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  1. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    3
    No burnt wires anywhere I can see. I'm not looking for a complex answer - if it involves tools, I probably shouldn't be doing it. I understand how much electricity is running through that unit. I just want to make sure I haven't missed the obvious such as a fuse, a loose wire or a tripped breaker. I'm a home-owner looking for help at a reasonable price and I don't feel that a $200 service call fee is fair if all the person does is change a fuse or flip the breaker.
    Thanks for all the replies. I'm confident I've done all I should so I'm calling in a pro.

  2. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    Zelienople, Pa
    Posts
    2,965
    Originally posted by tayost
    I don't feel that a $200 service call fee is fair if all the person does is change a fuse or flip the breaker.
    What if the "cheaper" service tech isn't as honest as the "fuse replacement" guy and ends up ripping you off for hundreds more?
    Do you know how much it costs a company to send a tech to your home for 1 hour?
    $200 is probably nearly break even for most areas...
    How tall are you Private???!!!!

  3. #16
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Richmond, Virginia
    Posts
    365
    You don't think it's fair to pay a service guy $200 to flip a breaker?! Give us a break (no pun intended). Let me ask you, would you take off to drive 15-20 min during working hours, spend 30-45 min talking to a homeowner getting the background on the system, taking 15 min to diagnose the system, "flipping the breaker", Let's see that's 20+30+20=70 min or 1 hr 10 min at an average of $80/hr, plus a $45 trip charge you're close to $120.

    NOW--let's say you have to go to the doctor because you have a lession on your skin and don't know what it is, you drive 20 min to the doctors office, spend 40 min waiting around for the doctor, spend 5 min with nurse who takes your hieght and wieght then spend, 2 minutes with doctor...who in the end tells you you've got a zit on your nose. You've spent 1 hr 7 minutes of your time for 2 minutes of a doctors time who doesn't even remember your name and will charge you $300. That's a $150/hr and I'll be you won't think twice about going to a doctor.

    hmmmm what's the disconnect here?

    Call a professional, at least most service guys will remember their clients names. We have invested a lot of time and money into education and tools for our business. I don't appreciate when someone says "I don't feel like paying $200 to have someone "flip a breaker"" Well, a lot of us have spent far more than that learning what caused the breaker to flip.

    Knowledge is power, and I'm sorry you don't have the knowledge to troubleshoot your system, but a pro does.
    Call one.
    Sean Cantrell

  4. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    3
    Wow... I didn't mean to make so many people upset. I do not mind paying a premium price for a premium service. I do not mind paying competitive fees for services that are beyond my expertise. Heck, I don't even mind paying those prices if I'm just too lazy to do it myself. However, I think it would be in the best interest of some companies to offer some basic tips at a reduced rate. As a home owner I would gladly pay more for the technician to come out to my house when I wasn't able to resolve it over the phone. Would it be so terrible for the phone representative to ask me if I have checked the breakers or if I felt comfortable replacing a fuse? I don't even get that option - it's a flat $200 to tell me what is wrong plus hourly labor plus the retail cost of parts to fix it. Shouldn't some part of this business allow for establishing customer relations? As a new customer why would I come back to you for service when I was charged $215 to have my breaker tripped? In that scenerio it's my opinion that I would have been ripped off. I'd much rather have someone charge me $50 for a phone consultation covering the basics and then $150 for the service call if I can't figure it out. These are just my thoughts and opinions - the way I see it from my point of view. I could be a minority in this case. The only reason I posted my question was to see if there were some BASIC steps I should take in this case. I do not know how business you guys generate from the lack of education of your customers but I do know that I would call the technician who asked me to check the fuses and flip the breaker the next time I had an issue before I would call the guy who charged me $200 to come out and flip it himself.

  5. #18
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Richmond, Virginia
    Posts
    365
    Look at it this way, does your doctor give you an exam over the phone?

    Not to mention the liability factor. It is dangerous from a liability stand point to give advice over the phone.

    When someone calls me saying their a/c heat isn't working the first question I as is "Is the t-stat on and set to cool, heat what ever..." Beyond that I need to visually inspect the system. I would never tell a homeowner to flip a breaker - way too much liability involved.

    Find a contractor you trust and stick with him. It will pay off in the long run.
    Sean Cantrell

  6. #19
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Office and warehouse in both Crystal River & New Port Richey ,FL
    Posts
    18,836
    Originally posted by tayost
    Wow... I didn't mean to make so many people upset. I do not mind paying a premium price for a premium service. I do not mind paying competitive fees for services that are beyond my expertise. Heck, I don't even mind paying those prices if I'm just too lazy to do it myself. However, I think it would be in the best interest of some companies to offer some basic tips at a reduced rate. As a home owner I would gladly pay more for the technician to come out to my house when I wasn't able to resolve it over the phone. Would it be so terrible for the phone representative to ask me if I have checked the breakers or if I felt comfortable replacing a fuse? I don't even get that option - it's a flat $200 to tell me what is wrong plus hourly labor plus the retail cost of parts to fix it. Shouldn't some part of this business allow for establishing customer relations? As a new customer why would I come back to you for service when I was charged $215 to have my breaker tripped? In that scenerio it's my opinion that I would have been ripped off. I'd much rather have someone charge me $50 for a phone consultation covering the basics and then $150 for the service call if I can't figure it out. These are just my thoughts and opinions - the way I see it from my point of view. I could be a minority in this case. The only reason I posted my question was to see if there were some BASIC steps I should take in this case. I do not know how business you guys generate from the lack of education of your customers but I do know that I would call the technician who asked me to check the fuses and flip the breaker the next time I had an issue before I would call the guy who charged me $200 to come out and flip it himself.
    I understand what you are saying and we ask our customer service people to ask if they have checked breakers,stat setting ,filter ,etc.

    I know they don't always do that as they often here"JUST GET OUT HERE" when they do.They would certainly suggest that if you asked,"is there anything I can check ?"

  7. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    9,548
    Same thing as stated above, is the t-stat on? Are the breakers on? That's it. They're not charging you $200 to flip a breaker, they're charging you $1 to flip the breaker, and $199 for knowing which breaker to flip. The doctor analagy is correct.... $1 for writing the prescription, $299 because he/she can. Many people here have spent alot of their time studying HVAC, do you think they shouldn't be paid for it? And this includes fuses/breakers. I had to pay Ford to reset my truck computer $100 (2 minutes) because they're the only ones that could. Please understand. This is why they don't allow step by step DIY questions on this site. General answers,yes.
    If everything was always done "by the book"....the book would never change.

  8. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    2,597
    check the circuit breaker. free advice.

    when it trips again it's time to call a pro to figure out why.

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