Searching \ for '[OT] Is the repairman scaming me?' in subject line. ()
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure! Help us get a faster server
FAQ page: www.piclist.com/techref/index.htm?key=repairman+scaming
Search entire site for: 'Is the repairman scaming me?'.

Exact match. Not showing close matches.
PICList Thread
'[OT] Is the repairman scaming me?'
2005\12\12@023831 by Juan Cubillo

flavicon
face
part 1 792 bytes content-type:text/plain; (decoded quoted-printable)

Hello list,

The story:
My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I had to pay $250. Im not happy...
The problem:
The repairman told me he had to change the "thermal protector" of the fridge. I was shoked when I noticed that the amazingly expensive thermal protector is same size as a coke bottle cap. I even have capacitors that weight more than this component!
This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the top. Im 99% sure that this thing costs no more than 5 bucks.
Im attaching a small drawing I made to give a better idea how this thing looks like.
Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is? Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???

Thanks
Juan Cubillo


part 2 4169 bytes content-type:image/gif; (decode)


part 3 35 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
(decoded 7bit)

2005\12\12@031429 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Juan Cubillo wrote:

>Hello list,
>
>The story:
>My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I had to pay $250. I´m not happy...
>The problem:
>The repairman told me he had to change the "thermal protector" of the fridge. I was shoked when I noticed that the amazingly expensive thermal protector is same size as a coke bottle cap. I even have capacitors that weight more than this component!
>This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the top. I´m 99% sure that this thing costs no more than 5 bucks.
>I´m attaching a small drawing I made to give a better idea how this thing looks like.
>Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?
>Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???
>
>Thanks
>Juan Cubillo
>  
>
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>

Looks like a scam to me.

--Bob

-- Note: To protect our network,
attachments must be sent to
spam_OUTattachTakeThisOuTspamengineer.cotse.net .
1-520-777-7606 USA/Canada
http://beam.to/azengineer

2005\12\12@035905 by Per Linne

flavicon
face
Could possibly be an RS-Components 228-2513 @ $6:- (in Sweden).

PerL


----- Original Message ----- From: "Juan Cubillo" <.....jacubilloroKILLspamspam@spam@costarricense.cr>
To: "Microcontroller discussion list - Public." <piclistspamKILLspammit.edu>
Sent: Monday, December 12, 2005 5:31 AM
Subject: [OT] Is the repairman scaming me?


>This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the top. I´m 99% sure that this thing
>costs no more than 5 bucks.

2005\12\12@042355 by Joe McCauley

picon face
That looks rather like a Bi-Metallic Thermostat. They are available for less
than US$5. If that is indeed what he changed then you are right to feel
annoyed. Don't forget to factor in the fact that he had to call to your home
though. Here in Ireland many appliance repair places have a standard charge.
Maybe that is what they had in your case?

Joe

> {Original Message removed}

2005\12\12@061751 by Tom Sefranek

face picon face
They cost about $25.  It is an over temperature switch.
Like most thermal breakers, once they fire they are more likely to continue to fire.
Contact junctions get lossy and generate their own heat.
So you paid 100% markup on the part, and $200 labor cost.
Pretty much normal for service...

Here in Massachusetts we have people taking tolls on the highway earning $150,000+ a year.

Juan Cubillo wrote:

{Quote hidden}

--   *
 |  __O    Thomas C. Sefranek   .....WA1RHPKILLspamspam.....ARRL.net
 |_-\<,_   Amateur Radio Operator: WA1RHP    (*)/ (*)  Bicycle mobile on 145.41, 448.625 MHz

hamradio.cmcorp.com/inventory/Inventory.html
http://www.harvardrepeater.org

2005\12\12@073006 by olin piclist

face picon face
Juan Cubillo wrote:
> Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?

I'm guessing it shuts of the compressor motor if it gets too hot.

> Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???

It depends on what you agreed to up front.  Keep in mind, you're not really
paying for the part as much as the house call.  How long was the service guy
there?  How much did GE say they would charge per hour?  How much is the
part itself itemized on the bill?  If it's truly a $5 item, then it's
probably acceptable to charge $25 for it when making a house call.


******************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, (978) 742-9014.  #1 PIC
consultant in 2004 program year.  http://www.embedinc.com/products

2005\12\12@075052 by Matthew Miller

flavicon
face
On Mon, Dec 12, 2005 at 06:18:00AM -0500, Tom Sefranek wrote:
>
> Here in Massachusetts we have people taking tolls on the highway earning
> $150,000+ a year.

I'm wondering just how this happens? A person working a no-skill job
earning over 100k a year? That's ridiculous. Is the mob involved? ;^)

Matthew

--
"It is difficult to get a man to understand
something when his salary depends on
his not understanding it."
                -- Upton Sinclair, "The Jungle"

2005\12\12@080746 by Thomas C. Sefranek

face picon face
-----Original Message-----
From: EraseMEpiclist-bouncesspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTmit.edu [piclist-bouncesspamspam_OUTmit.edu] On Behalf Of
Matthew Miller
Sent: Monday, December 12, 2005 7:27 AM
To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
Subject: Re: [OT] Is the repairman scaming me?

On Mon, Dec 12, 2005 at 06:18:00AM -0500, Tom Sefranek wrote:
>
> Here in Massachusetts we have people taking tolls on the highway earning
> $150,000+ a year.

I'm wondering just how this happens?

State employee, Union, Longevity.
The chairman of the bureau is claiming that nothing is wrong...

A person working a no-skill job earning over 100k a year?

I does fly in the face of us who have taken the time to get multiple
degrees, LOTS of experience, and working for much less.

That's ridiculous. Is the mob involved? ;^)

I couldn't say, but it IS suspicious.

Matthew


 *
 |  __O    Thomas C. Sefranek  @spam@tcsKILLspamspamcmcorp.com
 |_-\<,_   Amateur Radio Operator: WA1RHP
 (*)/ (*)  Bicycle mobile on 145.41MHz PL74.4

ARRL Instructor, Technical Specialist, VE Contact.
hamradio.cmcorp.com/inventory/Inventory.html
http://www.harvardrepeater.org


2005\12\12@084431 by Darrell Wyatt

picon face
>
>>This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the
>>top. I´m 99% sure that this thing costs no more than 5 bucks.


$5.00 for the part, $245.00 for knowing *which* part.

Too many unlisted variables to make a call from here, but
you might call the home office and ask for justification of
the charges...

D.

_________________________________________________________________
Express yourself instantly with MSN Messenger! Download today - it's FREE! http://messenger.msn.click-url.com/go/onm00200471ave/direct/01/

2005\12\12@090020 by M. Adam Davis

face picon face
It really depends on how difficult it was to diagnose and replace.  If
it's on a simple screw bracket that is easy to get to and can be
replaced in 5 minutes, then it may seem a simple cheap thing.  But if
it takes a lot of testing to diagnose it, then you're paying more for
their knowledge and experience than anything else.

Reminds me of the guy who retired after decades at a job.  They called
him back some time later and asked if he could resolve a problem they
couldn't figure out.  He inspected the machine, made a chalk mark on
the component to be replaced, and left.  Shortly thereafter they
received a bill for $50,000.  Furious, they called him and asked why
the charge was so high, so he sent them an itemized bill:
Chalk mark - $1
Knowing where to put it - $49,999

In the end, most mid to low end refrigerators are simple to diagnose
and fix.  When you get to the high end models it becomes a little more
involved.  Most of the charge is likely to be the base cost of a house
call, then a fixed labor charge for the particular fix.  Since you
went with the "official" GE repairman the cost is going to be 20-60%
higher than a generic repairman.  Further, if they had to drive a long
distance the charge goes up significantly.

I doubt he's scamming you any more than any repairman would.  If you
feel you have a honest complaint, call GE and discuss the issue with
them.

-Adam

On 12/11/05, Juan Cubillo <KILLspamjacubilloroKILLspamspamcostarricense.cr> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

>

2005\12\12@091719 by o Yipmantin

flavicon
face
Some time ago, we need to make an adjustment to a 50ton. press.
We call to the seller and ask for a technician to make the maintenance.
The day after the technician went to the factory and only did an
adjustment to one nut in the press and then it start to work well.

When he gave us the invoice, it says:

- Adjustment of one nut in a 50ton. press:  US.   1.00
- To know what nut to adjust:               US. 999.00
TOTAL INVOICE:                              US.1000.00

What do you think about this?

AY


2005\12\12@092126 by Morgan Olsson

flavicon
face
Olin Lathrop 13:31 2005-12-12:
>>Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?

I empirically found:

If the compressor is running, and there is a short power break (lightning or or someone (mis-)operates power switch or connector (one second or so) the compressor can not restart due to the now existing pressure.
So after some seconds this bimetallic fuse shut off the power, and later start the compressor and all is normal again.


--
Morgan Olsson, Kivik, Sweden

2005\12\12@093145 by R. I. Nelson

picon face
part 0 44 bytes
his is a multi-part message in MIME format.
part 1 719 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset=windows-1252; format=flowed (decoded quoted-printable)

Juan Cubillo wrote:

>Hello list,
>
>The story:
>My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I had to pay $250. Im not happy...
>
<SNIP>

>Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is? >Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???
>
>Thanks
>Juan Cubillo
>  >

First to find the cost of the part, try to find the part here:

http://www.repairclinic.com/0001.asp

Next How fast did they get there to repair it.  how much of the items in the refrigerator were destroyed.
Did the repair man come at a special time that you selected?
The other issue is what you might call supply and demand.

 

part 2 391 bytes content-type:text/x-vcard; charset=utf-8;
(decoded 7bit)

begin:vcard
fn:Robert I. Nelson
n:Nelson;Robert I.
org:RIN Designs
adr:;;P.O. BOX 373;RIPON;WI;54971;USA
email;internet:RemoveMErindesignsTakeThisOuTspamcharter.net
tel;work:1-(920)-229-7152
tel;home:1-(920)-748-7443
note;quoted-printable:Custom design and building of small electro mechanical devices.=0D=0A=
       AUTOCAD work ver2002
x-mozilla-html:FALSE
version:2.1
end:vcard



part 3 35 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
(decoded 7bit)

2005\12\12@094049 by rosoftwarecontrol

flavicon
face
Normal, daily small thing.

To all kind of repairing people, auto,
house what every, my thinking is
permit being robbed and control the
rob. You should see what are happening on the street
and inside the court: robbing, cheating and scamming
are actually ADMIRED! So, to get myself in
the situation, no dislike and no like.


{Original Message removed}

2005\12\12@094632 by Mike Hord

picon face
> - Adjustment of one nut in a 50ton. press:  US.   1.00
> - To know what nut to adjust:               US. 999.00
> TOTAL INVOICE:                              US.1000.00
>
> What do you think about this?

Sometimes valid, sometimes bogus.  All of those stories
of outrage over cost vs. fiscal value of knowledge usually
focus on extremely complex and expensive equipment.

I doubt the repairman had more than a 2 year degree,
and even if he had 40 years of experience at it, a good
deal of that experience is likely of reduced value due to
changes in technology.  Add to that the (relative) simplicity
of a refrigerator and the high replacement/repair cost
ratio, and you've got an example of corporate flim-flam
artistry.

Of course, that does depend on time to repair, travel
time, etc., and most especially on line-item cost of
replacement part.  We have a component which failed
on a piece of equipment here.  Replacement from
equipment manufacturer: $500.  From the component's
manufacturer:  $60.  NOT including an installer, either-
we'd have to do the repair (not difficult, though).

Mike H.

2005\12\12@094950 by rosoftwarecontrol

flavicon
face
good point here.

Knowing where to put worthes 50,000 time more!
It is a standard of a competitation sociaty! Is there
another kind of society, knowing where to put is free,
but chalk cost more?




{Original Message removed}

2005\12\12@100753 by Bob J

picon face
Thermal switches are very common in household appliances.  Typically this is
at the very least a $100 house call.  I replaced one not too long ago on our
electric dryer.  The part cost less than $10, and took about three hours out
of my Saturday between opening up the dryer, diagnosing the problem, going
to Sears to pick up the part, and putting the dryer back together.  My own
opinion on this sort of thing is that if you are not capable of reading a
voltmeter or using a screwdriver or have the desire to hang on to your
wallet then you have no alternative other than pay the bill.

Regards,
Bob

2005\12\12@101104 by michael brown

picon face

From: "Juan Cubillo"

>The story:
>My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I had to pay
$250. I´m not happy...
>The problem:
>The repairman told me he had to change the "thermal protector" of the
fridge. I was shoked when I noticed that >the amazingly expensive
thermal protector is same size as a coke bottle cap. I even have
capacitors that weight >more than this component!

Don't feel bad, they took me for a small fortune to replace a tiny (like
maybe 1/16 HP) little fan motor that simply blew on the compressor tank.
I had just gotten flooded and the water level got over the wimpy little
motor.  This caused it to stop blowing which quickly led to the
compressor over heating and shutting off.  Amazing how important a
miniscule amount of air flow can be.  Pretty nice of them to only charge
me $400 bucks for a $10 part and a five minute install (at most,
including moving the fridge in and out), wouldn't you say?  I generally
fix my own stuff, but the flood meant I had bigger things to immediately
tend to.  I suspect they factored that all in when calculating the
price.  :-(

2005\12\12@103145 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Sun, 2005-12-11 at 22:31 -0600, Juan Cubillo wrote:
> Hello list,
>
> The story:
> My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I had to pay $250. I&#180;m not happy...
> The problem:
> The repairman told me he had to change the "thermal protector" of the fridge. I was shoked when I noticed that the amazingly expensive thermal protector is same size as a coke bottle cap. I even have capacitors that weight more than this component!
> This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the top. I&#180;m 99% sure that this thing costs no more than 5 bucks.
> I&#180;m attaching a small drawing I made to give a better idea how this thing looks like.
> Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?
> Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???

It's a cheap part, probably around $10, or maybe even less.

It's used to protect the compressor from destroying itself. If the
compressor tries to start while there is still significant pressure in
the lines (i.e. a brief power failure, or a malfunctioning thermostat)
it will draw WAY more current then it should, and would burn itself out
after a few tries. This component senses that extreme current draw and
temporarily shuts off the compressor after a second or two. Most devices
with a compressor have a similar sort of device, some have it located
INSIDE the compressor, which is bad news if it fails!

Now, to the real question: is he scamming you? Well you are paying for
him to come to your house, diagnose the problem, get the part (probably
in his truck) and repair the appliance. If say they charge you $20 for
the part, that leaves you roughly $200 for the repair (I'm assuming some
taxes). How long was he there? $200 for a repair like this seems a
little steep, but it's entirely possible that it's a flat charge.

Call his company and ask them to explain the charges, see if something
doesn't match reality. Note though they probably charge you for travel
time, so even if he was only there for 1 hour, it may have taken him 1.5
hours to get to you place and back.

TTYL

-----------------------------
Herbert's PIC Stuff:
http://repatch.dyndns.org:8383/pic_stuff/

2005\12\12@105306 by gacrowell

flavicon
face

> On Sun, 2005-12-11 at 22:31 -0600, Juan Cubillo wrote:
> > Hello list,
> >
> > The story:
> > My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I
> had to pay $250. I´m not happy...


Recall a few years ago 20/20 (or Dateline, one of those news magazine shows) did a 'hidden camera' test of refrigerator repairs.  Rigged a refrigerator with a simple problem (loosened the connector on a circulation fan, IIRC) that could be simply repaired without replacing any part, then called a dozen different repairmen to service it.  I forget the details but I believe it was well over 50% that pulled some sort of scam, either replacing the good part, not replacing it and saying they did, or replacing some other unrelated part.

With that in mind, the thermal switch sounds like a likely problem, and $250 is probably not out of line for a house call.  You did ask for the failed part, right?  And put a meter on it to confirm it was failed open?

GC

2005\12\12@110529 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
>> Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?
>>  Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???
>>
> They cost about $25.
>

I think $25 is about right for a particular thermal protector via an
appliance dealer or manufacturer, although as others have pointed out
it's a part that costs maybe $5 from electronics suppliers...

I think you got scammed slightly more than average, depending on how
long it took to fix.  "Average" is probably about $60 to visist, $50
per half hour past the first 20 minutes, and maybe 3x markup on parts.

BillW

2005\12\12@111746 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>Recall a few years ago 20/20 (or Dateline, one
>of those news magazine shows) did a 'hidden
>camera' test of refrigerator repairs.

The BBC does a series every so often here in the UK, of looking at various
workman or companies that don't give value for money when doing repairs. I
think they tend to work out who to target from the Watchdog program
complaints.

2005\12\12@115354 by Anand Dhuru

flavicon
face
>
> $5.00 for the part, $245.00 for knowing *which* part.
>
Reminds me of the mechanic who kicks an old jalopy to make it start; the
owner is aghast at the bill of $100.00 as charges for delivering the kick.
The mech explains its just $5.00 for that, and $95.00 for knowing exactly
where to kick.

Regards,

Anand

2005\12\12@115358 by Mario Mendes Jr.

flavicon
face
For $250, put another $250 on top of it and buy yourself a new fridge.

It does not matter if it was a house call or not, it is simply ridiculous,
IMHO.  That person was trained to use a few simple tools to test here and
there and look up the problem in a list they got from the manufacturer.

Nowadays, everything is a "special skill".  If you ask me, there is no
skill involved in this one, it is simply because very few people actually
get their fridges repaired if the warranty has run out, therefore they
have to overcharge everyone that does not get a new one when it breaks.

Buy a new fridge.

-Mario

2005\12\12@122358 by Peter

picon face
part 1 1340 bytes content-type:TEXT/PLAIN; CHARSET=Windows-1252; format=flowed (decoded quoted-printable)



On Sun, 11 Dec 2005, Juan Cubillo wrote:

> Hello list,
>
> The story: My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I > had to pay $250. Im not happy... The problem: The repairman told me > he had to change the "thermal protector" of the fridge. I was shoked > when I noticed that the amazingly expensive thermal protector is same > size as a coke bottle cap. I even have capacitors that weight more > than this component! This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish > bottom and 3 leads on the top. Im 99% sure that this thing costs no > more than 5 bucks. Im attaching a small drawing I made to give a > better idea how this thing looks like. Does anyone here knows anything > about what a thermal protector is? Even better, Is the repairman > scamming me???

Ask for a receipt with itemized price/item list. There you will see something like (for example):

part                                            $25
1 hour work + travel to customer domicile) $200 tax                                         $25

this should be normal almost anywhere (except the exact price varies with the location). If you want to avoid surprises ask on the phone how much for the house call. If they say a ludicrous sum call someone else.

Peter

part 2 4169 bytes content-type:IMAGE/GIF; NAME=temp.gif (decode)

part 3 35 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
(decoded 7bit)

2005\12\12@123325 by Peter

picon face

On Mon, 12 Dec 2005, Augusto Yipmantin wrote:

> Some time ago, we need to make an adjustment to a 50ton. press.
> We call to the seller and ask for a technician to make the maintenance.
> The day after the technician went to the factory and only did an
> adjustment to one nut in the press and then it start to work well.
>
> When he gave us the invoice, it says:
>
> - Adjustment of one nut in a 50ton. press:  US.   1.00
> - To know what nut to adjust:               US. 999.00
> TOTAL INVOICE:                              US.1000.00
>
> What do you think about this?

He was a good technician who skipped the marketing training class.

Or to put it another way: Assuming you would have to work about 6 years
as mechanic to amass experience, then take evening classes in college
for four years, then work as a technician/engineer and after about 10
years start really knowing what makes things work in your line of
business, and you get a service call for a $15,000+ press out in the
boonies, drop everything, drive/fly/swim out there, patiently negotiate
any traffic jams/unmarked routes/walking in snow uphill both ways and
fix their problem in 1 hour using your experience, and go back, how much
would you charge them ?

Peter

2005\12\12@124143 by Peter

picon face

On Mon, 12 Dec 2005, microsoftwarecontrol wrote:

> good point here.
>
> Knowing where to put worthes 50,000 time more!
> It is a standard of a competitation sociaty! Is there
> another kind of society, knowing where to put is free,
> but chalk cost more?

If the knowledge of where to put the chalk is free then it is worth
nothing. That would make the pursuit of knowledge in such a society a
strictly academic occupation which few could afford, and very few would
practice. Strong hint to 'developed' societies which are optimizing the
skilled work force and engineering and medicine out of everyday life, by
subcontracting and outsourcing often to foreign nations and foreign
nationals over which they have no cultural influence and no fiscal
control, and try to focus on so called 'intellectual property' (of the
pre-existing kind - I do not discuss real progress and innovation here).
You can fool some people some of the time, but you can't fool everyone
all the time.

Peter

2005\12\12@124743 by Rolf

face picon face
Juan Cubillo wrote:
> Hello list,
>
> The story:
> My refrigerator broke. General Electric sent a repairman. I had to pay $250. I´m not happy...
> The problem:
> The repairman told me he had to change the "thermal protector" of the fridge. I was shoked when I noticed that the amazingly expensive thermal protector is same size as a coke bottle cap. I even have capacitors that weight more than this component!
> This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the top. I´m 99% sure that this thing costs no more than 5 bucks.
> I´m attaching a small drawing I made to give a better idea how this thing looks like.
> Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?
> Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???
>
> Thanks
> Juan Cubillo
>  
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
Since people seem to be relating stories, here is one you can learn from too. I did.

My neighbor and I were having an "over the fence" conversation. This was in February this year. The temp here in Toronto was around -20C (one of the cooler evenings). He was lamenting his expensive visit from the central heating/furnace repairman. His furnace had stopped working the previous evening. He has 2 children, and he made an emergency call to Sears on a Sunday evening. The repairman came out, inspected his thermostat, replaced the AA battery. Left. Billed $150 (Canadian), said that was the fee for an emergency call out, and he would not charge for the AA battery.

It transpires that the battery warning indicator was set on the programmable thermostat, but because of it's location it was hard to see where the digital thermostat was mounted. Additionally, it requires less energy to display he LCD on the thermostat than to close the thermostat "relay", thus, the thermostat appeared to be working, but was not able to drive the furnace.

For those of you in colder climes.... remember to double check your programmable thermostat before you declare your furnace "broken".

Rolf

2005\12\12@132707 by Robert Rolf

picon face


Morgan Olsson wrote:

> Olin Lathrop 13:31 2005-12-12:
>
>>>Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?
>
>
> I empirically found:
>
> If the compressor is running, and there is a short power break (lightning or or someone (mis-)operates power switch or connector (one second or so) the compressor can not restart due to the now existing pressure.
> So after some seconds this bimetallic fuse shut off the power, and later start the compressor and all is normal again.

True.
But sometimes the thermal cutoff resets too quickly, the compressor
is unable to start against the remaining pressure, and the cycle repeats
until the cutoff fails.
Since the cutoff is opening under FULL load, and an inductive one at that,
the contacts quickly erode, so a new one is required.

I had this happen on my GE fridge, but replaced the c/o myself.
About a month later it failed again, and it ultimately turned out
to be the compressor bearing were failing, causing too high start currents.
I mention this so that the original poster prepares himself for the
possibility that he'll need a new refrigerator soon (new is cheaper than
a compressor replacement, and you get better efficiencies today).

Robert

2005\12\12@192817 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face

On Dec 12, 2005, at 9:49 AM, Rolf wrote:

> The repairman came out, inspected his thermostat, replaced the AA
> battery. Left. Billed $150 (Canadian), said that was the fee for
> an emergency call out, and he would not charge for the AA battery.

Somehow I find that more acceptable than being charged $100 for the
house call and $50 for the battery...

I have a bit of sympathy for the repairman; you're not paying for
the expertise to replace a AA battery or a $20 thermal fuse; you're
paying for the expertise to solve more difficult problems, acquire
and keep a hazmat drivers license, run a small business, meet assorted
license requirements, stock parts, and so on.  It's rather unfortunate
but probably inevitable that things have gone that way.  I expect that
those of you who "consult" have some understanding; I doubt that that
high a percentage of YOUR "billable hours" are for activities that
required your expensive degree and hard-acquired special knowledge...

BillW

2005\12\12@193342 by Ling SM

picon face

> When he gave us the invoice, it says:
>
> - Adjustment of one nut in a 50ton. press:  US.   1.00
> - To know what nut to adjust:               US. 999.00
> TOTAL INVOICE:                              US.1000.00
>
> What do you think about this?

A responsible one (to themselves as well as to their client) may do
their costing this way:
1.  Part =  X
2.  Effort to order part = >X
3.  Effort to stock part = >X
4.  Effort to retrieve part = >X
5.  Effort to identify part is faulty = >X
6.  Effort to fix part = >X
7.  Cost of Risk if tech do damage = >X
8.  Transport =  >X
9.  Cost of risk during warranty period = >X
10. Cost of Risk that customer come back during warranty for totally
non-related work = >>X
11. Cost of Risk that customer DIY after knowing it is part X, or engage
another person = >>X  [for this, they just negate it by giving false
information or incomplete information]

I think for low volume repair, it is not much different from an
engineering work one is performing.

I just tossed one away after the compressor gave way, as I figure other
stuff may be breaking down soon, and the seal definitely need to replace
 in a while.

Toss = reusing it to store my electronics part, as the Japanese fridge
is one of best shelfing design cabinet for component storage.

Ling SM




2005\12\12@201523 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
On Sun, 11 Dec 2005 22:31:53 -0600, Juan Cubillo wrote:

>...
> This thing is a black cilinder with a brownish bottom and 3 leads on the top. I'm 99% sure that this thing costs no more than 5 bucks.
> I'm attaching a small drawing I made to give a better idea how this thing looks like.
> Does anyone here knows anything about what a thermal protector is?
It looks to me like a resettable thermal cutout - other options are self- and non-resettable, but the little projection looks like the reset button.  They are safety cutouts and all of them work by the current passing through heating a bi-metal strip, and when it reaches a certain temperature, representing an overload current, the strip flips open a pair of contacts, breaking the circuit.  The non-resettable type is just like a fuse - when it blows, you have to replace it.  On the self-resetting type when it cools down the contacts will make again on their own.  The resettable type needs human intervention to reset it.  Did you try pressing that button to see if it clicked and got it working?  (That was a silly question - if you had, you wouldn't have called the repairman!).

> Even better, Is the repairman scamming me???

Probably not - but his company may well be!  How long was he on site?  What did the Invoice say?  Here in England there is usually a "call-out charge" which may be GB£50 (say US$85) and then a charge for time on top of that, plus parts.  The price of parts always surprises me, and not in a good way...

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England

2005\12\13@073023 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
William ChopsWestfield wrote:

> It's rather unfortunate but probably inevitable that things have gone
> that way.  I expect that those of you who "consult" have some
> understanding; I doubt that that high a percentage of YOUR "billable
> hours" are for activities that required your expensive degree and
> hard-acquired special knowledge...

I'm not sure that things "have gone that way"; I rather think they always
have been that way, and it's only a result of the illusion of early
industrialization that ever increasing specialization may be the future.

A good hunter did probably 99% of his time the same things a mediocre
hunter would have done, too. The difference lies in those very few moments
where excellence shows. (There are of course always those few exceptional
persons who constantly radiate excellence -- but then, they usually do that
/all/ the time, no matter what exactly they do, and it's not really any
specific expertise in a profession that makes them exceptional.)

Gerhard

More... (looser matching)
- Last day of these posts
- In 2005 , 2006 only
- Today
- New search...