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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    1,167
    Take head of this message and you might save yourself so money. A friend of mine installs hvac equipment whenever and however he can do it...he cannot do the wiring and has very limited knowlege of any service type work that needs to be done to a unit and has limited troubleshooting skills so he calls on me to cover his back whenever problems arise or he needs help wiring something. Ok here is the story. He called me today and said he needed help getting a package heat pump started...he had installed it for a homeowner who had bought the unit over the internet in order to supposedly save some money. My friend calls me up saying its installed but he fears hes done something wrong in the low voltage wiring circuit because the thermostat is not energizing the unit. When I get there he tells me that the homeowner had him pull out an older but working split system heat pump so he could put a newer 12 seer package heat pump in that he had bought off the internet. The homeowner was very proud of himself that he had saved so much money by doing this and found my friend who installed it at a very reduced price thus getting a very very cheap install and getting a efficient system to boot. When i heard what the owner paid for the 4 ton package heat pump I was impressed because it was indeed lower than what I can even buy such a unit for (goodman).
    Upon further investigation however I noticed that this unit was not in fact a heat pump but was a straight air package system with electric heat only (15kw heat strips).
    So I went ahead and fixed the wiring problem...replaced the heat pump t-stat with the appropriate t-stat for his unit and gave the homeowner the bad news. The homeowner had removed a more efficient heat pump and had installed a less efficient and more expensive to operate electric heat system. His smile quickly faded and he was no longer proud of himself. He states that he specificly ordered a heat pump and thought thats what he got...however any knowlegable hvac guy would have known it wasnt right off the bat by looking the unit over and reading the bill of sale...but since he went the cheap route he got bit. Not only that but I informed him that his 10 year warranty he also purchased from the internet company was virtually useless as most goodman distributors in my area will only warranty parts on units that were bought thru them...thats the way it is in my area. So if he ever needs a warranty part he most likely will have to wait a day or so on parts to be shipped to him via overnight delivery and will pay additional freight for this. Now hes contemplating removing the new system that was just installed because he now knows how high his heating bills will be next winter. So let this be a lesson for the diy masters out there....there is a place for diy but hvac is not one of them. Also the price he got on the system he bought over the internet turned out to be much much higher than if he had gotten the system locally. Live and learn..there are no free lunches.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    665
    Oh, thats.......funny! Too bad dude!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Posts
    3,157
    Bet his first concern was getting ripped off by some contractor that was out to screw him over.

    and to think , he could have saved even more money if he would have installed some of the system himself. Who really cares about the warranty, He bought a Goodman, They never break down

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Soside Chicago
    Posts
    377
    thats a painful lesson!ouchhhhhh!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    North Las Vegas
    Posts
    784
    LOL

    A story full of mistakes made by everyone it seems.

    1.Not to be down on your friend but what is he doing attempting installs if he is in over his head in the first place, I think that is known as being a Hack.

    2.The Homeowner should have not purchased anything without doing the research first and making sure he was getting what he paid for even if it was off line, no matter how much anyone grips about it its going to take place whether you like it or not and yes they will always find someone to do the install money is money and everyone needs it at times. Granted if he would have hired a Contractor he might have payed more but in the long run he would have had a system that worked for him.

    3. I find it hard to believe that a Pro would even go over to help a friend out knowing full well he was a hack and taking money from his own pocket. If you really want to be a friend to him then tell him to leave things alone that he doesn't fully understand and call in a Pro or better yet give take him under your wing and teach him somethings so he isn't out there putting other peoples lifes in danger. If your out there fixing his problems then you by your actions are encourging Hacks as well and the people that hire them.

    4.Was there a permit pulled for this wonderful job, Not many Pros I know whould go around and work on an Install with out one being one site, our permits require contractors name and license number before its issued.

    [Edited by retired btc on 04-08-2005 at 01:31 PM]
    Far better it is to dare mighty things, to win glorious triumphs even though checkered by failure, than to rank with those poor spirits who neither enjoy nor suffer much because they live in the gray twilight that knows neither victory nor defeat. (President Theodore Roosevelt)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    556
    Originally posted by retired btc
    LOL

    3. I find it hard to believe that a Pro would even go over to help a friend out knowing full well he was a hack .

    [Edited by retired btc on 04-08-2005 at 01:31 PM]
    Thats why he calls himself the hackmaster. Duh

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Dallas TX
    Posts
    2,216
    Boy that is like a really good bed time story. Not every DIY goes that bad but a lot do simply because they do not know what or how to double check what they are buying. I had lunch with A/C Harris today and told him that it isn't always this or that unless you are a parts changer. It is what you know that makes us talented and know what the heck we are doing. I feel for the guy because of the wasted money but now he knows.

    Thanks for sharing.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    GEORGIA
    Posts
    1,532

    Angry

    Three cheers for Retired btc...I could have not said it better....but lets go back on one of his points, hackmaster? You are a Professional member? This kind of irresponble behavior on your part is a large reason this industry is going down the tubes...your hack friend is doing unlicenced work and you encourage it? He knows he can bite off more than he can chew because he has you to fall back on...geez...In this state , the "encouraging of un-licenced contractors to preform licenced work" is grounds for lience revocation....oh crap, I give up, I'm afraid the HVAC community will always be right next to the back street Automatic Trans. people...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio, United States
    Posts
    12,911
    Actually "our" transmssion shop operates out of the same building. Cuts down on our overhead. That Stephy she sounds like a mean one.

    No Heat No Cool You need Action Fast

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Suppy NC
    Posts
    4,513
    wow what a way to learn a lesson
    seems always the hard way to

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    1,167
    btc and stephy. First off lets look at the true definition of a hack. A hack is one who truly doesnt know what they are doing and just wing it. Example is...one who installs a unit not knowing how to size duct work and just guesses, one who leaves duct work hanging on the ground and leaves it looking like a snake pit under a house or in the attic..very sloppy work, one who replaces a capacitor and just leaves it hanging inside the cabinet without mounting it back...ect ect ect. The problem with hacking is that the units always fail in time ...always. Although my friend is not a state licensed contractor he is licensed as a specialty contractor which allows him to install residential hvac in residential homes as long as it is in the county and not in the city limits...most change outs around here take place in the counties. Now the gentlemen in question who installed this unit is an expert installer with the exception of being able to troubleshoot electrical problems. He has no problem installing main voltage to the units and running tstat line and mounting tstat and all his installs adhere strictly to code and beyond. On many installs I do with my company I use this individual to install and I will put him up against any you 2 have on board as far as installing technique and code adherence. Now apparently you 2 einsteins feel that anyone without a state contractor license is a hack...wrong. I know personally 3 individuals with state mechanical contractors licenses that I wouldnt let work on my lawnmower much less put in a hvac unit. So basicly what im saying is that a hack can be licensed or unlicensed...that isnt the criteria...its how well the person does his job. Yes this individual takes on install jobs and relies on me to take care of bugs in electrical or any service work he encounters down the road on his installs but nothing wrong with that. Lets face it...hacks are here to stay and will always always be with us whether its in hvac, electrical, car mechanics...pick a service field and I will show you hacks. The reason there are hacks is not me or people like me...its the homeowner. As long as someone is looking for cheap work then thats what they are gonna get and there will always be someone available to do it..its just the way it is. So if your looking for someone to blame for encouraging hacks dont look at me, state goverment, goodman or whomever...look at cheap skates who own homes and are willing to risk the lives of their families or the home they live in to save a buck. I run a reputable company and have been in business for almost 8 years now and have been in the hvac business since 1983. I advertise in the yellow pages and am state licensed yada yada yada...dont mean a hill of beans unless you do quality work. My business is based off repeat customers and I can name the number of customers ive lost on one hand over the years. I am not the reason there are hacks around.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2000
    Location
    WYO
    Posts
    2,019
    Hackmaster is the name you chose tho.
    never say never

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    South Carolina
    Posts
    1,167
    I dont really think i meet the defintion of a hack...my price list pretty much exclude me from that group.

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