Beware of Buying Units Online

The internet is a great shopping channel to bag yourself a bargain but beware of trying to save a few pounds by buying air conditioning equipment and asking a registered installer to fit it.

It is illegal to install air conditioning systems unless you are the holder of an F Gas certificate.

We have had an increase in callers wanting us to install systems they have bought online. Here are some recent examples.

Caller A
He had imported some units from Hong Kong where he went on business and wanted them installed in an investment property in Manchester. They had R22 refrigerant in them and were non EU certified and therefore illegal to import or install in Europe under the Kyoto Protocol. We could not install them.

Caller B
He had identified the Toshiba unit he wanted and bought it from a middleman on the internet. As an installer we buy direct from the Toshiba authorised UK distributor. He could have saved £150.00 by speaking to us first.

Caller C

He had bought a unit for his flower shop and asked us to install. He said it was a Toshiba but many Chinese made units state ‘Powered by Toshiba’ on the casing and this is confusing to buyers. Such units are often imported by traders who offer little after sales support. They are often old designs. In this case the client had bought an underpowered unit for the job it had to do.

Caller D
He had purchased six units for his office at £500 each. They were unbranded imports. We could have supplied Japanese (Panasonic, Mitsubishi etc) branded units for less with better warranties.

I could go on but I think I have made my point. Speak to a professional installer before making any decisions. Many industry engineers will not work on an install only basis as they cannot be sure of the provenance of units. They could be grey imports of poor quality. If they do not work when commissioned because they are faulty you will still have to pay for installation and where will you turn for support? You may have to send the faulty unit back to a supplier 100 miles away!

I recommend you speak to a reputable air conditioning company and avoid making an expensive mistake.

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