The last 2 posts — This is not your father’s furnace” and “Quality?” have stirred a good discussion. I encourage you to read both and to scroll down to the bottom of each and read the posted comments.
One consensus was the distribution will sell to anyone! Unfortunately, that is a sad truth today. Manufacturers are pushing for more market share and they are pushing their distribution chain to sell more. Because of that, the perceived quality of the equipment suffers because now there are people who haven’t a clue buying and putting the equipment in.
The biggest problem here is too many of these guys are what I call “set and run” contractors. START-UP? They don’t know the meaning. They buy a curb adapter, lift the old unit off, put the curb adapter on and set the unit on it. Hook up the gas and electric, turn it on, and leave. Now if there is a problem, they don’t know what to do other than change parts.
Thos brings me to some of the other comments the posts received and that is the poor quality of components. I track warranty very closely. One trend I have seen is an “increase” in the warranty to sales ratio. A good number is 2% (+/- 0.2 — 1.8 to 2.2%). Recently, that figure has climbed to 3.13%. WHY? It comes back to these “parts changers” who skew the warranty to sales rations because they buy only a few pieces of equipment but have a lot of warranty claims on what they buy because they don’t know service and are just part changers until they get the unit working — never figuring out waht was actualy wrong. If that don’t work, they either walk away or tell their customer that the piece of equipment is a “lemon”. then they let them deal with the manufacturer and they are gone.
This could become a whole discussion in itself. All I am trying to say is:
- I know today’s equipment is a lot more efficient and safer that “my father’s furnace”.
- todays equipment requires trained personnel to service and install.
- Don’t ever stop learning. Technology keeps changing and either you keep up with it or you will be left behind.
- Components used in the product are pretty reliable but there will always be some issues and that’s what warranty is for.
- I know that manufacturers have set up warranty parts failure analysis and work closely with vendors on this.
- and if they can’t correct, new vendors are found.
- Lastly — a very good point was made about LICENSING. For an industry that deals with electricity, gas, pressures, and do this for the public in their homes and businesses, it is scary to think that there is no one out there regulating these people.
- Some states or municipalities do, but there are a whole lot more that don’t.
So as I stated at the end of “This is not Your Father’s Furnace” post:
Yes, it is sad to see old reliable go its way, but today’s technology assures us that these products are going to help conserve energy for future generations and provide us with the utmost safety in the process.
Remember, also, that this new furnace can be just as reliable as your father’s furnace if you take care of it and have it maintained yearly by a qualified service agency Then you can have the best of both situations – high efficiency, safety, and reliability!
Thanks to all that commented and responded. This has been a learning experience for me and I did have to take the “blinders off” and understand the true feelings expressed by some of the comments. As I’ve said many times, I don’t know it all and I will always try to keep learning.