ED Magedson – Founder
ARS-Rooter Rescue9070 Euclid Ave. Manassas, Virginia USA
ARS-Rooter Rescue - Technician = Jimmy R. Bait and switch, upsale, scare tactics, concerned citizen, air polution Manassas Virginia
I was offered aq free hotdog at Home Depot by an ARS - Resue Rooter representative. Then then told me all about how my HVAC usit could fail without doing twice yearly maintenance. I am an electrical engineer responsible for Planned Maintenance, so am aware how important regular maintenance can be.
I was offered a one-time visit to inspect my unit for $79, which is a markdown from the regular price of $95. This sounded like something I needed, and the price seemed reasonable. I scheduled a visit for the next business day in the afternoon (no particular time).
I received a phone call at ~5:00 PM the day of the appointment, and was told they would arrive in 30-40 minutes, but the service technician, Jimmy R., arrived about 6:15 PM complaining of traffic problems on the way. This was not a major issue, as I was home and had finished dinner. This could be an issue in a busy family, but I was able to compensate.
Jimmy did a thorough inspection, informing me that I was low on coolant, and the cost to replace my R-22 coolant was $411, on top of the $79 service call. While we were discussing adding coolant, he informed me that the reason it was low on coolant is that there may be a leak in the cooling coils of the inside unit. It seemed he wanted to install $411 worth of coolant into a 3-ton Comfort Maker 7-year-old unit. Then at some future date come out and sell me a new set of coils, as he mentioned that the coils were probably not repairable.
This smelled of all the scams I have heard of to upsell these services. I wrote a check for the $79 and thanked Jimmy for the information, when he offered the twice-a-year maintenance plan for $199. At which time I stuffed my money way down in my pocket and watched him leave.
Is this a common practice for ARS? Or, was my HVAC in that bad of shape? It cools the house as it always has, and I have not noticed a degradation of performance. Jimmy mentioned an 11 degree differential in incoming and outgoing air, and said it should be about 20 degrees, then he hooked up some metters to the outside unit and said my sub-C was -3 and should be 10. I don't know what these numbers are, or what they mean, but I knew I was not going to give ARS ~$1000 before I checked with my HVAC O&M team at work.
This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/04/2013 05:32 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/ars-rooter-rescue/manassas-virginia-20110/ars-rooter-rescue-technician-jimmy-r-bait-and-switch-upsale-scare-tactics-concern-1081517. 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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