Monday, February 24

Tradesmen - A Rant

When I moved into his brand new duplex last year I was thrilled - in part because I had never (as an adult) lived in a brand new place.  I was 4 years old when we moved into our Adelaide house way back a long time ago - and clearly I have no memory of it.

The new home was clean, pristine, and I loved it - but I knew that there would be some issues, as there often are with brand new premises.  I seem to have had more than my fair share of them.
  • the garage door made a noise that was far in excess of what anyone would expect
  • the air conditioner saga - it has never worked properly
  • the smoke alarm system is always causing problems
Plus we have regular inspections, regular checks for termites etc, and regular (apart from my extra callouts) inspections of the smoke alarms.

Also I have had connection to NBN, and new blinds.

Of course all these "visits" require someone to be home to give access to the various pieces of equipment or the whole house, and since I live alone it does take some planning on my part.  However, I often get little or no notice, and sometimes when I am told that a technician is due "between 8 am and 12.30 pm" or similar I can wait during that time and no one appears.  On one occasion I was 50 kms away and a technician was due in an hour - I rushed back but no technician ever turned up.  That was a big drama with the real estate people who had clearly given me the wrong information.

Caboolture River near the Old Beachmere Road.
I do understand that technicians are unable to correctly/exactly know when they may arrive to do the work, but surely they have (a) some idea and (b) the skills to contact the person who is waiting or them to advise of expected arrival time, and a quick call or SMS to advise of revised time.

About ten days ago the battery in one of the smoke alarms went haywire and during the night beeped for 5 hours.  I don't have a ladder here, and anyway I was told NOT to touch it.  It is wired to the electricity too.  That was on a Thursday night, so early on the Friday morning I advised the RE agent, and was later advised that a technician would come on Monday morning.

It was 1.30 pm on the Monday that I gave up - I had been waiting all morning, and late morning I had phoned the company and the technician and the latter did not respond.  I left home at 1.40 pm (I had things to do!) expecting that the technician had again forgotten to attend.  He phoned some time later when he was apparently on his way to my home, but I had long gone.  We made other arrangements and one did turn up a few days later. (And as it turns out could not repair the alarm and now I am waiting on an electrician!!)

Waiting.  Waiting.  

All the problems I have had are not my doing.  The air conditioner was never installed properly and as I am only an infrequent user of the a/c it wasn't until the hottest day in 100 years that I needed it - and it didn't work.  It took 6 weeks of various visits by technicians before it was repaired.  There is clearly an ongoing problem with the smoke alarms.

What amazes me is that there seems to be an expectation that someone is waiting home with nothing else to do but wait for these technicians to attend. Some are good with making arrangements, or re arrangements.  Some are just ..... incompetent?


I have had in all three almost full nights of no sleep due to the strange behaviour of the smoke alarms, and I don't have confidence that there won't be more.

I wonder if they will work if I really do have a fire!!!!!  Apparently the alarms are so sensitive that they pick up ANY changes in atmosphere.  What nonsense!!!!!

I wait.  I wait.

Postscript

6 days after the technician had been and told me that my problem should be fixed quickly as my smoke alarm, being faulty, did not comply with the rules.

I had heard nothing from the company - Smoke Alarm Solutions - so I sent an email.  

Some time later I received a phone call that the electrician will be here NEXT Friday - March 7th.  Priority?  

I wait. I wait.

2 comments:

peter petterson said...

Not an entirely satisfactory situation, but it is new digs for you.

Di Hill said...

Yes, Peter. Still no call re the electrician. Hope I don't set fire to the place - if the smoke alarm is essential then it should be working.
Thanks for readng my whinge.