This was my day for all things furnace: had three bids booked to replace my furnace which stopped working 6 weeks ago. I expect to get some apples and oranges back, but at this early stage I'll say that I am glad that I called all three: Evergreen, Accurate, and Reed Wright. I have to say that Terry from Accurate blew my mind with his over the top customer service:
A little backstory required: Jan 6th I scheduled Pacific Heating to service (clean) my furnace. The technician declined to service it because he said it was so old that he was afraid it might not go back together. The heat exchanger was not cracked, the pilot was clicking a long time before furnace would fire. He left, but charged me $100 for the service call and said I could apply the money towards a new furnace when I got one. Five weeks later, the furnace stopped firing. Fan was blowing cold air constantly. I called Pacific because I don't know anything about furnaces and was looking for a little insight: should I be scheduling another service call, or a replacement call? They wouldn't discuss my situation with me (I was just hoping to maybe chat with the technician who came out, tell him what the symptoms were, and get his recommendation for a move forward plan). They simply said to me: if you want to schedule a service call, I can do that for you, but we won't discuss your situation over the phone.
And I stayed without heat for 6 weeks.
Today I devoted to getting 3 bids for a new furnace. Terry from Accurate Heating and Electrical came out and asked "Is your heat exchanger cracked?" I said I didn't think so. He opened it up and said,"Well, it needs to be cleaned. Mind if I clean it?" I hemmed (not wanting to pour money into an old 1988 over-the-hill furnace, and he said,"How about this: I clean it. If that doesn't fix your problem, you don't pay for anything. If it fixes your problem, you can pay me for my time." 15 minutes, a $6 part later, my furnace was working better than before. ALL IT NEEDED was to be cleaned, which is what I paid Pacific to come out and do, and they refused to do it (but again, still charged me.) Terry didn't even invoice me when he left. He said,"Run it a few days. I'll touch base with you later, and if it continues to work well for you, I'll send you a bill."
I'll still probably need a new furnace soon. But in the meantime, I HAVE HEAT again! And I can't recommend Accurate Heating and Electrical highly enough for his fantastic customer service. He might not have sold me a new furnace today, but I've got his number down as someone I trust in a pinch, hands down.
I called Pacific Heating to tell them about this experience and spent an infuriating hour on the phone with the owner who explained to me the constraints of being a family run business and that he was sorry I was disappointed, but that he couldn't do any better in the situation. Amazing lack of customer service. Really? I've been cold for 6 weeks, they denied me the service that I brought them out to perform, still charged me anyway, and think that explaining their cost model is supposed to make me feel better. UN-REAL.
I also really liked Bryan from Reed Wright. I appreciated that he offered practical solutions for my particular situation: didn't try to sell me a waterfront condo on Mars. But fixing my furnace on good faith? That's old school customer service the likes of which I didn't think existed anymore. Brilliant.