PSEG WorryFree -- is it worth it?

Hi, all!
PSE&G (local gas&electric company) offers home appliences coverage plans (called WorryFree). They cover some parts and labor for furnaces, A/C, water heaters, friges, etc. I probably don't need coverage for, say, dishwasher (no big problem to wash dishes manually for some time) But for, say, the furnace -- I'm not so sure. It is just about $4/month. And furnace or A/C -- I definitely don't want to mess with them. At list just yet ;-)
Has anybody heard about that PSEG WorryFree service? Is it worth it? Or is it just OK/substandard/terrible? Should I consider something else? Or should I just sit tight and don't worry until something happens?
We just bought a house, the shape of the furnace is unknown to me (except that it seems to be working more or less as it is supposed to).
In general, should I call somebody to preventively checkup/tune it? PSE&G says they check it for free every five years (next checkup coming in 2005).
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Sorry, no personal experience, but for $48.00 a year, I would see what all they cover. IMO it would be worth it.

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<snip>

All maintenance contracts are not worthwhile. If the cost of the repiars regularly exceeded the cost of the insurance, they'd be losing money on the contract and they'd never push it or even offer the service. It's only worwhile top buy this sort of thing when you absolutely could not afford a reapir. But if you took the money you'd pay into that and set it aside and made all reapirs out of it, on the average you'd come out ahead.

If it were completely unknown, then I'd have the repair critters come in and give it a full physical. But....

If they say the next check up is due in 2005, then it was checked not too long ago. I'd let it slide so long as it seems to be working properly.
John
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snipped-for-privacy@westnet.poe.com wrote:

That's what I thought. And it is true on average. Though there's also Murphy's Laws (as it was with my phone service and their maintainance plan, but that's another story of stupidity).

Yeah, my main problem is that it is unknown to me. I don't have history, don't know if installation guy did a good job. I can take out the cover, but have no idea what to look for to estimate its health, and don't really know the telltale signs of something going wrong until it is too late.
So, essentially, my dilemma is between maintainance plan -- some insurance for a little cost and one-time full inspection.
I'm probably going to request couple of quotes about how much full inspection runs for, and see how that compares to what I'd pay PSEG.
That, of course, leaves out the matter of the service quality...

Every five years -- they did it in 2000 (fall?), that is three years ago. I don't know if it is counted as recently regarding furnaces.
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snipped-for-privacy@westnet.poe.com wrote:

Worthwhile isn't the word; perhaps 'economical' is better. You're correct that it's more profitable for the service companies, but then this is just like insurance, which is a really crappy way to save for retirement. Why not just put it all in a high-yield investment? But then, you know the insurance company will be there in N decades.
There are considerations such as convenience and the economics of, perhaps not the repair itself, but the 'downtime' and attendant expenses. If you save $20 on the stove repair, but have to take the family to Denny's every night for a week, you haven't saved much. A business may want as little down time as possible because when the equipment is dead, their employees aren't as efficient -- or can't do anything.
I can see this being "worthwhile" for many people, but they should know going in that they're buying peace of mind rather than keeping costs down.
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Financially it makes no sense at all. They figure what they expect it will actually cost them, add their overhead in, and then triple it.
However, if you like the idea that no matter what happens, a qualified person will come out and make it better for free, than it is a good investment. I went for a 10 year warranty on my furnace because the cost was about the same as one service call. The odds are I won't need a service call, but I am all set if I do.
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I have it on the HVAC in 3 homes that are part of a business and are occupied by others. I like it for the convenience factor when something goes wrong. There's no guessing about who to call, are they available, etc. Whenever there's a problem, I just call them and they show up quickly and figure it out. I can't say that it saves any money but it sure does save on the hassle of finding someone to fix a problem when the heat or AC stops working.

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