Saturday, March 28, 2009

construction and deconstruction

in case you were wondering, this is what the inside of my dryer looks like. The big shiny thing is the drum, and it rotates, pulled by the black strap (belt). The motor is on the bottom left, and it's attached to a blower (one of three) that vents out the bottom left corner. A smaller belt, tucked in at the bottom, center, was the cause of the whole mess - some of the gripping ridges on it had ripped off, and the belt was not grasping as it should. Thus the quiet-bam!-quiet-bam! sound I heard, as the belt grasped, then lost hold on the machine. At something like 12oo rpms.  (bam! bam! bam! bam! bam! bam! sizzzzzzzle.)  

Neat, eh? Below is the dryer's motor, in case you are curious, which was replaced by the Mikes  from company A (or F), and removed by the Mikes from company B, in order to replace the smaller belt:

...and it has a nice layer of shmutz on it. How odd, that a brand new motor should have so much lint - especially considering that the dryer was unusable for most of the time after the motor was installed.

Yep, folks. We were took. To the tune of oh, summer camp for the Eldest. Time to start planning Mom Camp and calling Company F. Although I will find that the manager there is out, on vacation, just left to pick his daughter up from school, is helping out in the field, and is sick.

But I have taken notes. And I have receipts. And I have Angie's List...

In the meantime, a change of mechanical pace: 


Anonymous said...

If you've truly got it all well-documented, I can suggest the following:

Mail Company F a certified letter (which meets legal standards), with copies of all the documentation (NOT the originals). In your letter, ask them for whatever you think they should give you--at the very least, parts and labor for the stuff they didn't fix. Then, mention that if this isn't resolved to your satisfaction, not only will you give them a bad grade on Angie's list, but you will file with the Better Business Bureau, and you will take them to small claims court. Give them a deadline. Note that small claims court in most states is for amounts less than $5000, so I might be assuming too much. That ought to get you some relief. On the off chance it doesn't, if you are so inclined, you can actually then take them to small claims court, where you would represent yourself, which is what most people do. However, most companies, especially when you can document the fraud, will go ahead and just pay up, rather than go through the hassle of hiring a lawyer for small claims court. And you will get MUCH further with this in writing than you will trying to talk to some disappearing manager on the phone.

Anonymous said...

You've also got photographs.

Great advice above. Definitely time to send such a letter. I wouldn't, however, specify small claims court in the demand letter, just court. If it comes to it, then you can decide in which court to file.

You also could get a statement from the Mikes from company B affirming what they found. You can indicate your ability to get this evidence in the demand letter; you need not actually get it in order to use the possibility for leverage in the letter.

Parts and labor, yes, whatever you paid them for nothing. But how to account for the dryer being unusable after they "fixed" it? And weren't they called multiple times for the same problem?

Didn't these same people also attend to other machinery in your home? Do you need to have that work examined for similar shoddiness?

I wonder what the laws are, whether there is a liability for treble damages for something like this.

Best of luck for a speedy resolution and all the money returned.

Anonymous said...

Also in the letter indicate that you first tried to resolve this by contacting the manager however many times, listing the dates and the excuses if you have them, and that though you called all those times you never got a return call.