Sump Pump 538$

I went to visit my mother and noticed a new pump was installed next to the old unit, the pit cover is steel 5ft wide with several acess covers, so it fit in fine. I was told by my mom the old unit would not turn off, the plumber turned it off, told her it was "obsolete, broke, a new unit needed". The pump is in a 80 yr old house built to the highest standard then, it is apx a 500- 800 gallon pit, the pump is 240v with alarm bell system, the motor itself is apx 1ft wide by 14 " high. The motor unit is 2ft above the floor. It is a commercial unit that works well, is oiled every 6 months and in 30 years stuck on once from a sock falling off the laundry machine. Even with the pump off in spring for weeks no flooding ever occured. A basement sink and washing machine drain into it as does the Tile system. Ive checked the brushes on the motor and even after possibly 30-80 years have 30% life left, it operates well, I oil its 5 ports regularly, every 6 months. I imagine it is a 2-4000$ commercial unit to replace today. The plumber turned off the pump at the units separate hardwired breaker box , my mom did not know how to do this. [On the receipt the plumber states she turned it off] she said this is a not true, that is why she called them.
Well being the very suspicious person I am, I figured it was a 50-100$ bad switch or rusted out shaft or bushing. So I flipped it on expecting nothing , but it pumped, it cycled, the switch worked fine as I expected, and I re tested it many, many times, and all is fine. Knowing the 2nd floor laundry shute is above and slightly in front, that the dryer rests on part of the pit, and having pulled laundry off the pump many many times im guessing something might have caught on the exposed float rod or switch handle keeping it from shutting off.
So now im angry and check the install. The new 120v 1.5" pump the plumber plugged into the dryer 15a circuit with a power strip sitting on the floor , behind the washer-dryer, plugging the dryer in that also. I don`t know amp draw of either unit but guess that if both turn on at the same time the 15a fuse will likely blow. So I get a bit more angry. I notice the plumber put a check valve at the pump base, not at the 7ft ceiling as I thought should be done, but then I noticed the old pump had no check valve that an Air Trap was designed into the discharge pipe flowing outside at the ceiling, I don`t see the new unit needed one and this one was most likely improperly installed to low anyway.
I am planning on contacting and recording a conversation with the plumber [here it is legal for me to record conversations] possibly get a permit, and city inspector out. I wont know if the Stop Pay order was successful until Monday. Now I have 2 good pumps. In Ilinois penalites can be doubled for ripping off the elderly, my mom is 88. What would you have done and do now.
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you need to supervise when anyone is working at her home. Older folks ae easy prey for cons:(
I would go after the jerk
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<<<snip>>>
I'd call the plumber, explain the situation and ask for a full refund. Point out that if he accepts the deal, he won't be subject to the 2x damages because he ripped off the elderly. I bet it'll be a long time before he tries a stunt like that again.
KB
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Be very nice and civil when you talk to the Bozo. You might be better off turning it over now to the AG's office. They have people that specialize in going after those rip off artists.

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I'd start the recorder and call the plumber first, and see if he was aware of the work that was done at your house, and I'd let him know that I was "just" following up because of her advanced age and wondered ... . If he falls all over himself to straighten out a possibly bad situation, I'd probably feel satisfied if he was prompt and seemed to mean what he was saying. If he blows you off, I'd probably have to calmly ask him is he was aware of the double-charges, etc, he could be liable for, and see what he has to say to your recorder. If he's obstinate about it, I'd still probably try to use a calm, polite but firm stance with him to try to get his opinions and standings on these matters, whatever he'd like to say.
If no win-win appears, then I'd be sorely tempted to: 1. Take him to small claims court to start with, where the recording would be fully admissable as evidence where that's not necessarily so in a full court proceeding. This way you have a chance to recoup some money, and mayb e even a punitive up to the limit of the particular court, sometimes $5,000 or more. 2. And I would also at the same time file a complaint with the state attorney general's office if the situation seemed as cruddy as you state it does. 3. And even though everyone says it's a useless effort, you included, I would also file a complaint with the BBB and possibly the licensing bureau if I knew who it was.
Just my 2 cents. And no, I'm not about to debate the value or lack thereof of the BBB, so this's my last mention of it in this thread <g>.
Pop

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I wopuld go for the jugular, call him and record whatever he says then use it against him wether or not he tries to make nice.
you do the crime you do the time..........
he deserves whatever he gets!
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m Ransley wrote:

Well i'm pissed off just reading it. However, there is another side.
You said the pump was old, the plumber seemed to agree with that. He may not know that you are servicing the thing every 6 months. He may put the new one up because if he just tweaked the old one and then it breaks and ruins her basement he would feel he did her a disservice by trying to save a few bucks. The check valve installation is proper. Sometimes check valves are installed higher on the pipe (like mine) because they make convenient disconnect points when you are removing the pump, but that is an inferior location. Not sure what good the air trap would do for water backflow. As for why the pump was stuck on, it could have just been dirty or something. Mine sticks on when it gets dirty. usually calls for full cleaning not just getting it to turn off.
Now the elcheapo power strip installed on the _floor_ behind the washing machine is just stupid and any plumber should know better. Of course he could ask for an electrician to install a new 120v outlet for the pump.
I would talk to him first. Theres legitimate reasons for lots of this stuff. You may buy it, or you may not.
--
Thank you,



"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
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I talked to him today, he did not pull a permit even though the job was done 4 days after his first visit, so the city is comming out and sending him a citation, that is a start. He said the pump wires were disconnected and he could not test it, well the wires are intact and the corrosion eveywhere will show all is original and untouched, so he lied to me. Bottom line the old pump works fine. If he was smart he would have removed the evidence-the old pump.
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m Ransley wrote:

If he couldn't test it he should not have touched it. Thats shadey. I hope he gets whats coming to him.
--
Thank you,



"Then said I, Wisdom [is] better than strength: nevertheless the poor
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