FOUNTAIN, COLO. — We're watching out for you and your money. Our cold winter weather means extra stress on the furnaces that keep our homes warm. But how do you know you're getting a fair deal when it comes to repairs or even new equipment?
When we call someone to come look at the furnace at our home, we believe they are experts and we hope they'll be honest. But right here in Southern Colorado a woman says her experience almost led to an expensive mistake.
With snow piling up outside her home in Fountain, Danijela Gray made a call to have her furnace serviced for the winter, but when the repair man arrived he told her it was all bad. Everything needed to be replaced.
"The furnace and the air conditioning. I said, woah. He said it's going to be $12,000. Well, I didn't think nothing of it because I thought well if I need it I'll have to replace it and so I wrote a check for $12,000," said Gray.
Gray's friends told her the situation didn't seem right. With warm air still flowing through her home's vents she stopped payment on the check and called for another furnace repair company to come take a look.
"Did he see anything wrong with your furnace?," News5 Investigative Reporter Patrick Nelson asked.
"No. He looked at the furnace and said there's nothing wrong with it," said Gray.
The second inspection didn't cost her a dime. Gray was frustrated by how different the opinions were between the two repair companies and says her experience was important to share.
"I'm 90 years old you know and I guess they think, well that's an old woman over here well we can get something from her. We can get her. No. Not anymore. They almost did it. But I'm glad I had good friends," said Gray
At this point we are not naming the company that gave that $12,000 estimate, because it is possible equipment may need to be replaced or the furnace could need some type of major repair at a later date. But it's a reminder that if you don't like your furnace repair estimate, you should get a second opinion to make sure you aren't paying more than you need to.
Important safety alert
One caution: If the technician says he found evidence of a gas leak, or the potential for a gas leak in the near future, take him seriously. Do not turn the furnace back on without a professional inspection.
The same goes for a cracked heat exchanger, which could release deadly carbon monoxide gas into your home.