BG Central Heating breakdown care

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It's not an issue of being bastards or not caring about the sick and elderly. That's the job of the various public services for which we pay outrageous sums and receive poor value for money, and also, of course, the family.
An accident and emergency service related to healthcare may well have to prioritise its resources but this is not the same thing at all.
BG, as far as this contract offering is concerned is not a charity, neither is it a public service organisation. There is a place for those, but not in the market of heating service contracts in the modern world.

It's really very simple. They should provision appropriately for the levels of service and the response times and offer services with guaranteed response times.
I'll give you a simple example. I have a number of items of networking equipment manufactured by Cisco. Some of them are critical to my business and I can purchase a 4 hour support contract for them; for others I can buy 8 hour a day, 5 day a week, next business day support because that is good enough. The prices are based on the product and the level of service.
I recently had occasion to use the 8x5xNBD support for a failed wireless access point. I had already worked out that there was a hardware problem with the radio section but it wouldn't have mattered. I logged the call on Cisco's web site (could have been by phone or email), received a phone call 20 minutes later and went through the problem with the support person. OK, the questions were fairly basic, but in 5 minutes, he had come to the same conclusion as I had before I called. He actioned a replacement and it was in my hands by 10am the following morning. All I had to do was to pack the faulty part and return it using the pre-addressed label.
So it is perfectly possible to offer a service, actually at a fair price, and to operate it correctly.
I suspect that BG fail at this through a lack of business expertise and the wrong culture. The attitude that they are doing their customers a favour, like the NHS seems to have, does not cut any ice in the modern world.

.andy
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But not to have cheap products with quality? Mmmmm
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There's quite a difference between a "fair price" and "cheap"

.andy
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Big difference from top bucks and decent quality too.
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Of course. It depends on your evaluation criteria.

.andy
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JB wrote:

I called the AA out one night and the chap they sent phoned me up en route to say he'd be delayed as a more urgent job had come in. 1 hour later he rolls up and apologises for the delay but as women are a priority then the dozy mare that put petrol in a diesel Disco got a priority tag whereas me with a broken cambelt was left til later. So much for equality.
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They flat refused to come out to my partner with a flat battery because a Transit 120 is "above their weight limit". I moved to the AA from the RAC after the latter decided that they would go into the ambulance chasing business. Looks like I will be putting my business elsewhere again!
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On Tue, 30 Dec 2003 16:07:32 +0000, "Andy Luckman (AJL Electronics)"

The RAC will do exactly the same in the wrong circumstances. Neither organisation seems to have any consistent set of size/ weight standards. Both organisations will consistently tell you the other does *not* recover your vehicle. Earlier this year the AA happily recovered my LDV400 LWB 3.5 tonner without demur. They always sub out van recovery anyway, and the subbie invariably sends at least a 10 tonner. Last RAC rep trying to get me to switch said I should do so because AA wouldn't touch it and they would.
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James Hart wrote:

Is it a coincidence that the AA and B Gas are now both cash-cow divisions of the dreaded Centrica??
Don't have anything to do with either of them. They are not the companies they used to be ... probably not even British either.
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Hall wrote:

A Keston engineer (off the record) said that the best thing to do with their boilers if working OK and giving the correct CO was to leave well alone regardless of what the book says. Downfiring condensing boilers are basically self cleansing by design though. My (upfiring) Potterton Envoy collects all sorts of stuff in the burner, but whether this would show up on an exhaust gas analysis, I don't know.
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I'd be interested to know the outcome of this as I've been considering a 'maintenance and breakdown cover' policy for my CH boiler which is coming up to 3 years mod 2004.
I also agree with what you say about the maintenance expetations. But knowing what companies can be like they'd probably class this as a service and charge thru the nose for it!
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Just out of interest, I didn't touch my newly installed system with the express desire of seeing just how long it would run without a 'service'. The answer - 12 years. Then it needed a good clean out. Natural gas burns pretty cleanly and doesn't require the ancient idea of an annual clean out that town gas did. IMHO, there's nothing in a modern system that an annual service from BG etc is needed. It's simply an insurance contract. And it's up to you whether this is worthwhile or not.
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I would have thought that there should be some maintenance instructions for the boiler which would tell you what servicing is required. (Maybe you need to get a copy from manufacturer.)
In my (old) experience the thermo couples fail and need replacing if you don't want to stay cold.
You might find that something like inspection of the burners is covered, but replacment is not.
Michael Chare
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On 29/12/2003 "ANt" opined:-

I would suggest the best thing to do is to put the money you would pay BG into a money box, then use that to cover the cost of any repairs.
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ANt wrote:

They do next to nothing. Cancel the contract and save your money. I haven't had one for > 20 years so have saved myself enough money for 2 boilers when the time comes...
I watched them do 2 "services" not long ago at my ma-in-laws and another. They were barely there 20 minutes in each case. In one they failed to do anything about the very noisy pump which they had to replace the following week. In the other they did nothing about the combi cold pressure of <0.5 which was a 10sec job to fix. Both contracts were cancelled by the householders... B Gas are now nothing more than a milk-cow division of Centrica, who have also f***ed up the AA. They're probably not even British ....
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<snip>

I have AA buildings and contents insurance. It's the worst level of service I've ever had in my life. When applying for it, it took 10 iterations of the policy before they managed to get it right. I even faxed them an altered copy of their own document with instructions to change it so it looks like THIS. They still didn't get it right. They also couldn't get their heads round me wanting my wife and I named on the policy as Mr & Mrs X...they managed every combination of MR & MRs <firstname> <lastname> you could think of. At one stage I thought they were just taking the p1ss. I'm in the process of finding another provider now..
Ant.
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ANt wrote:

You should see the knuckleheads that work there, I have. And their IT, its unbelievable. The PCs they have to use you wouldn't give skip room to. All the AAs & and B Gas "servers" have been centralised together in Mitcham (at the gas works) and a right hodge-bodge it is too :-). Most of the orig AA IT staff left under acrimonious circumstances and they seem to rely on contractors now.
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The majority in our place are 133Mhz / 166Mhz pentiums running Win95 registered to someone called Vic0din :-p
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On 29 Dec 2003 08:26:01 -0800, snipped-for-privacy@btinternet.com (ANt) wrote:

Some boilers need a strip down and clean out/wash burners etc,adjust this n that,some don;t. Its horses for courses. For modern boilers,a lot of the fee is really for insurance as modern appliances are more technologically advanced and therefore cost more to fix when they go wrong.
You pays your money you take your choice. The way people bleat on here about BG you;d think they were the worst ever organisation. Beleive me,they are not. They are just an easy target for people to shoot down. Mind you,people not happy with them could try the yellow pages or small ads. I expect there are lots of fully qualified,dependable,honest tradespeople on there.
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(ANt) wrote:

time
know
attending
modern
here
And Con Men

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