Your home’s security and safety may be dependent on having a well-functioning garage door. After checking such obvious things as batteries and power source, when a garage door is malfunctioning there are a few steps that are necessary in order to ascertain the service you call out is a legitimate one.
CHECK THE GUARANTEE FIRST
If you have been the owner of your property for more than a few years, the chances are the guarantee on your garage door is no longer in play. Check first though, as there are brands out there that provide up to A 5-year warranty in some cases. If you are taking possession of a property after purchase, be sure to ask the seller to include the paperwork for guarantees on things like the garage door in the sale. This may save you a phone call and a service charge at the beginning.
GARAGE DOORS AGE JUST LIKE ANY OTHER HOUSE FIXTURE
A garage door is a fairly complicated structure with springs and cables that wear down like any other mechanism. The scammers and fraudsters out there, prey on those who have a garage door break down at an inopportune moment like weekends or when access is very important. This panicked mind-set is what can sometimes drive someone to consider the websites out there that offer cheap call-out fees. This is fake savings because an inflated cost will just be added to the service somewhere else in the billing.
It has been proven that two out of every ten (that’s 20%) garage door repair services in the United States that were contacted then attempted to charge the customer for unnecessary repairs. The internet is teeming with less than honourable companies using a multitude of domains, names and fronts to target the homeowner who tries to save on call-out fees by offering what seems like a bargain price for one. Proper technicians take into account that running a 24-hour service, scheduling a visit, petrol and expertise cannot be done for less than $150 – $350.
ASK RELEVANT QUESTIONS
With a cheap call-out and service fee being a red flag there are some questions you should have clarified before making a booking.
- Ask them where is their physical address and while they are on the line, Google Map them to see if the store front is legitimate. Many of the companies that offer a fix-it service simply reroute the call-out to an uncertified handyman who gives them a cut of the fee.
- Never allow a repair technician to start work without a detailed description of the work that they are about to do, what the final total costs will be and for how long the parts are guaranteed. If the answer you hear is in anyway suspect, remember that you do not have to use the service just because you have paid for a call-out. Simply say that you would feel more comfortable getting another price quote.
- Be informed about the parts that are installed. Cheap model springs for garage doors are notoriously short-lived but are sold by dodgy technicians as “Life-time guaranteed”. The company then scores big when the spring breaks and they cash in on a big call-out fee while replacing it with yet another short-lived spring.
REFERRALS FROM RELIABLE SOURCES
Unfortunately, online reviews can be manipulated on any site or search engine. So, relying on a five-star review from Trade Me is not a good idea. This makes it difficult in making an internet search enquiry into the company before hiring. Rely on word-of-mouth from trusted neighbours and relatives. You can also give a well-known garage door manufacturer a call and ask them who they recommend in your area. They will always have the names and numbers of the experts that they use to install their own products in the best professional manner.
When garage door problems arise, which will happen to any door in time, don’t forget that the easiest way to obtain a consummate service is to look at the rim or garage door itself for the sticker the manufacturer and installer will have placed with the contact details of the technician that they recommend for emergencies.