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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
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    503

    Dealer Referral From Mfg. Website - Don't Believe Everything You Read!

    Unbelievable! I was impressed with the iQ Drive equipment and went to www.maytag.com looking for a dealer in my area. The first on the list had been to my house and quoted me 4-ton Rheem and Carrier single stage equipment to replace my old 3.5 ton Rheem. He was nice, but recommending equipment sizing off the "top of his head" didn't impress me.

    So, I decided to check out the #2 dealer on the Maytag list before calling for an appointment. His license # was listed on the Maytag site, but it had a "B" prefix instead of "R" for registered or "C" for certified. I looked him up on the FL Dept. of Business Professional Regulation website, first by license #, which didn't exist. Then I went to the FL Dept of Commerce to find out the name of the business owner. He's apparently been in business since 2001.

    So, I looked up the license status of the business owner, by name, and guess what? He was listed as "Eligible for Exam". In other words, he HAS NO HVAC LICENSE! Probably has no insurance, either.

    As I always say, "caveat emptor". Maybe I'm just too picky, but it seems like installing HVAC in Florida is like having a garage band.... good for beer money! Not unlike the roofing business in my area.

  2. #2
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    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by Florida Joy View Post
    As I always say, "caveat emptor". Maybe I'm just too picky, but it seems like installing HVAC in Florida is like having a garage band.... good for beer money! Not unlike the roofing business in my area.
    BTW, this contractor's rating on BBB is "D" due to 4 complaints in the past 12 months. They're on Angie's list, but recent reviews indicate they installed VERY expensive equipment, charged for a VERY expensive extended labor warranty, and when the customers called for service, the call was "transferred" automtically to another provider who told the customer the installer had "gone out of business". I also checked the company's website.... it's a logo with a phone number.... no other information! BTW, the license number listed on Angie's List belongs to an individual in Colorado by another name. Gheesh!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
    Posts
    503
    And it gets worse!

    I thought I'd check the guy's background through the county clerk of court website. Not only does he have numerous recent traffic violations (speeding 20-29 mph over the limit, driving without insurance, expired registration, careless driving... all on different dates), his misdemeaner history is quite telling..... battery, retail theft, domestic violence with children, etc. Although the guy's name was pretty unusual, I did verify it was the same guy by address and birthdate.

    Not someone I want in my home.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Western PA
    Posts
    25,400
    Sadly, it is guys like this that get the publicity while those of us with clean records and a desire to do things properly labor largely in silence and obscurity.

    I will assure you that there ARE good HVAC guys out there. The news will have you believe that they are in the minority, but I'm not convinced. More like a few bad apples spoiling the reputation of a large bunch of good, conscientious men.

    Keep looking, Florida Joy, you will find the contractor that you are looking for.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
    Posts
    6,414
    Unfortunately many "contractors" in the hvac industry are "fly by nights" and are unlicensed and uninsured. Usually they are the ones that get jobs by low balling price and do poor job installing then when you have a problem they are nowhere to be found.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
    Posts
    503
    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Unfortunately many "contractors" in the hvac industry are "fly by nights" and are unlicensed and uninsured. Usually they are the ones that get jobs by low balling price and do poor job installing then when you have a problem they are nowhere to be found.
    I know you are correct! The thing that really gets me is that twice now I've gotten referred to "fly by nights" by supposedly reputable websites.... Maytag (this recent "nightmare" contractor) and Comfort Institute (the Amana dealer who sounded "nice" on the phone but turned out to be just as bad as this Maytag guy).

    Who knows how badly you would get "taken" by not knowing how to do background checks before inviting these people to your home.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
    Posts
    6,414
    See if you can find a contractor in your area that is affiliated http://www.certaincomfort.org/index.cfm?p=page&id=8

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
    Posts
    6,414
    Just about any reputable contractor will have an account with a nordyne distributer. They should be able to buy and install an iq drive system, although nordyne will not sell an iq drive to a contractor that has not been through a training course on the iq drive and has a certification card for the iq drive or at least that's how it was last year.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
    Posts
    503
    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    See if you can find a contractor in your area that is affiliated http://www.certaincomfort.org/index.cfm?p=page&id=8
    Been there, done that. The closest company listed (another county, not close at all) is a construction company doing commercial and residential building design. The only other (far, far away) has an invalid URL listed. I did find some information about their service area and I'm not in it!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Anderson, South Carolina, United States
    Posts
    6,414

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
    Posts
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Just about any reputable contractor will have an account with a nordyne distributer. They should be able to buy and install an iq drive system, although nordyne will not sell an iq drive to a contractor that has not been through a training course on the iq drive and has a certification card for the iq drive or at least that's how it was last year.
    The thermostat (nordyne calls it a controller) that is MANDATORY for the iQ drive to work properly is a dealer only item. I'm pretty sure they won't sell the iQ drive or the controller to anyone without certification on the iQ drive equipment.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Florida Space Coast
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtrammel View Post
    Been there, too. No cigar!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Massachusetts
    Posts
    6,829
    So how about 'interviewing' the company over the telephone. Naturally there's no such thing as a 'sure method' but if you ask the right questions, you may be pleasantly surprised at the results. What I'm suggesting is that for either equipment replacement or for service, you lead by asking the same question. The question to ask is, "How would you size a replacement (furnace, heat pump, AC) for my home?" Any answer that is associated with "load analysis, Manual 'J' calculation, ACCA load analysis" or similar, is most likely a company that is not cutting corners, is not winning bids by being the lowest price and is a company you'd like to have in your home. On the other hand, those that require you to call a beeper number, leave a voice mail on an audio recorder (cell phone calls are okay for small company's doing a good job so I'm not speaking about the tech who's in an attic and can't answer his phone) or one that answers with, "by square footage, the area of the home, my vast experience in the business or by the existing equipment size" or similar should be avoided. They're the companies that are telling you, if you know the right answer, by virtue of their bad answer, that they cut corners and/or are not real businessmen. You're quite right, you need to do your homework and remember, even the very best companies have distractors.
    If YOU want change, YOU have to first change.

    If you are waiting for the 'other guy' to change first, just remember, you're the 'other guy's' other guy. To continue to expect real change when you keep acting the same way as always, is folly. Won't happen. Real change will only happen when a majority of the people change the way they vote!

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