual whose work includes the installation, alteration, repair or maintenance of heating systems, ventilating systems, cooling systems, steam and hot water heating systems, boilers, process piping, backflow prevention devices, and mechanical refrigeration systems, including tanks incidental to the system.
“Inactive tradesman license” means an individual who meets the requirements of 18VAC50-30-73 and is licensed under that section.
“Incidental” means work that is necessary for that particular repair or installation and is outside the scope of practice allowed.
“Industrialized building contracting” means the service that provides for the installation or removal of an industrialized building as defined in the Virginia Industrialized Building Safety Regulations (13VAC 5-91). This classification covers foundation work in accordance with the provisions of the Uniform Statewide Building Code (13 VAC 5-63) and allows the licensee to complete internal tie-ins of plumbing, gas, electrical, and HVAC systems. It does not allow for installing additional plumbing, gas, electrical, or HVAC work such as installing the service meter, or installing the outside compressor for the HVAC system. The BLD classification also provides for this function.
“Journeyman” means a person who possesses the necessary ability, proficiency and qualifications to install, repair and maintain specific types of materials and equipment, utilizing a working knowledge sufficient to comply with the pertinent provisions of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code and according to plans and specifications.
“Limited use/limited application endorsement” means an addition to the certification record of a certified accessibility mechanic authorizing the certificate holder to erect, construct, install, alter, service, repair, test, or maintain limited use/limited application elevators as defined by the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code.
“Liquefied petroleum gas fitter” means any individual who engages in, or offers to engage in, work for
the general public for compensation in work that includes the installation, repair, improvement, alterations or removal of piping, liquefied petroleum gas tanks and appliances (excluding hot water heaters, boilers and central heating systems that require a heating, ventilation and air conditioning or plumbing certification) annexed to real property.
“Maintenance” means the reconstruction or renewal of any part of a backflow device for the purpose of maintaining its proper operation. This does not include the actions of removing, replacing or installing, except for winterization.
“Manufactured home contracting” means the service that provides for the installation or removal of a manufactured home as defined in the Virginia Manufactured Home Safety Regulations (13 VAC 5-95). This classification does not cover foundation work; however, it does allow installation of piers covered under HUD regulations. It does allow a licensee to do internal tie-ins of plumbing, gas, electrical, or HVAC equipment. It does not allow for installing additional plumbing, gas, electrical, or HVAC work such as installing the service meter, or installing the outside compressor for the HVAC system. No other specialty provides for this function.
“Master” means a person who possesses the necessary ability, proficiency and qualifications to plan and layout the details for installation and supervise the work of installing, repairing and maintaining specific types of materials and equipment utilizing a working knowledge sufficient to comply with the pertinent provisions of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code.
“Natural gas fitter provider” means any individual who engages in, or offers to engage in, work for the general public for compensation in the incidental repair, testing, or removal of natural gas piping or fitting annexed to real property, excluding new installation of gas piping for hot water heaters, boilers, central heating systems, or other natural gas equipment that requires heating, ventilation and air conditioning or plumbing certification.
“Periodic inspection” means to examine a cross connection control device in accordance with the requirements of the locality to be sure that the device is in place and functioning in accordance with the standards of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code.
“Refrigeration contracting” means the service that provides for installation, repair, or removal of any refrigeration equipment (excluding HVAC equipment). No electrical, plumbing, gas fitting, or HVAC functions are provided by this specialty. This specialty is intended for those contractors who repair or install coolers, refrigerated casework, ice-making machines, drinking fountains, cold room equipment, and similar hermetic refrigeration equipment. The HVAC classification also provides for this function.
“Reinstatement” means having a license or certification card restored to effectiveness after the expiration date has passed.
“Renewal” means continuing the effectiveness of a license or certification card for another period of time.
“Repair” means the reconstruction or renewal of any part of a backflow prevention device for the purpose of returning to service a currently installed device. This does not include the removal or replacement of a defective device by the installation of a rebuilt or new device.
“Residential building energy analysis” means (i) an inspection, investigation, or survey of a dwelling or other structure to evaluate, measure, or quantify its energy consumption and efficiency, including lighting, HVAC, electronics, appliances, water heaters, insulation, and water conservation, and (ii) recommendations to reduce energy consumption and improve efficiency of a dwelling or other structure, including lighting, HVAC, electronics, appliances, water heaters, insulation, and water conservation for compensation conducted or made by a licensed residential building energy analyst.
“Supervisor” means the licensed master or journeyman tradesman who has the responsibility to ensure that the installation is in accordance with the applicable provisions of the Virginia Uniform Statewide Building Code, one of whom must be on the job site at all times during installation.
“Testing organization” means an independent testing organization whose main function is to develop and administer examinations.
“Trade” means any of the following: electrical, gas fitting, HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning), liquefied petroleum gas fitting, natural gas fitting, plumbing, and divisions within them.