Called them out for an estimate on replacement of gas water heater, gas furnace, and air conditioner.
First the AC; they were honest and pointed out that it wouldn’t be that much money to replace the evaporator coil on my 4 year old system because it was still under warranty, rather than trying to sell me a new system. Another HVAC company gave me a high price for the evap coil replacement in an attempt to push me towards a full system replacement. I appreciated their honesty.
Now for the gas water heater, and the reason they still get a single star. They told me that for an in-place replacement where gas lines are not being moved, there is no need for a permit or an inspection. I’ve had a few estimates at this point and every other company mentioned needing permit/inspection, so I was skeptical and pressed them on this. They said if they would be adding more than a few feet of pipe they’d need it, but not for a replacement where the location of the water heater wasn’t being moved.
I called Fairfax County Building Permits number and posed the same question, and they immediately shot that info down. You need a permit for anything having to do with gas.
Either Marco & Son wasn’t aware of this which makes them incompetent as a contractor doing this kind of work, or they were lying to cut corners/costs. I’m not sure which is worse, but I absolutely wouldn’t use them for any work on my home because of this. If there ever were some kind of accident involving the install and a permit/inspection were not done, homeowner’s insurance could deny the claim. It’s not something to skip out on for the liability reasons alone.