Monday, August 08, 2005

Ode to the AC

I'm a mournful lover of air conditioning today. Our central air unit is having an issue - of what form I do not know. But our air, while present, is sluggish and barely cools the house. I called around to some HVAC repair shops. I about fell out of my chair. Doctors are crazy to go through all that schooling. TO JUST PULL UP AND PARK IN FRONT OF MY HOUSE is a $50 minimum. That is just to park here, folks. THEN they start the clock and look at my AC. The one woman who answered the phone seemed to be almost talking me out of using their services. "It will be $124 for the first hour, and that is not including any parts or additional service. At least $124, and that is just for showing up and looking at it. Anything else will be in addition to the $124." Do you get the impression the up front fee will be at least $124? She won - I didn't use their service. So in addition to charging me $50 for the 5 mile drive to my house, no one could service our house until Wed. Three days until we would have AC, during a hot, humid, sticky week of thunderstorms and wet. What did I do to deserve this?! I finally found a guy who just charges a flat fee by the hour. I might add that hourly wages run between $52-$80/hour. Can you imagine? And people look at us funny when we charge them $25/hour to do weeding and landscaping work - and we don't charge extra for the chemicals or for the parking spot! We'll see what they diagnose the poor thing with tomorrow. With any luck, maybe it'll just be a clogged filter. Either way, I'm paying at least $56 up front, and that is just for phone call, no matter how you dice it.