I have a New Yorker gas furnace which was installed in October 2010. A few weeks after installation I began having issues with the pilot light randomly going out. Sometimes it would happen once a week, sometimes multiple times a day. I notified the installer and he tried on many occasions to fix the issue, to no avail. Eventually he brought in the manufacturer who deemed it a "condensation issue" -- essentially condensation was dripping onto the pilot light and putting it out. They fixed it (or so I thought) and I did not experience the problem again.
Last winter (2011) I had no known issues.
Fast forward to 2 weeks ago, my heater suddenly began short cycling. I contacted the installer and made an appointment. He never showed up and never contacted me. I was COLD. I called someo ne else, thinking it was something simple like a dirty flame censor. Well, the tech opened the furnace and the flame wands were completely rusted shut, which caused the short cycling. He deemed it a leak and told me that my heater was defective and that I should contact the installer, who should contact the manufacturer and "take responsibility" for the heater he installed. Basically, the moisture that was putting out my pilot light never went away, it just moved and dripped on the wands.
In the meantime, the tech cleaned the heater and got the heater up and running again, because after all it had been 5 days at that point with no heat, in the middle of january. However, you could still hear the leak, hissing as it hit the metal. It needed to be addressed.
I have been trying to contact the installer for over a week. He has been leading me along day by day, telling me he's going to contact the manufacturer, come out to look at it, etc. He finally showed up tonight and told me that he spoke to the manufacturer, who instructed him to put some kind of bypass in the furnace to stop the "condensation." He said he is going to come back tomorrow and do the work.
Here's the thing. He wants to charge me $$$ for parts and labor, to put in the bypass. I (rightfully) already put out $$$ for the other tech to come out and do the temporary fix after he stood me up for the initial service call. I feel some kind of way about having to pay for this fix AT ALL. I was told by the installer and manufacturer that the issue was settled 2 years ago. Now I have to pay $$$ that MIGHT fix a problem that is caused not by normal wear and tear, but because of a defect?
My question -- is this normal? Is the installer being just in asking me to pay for this fix? And what if it doesn't work? This is my first house, and the heater was my first major purchase/dealing with a contractor. I knew it needed the be installed when I purchased the house, the previous one was from 1952 (!) My home is 93 years old, a 2 story rowhome in Philadelphia.
Thanks in advance for your help.