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Choosing a Quality Service Company
Choosing a swimming pool heater service contractor for a job is sometimes harder
than the work itself. You need to find one who is honest, competent and who
cares about the quality of his work with swimming pool heating systems.
They are out there though. Usually they don't have to advertise their experience
with pool heaters, and they can pick and choose who they work for, but when you
find one, hang on to them, because they are worth their weight in wrenches.
Hopefully it will be the start of a relationship that will last for many years.
One that will give you peace of mind knowing that you are being treated fairly
and your electric pool heater, gas pool heater, or solar pool heater is properly
installed and maintained at a reasonable price.
The best way is the old standby: word of mouth. Call everyone that you know and
ask who they have had a good experience with when it came to the installation of
their swimming pool heating equipment. If you are a hermit or new to your area,
I've made a list of ten rules to help you find a good pool heater contractor.
And don't forget everything beats just calling the biggest ad in the phone book.
1. Never use a pool heating contractor who solicits you for your business. You
have to ask yourself why he's so lonely?
2. Only use a pool heating contractor who uses his name in the title of his
company, like me of course. I want a person with a big ego fixing things for me.
Chances are they will take pride in their work.
3. Try only to deal with the owner of the pool heating contracting company.
Employees come and go but owners seem to stay around a little longer. Remember
you are trying to develop a relationship.
4. Never chase a special price on pool heater service. There is always something
else you have to buy. See rule 1.
5. Ask what the hourly rate is on the phone. When they arrive tell them that you
want to know the cost of the pool heating parts before they are installed. If
the rate is too high or the materials seem out of line tell them that it is more
than you are able to spend at this time. Never let them lower their price. Tell
them that you respect their ability and competence, and the way they value their
work but you are unable to do business with them at this time. But the next time
something comes up you will give them the opportunity to bid on the work. And
the next time do give them the chance. They might be more reasonable.
6. If the estimate is too high, tell the contractor that you will get some more
quotes. If he wants to be paid for the service call, pay him and ask for a
credit if he does the work later. Then call two other pool heater contractors to
get a free estimate for the specific repair that the first contractor said the
7. Never haggle with the price. See rule Five. If you use them again they will
overcharge you and then reduce it when you haggle. You don't want somebody
working for you who feels like they are being cheated.
8. Don't promise to get them a lot of work with other people. Contractors hear
that all day long from people who want a break on the bill. Don't give the
contractor an opportunity to laugh at you.
9. Look at the truck and the service person. Are they clean? Is the name painted
on the truck? Does the pool heater contractor look like an axe murderer?
10. Pay by credit card if possible or pay by check when the job is complete. No
deposit "to buy the parts" but on equipment change outs you might have to give a
deposit. Make sure you have a contract though.
When you find a good one treat them well and you'll be repaid many times. And
don't forget good people know other good people so don't be afraid to ask. Maybe
you will have a lot less to worry about.
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