Saturday, July 12, 2014

Attempting to Keep Cool

How long does it take to fix an air conditioner?  A long time if you have a home warranty.

Five years ago we replaced our 22 year old downstairs air conditioning unit. We have a home warranty so they paid for all but $700 of it.  They put in a Carrier.  At the time we really didn't put much thought into it, we were in the process of moving to Texas.  A year later we were back and the unit needed servicing.  Every summer as it heated up the unit needed servicing.

A month ago our unit stopped cooling.  We still have the home warranty so they came out for $75 and added refrigerant.  We were told that there was probably a leak in the coil but they couldn't check it unless the refrigerant went out within 2 months. Within days our house was hot again.  Again the company came out and checked.  The refrigerant was low so they looked for a leak in the coil and found one.  A new part was ordered.  At this point we were three weeks without air conditioning and the temperatures were over 90 every day.

At the one month mark they came out and replaced the coil.  Through the warranty company we were to be charged $385.  The servicing company said that if we paid the entire cost it would have been $1800.  Great, except it wasn't running.  Now the compressor needed replacing. I have no idea what that would have cost us because we said no.

To get a new compressor in would have required ordering the part and waiting again for another appointment, about 2 weeks.  At that point we dropped the warranty and decided to replace the unit.  The unit had only a 5 year warranty from Carrier (separate from our home warranty) and it had just expired.

We signed a contract for a new unit and they ordered it.  Installation is scheduled for Monday.  Since we had an elderly person and a baby in the home they came out and put in three window units for us to use until Monday.

Before the window units were installed the temperatures downstairs got up to 85 every day.  Upstairs the air conditioner worked so the baby and I moved upstairs to Sarah's bedroom.

I also stipped cooking and we ate out for dinner so we could enjoy a meal in some cool air.

We also found out the play doh has a cooling effect!  Try it.

Lessons for us are many: 

Using a home warranty does not guarantee quick repair of any products. We got much better service and window units once we bought our own unit.

Using a home warranty service means that when they replace items they will use the cheapest products that they can.

If you want a quick repair bypass the home warranty.  Besides the air conditioner, we have had to replace our water heater without using the service because it would have taken them a week to do so.  We got it done in one day.

Our home warranty automatically renews.  We plan on cancelling before they renew again.

We are not used to living in heat.  Once the house temperature got above 80 we were inclined to do nothing put go sit in the pool.  Not much got done and I have projects that need finishing.

Chocolate will melt when the air conditioning goes out.

Play doh is cool even in a hot house.

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