• Report: #20026

Complaint Review: United Air comfort

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  • Submitted: Thu, May 02, 2002
  • Updated: Mon, June 23, 2003

  • Reported By:Dayton Tx
United Air comfort
166129 W. Hardy Rd. Houston, tx Houston, Texas U.S.A.

United Air comfort ripoff dirty SOB's Houston Texas

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Lay Down With Dogs........Get Fleas..

*Consumer Comment: The national HVACR trade media is watching and learning.

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: To Joshua in Houston...Run away, run far far away..

*UPDATE Employee: Ambitious Induvidual Wanting to Learn More Stands In Doubt of United Air Comfort

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: Joan in Lake Dallas

*Consumer Suggestion: Website for Texas Complainants

*REBUTTAL Individual responds: COUPON RIPOFF

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: hey joe

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: experienced and certified? ..Don't fall for that $19 tune up

*UPDATE Employee: Your all misleading!!

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: I will be in court in Florida about united air comfort in 2 months

*UPDATE Employee: Sacramento Marine ..tired of teaching my techs how to steal from the customers

*UPDATE Employee: I'm one of the oldest employee of this company

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: The United Inside Story

*UPDATE EX-employee responds: nameless stranger

*UPDATE Employee: Dear Matt from glendale arizona

*UPDATE Employee: Dear Matt from glendale arizona

*UPDATE Employee: Dear Matt from glendale arizona

*UPDATE Employee: Try to control ..Sorry for any trouble.

*Consumer Comment: Use Your Common Sense

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For all of you that have filed a ripoff report on United Air Comfort, plese don't take it out on all the techs. We do what they tell us to do, but in the process we get screwed too. You do your job in your own vehicle & have to buy the parts from them and drive two to four hundred miles a day. Then you recieve a check that doesn't even cover the amount on gas you spent and nothing else.

They do not pay their techs when and what they are entitled to recieve, and then give lam excuses of why your check is not here. Many techs that come to your homes have no experience.

Joshua
Houston, Texas

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/02/2002 06:08 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/United-Air-comfort/Houston-Texas/United-Air-comfort-ripoff-dirty-SOBs-Houston-Texas-20026. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Lay Down With Dogs........Get Fleas..

AUTHOR: Raymond - (U.S.A.)

If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to worry about...

There are plenty of websites that have positive spins on the HVAC business, or at least ones that tell the consumer what to look for in an honest contractor...Obviously, the media does seem to enjoy the negative spin on most subjects, but why would people complain so much if there were not a measure of truth to most of these reports?

Granted, and I stated before, this forum is great fodder for corruption of the truth, just read the letter above from Joan in Lake Dallas...I was pissed when I read about myself on this website...
I did nothing but treat those people with the utmost respect while in their home and then they had the balls to come back with that junk..


Best thing to do is remain vigilant, stay informed and keep track of what you do, you can almost bet someone is...
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#2 Consumer Comment

The national HVACR trade media is watching and learning.

AUTHOR: John - (U.S.A.)

We fight the lousy image that is given to HVACR contractors, thanks to national network news broadcasts. No doubt they will get wind of this and paint us as the bad guys -- again.
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#3 UPDATE EX-employee responds

To Joshua in Houston...Run away, run far far away..

AUTHOR: Ray - (U.S.A.)

In my opinion and through my eyes, Joshua,

I have seen your Houston manager on the tele-video and he is a real jerk, running the shop like a military boot camp..When the instructor, "Matt", comes on to ask him questions, your manager jumps up in military style, d**n near salutes, and apologizes for his men for not doing their jobs, then yells at them (the employees), about not doing their jobs and guarantees that they will do better, or else!!, "Sir"..All the while "Matt" has to calm him down and say "good dog" (sarcasm on my part) to get the manager to sit..

If you have the talent and abilities you say you have, go to a legitimate HVAC company and apply, your experience should at least get you some inqueries..

As for the $500.00 fee, that is just plain extortion, I'd like to see them enforce that..

Most of these people in the rip-off report have written in the "heat of the moment" and do truly have a legitimate gripe, but, they are going about it the wrong way...It is not the techs they should go after, but, "THE COMPANY" and the Pres., Mark Berch or Mark Cuthbertson or whoever he goes by now for teaching the "street method of HVAC. He is the main vein on the three headed monster that is United Air, or United Restoration, or whatever it will morph into next...I strongly suggest that everyone that has had bad blood with this company explore all these names and find out just what he is really all about.

In my research,(dogpile.com, google.com) I have found that he and his two brothers are worth over 31 million dollars, getting richer, and the company pulls in millions of dollars a year off the backs and sweat of people like you and me that accepted working for minimum wage without any benifits, utilizing our own vehicles, and supplying tools necessary to do the job...

Hell, do the math, you actually end up paying them to work, unless, you "ripped the customer off", saying they need a new part or service, that, in truth, was not necessary, and charging them 5 to 10 times what the part is actually worth..(Example, for a new fan motor, I charged a customer $500.00 dollars that only cost $38.00) ...Granted, you need to add in time to do the work, time for travel to get the part, by the way, you are using your own vehicle..Does this not get you to thinking that after a while, hell, I,ll just jack up the price and see what they will pay? All you have to do is call the manager,(a drop call), in front of the customer and say, "well Ms. so and so can't afford this price, can you give her a deal so we can get this problem fixed today?"....Consequently, the manager will come up with a price off the top of his head lower than the inflated price you quoted and it appears much better..The whole system is based on "NEVER WALK AWAY WITH JUST THE PRICE QUOTED ON THE COUPON", you got your foot in the door, now sell, sell, sell...Whether it be the "$24.00 tune-up, the $44.00 duct clean, or the Combo", you must find all sorts of nasty stuff that needs fixing..(A note to Joan in Lake Dallas, your unit really is filty and does need cleaning...)

Plus, we always get this line, "If a tech comes in here tomorrow with just a regular tune-up or duct clean,(24 dollar or 44 dollar ticket), I will fire your asses, and get a whole new crew!"..That was pretty much the one statement that got me searching for a new job...

Don't get me wrong, there are a lot of systems that do need attention, but, there are a majority that do not..

I know personally about one tech that sold a component to a customer that was not needed. He asked me if the component was bad. After inspecting the component, I said there was nothing wrong with it, he then shrugged and said, oh well, still got a $400 sale.....He really didn't have a clue..He truly believed that they needed the component. Being there one week, not even EPA certified, he couldn't wait till he could pump freon and make that $800 to over a thousand a week guaranteed in the classified ads, never realizing what was had gone on, thinking this is the proper way to do business..

Remember, these employees get "THREE DAYS TRAINING" to come into your house and tell you everything wrong about your system..Look at it this way, if it is too good to be true, 99 per cent of the time, IT IS!!!! If you take the coupon "deal", the first thing you should ask is how much experience in the trade do you have and how much do you know about my system? If they can't explain what they are doing and why, get them out of the house immediately..You don't get a deal for $24.00 and the duct cleaning ain't nothin but a leaf blower shoved in your duct for 10 seconds stirring up the dust..Ask for concrete proof on paper that this will ultimately get rid of your duct problems and have them show you a guarantee in writing that if you are not 100% satisfied there will be no cost..Have them accept this, in writing, before they start and do not sign, initial, or acnowledge anything on paper, because if you do, you have released all your rights from then on..That is why we were told to have the customer initial everything found so the customer would "buy" the problem..Once I sign, the problem is mine, even if the tech messed it up, you have acnowledged that there was a problem and now it is your responsibility to fix it, you would not believe how many units were messed up by three day techs that got out of it because the customer signed off the problem...Read the fine print also..all the way through before you sign..Even if you allow the tech to do the work, you are not obligated to sign anything....The best thing you can do is ignore the coupons from UNITED AIR COMFORT and demand that they leave the Great State of Texas unless they can get in line and do the consumer right..They can't do it with a leaf blower and and overgrown fan called a negative air machine..Jeese folks, they stuff your vents with cut up matresses and call 'em bladders and tell you all the boogers are leaving out the door..Wake up!!!!!

Out of all of you reading this, I am sure there are a few hard core loyalist, to this, I welcome your rebuttal, in fact, I dare you to get on line and share your experience, I really want you OUT OF TEXAS...and I don't want to see anymore Mark Cuthbertson's or Mark Berch's or Jerry Hall's "CLONES"..(It's a thing about the mousse in their hair)..

Mark, if you want to be legitimate, then start paying a competitive wage, pay for mileage and offer benefits, hell, you certainly can afford it, otherwise, be paranoid and always look over your shoulder for people like me and the employees you "ripped-off" that come to their senses and report you and subsequently bring you and your company down.

Look to http://www.unitedaircomfort.net/UAC/Employment/index.cfm and see the king of "Street HVAC" for yourselves..Do you really want to work for a guy that says he will teach you the street way of doing HVAC?..THE GUY WHO IS MAKING MILLIONS OUT OF 47 SHOPS IN THE U.S and it's coming off your backs?..

One last bit of math...And I swear to God, these guys will tell you that they are steadily giving up money on these jobs because of this or that, well lets get them to give it up through lawsuites, that would give them a chance to say something true for a change..

10 guys in a shop each bring in three jobs at $44.00 for a day....
47 shops,13 states, and growing, bring in the same amount..
this does not include new sales, repairs, service calls, parts, or complete reconditions at what ever rate that can be gained..

Lets just stick to the one shop of 10 guys, which probably is about the national average, doing three $44.00 duct cleanings from the coupon..(based on Texas ad in the paper).....

10 people in shop
3 jobs per day
$44.00 per job..coupon price..
total...$1320.00...one day.....

10 people in shop make
5.15 per hour per 8 hour day less commision..(very little commision is made on less than $300.00 per day's tally)..
total...$412.00..one day..gained by the workers less taxes...

$1320.00 minus $412.00 equals $908.00..profit for the company per day per shop....times 47 shops equals $42,676.00....times one week equals...$213,380.00 per week..which equals..did I do this right?..$11,095,760.00 per year???

Now this is just figuring that all employees in all the shops get their foot in the door for a $44.00 duct cleaning every day.....WOW......Think I'll start my own duct cleaning business...

Prove me wrong Mark..Give us your annual earnings and let us see, or do we have to find those too?..By the way, who is Lew King and where does he live?

Can someone from the National Media give me some help, or am I on my own..All of you too scared to write, here is your chance to be heard, like I said before..This forum can be corrupted, so don't write unless you can back it up, I wrote everything down about my experience, you guys in the company that read this, do like the company tells you...."WRITE IT DOWN"...Big money is gonna hit back, only the masses will prevail..

GET OUT OF TEXAS....you are not welcome here..
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#4 UPDATE Employee

Ambitious Induvidual Wanting to Learn More Stands In Doubt of United Air Comfort

AUTHOR: Private - (U.S.A.)

I am an apprentice electrician by trade and
presently haven't been able to find work in that
field, so I responded to a classified ad in The
Classifieds. I took a challenge to learn another
trade. I want to advance in trades, I have a
strong desire to better myself. The training
videos at United Air Comfort are very educational
and I do posses a high level of aptitude with
mechanical and electrical devices so the training provided is sufficient to do the work. I have been with said company less than a month.

What bothers me is how we are only paid the
Federal minimum wage ($5.15), using our personal
vehicles to go to each jobsite and we're given
only $1.00 gas expense per job for that, having
to make a lot of calls to go to the next job, as
well as waiting on the dispatcher to tell us the
next job, and how we are strongly encouraged to
sell services, which in most cases are actually
needed.

I haven't been on a job yet, or with anyone else, where falsification of problems have
occurred. We also must pay $5.00 a week for
chemicals we use and if any mastic seals done on
vents are needed, $0.50 per vent comes out of our check. I feel like I'm being extremely cheated, yet I suffer it to gain valuable training. At our shop there are much more qualified individuals to do more technically demanding work, such as new installations, and the technicians have enough knowledge to perform the type of task given them, such as tune-ups or a duct cleaning. I'm just feeling distraught by the low pay and expenses and I'm very disturbed by the comments I've read thus far.

For the time being, I'm going to continue to work for said company, gain valuable training and see how egregious they may actually be until I find better employment.

There is even a Confidentiality Clause in the application that more or less states that if I were to continue to do HVAC work for another company, United Air Comfort would demand payment of $500.00 per week for breaking confidentiality. That is absurd!!!

I will be writing again.

Sincerely,

A private individual wanting a chance.
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#5 UPDATE EX-employee responds

Joan in Lake Dallas

AUTHOR: Ray - (U.S.A.)

Joan I can see how this forum can be corrupted..There are always three sides to the story...Your side, my side, and the truth..Let's start with your side...The only true things you wrote were that you did not pay, that you had someone sitting with and elderly lady, that we talked on the phone and that you told me your son-in-law was in the business, but could not do the inspection due to a death in the family..The rest is purely conjecture on your part..Now here is my side..It was raining I came in and apologized for the mess etc...I had the care-giver turn on the unit and found it was running properly..The unit was turned off and I went to the attic to inspect the air handler as per the coupon's guarrantee..After opening the inspection doors and seeing inside the blower and the evaporator coil, both the sitter and I saw the mold and filth and crap piled in both aformentioned components..I stated that if this was not taken care of that the wear on the motor being full of stuff (and that is not the s word I would have preffered to use) would cause overwork in the system..Now, with the evap coil being full of these black green balls of mold and crap the air flow is hampered, and I stated that it (the unit) was being overworked and could possibly go out sooner than it should..
You have painted a very grim picture about my character and I don't appreciate that. I worked very hard to inspect your crappy unit in your crappy attic and it would have taken several hours to clean up the filth you or the previous owners allowed to enter that expensive piece of equipment..Even the sitter and the elderly lady said that your son-in-law probably wouldn't have a clue as how to fix it, and now it seems as if they were right..Make sure the button on the fan and furnace door is depressed by the door or the unit will not run..The unit was running fine when I left..looks as if you want "sumpin fer nutin".

In closing, here is the truth..The reports about this company are mostly true..I did not subscribe to the methods of "always find something wrong and make the customer pay". Most of my customers were extremely satisfied with my work..Only the ones that wanted that "$24.00 deal" and then accused me of breaking something that was already messed up, trying to get a free this or free that, screamed the loudest and tried to villify me..It was my fault for working for this company, consequently I moved on by my own resignation, (the top brass really do push to get all they can from the customer), however, it was not my fault your unit was in such filthy condition..

If you clean it up, have your son-in-law break it, then say it was my fault, hell, who knows, you just might get a new unit anyway..But then, that would make you just as bad as the company, wouldn't it? My advice is, if you want to "God bless", then do the right thing and apologize..Oh, and send the company the money I'm sure they will appreciate it..
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#6 Consumer Suggestion

Website for Texas Complainants

AUTHOR: Steve - (U.S.A.)

http://www.license.state.tx.us/ComplaintsOnline/WCComplaints.ASP?WCI=WCGo&WCU=&WCU

Go to this website, fill out a simple form and your case will be reviewed by the Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation. For best results fax or mail documents supporting your case. It works!

The maximum fine in Texas is $5,000 per each violation (depending on the severity of the crime). The largest fine I have seen is $70,000.

DON'T MESS WITH TEXAS!
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#7 REBUTTAL Individual responds

COUPON RIPOFF

AUTHOR: JOAN - (U.S.A.)

I GOT A COUPON IN THE MAIL FOR A/C SERVICE CHECK. THEY WOULD INSPECT CHANGE FILTERS, CLEAN AND ADD UP TO TWO UNITS OF FREON IF NEEDED.
I THOUGHT OH THIS IS A GOOD DEAL.MY SON IN LAW DOES A/C'S BUT HAD HAD A DEATH IN HIS FAMILY AND I DID NOT WANT TO BOTHER HIM TO DO THE SERVICE FOR THIS SEASON AFTER I SAW THE AD, SO I CALLED UNITED AIR COMFORT.SO HAPPENS THAT THE DAY THEY WERE TO COME I LEFT HOME FOR WORK AND FORGOT TO LEAVE A CHECK FOR THE $25.00 WITH MY ELDERY MOTHERS SITTER.MY A/C WAS WORKING FINE THIS WAS JUST FOR A SERVICE CHECK !!!!

SO I CALLED THE COMPANY AND TOLD THEM I HAD FORGOTTON AND WOULD LIKE TO RESCHEDULE.THEY SAID "NO I COULD NOT BECAUSE THE SERVICE MAN HAD ALREADY LEFT FOR MY HOUSE."

HE CAME WENT INTO THE ATTIC FOR A LONG TIME ACCORDING TO THE SITTER...CAME DOWN AND WANTED HER TO CALL ME AND TELL ME IT WAS FILLED WITH MOLD AND WOULD GO OUT.

I TALKED TO HIM AND HE PAINTED A VERY VERY GRIM PICTURE AND WANTED %500.00 TO SO CALL CLEAN IT.I SAID WELL I AM NOT PREPARED TO PAY $500.00.....TOLD HIM ABOUT MY SON-IN-LAW AND THAT I WOULD HAVE TO CALL HIM TO COME AND CLEAN IT FOR ME RATHER THAN TO PAY $500.00.

HE SAID OKAY.HE SEEMED VERY NICE AND EVEN TOOK THE SITTER UP TO THE ATTIC TO SEE THE MOLD.HE MUST HAVE SPRAYED IT WITH SOMETHING WE GO TO THE ATTIC A LOT FOR CERTAIN ITEMS FOR A PROJECT WE ARE DOING AND NEVER SAW THE MOLD.I CALLED MY SON-IN-LAW AND HE SAID HE WOULD COME AND CLEAN IT AND PROCEDED TO TELL US NOT TO EVER CALL ANYONE LIKE THIS AND HOW THEY TEACH YOU IN A/C SCHOOL TO RIP PEOPLE OFF.

WELL YESTERDAY I WENT HOME AND THE A/C WAS NOT WORKING.NEEDLESS TO SAY I HAVE CALLED AND TOLD MY SON-IN-LAW YOU NEED TO COME TODAY RATHER THAN THE DAY WE HAD PLANNED FOR HIM TO COME BECAUSE NOW IT JUST DOES NOT WORK !!!!!

GUESS THEY BROKE IT FOR US BEFORE THEY KNEW ABOUT OUR FAMILY MEMBER.GUESS THEY THOUGHT WE WOULD CALL THEM FOR REPAIRS.

YOU CAN BET THEY WILL BE THE ONES RIPPED OFF WHEN I GET THE WRITTEN REPORT ON WHAT IS WRONG WITH IT.

IF THEY CAN NOT BE HONEST THEY CAN GO TO H--- BECAUSE THEY DO NOT NEED TO BE IN BUSINESS.WE NEED TO STOP THEM!!!! I AM SORRY I DI ALL CAPS BEFORE I SAW THIS note.

I do not have time to chage it now. sorry hope you can read it.
god bless
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#8 UPDATE EX-employee responds

hey joe

AUTHOR: Keith - (U.S.A.)

Hey Joe you really shouldnt stand up for people that wont stand up for you. First of all any tech that got his epa certificate from united should have it revoked. Epa proctors are supposed to be disinterested third parties ,as managers being told by the owners of the company and upper management to get people certified within a week of hiring them to cover the work load that is overbooked you can hardly be disinterested and as the manager of the person taking the test you are not a third party this info is direct from esco and they will be looking at revoking all proctors from united for it is better to lose them as a customer then to get fined by the government for not overseeing their proctors more closely. By the way don't try to bullshit your'e way through mark and ian dont care about anyone but themselves. they prove it day in and day out on the V-tel
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#9 UPDATE EX-employee responds

experienced and certified? ..Don't fall for that $19 tune up

AUTHOR: Mike - (U.S.A.)

i guess to qualify as a "certified and experienced technician" with united all you have to be able to do is fill out an application!i recently worked for united and personally witnessed three different"certified and experienced technicians" pad bills and include bogus charges for work we never even performed.I worked with a different "technician" during each of my three days with united and all three did the same things.

i,having a conscience, couldnt do that to people so i no longer work for united.They prey on people's ignorance and gouge them for all they can because the "technicians" now make minimum wage plus commission.

some of the incidents i personally witnessed were charging a woman $60.00 for "cleaning" her clothes dryer vent.All we did was pull out the dryer and make it look like we were servicing it. we never did vacuum it or blow out the vent.For that $60.00!

The next day we went to a home and the woman was concerned that her a/c wasnt cooling right. So we went out back and farted around for a few minutes.

The "technician" then determined that the womens system wasnt large enough for her home.she has a 1500 ft home which needs about a 3 ton system(which she already had and was only three years old!)the "technician" managed to convince this poor woman that she needed a whole new 4 ton system(big commission!)so now this poor woman is out about 3 grand and is getting a system that is actually too big for her house.

i could go on and on with these scams.I didnt see one customer who's system wasnt having problems if you know what i mean;)Some of the tech's would hang around before our morning"training" session and exchange stories about ripping people off and actually laugh about,in the presence of the manager.

So this bullshit about a few bad techs is exactly that! Don't fall for that $19 tune up or the $39 vent cleaning because all it is is a way for united to get into your house and your wallet!!!!!!!!!!!!
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#10 UPDATE Employee

Your all misleading!!

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

Soo... You say you willingly took an EPA test open book, and knew about it! I think that means that I can collect $10k if I turned you in. That also means that you are not REALLY EPA certified doesn't it Ryan?

As for all the other complaints, people venting off. They obviously are the bad seeds you see in every business. Me, as a high official in the company, have been here for numerous years now. Yes we do train techs how to work on HVAC the proper way. We do provide a technical support branch for those who may have a learning disability and take too long to learn this trade. It is mainly provided for when an honest technician is stuck in a situation.

As for customers, we as a company don't rob the customer, the techs do. I can't count how many homes I have been to that were in perfect condition, and have had a happy customer who only paid the minimum. (I was called back out there to do further services by the way too) We just let the customer know what is suggested. If the customer wants it done, it's thier choice. They don't have to pay if they don't want to.

If you are not happy being employed here, FIND ANOTHER JOB THEN. You should be able to be man enough to find a job you are happy at.

Thanks
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#11 UPDATE EX-employee responds

I will be in court in Florida about united air comfort in 2 months

AUTHOR: Joe - (U.S.A.)

Please people its all true.I will be in court in Florida about united air comfort in 2 months.
I would love to have your story .

Please post your Rip-off Report so others will know and so I can print out your Report and take it into court with me.
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#12 UPDATE Employee

Sacramento Marine ..tired of teaching my techs how to steal from the customers

AUTHOR: Carlos - (U.S.A.)

i been working with united air comfort for over three years i am tired of teaching my techs how to steal from the customers especialy after they cut their pay from 25% to 10% now they realy want to steal from the customers and from united air comfort even when united catches the tech stealing from the customers united tells me the marine dont fire them because its more trouble to hire a new employee then to fire them so i have to sit there whith the techs that steal from united and the customers in the shop and laugh with them how they stoled from the old lady that her husband died a few months ago this realy hurts but what can i do i just bought a house with a big morgage payment im so sorry i have threeki
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#13 UPDATE Employee

I'm one of the oldest employee of this company

AUTHOR: John - (U.S.A.)

The company's training is simple steal from the customer or you wont get paid. I have seen about 3000 employees go in and out of this company. The EPA test are sold by the managers or taken home to be done at your own pace, with a price of course.There's so many rip-off stories I could tell you but I would be typping for 2 years. The reason I still work for this company is because the money is great. I steal all their customer whenever i can. The people they hire are not screen (thieves, rappist, etc....)I work out of the sunshine state. There's about 5 shops in Florida. Be ware 9.95 or 25.00 19.00 or 39.00
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#14 UPDATE EX-employee responds

The United Inside Story

AUTHOR: Ryan - (U.S.A.)

Here's how United Works--and I am a former employee.

They advertise specials for $29 to $59 for duct cleaning and Free to $29 tune ups. These prices are dependant upon the season and how busy the company is on a particular week.

The formentioned prices are just to get you in the door. The duct cleaning includes 7 ducts and additional ducts are $9.95 each. Returns (where air comes back to the unit) range from $15 to $45, depending on the type and length. With this company, all ducts leak. All ducts need sanitizing. Everybody needs a new furnace. If the furnace isn't in bad shape, then it's too small, or it's too large. The goal of the United Technician is to turn that coupon into a $400 to $800 ticket. Because on a $29 ticket, the tech makes about $7.25. On a $800 ticket, the tech makes $200 in his pocket. There is no guidelines on what to charge. Charge the highest price is attitude that is encouraged. I did this for a short period of time, and then realized that there's more to life.

About how the tech is qualified. Most times, he or she isn't. The only certification United offers is the EPA license. And that test is open book. I have even seen some techs take the test home and bring it back a week later. Training is done in the morning by a series of videos and lectures, at which time most of the staff is insulted. I took notes on stuff I took notes on time and time again. Techs are trained for 3 days when they follow a tech that has been there at least a week longer than they have. I calculated the turnover in my shop over a six month period of time. It was a staggering 93%. Average employee was employed there 3 weeks. In their hiring ad they advertise $750 to $1000 per week. In my shop, I reviewed payroll records, and nobody in two years in my shop ever grossed more than $750 per week, unless there was a payroll error. And we all know that doesn't count.
Techs are to be at work at 600am. Even if there is no work, techs are supposed to report in and take advantage of training, and if there is no work, they go home. They are not compensated for the time they sit in the meeting.

When trying to light a furnace, I was told to light a wad of newspaper and stick it in there. Using common sense, I told the customer to call the gas company and bowed out, and that is where I resigned with dignity.

Customers beware of the kind of tech's this company attracts. I am all for people bettering their lives and being employed. I have the upmost respect for somebody who wants to take their names off the welfare rolls and work. Yet, the there are two types of people in this company who work there. The more educated people don't stay around long. The demographic of the typical UAC employee is one who is not as educated and does not ask a lot of questions. They do not have a background in HVAC, and most came from backgrounds where their field of expertise would not lead to an easy transition to HVAC work. These tech's are great people, and I enjoyed working with a lot of them, yet when it comes to the work they are doing, they are at best not qualified unless supervised, which they are not. I only say this because I have a very technical background and I came into this position due to a layoff. I was often called to correct other peoples errors. I have gone to peoples houses to find that unnecessary repairs were made, and people were grossly overcharged. The right thing to do would be to make the repair for free. Yet, if I did that, I would lose money because the company would not reimburse me. Its a situation you can not win.

Please take this warning to stay away from this company, whether it be for employment or their services, you have better things to do with your lives.
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#15 UPDATE EX-employee responds

nameless stranger

AUTHOR: Joe Stranger - ()

Well in response to matt of Arizona,
I in the past have run a United Air shop.
Where we, as with all of you were instructed by Mark Berch to give our EPA test OPEN BOOK.
Meaning a tech could come in off the street be EPA certified and in the customer's home working on the AC unit in less than ONE WEEK.

Also the verbal abuse from Mark Berch is more than a little disturbing. How many times can one person stand being called things I cannot repeat within this forum? Honestly I want all customers who read this note realize one fact.

There is nothing strict about the training program, all Federal, State, County and City laws are violated within each of these shops. The quality of work you will receive will leave you calling in another heating company to get the job done right, which, by the way Mark Berch would more than likley refuse to pay for.

Just to restate my points for all to see.

United Air Comfort will send an UNCERTIFIED\UNQUALIFIED TECHNICIAN TO YOUR HOME

Training as Matt from Arizona claims makes the tech "qualified" to go to your house is only 3 DAYS long. Followed by endless hours of videos of "Training"

So as a former Store Manager from UNITED AIR COMFORT I want all customers to boycott services from this company! THEY ARE A SERIOUS SAFETY HAZARD TO YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES, YOUR PETS, ANYONE WHO COMES INTO YOUR HOUSE.

Please stay away from this company
Thank you
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#16 UPDATE Employee

Dear Matt from glendale arizona

AUTHOR: employee - ()

I would like to know what certifications your techs have i hope you dont refer to their epa certifications for which the tests are given by their managers in their branch location. managers that are certified epa proctors but many of whom have little or no hvac experience and dont even need to take tests to become a proctor for the epa. a proctor who gives tests to his own employees and "advanced training" to help them "prepare" for their epa exam. Yeah i really want those people coming to my home so they can tell me whats wrong with my hvac system.
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#17 UPDATE Employee

Dear Matt from glendale arizona

AUTHOR: employee - ()

I would like to know what certifications your techs have i hope you dont refer to their epa certifications for which the tests are given by their managers in their branch location. managers that are certified epa proctors but many of whom have little or no hvac experience and dont even need to take tests to become a proctor for the epa. a proctor who gives tests to his own employees and "advanced training" to help them "prepare" for their epa exam. Yeah i really want those people coming to my home so they can tell me whats wrong with my hvac system.
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#18 UPDATE Employee

Dear Matt from glendale arizona

AUTHOR: employee - ()

I would like to know what certifications your techs have i hope you dont refer to their epa certifications for which the tests are given by their managers in their branch location. managers that are certified epa proctors but many of whom have little or no hvac experience and dont even need to take tests to become a proctor for the epa. a proctor who gives tests to his own employees and "advanced training" to help them "prepare" for their epa exam. Yeah i really want those people coming to my home so they can tell me whats wrong with my hvac system.
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#19 UPDATE Employee

Try to control ..Sorry for any trouble.

AUTHOR: Matt - ()

We here at United Air Comfort would like to believe that work in the field is being done properly. In that note, like any other customer home service business, we unfortunately can't follow every tech with a camera.

We do have a strict hiring process, and if we hear of any problems with a tech, he is terminated right away. But again, we can't by law, follow a tech with a camera into a customer's home. We at United Air Comfort like to hear from customers about problems they have, so we can weed out the trouble techs in the comp.

And in response to the ex-employee: techs know what the pay is when they sign on with the company. It is their choice at to join this comp. or not. And all our techs are fully certified and experienced.

Sorry for any trouble.
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#20 Consumer Comment

Use Your Common Sense

AUTHOR: Jeff - ()

I don't understand why anyone would work under those conditions. The HVAC industry is suffering from a serious shortage of technicians. In other words, there are thousands of companies across the country (mine included) looking for skilled, trustworthy individuals to represent their company in their customers' homes. Why would anyone with a solid foundation of honesty, integrity and character work for an outfit like United Air Comfort?

Consumers should use common sense when they see those ads. $29 doesn't go very far. In addition to paying the technician, its got to pay for benefits and taxes, liability insurance, phones, computers, paper, electricity, tools, training, office salaries, etc. In other words, its not realistic to think that you can get ANY valuable service for $29.
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