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Disgusting fridge...when to refuse?


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28 replies to this topic

#1 DurhamAppliance

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 07:17 AM

Went on fridge call the other day on behalf of a landlord. He was going to meet me there but decided at the last minute to leave the key. Standard hotpoint fridge, not cooling, tenant moving in the next day. Fridge not running, no lights, reeked of ammonia, mold and full of those dead little bugs (water fleas?).

I now understand why landlord left, he didn't want to incur my wrath. Since I was there, I thought it would be a quick repair...either a power problem or timer/cold control with burnt out bulb. Voltage detector quickly suggested the latter. Thought I'd get in an out quickly. Put some vapor rub under my nose, and went to work,,,moved timer...nothing...so had to be cold control...opened housing and what appeared to be thousands of those little bugs fell out. Okay, I'm a big boy...no problem...but getting queasy (and dummy me, did not have any masks on my truck). Bypassed cold control and fridge came to life. "Good," I can get out and get paid, and advise landlord to clean fridge before I returned with a cold control. Then I noticed the Evap fan wasn't working. Should have guessed it since every time I see these bugs, the fan motor is usually rusted over and good chance of sealed system failure.

Now I had to remove panel to check out fan and evap....more bugs...zillions of them. I had to remind myself " You're still a big boy" and got to work. Fan motor rusted...but now I have to wait and check out evap pattern. Waiting....getting queasy...wait some more...getting queasier. Opened freezer door..saw enough of a pattern to pass. Now I can leave...oops..gotta check one more thing ...should have done it earlier but was guessing sealed system leak...okay unplugged fridge and plugged it back in to check out start mode for relay/compressor....waiting a few more minutes...queasiest now,,,,compressor fired up. Okay....out. As I was packing up I got a ransom demand. From my stomach! For reasons I cannot explain, it said "If you go to McDonald's and buy me a quarter pounder with cheese, I'll be cool and you'll be cool" After practically bathing in the sink at the restaurant, I did as ordered. Queasiness gone. Maybe my stomach just needed something recognizable.

Now my quandary, should I charge more by including a "disgusting fee" or should I have just said "no"? Where do you draw the line?

Edited by DurhamAppliance, 15 January 2012 - 10:52 AM.

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#2 RegUS_PatOff

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 07:22 AM

... I don't know, but ..... pictures ? :blink:
.

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#3 DurhamAppliance

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 07:26 AM

Pictures? Hell no... still trying to get the image of a zillion nasty little bugs falling on my brand new snap-on out of my mind. The horror, the horror.

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#4 john63

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 10:07 AM

<laugh>

Yeah--I've had those--but the weird thing is that there haven't been any lately.

Most of the utterly disgusting refrigerators were in city-owned housing (HUD).

Cannot count the number of times that I've been in those "homes" where coachroaches crawled about on all walls & every thing.

Defrost timers completely---let me repeat that---COMPLETELY encased with roach eggs (and baby roaches crawling out of it).

Yes---I charged more for this unfit-for-human-habitation calls. Kind of a "hazard-duty" rate.

I think that the local/fed gov't changed some rules about this type of neglect---as I don't see it much anymore.
To eliminate:

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Read below:

The *correct* amount of HE (High Efficiency) detergent that should be used in any front load or agitatorless top load washer with tub sizes 3.0 cu ft and larger is as follows:

HE: (2) Tablespoons Per Wash Load

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Use: "Tide Washing Machine Cleaner"

#5 DurhamAppliance

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 10:22 AM

Ah yes....Hazard pay!

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#6 DurhamAppliance

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 01:07 PM

Okay got it now.... $25 dollars more if I have to stick Vicks vapor rub up my nose. Add another $10 if need to wear a mask and another $75 if i have to ..well..... :puke:

Edited by DurhamAppliance, 16 December 2011 - 01:08 PM.

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#7 SANTA

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 06:17 PM

Just think of the money you could make if you were a proctologist. :thumbsup: :yucky:

#8 RegUS_PatOff

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 06:19 PM

pictures may also come in handy to show the owner / landlord if he questions the "hazard duty pay"
.

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#9 kdog

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 07:29 PM

I would consider finding a leak (making one), and condemning the fridge - tell landlord its beyond repair and send him shopping
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#10 Scottthewolf

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 09:13 PM

I used to be a maintainance technician for a 95 unit apartment building. When I found appliances like this where nothing can remove the bugs or smell from them I would make sure none of the bigwigs from corporate were around, take the appliance outside or to my garage to clean them and accidentally drop the said appliance on the concrete and make the unit unuseable. It HAD to be done where the slum tenants moved out of a unit and food was left in the refrigerator.
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#11 DurhamAppliance

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Posted 17 December 2011 - 03:32 AM

Didn't we take a pledge, what was it now?....uh..."neither rain nor snow nor..." no that's not it....lemme see...okay..."I (fill in your name) promise to uphold the"...nope. hmmmm..Posted Image oh yeah.. got it... " I will do no harm to an appliance."

Since I've also done it, maybe it's best this "Repairocratic" oath should read in part " I will do no harm to an appliance unless the appliance will do harm to me."

Edited by DurhamAppliance, 17 December 2011 - 03:48 AM.

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#12 kdog

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Posted 17 December 2011 - 01:54 PM

This is for the greater good of all Mankind to have such an item sent to the landfill
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#13 nickfixit

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Posted 24 December 2011 - 07:43 AM

"Just think of the money you could make if you were a proctologist."

I've always thought of myself as an appliance proctologist. I've been deep in the shit many times over the years.
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#14 Chat_in_FL

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Posted 25 December 2011 - 09:41 AM

Now my quandary, should I charge more by including a "disgusting fee" or should I have just said "no"? Where do you draw the line?


Refuse! Take into consideration those bugs climbing into your toolbox and you now carrying them from house to house...

Company policy: Tell them to clean it up and reschedule.

Edited by Chat_in_RI, 25 December 2011 - 09:49 AM.

We, the unwilling, led by the unknowing, are doing the impossible for the ungrateful. We have done so much, for so long, with so little, we are now qualified to do anything with nothing.

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#15 DurhamAppliance

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Posted 25 December 2011 - 09:31 PM

Refuse! Take into consideration those bugs climbing into your toolbox and you now carrying them from house to house...

Company policy: Tell them to clean it up and reschedule.


No doubt, If they were alive or if they were roaches (dead or alive) I certainly would refuse. These things are always dead, they breed in the ice maker tube then die in the fridge. Not sure what you call them. I had a tenant in one of my rental properties call me because of bugs coming out of her bath tub drain. Called my plumber, he asked me if the tenant had ever used that tub. Found out the tenant had not used that tub for 8 months. These things bred in the trap. Whatever they are, at least they don't hitch a ride to your shop.
Then again, maybe a spore gets inside me somehow and these things come out of me like tiny chest bursting aliens Posted Image

Edited by DurhamAppliance, 26 December 2011 - 02:11 PM.

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#16 kdog

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Posted 25 December 2011 - 11:36 PM

Probably just a bit of Gas from the Quarter Cheese
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#17 Shawnna

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 07:02 PM

ugh.......... I'd charge DOUBLE and explain you're concerned with the health of the renters that are moving in the next day. :rocker:

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#18 Mr. Lee Fix

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Posted 26 December 2011 - 11:21 PM

If the bugs are alive you need to add an "Extermination Fee", or failing to terminate them, an "Impede Fee". If they're dead you should add an EPA mandated "Bio-Hazard Remediation Fee". Then cash the check and never return. I, for one, would never have set foot in the place...not for any sum or anyone. I'm skieving just reading your account.

#19 Dan Webster

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 11:58 AM

My boss sent me out to a deadbeat once. The power had been off several month's at the house and the landlord let me in. My boss gives away a free turkey with every new purchase at thanksgiving. I repo'ed the ice box and it had the remains of that turkey inside it. It was pretty nasty.
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#20 grey shrek

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Posted 29 December 2011 - 12:15 AM

Many years ago , in my working life Sears sent me to a house in a town south of Lethbridge , Alberta. Yee olde gag reflex was on standby the whole 5 min. I was in the house. Lucky for me Sears had a pick-up for major repair policy at that time and we had a loaner sent out. I understand that one of the guys that went to pick up the fridge actually had to go outside and hurl. I don't think even roaches or maggots could stand that place. It had more live flys in the fridge than most house do.I do remember a shiny new pair of cowboy shoes on the table - boy , did they look out of place. We POWER WASHED the fridge before letting it in the shop and we power washed the loaner when it came back. Had a few dung holes we had to go into , but that was the worst...{ Kdog- I think Ken might remember that unit..} " I used to think that with old age , I may have mellowed - turns out I just don't give a shit. "




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