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Although some callbacks are unavoidable because of parts failures, others can be avoided by a proper diagnosis of the original problem and corrective action taken.
"Many people in the business don't recognize how much callbacks cost," said John Bunting, president of OnWatch Electronics Inc., maker of the OnWatch Model 51, a diagnostic tool for oil and gas burners.
Bunting said that with callbacks costing as much as $75 to $100, the problem is one that contractors cannot ignore.
Another reason that callbacks are costly is that a contractor's reputation is at stake. "After a tech makes more than one return to a home, the customer starts to question the quality of the contractor's work," he said. "It is one thing to have a callback, it is quite another to lose a customer."
PRODUCT HIGHLIGHTSAccording to company literature, the OnWatch has the following features:
Alan Mercurio, oil service technician and founder of OilTechTalk.com, said he wouldn't go on any job without the OnWatch.
"I don't just sell the OnWatch [at his Website] I use it myself anytime I have a nuisance call that I just can't babysit," he said. "The OnWatch can stay at the call 24/7 until the system fault takes place. And if that's not good enough, it also displays a message for the customer that the fault has been detected and they should call the service company. And yes, it even displays the service company's phone number. How cool is that?"
Being able to find these problems are a must for preventing callbacks, and can lift a large burden off the shoulders of a service tech.
"Put yourself in the shoes of the tech," said Bunting. "He has to be a diplomat and not just a tech. There are more pressures on him to solve the problem. The OnWatch gathers data 24 hours a day until the burner locks out.
"We dramatically increase the odds of the service tech finding the problem."
Mercurio agreed, especially when time and money is important to both the tech and the customer. "Once I arrive, all I need to do is read the history of what took place right up to the time of the failure and make the necessary corrections," he said. "I can't even begin to tell how much money has been saved with the use of this instrument, but I can say that it pays for itself within the first few calls. The rest is money saved for the contractor's bottom line."
For more information, visit www.onwatchinc.com/model51.
Publication date: 11/27/2006