Informal survey: appliance repair

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Let's say your washer or dryer is broken, and you need to find a repair company to fix it. How would you make the decision between an independent service company as opposed to one of the large national outfits? What resource would you access to find such a business? What do you see as the benefits of a small or large operation? If you could design a service from the ground up, what elements would be present that would prompt you to make it your first choice? I'm interested in your random thoughts on the subject.
Todd
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First previous experience would prove Sears repair is a BIG RIPOFF. nice techs but very expensive and any company who charges twice for travel for the exact same tech to service a furnace with air deserves to go out of business. they are so big the overcharge for parts too.
I would look to a small local outfit with referals from friends.
big companies are just in it for big bucks:( local guy iosnt supporting a office tower somewhere with hot chicks as secretarys to president with private jet:(
Of course I generally repair my own appliances......
I fix office machines for a living
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

I agree with the above. We bought a Sears Kenmore fridge and found the ice maker was leaking water. It took 4 service calls to get the problem fixed -- by replacing the ice maker. They wrote up the waranty work for about $128 per visit plus the cost of the replacement. So the service cost was GREATER THAN THE FRIDGE COST!
Sears is totally messed up.
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wrote:

And that fat-ass Sears Whore Bob Vila...perfect spokesman.
For some reason I just can't stand that guy. That Paul guy sidekick of Letterman is another.
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bob v no longer represents sears........
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Al Bundy wrote:

Maybe it was a Vila appearance on Letterman, when he tried to mention Sears at every possible turn and proved that he couldn't operate a saw or hammer. He was only slightly better at hammering than George W. Bush was. And about 20 years ago, Vila was sued by Conrad Janis, the actor who played Mindy's father on Mork & Mindy, for doing a bad job building his $2M home.
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I think I saw Bob Villa tools on tv the other day. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. SELF INVOLVED MUCH?? Couldn't think of another name for your tools? What a whore..
How about a BV door mat?
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snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (Charles Pisano) wrote in

I'd buy a BV head decal with mouth open to put in the bottom of the toilet so I could shit and piss on it. Like those clown things at carnivals with the mouth open that you shoot the water gun in...
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Bob is selling his tools on HSN. stumbled onto that the other day.
he is no longer affilated with sears.
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Mercenary Whore.
But...he follows where the most bucks are and HSN must be a gold mine. He's not stupid, just incompetent. Guess I'd do it to. Who cares what people would call me. Laugh all the way to the bank.
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do_not_spam snipped-for-privacy@my-deja.com wrote in

No shit! He was on Letterman? Kinda glad I missed it but yet would be drawn to it. Sorta like watching thise nature shows showing maggots eating a rotting carcas. It's disgusting but you look.

Did he at least grab the right one or was he spewing nonsense about the hammer while pointing to the saw?
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Al Bundy wrote:

At least on one of those appearances he was with Norm of This Old House and The New Yankee Workshop. I remember them building window screen frames.

Amazingly, he was able to tell a saw from a hammer, but he couldn't quite guide the circular saw straight. Letterman complained about Vila plugging Sears so much.
They say Vila treats the craftsmen on his show badly to make himself look smarter. He'll ask one of the craftsmen on camera what he's doing, and the person will explain it. Then Vila will stop the camera and ask the question again, this time rephrasing it so it contains the answer the person just gave him, and all the craftsman can do is reply by saying, "That's right, Bob."
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wel;l I DONT buy stuff because so and so names on it, I buy what I think will do the job....
so his marketing doesnt matter
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I think you've gotten the "on camera" and "off camera" thing backwards. In any case, given that many craftsmen are better at their craft than at talking for the camera, and the reverse is true for most showmen, I'd say that that's both typical, and proper. Irritating, if you're the tradesman in question and you weren't expecting it.
But that's what the guy DOES for a living, is re-package other people's knowledge into a standard format, and serve it up to a consumer base.
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:

Hmmm, Only thing I do with Sears is buying needed parts from them. (regional parts depot is located in my city) I do almost every repair task myself. Guranteed work by me and self-satisfaction! Best shops are locally run mom and pop type famliy buz. with long history. Do you know who makes best pizza? Not Pizza Hut or Domino, local mom/pop pizzaria who still cook the pizza old ways with fresh everything.
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We bought the washer, dryer, microwave and electric stove at a local Maytag dealer. We have called his repair staff three or four times in eighteen years.
snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

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I'd avoid any national company or big chain. They are usually over priced and often less competent. Out local dealers have good service, good reputations, fair prices. I look no further.
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On 7 Oct 2006 06:04:27 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

My 5 year old side by side with ice in the door quit working after a power surge from lightning.
The cost to replace the compressor was $450.
I made the decision to purchase a new one for $780 with a new 5 year warranty.
I know most electronics are throw away and not repairable, but same goes for washer dryer fridge and stove.
Throw it away and don't waste your money repairing it as something else will break on it next week.
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My one experience with a national was Sears/Kenmore. Upon my first call, I was told that the local rep would need to call me back. By the time he called back 4 days later, I'd already had the dishwasher fixed by a small local business.
Resources I used to find the small business were: asked friends and neighbors, looked in Yellow Pages, called appliance stores.
Benefits of small operation: A local person needs to keep reputation "clean" to stay in business; possibility of more timely service (see above); often handles more models or types of appliances, so if I like the service on dishwasher, can call the same guy if my fridge goes on the blink; might be a resource for a good used model if I decide not to fix mine.
Elements that would need to be present: Easy to find (Yellow Pages ad, regular local advertising, regular newspaper ads). A real person to respond to my call; all too often, when calling someone local for service of any kind, I get a very unprofessional-sounding answering machine. Likewise, someone who knows something about the business; I don't want to talk to someone's spouse or kid who can't even tell me when the repair person might call back. Prompt service. Fast access to parts. Competitive pricing (would not have to be less than the national, but would have to be not ridiculously more).
Jo Ann
snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

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On 7 Oct 2006 06:04:27 -0700, snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com wrote:

I'd get the parts online & fix it myself.
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