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Lochinvar Service

MikeD Member Posts: 11
I just had a guy look at my Knight Lochinvar wall mount boiler for a servicing after being in place for 3 years.  He recommended replaceing the ignition and combustion sensor for 250 bucks, on top of the service contract, and 1st time inspection fee 650 dollars out the door.  Do those sensors cost that much?



  • Tim McElwain
    Tim McElwain Member Posts: 4,608
    Not sure of pricing

    and we do not discuss prices here. What was the reason given for the replacement of these items which usually just need cleaned with a piece of emory cloth. They may then need some spacing adjustment particularly on the igniter portion. Did he give you a break down of microamp readings on the system? Did they do a combustion analysis? Did they clean the unit?
  • lchmb
    lchmb Member Posts: 2,997
    service contract

    Dont know about the price, but if he's giving you a service contract why isn't it covered under the plan? Or does the plan take affect after you pay for a service? What does the plan cover? Is he trained to work on the knight's? Is he licensed? Have you recieved any references or checked with anyone to make sure about his company?
  • tim smith
    tim smith Member Posts: 2,738
    Re: parts for WBN boiler if thats what it is

    I think you are talking about the PLT3021 & PLT3022 for the WBN model.
  • MikeD
    MikeD Member Posts: 11
    Feeling Ripped Off

    No it was just a pre-inspection survey, just the outer cover was removed.  Supposed to send somebody to do the cleaning and replace those parts at a later date.   I got their name from Lochinvar's website as a authorized service provider, that was really all the reference I could find, so hard to find someone who knows how to do the service, most just know how to throw them up.  Thanks for the part numbers, I had found them from another source and the supply house that sold the boiler had them for fifty bucks for the both together.  Needless to say I'm stopping payment on the check and never doing business with these thieves again.  I've never done it, but from looking at those sensors there are two screws on each, I guess they think they can gouge 200 in labor for that.
  • Big Will
    Big Will Member Posts: 396
    I have to say

    What you are saying is quite upsetting. I run a service company and when people look at a repair or service that way I just walk away. First off we don't discuss pricing here. That said you are forgetting parts mark up and the cleaning of the boiler. For me to properly service a boiler without replacing any parts usually takes anywhere from an hour and a half to two hours with one way drive time included. Now I am not saying the contractor is in the right at all. However you cant look just at the parts cost and throw the rest of the guys over head and time out the window. And stop payment on a check costs him money. I am trying to go easy here but I have had a few customers react like this and it really makes me see red. We contractors are not getting rich out here and most of us would like to be able pay our guys better too. The costs involved in just showing up at your door in a service truck with a well trained service tech are huge.

    Food for thought.  
  • MikeD
    MikeD Member Posts: 11
    Reasonable Profit

    I have to say that if this guy had merely doubled the supply house price I would have been fine, wouldn't have batted an eye, but 5x makes him a thief in my mind.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,490
    We learn from each other here, Mike.

    I'm learning from you. I don't know how to tell someone what something should cost because I don't know what it costs for them to be in business. I can't just say double the price of your cost on the parts. That makes no sense to me.

    When I buy, I just ask how much, and then I decide whether I want to do business with the person. I always ask first and then I vote with my dollars, and I never second-guess afterward.

    BTW, this is why we don't discuss prices on this site. It usually leads to arguments, and that's not what this site is about.
    Retired and loving it.
  • Jean-David Beyer
    Jean-David Beyer Member Posts: 2,666
    I am just a homeowner.

    But it seems to me that just doubling the distributer's price seems simplistic. Consider a recent experience I had.

    I had a noisy circulator. The manufacturer generously sent me a replacement gratis. I did not wish to install it myself (things for which I am not prepared happen if Murphy is on duty), though I am pretty sure I could have done it, and it would have taken me longer than my current heating contractor took. I am retired, so I would charge no labor. I live here, so I do not need a truck with a loan that needs to be paid back, insurance on the truck, license plates on the truck, an employee in it who has to be trained and paid. I do not run an office with rent to be paid, staff to be paid (perhaps with benefits), taxes to be paid. I do not have capital invested in a business on which I should get a fair return. I happen to know what my contractor charges per hour, what his markup is for some items. There may be more expenses that I am unaware of. I have never run a heating business, but I know some business owners and they tell me of the financial aspects of their businesses. It is amazing to me some of the expenses that they must deal with on a regular basis, and some of the surprise expenses too. They must recover the expenses and get a fair return on their investment. Doubling the cost of parts is not the way.

    I recently bought a spare pressure relief valve for my boiler. I did that because my technician said he did not have a spare on his truck because there were too may different ones. I imagine that is correct. He has a big truck full of stuff, but the local supply house is way bigger than his truck. That valve was  way way under $100. Now if mine starts leaking and not because the expansion tank quit or the fill valve got too much dirt in it, it will be on Christmas eve or something like that. Supply house will be closed. I do not know if the tech would come out then, but if he did, I sure would want him to have that valve. In fact I expect him to charge quite a bit more than double what I paid for it to put it in. It is a matter of fairness, for one thing.
    MNPLUMBER Member Posts: 28
    Seems like a good deal to me

    Why would you stop payment on the check? Why don't you just call him and explain to him how you feel. I'm sure if you're not happy he would refund your money in a heartbeat.

    Is he the only certified tech in your area who works on these units? I would think about that before doing anything.

    I'm a licensed Master Plumber and charge that for replacing a flapper and fill valve in a toilet. I do think your boiler is a little more important when it comes to safety etc.

    Think before you act.
  • lchmb
    lchmb Member Posts: 2,997
    still dont

    Again I still dont care about the price, cause honestly the company I work for get's what is considered a high price.  But in reference to your service contract, is it a labor only service contract? Parts? ability to call? If they listed everything and you agree'd to the contract, I would call and cancel, not do the stop payment. If nothing else, it give's them a chance to discuss the issues...

    As far as replacing the ignitor and flame sensor, I also like to replace them when I service certain unit's. I have found two manufacturer's that the ignitor expands in the housing and can cause issue's down the road if not replaced. So maybe their experience will save you a large amount of issues...There's alway's two side's to the story...
This discussion has been closed.