Installing a new HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) unit requires a lot of things to come together. The contractor will usually coordinate most of the installation for you, including hiring an electrician for the job.
HVAC Electrical Installation
Before you install a new HVAC unit, you need to be sure that your home or business has the infrastructure to support it. Something as simple as not having enough power in the breaker panel can completely derail the installation of the new unit. In many cases, the electrical panel can be updated, but you will need an electrician to do that work for you.
If the installation is new and there has never been an HVAC system in the building, the electrician will need to run a new circuit to the location of the unit and tie it into the breaker panel. In most situations, this means adding a two-hundred and twenty-volt circuit that is dedicated to the HVAC and nothing else.
Running a new circuit can involve running lines through a wall or existing conduit, so the contractor will often get all the preparation done before the unit arrives. The electrician can run all the wires, tie everything into the box and have the electrical system ready for the HVAC during the prep work, but if the service needs updating, the work may take a little longer.
Updating The Electrical Service
If there is not enough room in the current electrical panel to support the power needs of the new HVAC system, the service may need to be upgraded. Most service entrances have enough electricity coming to the building for some additional circuits. Still, the electrical panel may only have enough room for the current amount of service you are using. Updating the service means the panel will need replacing with a larger panel that has more busses in it and the ability to handle the additional electricity and breakers for added circuits.
Updating the panel is not a job that you can do on your own. An electrician must do this for you. The electrician will move the existing circuits to the new panel and then add the extra ones that you need. Keep in mind, once you increase the service coming into the house, you need to have the building inspector come out and look over the upgrade to make sure it meets code.
The contractor can handle all of the work, the inspection, and the payments to the electrician for you if you choose. Often the HVAC contractor will have an electrician that they prefer to work with. If you trust the contractor to make the call on who does the electrical work, let them use their electrician for the job.