For years, I’ve heard that Direct Energy technicians are quick to shut off furnaces during an inspection. The verdict is a cracked heat exchanger, a piece of metal that separates the furnace’s fire from the home’s air stream.
The company says it has to act speedily because of the danger of carbon monoxide leaking into the home. Critics says it’s because of the pressure to increase furnace sales.
Direct Energy is aware of the problem, as I said in my column. It is telling owners of shut-off furnaces that they can get a free second opinions to confirm the diagnosis.
Many people already go to other contractors to get a second opinion. And if they find the furnace really does need to be scrapped, they give their business to someone else.
Direct Energy hopes to win back furnace sales by offering second opinions. And if another inspection shows that a furnace works well, it hopes to gain customer loyalty.
Many heating contractors sell annual maintenance plans. Some aren’t as quick on the trigger as DE technicians are. So, I suggest that you look elsewhere for a second opinion, rather than rewarding bad behaviour.
Posted below are stories from readers about their own furnace inspections and re-inspections.