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Direct Heating and Cooling / Read this before you call to DHC!

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I did not realize there was a website https://www.complaintsboard.com I would have check it first before I made a one year contract with this company direct heating and cooling in Cape Coral. My AC has been working fine since I bought my house in 2004; in February I wanted just to have a regular check up. So I called this company thinking it was going to be a good experience….and this is what happened. A tech came came and check the condenser and the evaporator unit and told me it was fine. That all I needed was a UV light to avoid getting mold in the unit and will help me and my kids not to get any allergies, so the price was $2000.00 and I said I’ll call you back let me check with my boss (wife), but he then said I’ll give a good deal if you get a one year contract for $150.00 and that way you don’t have to pay any service call fees. So I went with it. Now 2 days ago I noticed warm air coming out from the supply panel, so I figured I have a contract let me call them. Now it was 6 pm so I shut off the unit then a guy by the name of “Greg “shows up around 9pm and turn on the ac from the thermostats and went outside to check the unit and check the Freon told me Freon was ok, that the unit was going bad and I needed a new because of the new code I might need a 13 or 14 SEER unit and with the discount I can get for $6800.00. Now I said let me think it over. Remember my unit was working when he came in. So the next day I called two different companies and them both told me all I needed was a good cleaning for both units because they were dirty. No need to replace the unit. Now the first guy who came two month before did not even clean the unit when he put me in the contract. It’s amazing how far this people can go or if they can get a good sleep knowing what they are doing ripping people off .I am not going to stop here, if I have to go to the new I will. I hope someone else reads this before they call the DHC Company.


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A  16th of Aug, 2008 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
Same exact thing happened to me. We had just purchased a home in South Gulf Cove and called the A/C company for a check up (there was a Direct Heating and Cooling sticker on the unit). They told us the same thing about not being able to service the unit because the unit uses Freon. Needless to say we purchased the new unit... WHAT A MISTAKE. The new unit we purchased so far needed to be totally installed TWICE. The first time there was water leaking out of the unit in my garage and we actually needed to put a bucket under the drip. It took over TWO WEEKS to get someone out to look at it. (when they sold us they were here the next morning since they wanted our money that day). After waiting TWO WEEKS the owner came out took a look and said "this will never pass inspection... call the office and tell them you need a reinstallation"... then we call the office and TWO MORE WEEKS LATER two people came out to reinstall the unit... Now the part in the garage condenses and freezes (when it is not dripping it is freezing). Needless to say the unit failed inspection... MIND YOU I DID NOT HAVE A PROBLEM WITH MY ORIGINAL UNIT... JUST WANTED A YEARLY MAINTENANCE CALL. Now, we have had two more service calls. There is black tape all around the unit that is dripping. The guy told me on Thursday he needs to come back out on Monday and put insulation around the air handler so it wont drip. At that point I told him to "GET OUT!!! ... you are not coming back" (already six time i have had these people at my house). "And, he sure as Hexx is not going to wrap the drip in insulation so I cannot see it." The end of the story... this has been going on since June 19, 2008. Today is August 16, 2008. Direct Heating supposedly is coming out on Monday. If they do they can take their unit with them when they get here. I have already hired a new company to come and reinstall a new unit. My bank has already reimbursed me my $6K and now we are going to start fresh with someone reputable.
A  19th of Oct, 2008 by 
Agree Disagree +2 Votes
I also had a problem with these clowns. Recently I called them to have a routine maintenance on my 5 year old 4ton 12 seer unit. A tech named Kevin came to check it out, and within 15 minutes, convinced me that my unit was junk and needed to be replaced. He told be my coils needed to be replaced and the unit was operating at twice the electricity it should. After some time I caved and agreed to $4900 for a new 4 ton 13 seer unit and condenser. He took an imprint on my credit card and sprayed some chemical into my ducts as a prelude to the next day install. After he left my gut was telling me I was being screwed . I called AC Techniques through a friends recommendation and Jimmy from AC came to check it out. He cleaned my unit thoroughly and did some routine service and had to repair a bad piston in the airhandler and now the unit runs better than ever!!
I quickly cancelled with Direct although they tried everything to convince me otherwise. They are crediting me all of my money except $500 for that duct chemical which I never even needed. They are a shady operation and are unprofessional from Kevin "The Tech", to Mr. Henderson "The Manager" to the CSM, Miss Williams. Disgusting! I hope and pray people like this get their just desserts. Go with AC Techniques, atleast you will get a good honest job with Jimmy.
A  22nd of Apr, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +2 Votes
As an Airconditioning contractor in the area for the past 23 years I have had many occasions to run in to work done or proposed by this company as we sell the same line of equiptment.
I can relate many situations were people are paying 2 to 3 times what the average rate is for replacements, worse than that i constantly come across misinformation on high efficency systems 5 or less years old about units being "obsolete" (UNTRUE) because of the change to new refrigerants in 2010, and parts being unavaible or way over priced (ex. a evaporator for 2500$ that was not even bad, BUT if it was should have been free under the warrenty) This i have heard them say about systems that were even less than 1 year old and many having full warrentys on all parts.

For example a Ms. Levy had a unit that was 6 years old, a 12 SEER, she had purchased it with a 10 year factory warranty, parts and labor, they convinced her that hers was having problems, was not efficent and that it was obsolete and parts were very expensive if even available, even though as a snow bird her highest bill in the summer was under 35$ with this system . Also there was a very serious mold problem, although there was not complaint from the owners. this resulted in a UV light and seal the ductwork, they charge 2495$. They sold her a 14 SEER Rheem 3 ton at this time for 7, 166$, when her existing 12 seer was under full warrenty for another 3 years.(FPL says a 14 seer vs. a 12 seer would only save on average 150$ @ year IF THEY WERE HERE IN THE SUMMER), as they are not it would be about
20$ savings, not worth a 7000$ investment in my opinion.
When she returned apx 6 months later they came for the "maintnence inspection" and told her the unit they JUST put in would also be obsolete as it used r-22, that they only put this one in because the other was not avaible and they didnt want her to have mold while she was away. (I thought the UV light would not allow mold to grow..) and they needed to replace it as there would be no parts avaible as of 2010. She asked about the 10 year parts and labor warrenty she had purchased with this new system and they told her the warrenty was no good if they couldnt get the parts and proceded to sell her a Frigidare 16 SEER, (totally unecessary in my opinion). They said that it was usually 16, 000$ for this system but they would "buy back" her unit and the end price would be 8994$! I helped her get this returned after a nasty battle and exposure on WINK TV. I have many other stories, you be the judge of this one.

My Advice, Beware of the Maintnence Specials, use established contractors, listen to your friends about their experences. Dont respond to pressure to do something at that moment, get another opinion if you sence sales pressure, esp if your unit is running when they arrive. If you think you have been the victum of Fraud file complaints with your local building department, and the Department of Professional Regulation (DBPR) as they issue the licences that allow us to work.

Steve Turcotte, All Seasons Comfort North Port Florida. email: sturcotte3@comcast.net
A  18th of May, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +2 Votes
Thats not even that half of it. I worked at this place and saw everything first hand. Their doors should be padlocked!!
N  11th of Sep, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
How to not be scammed by an HVAC Tech:
Be polite, offer the tech water or coffee, and have a flash light ready. Watch them while they are working, but keep your mouth shut, just observe. Offer to hold the flash light. Don't make distracting chit chat and don't ask the tech for a conclusion before he/she is ready. Have a note pad ready, don't take notes yet. You may not understand what he is doing but you can observe what areas he is working in and how much time he spends in one area. If you have some knowledge of heating and cooling or engineering don't tell the tech. You may hear an audible groan, if you don't he/she will be thinking "oh no not another engineer with a chip on his/her shoulder." The reality is if you could have fixed it you would have already, instead you called in an expert, if the tech is not an expert, you will have a chance to point that out later. For now just keep quiet. If the tech seems overly chatty about how you need to spend money on other "upgrades" like UV lights, just make the briefest comment you can about how you may be interested in talking about that after your problem is diagnosed. If the tech is nervous and tries to get rid of you by telling you to go adjust the thermostat, tell him flat out that you prefer to observe and he/she should feel free to make any adjustments. A true technician will be able to focus on the diagnosis of the system and reach a conclusion regardless of weather you are there or not. Once the tech reaches a conclusion he/she will approach you. Now is the time to ask questions. Some good questions are:
What do you think caused this part to fail?
How do you know it has failed?
What test did you preform to determine this?

That last question is a great one, it really tells you if you have a true tech or a bull sh..er
A true tech will be able to answer the question and even show you.
"Mr. Homeowner sir, you have a failed gas valve and thermostat."
"Oh, both parts are bad? How did that happen"
"Well..sir... the transformer here, creates 24 volts, now it has a little breaker on it, which you saw me reset, lucky for you it has a breaker other wise you might need a transformer as well. Ok, so it creates 24 volts which travels up to your thermostat and waits for instructions once there is a call for heat it travels back to the furnace and goes through a bunch of safeties, eventually it gets to the gas valve and energizes a coil which turns on the gas and gives you heat. Now your gas valve has an internal short to ground I can measure that here. But I know your thermostat has also failed because after I reset your breaker I could not get a call for heating, so I bypassed it here to test the rest of the system."

Now this is a good explanation, but it does raise some new questions and it does simplify some of the science (like transformers don't actually create 24 volts they transform), but the techs ability to simplify the language and help you see what happened is a real good sign that he/she knows what he is doing. Now he may be lying, but remember you observed him/her the whole time, so you can now ask questions to clarify, questions like, "Is this (pointing to a bundle of colored wires) where you bypassed the thermostat?"
His answer should further clarify and in effect teach you some thing:
"Yes the voltage travels up to the thermostat on the red wire and comes back to the furnace on the white wire, you can see on my meter here that the circuit is open even though your thermostat is calling for heat."

Now the tech has just raised the level of discourse. He is now letting you into his diagnostic process. Are you able to follow? This depends on you knowledge and his/her ability to explain. If either are lacking you have to start trusting, or asking for further clarification. These questions could go on endlessly but they often don't. There is nothing wrong with asking for an education as it relates to your problem. A good technician will be happy to oblige. One who does not know what he/she is doing will get frustrated, angry, or overly technical.
Be calm take a breath, ask him/her to do the same, and say you don't under stand.
If he starts to contradict himself start taking notes.
You may end up speaking with his boss or another company and you will need the notes.
N  30th of Sep, 2009 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
These people are an absolute rip-off. First of all, I have lived in my home since 2001, when it was built brand new. In 2007, I had Direct Heating and Cooling come out to my home and inspect my system. I was told that I would need a new air handler, as mine was not cooling efficiently or sufficiently. So my wife and I decided to replace it. They gave me a Frigidaire unit for $3, 500. The next time that they came out, they told me I needed a new condenser as mine didn't match the Frigidaire unit, and therefore was working harder. So I put down another $3, 500.00. The next time they came out, less than two years after installing the air handler, they found rust and mold on the coil inside the air handler. I was told that for $1, 200.00 they will do a full system cleaning and install a UV light. I told the tech that for this being two years old, my system should not have this amount of rust or mold in it. He again tried to sell me the UV light. I explained that my friend was in air conditioning and that he told me that I should not have paid anywhere near what Direct Heating and Cooling charged me for this unit, let alone $1, 200.00 for a UV light. The tech replied with "Next time, you can have your buddy come over and do the maintenance on your system, then." I got angry and told him to pack his crap up and get the hell out of my house, and that meantime I was calling his supervisor. I asked him what his (the tech's) name was and he replied with "I don't have to tell you my name". I called his supervisor, who set up an appointment to come out personally. After cancelling three times, he finally came out with the tech and basically told me exactly what the technician told me. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY IF YOU CAN AVOID THEM. They are overpriced with cheap equipment, rude, and come to find out, when I had my friend do a full system cleaning and install a UV light for $475.00, they overcharge the unit with freon so that it works harder and breaks down sooner. Direct Heating and Cooling is a rip-off.
A  7th of Jun, 2010 by 
Agree Disagree +2 Votes
Without question, a rip-off company, very questionable management and the worst to do business with.

Find a reputable company - there are many. I have filed detailed complaints with the BBB, DPBR and the media. They will never hear the end of me. DO NOT USE THEM!
A  9th of Jun, 2010 by 
Agree Disagree +2 Votes
I just had this company come over and rip my father off for $525. They were going to come back tomorrow and "finish the job". I called the company to cancel this work and got a real rude and surly person who called me back and said they were entitled to the money because their person did work while he was here. I called the Venice Police Dept. because of my father's age. He is 92. The Police came out to the house and had my father write out a statement and they said they were going to charge the owner of the company with Abuse of the Elderly--a Felony. Maybe I will be able to put a stop to these con men once and for all.
A  13th of Aug, 2010 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
This is all happening to us RIGHT NOW and has been for the past year. We had them come out a year ago because our current unit wasn't cooling correctly. They said we needed to completely replace it for $7500. Since then, it has been constant trouble. We still have the same issues as before with $7500 down the toilet. We have a "warranty" with them, but every time we call because the unit isn't cooling they are rude. IF they show up at all, it is at least 2 hours late. Last night, they were supposed to be here at 5:30 and at 9:00, I called for the third time (after being told each time that they were on their way) and they said the tech that was coming must have been "bombarded" so they were sending another tech out and he would be there in 30 minutes. I told them to forget it...I was going to bed!!! They were supposed to be here today at 6 and showed up at 8, spent 5 minutes, tried to sell more work and left without warning. STILL have a HOT house!! SAD that these people continue to con people out of their hard earned money!! STAY AWAY FROM THIS COMPANY!!!
A  14th of Aug, 2010 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Just an update to my earlier post. The Venice Police Dept. contacted this company of thieves and told them they were going to press charges and go to court. This company refunded my father's money IMMEDIATELY. The Police detective told me there were 55 complaints against this company in Collier County and 70 complaints against this company in Lee County. If you are over 65 years old I suggest you call the police on these people and see if an "abuse of the elderly" cahrge could be filed.
A  2nd of Apr, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
ThiS Company screwed us over also. We just had a NEW AC SYSTEM INCLUDING DUCT WORK PUT IN BY THEM. It has only been 2.5 years and now have been told the Air Handler needs all new parts. I asked about a warranty and they started talking over my head saying it was because the plenume came off. So when I said we paid your company to replace that also 2.5 years ago also he changed his story and said that it was something else that caused all the problems. Long story short he said he could give me a deal. the price was from $700-1900 to repair. GO POUND SAND DIRECT HEATING AND COOLING. DO NOT USE THIS COMPANY!!!
N  17th of Nov, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Ps they also now go by the name Vans and will call their Direct customers acting like a different company, also beware of AAA cooling and heating as they answer their number although the company is not in Busness supposedly
N  21st of Nov, 2011 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
The owner of this company Direct Heating and Cooling, she is a real con artist. Had telemarketers calling my house non stop about having the Clean and Check done a routine maintenance and Bi annual cleaning, so I finally caved in and set an appointment with the company. My appointment date arrivals company no show, called me wanting to reschedule, so I did well they finally showed up told me my 3 yrs old unit was fried and that I needed a new drain pan as well. I said give me some time to think about it. I had another A/C company come out and do the same inspection, they said I had a dirty unit, he was baffled when I said that I had just had a company come do the service prior to him doing it... That was until he asked who I had come out and do the service. I told him Direct Heating and Cooling, he rolled his eyes and said I should have known!! By the way my unit was fine and is still working wonderfully thanks to BnB Cooling!!! Direct Heating and Cooling such a worthless company and all of there employees as well!!!
N  17th of Jan, 2012 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
Same things happened to me in 2011. What a shame that this company is still in business. People need to get the word out that these people are crooks!!! They prey on the elderly in Florida and screw them over big time!!!
A  3rd of Mar, 2012 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I have a high-end lennox Heat Pump I installed 2 years ago. I called Direct heating & Cooling for the annual check-up. Gary, the tech told my wife the evaporator had a leak and the cost would be $1900 to replace it. After further inspection he told my wife there was signs of mold and it would be better to replace the whole unit. I didn't bother to ask him how much that would be. Oh! he also told me my equipment was out of warrantee. Thing is...I have a 10 year warrantee. Can't wait to get back home to see what the real problem is. I wouldn't but it pass these guys to sabotage something like put a little hole in the evaporator. I will find out when I get home. Watch for DIRECT HEATING & COOLING!!!
A  10th of Aug, 2012 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
And a woman named Shirley should get a new job she is the rudest customer servive rep i ever talked to their servive is terrible and they should be put out of business for consumer fraud.Always trying to sell things you dont need.I am contacting the office of consumer affairs and see if they can do anything about these sleazebags
A  1st of Jan, 2013 by 
Agree Disagree +1 Votes
i bought a unit from these people in july, in september it failed inspection. the inspector said there was faulty wiring and it could be dangerous. finally a guy shows up to do so called maintenance, tried to sell me stuff without doing much else. i told him about the inspection again. he took the paperwork from the inspector and sent someone else to do the repair. when the new guy showed up he did not have the parts required to do the repair. i called to ask about this since every time they come out i have to take time off from work. the customer service person shirley could not come to the phone. after the first hour of waiting for a return call i contacted one of the lawyers i work with and he said he would look into taking legal action against them for putting my family in danger with the faulty wiring. after the second hour i called a county commissioner who said to call the county office and see what i could do about their license since the company that insures them would not accept them not doing the repairs in the legal amount of time. Now we will see if in the new year they have a license left in the state of florida maybe hitting them in the pocket book will let them know that you can not treat people this way
N  18th of Jan, 2013 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
I just ask them for a service call then they said I needed 599 dollars worth of work I said that's bull its new I told them to leave I just tried every thing and nothing works I have two kids these people mess up everything for 35.00 dollars I fell like I paid them to break my init I'm so mad I can't do nothing now it's 130 am but just to let u guys know they screwed me
N  28th of Feb, 2013 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
A  30th of Apr, 2014 by 
Agree Disagree 0 Votes
Their phone rep said Direct Air is no longer associated with Vans, and Direct now has an A+ rating with the BBB. I checked this online while speaking with the rep and told their was no such rating. (I always try to stall and keep these DNC violators on the phone as long as possible--time is money, and it's their loss). Anyway, the rep babbled on and on about having service in my area, North Port, when in fact I live in Sarasota. I let her babble on and on for a long time, asked her nonsensical questions, and then told her that I saw a bunch of negative reviews against the company.
Rep: "(sigh of frustration) "Do you want us to come out to service your a/c, or are you just going to harass me?"
Me: "It's YOU who is harassing ME, %^#$*@!! (hang up phone)

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