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-   -   Replacing draft inducer cost of DIY vs pro (http://www.diychatroom.com/f17/replacing-draft-inducer-cost-diy-vs-pro-130729/)

WillK 01-20-2012 12:20 PM

Replacing draft inducer cost of DIY vs pro
 
I am very big on doing things myself where I can, and I am doing so in the case of my draft inducer.. I tend to judge quotes in the context of what it would cost to do myself. All due respect to pro's because I don't begrudge the increased prices where something is beyond my ability, but I want to understand if this pricing is reasonable in the context of whether I would consider the particular pro for future work where I will need it.

I was charged $85 for the service call, which I don't have a problem, which was a month or so back. I called around 10 PM and was told it wouldn't be until around 6 AM the next day since he had other jobs first, and his actual arrival time was 9 AM. By that time, I had cleaned out the dirt that was stalling my inducer using WD-40, so all he had to do was tighten screws on the vent pipe. He indicated if I needed him back out again within 90 days he would waive the service call charge. I don't have an issue with any of this.

The quote he gave for the draft inducer was $498. I will be replacing it myself, and my cost including shipping is $113.58. I don't begrudge a profit, covering labor and overhead or expertise... But I assume the guy I bought my inducer from is selling it at a profit as well and even so, that's a very big difference in price.

Put it in context for me, is this or is this not a reasonable price to replace a draft inducer I can buy for $113 for $500?

TarheelTerp 01-20-2012 12:38 PM

service call, diagnostics, oiling, fasteners, etc aside...

An OEM part, sourced from a wholesale distributor who will actually warranty the part,
costs more than something that looks very similar to that sourced retail or on the net.
Add markup on the material to that wholesale cost.

Then you have the value for the time to get there and then to do the work involved...
this labor rate should/will include the overhead costs of operating the business as well.
Including his labor warranty.

Then of course there's profit. No one is in business to break even.
---

As for context... what do YOUR customers/clients say about how you get
the money needed to pay your mortgage, buy groceries, and fund your IRA?

hth

harleyrider 01-20-2012 12:53 PM

Lets look at it this way............if YOU owned the comany, would that price seem fair ? i am betting that if you had even a clue what it cost to be in the HVAC business these days, your answer would be yes, its a fair price.

diyorpay 01-20-2012 01:13 PM

I got the lecture from the trade once.

Add the overhead for truck(s), the office, the office support, advertising, training, experience and knowledge to diagnose correctly the first time, insurance, proper safety, inventory, tools...

A lot of truth to it.

On the other hand, I've had shoddy work done that I could have done better myself. Even after I get it right (sometimes) on the second try, it's still cheaper if money is an issue.

Peace of mind and a warranty come with a price. Just make sure you get a good contractor.

WillK 01-22-2012 12:02 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by harleyrider (Post 828935)
Lets look at it this way............if YOU owned the comany, would that price seem fair ? i am betting that if you had even a clue what it cost to be in the HVAC business these days, your answer would be yes, its a fair price.

I don't, that's why I'm asking. The blower housing does have the identical markings to the original and I'm guessing that what I bought is remanufactured or something like that by Rotom and Rotom installs their new motor... Unless someone will tell me that Rotom makes a product that is inferior, I would think that high cost of HVAC would drive the use of less expensive parts.

I thought I had made clear that I recognize the existence of overhead costs and the need to make some profit, these are costs I don't know and I wanted to know if the costs are reasonable or not.

If it helps the original ICP part number is 1014433.

I'm asking because I do usually see this kind of difference and I usually end up doing my own work because of it - knowing that I am capable of meeting my needs. In this case, the repair on this furnace does not need to last 5 years, and I wouldn't expect it to because of the environment. I want to be able to judge pricing because when I get a new furnace, I won't be doing the installation myself. So I must wonder, based on this experience, do I expect the particular business to be priced fairly nor not.

yuri 01-22-2012 12:27 PM

my company would chg about $500 or more. for example. I pay $150 for an OEM part. mark it up 100% which everyone does ( we go as high as 2 or 2.6x for some parts). you now have $300. add 2 hrs labor at $100/hr and voila $500. 2 hrs labor = 1/2 hr travelling time, 1/2 hr pickup part and 1 hr to install. and that is MINIMUM chg. can be more if travelling time is longer. these are normal business costs. Honda dealer chg $140/hr where I am so get used to the real world prices. of course you can DIY and so do I. I can buy an electric water htr for $250 and hump it in myself or pay a Pro $600-1000. everyone needs to make a living and not a marginal one.:whistling2:

rotom parts work but cost 25% less and last 25% less, not a problem for a short term but you get what you pay for. nothing remanufactured about them and I use them.

beenthere 01-22-2012 01:42 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by yuri (Post 831122)
my company would chg about $500 or more. for example. I pay $150 for an OEM part. mark it up 100% which everyone does ( we go as high as 2 or 2.6x for some parts). you now have $300. add 2 hrs labor at $100/hr and voila $500. 2 hrs labor = 1/2 hr travelling time, 1/2 hr pickup part and 1 hr to install. and that is MINIMUM chg. can be more if travelling time is longer. these are normal business costs. Honda dealer chg $140/hr where I am so get used to the real world prices. of course you can DIY and so do I. I can buy an electric water htr for $250 and hump it in myself or pay a Pro $600-1000. everyone needs to make a living and not a marginal one.:whistling2:

rotom parts work but cost 25% less and last 25% less, not a problem for a short term but you get what you pay for. nothing remanufactured about them and I use them.

Plus most of us give a 1 year warranty. So if it gos out in that year. You don't pay for another service call, or labor to change it out again.

Tator1076 01-22-2012 01:56 PM

You are saving money but you have to understand we have family's too. We have to charge more to pay for company's expanse and payroll. Just think about it if some one say they can do your job ten times cheaper and now you lost that job. That can p you off too.

WillK 01-22-2012 10:04 PM

Doesn't seem so long ago I thought of Canadian dollars like monopoly money but apparently the exchange rate with the US is pretty close to dollar for dollar :laughing::jester:

I thank everyone for their input. I'm doing a load of work myself and I always have, but I have a plan and I know full well that as I progress through the plan I will gradually be depending more on contractors.

At this point, I am in the process of paying for my 3rd home on land contract. My first home was a 50 year old house that I couldn't sell even at $50,000 under the $185,000 I owed on it before the bank took possession under foreclosure because I had to move for a job when jobs stopped being available in Michigan. The second house was new because the wife didn't want to deal with repairs, but when we moved back to Michigan we had to sell on a short sale because of the other foreclosures driving down market prices.

So we bought this house cheap without depending on bank financing, part out of necessity and part out of a desire to fast track our finances to a substantially lower debt to income ratio. In spite of that, I can't finance tires which I tried to last week when one of my tires went flat and was bald - I had no difficulty paying for 1, but I would've needed financing to pay for all 4 as I wanted to, so it'll wait a month or so.

That's also the difference between paying $100 for a part and paying $500 for a pro, and right now the extras I get for the pro would just go in a dumpster in a year or so when I need a pro to put in a new furnace. By then, I expect to be able to get financing through a credit union - I had consulted last fall hoping to finance my foundation, but I had recently started a new job and length of employment wasn't enough and from paying for roof materails on credit cards, I had a high credit utilization going against me.

hvactech126 01-22-2012 10:15 PM

Anyone can buy a part, just like anyone can purchase the products to build an airplane. However, can just anyone assemble the parts correctly to ensure the end user is safe? Why is it that so many people disregard the professional training that goes into becoming a top notch trades person. All they see is the price of the part. What about the cost of obtaining a trade certification, the continuing education, the liability insurance, fuel, vehicle maintenance, vehicle payments, insurances, office expenses, advertising, phone systems, banking fees, bad dept, capital depreciation, accounting and legal, workers comp, holiday pay, vacation pay, training pay, pension plans, benefits package, software and hardware costs, equipment costs, storage costs, cost of handling stock, warehousing costs, lights,utility costs, non billable time costs, office staff, answering services, bookkeeper costs, rent or lease costs, taxes, etc? Are we as trades people to absorb all these costs? Who is to absorb these costs? I guess we're supposed to sell the part at the same price as we purchase it for and then charge only for our time at the job, not for the non billable time, and some how try to cover all those other costs plus some how support our companies, our employees, and our families. Is it no wonder why there is a shortage of skilled trades people. When is someone going to start educating the public on the costs associated with running a business?

WillK 01-22-2012 10:43 PM

Okay, you'd have a point if we were talking about installing a new HVAC system including new ducts to go with the new floor layout I'm going to have, getting a proper cold air return system in, and putting thought into sizing new ducts instead of just cobbling something new together to go with the ducts that already exist.

I should point out that changing this blower involves all the technical expertise of turning 3 screws to bolt the blower unit to the furnace, 2 screws to bolt the vent duct to the blower, and pulling off and on 2 wires and a hose to a pressure sensor. I called this in knowing exactly what the problem was - it's a pretty obvious issue to identify, and I know perfectly well how unreliable a homeowner's certainty of a diagnosis can be.

I can't imagine the hell that whatever contractor did the job had to go throuIgh putting in the furnace I have, the crawlspace was absolutely un-navigateable when I bought the house. I have every intention of getting a contractor in ahead of time to plan out the system, and bring them in when it's time to install with a house that's designed with accomodating the ducts in mind and a crawlspace that can actually be crawled and has the lighting needed to do the job safely and as easily as possible.

how 01-22-2012 11:30 PM

Yes a nerve has been touched here.
One of the major differences between many of the people coming here for help and the forum people offering that help is ..we are all gainfully employed in a well paying trade where as others coming here may be trying to decide which comes first, food or heat, for themselves and their families..
Civilization depends only on the rule of contract and ones ability to empathize with those in different circumstances from our own. I think that those of us who have been financially secure for some times might easily forget what it was really like for us when we were not.

hvac5646 01-23-2012 01:10 AM

Posts like these are annoying to me, no disrespect to the OP ..they just bother the dickens out of me.


If i wanted to work for an hourly rate I would find a job.

But the Pros here are in business to make a PROFIT, not a an hourly wage.

We take all the risk of opening a business, we have to invest in ongoing training to keep up with technology. We warranty the part that we have to stock or run to get...ect

Yeh..five hundred bucks is cheap for an inducer.

DrHicks 01-23-2012 01:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by WillK (Post 828889)
I am very big on doing things myself where I can, and I am doing so in the case of my draft inducer.. I tend to judge quotes in the context of what it would cost to do myself. All due respect to pro's because I don't begrudge the increased prices where something is beyond my ability, but I want to understand if this pricing is reasonable in the context of whether I would consider the particular pro for future work where I will need it.

I was charged $85 for the service call, which I don't have a problem, which was a month or so back. I called around 10 PM and was told it wouldn't be until around 6 AM the next day since he had other jobs first, and his actual arrival time was 9 AM. By that time, I had cleaned out the dirt that was stalling my inducer using WD-40, so all he had to do was tighten screws on the vent pipe. He indicated if I needed him back out again within 90 days he would waive the service call charge. I don't have an issue with any of this.

The quote he gave for the draft inducer was $498. I will be replacing it myself, and my cost including shipping is $113.58. I don't begrudge a profit, covering labor and overhead or expertise... But I assume the guy I bought my inducer from is selling it at a profit as well and even so, that's a very big difference in price.

Put it in context for me, is this or is this not a reasonable price to replace a draft inducer I can buy for $113 for $500?

I just paid $187 for a draft inducer for my furnace. I installed it myself. List price - which I assume an HVAC Professional would have charged - is about $335. Throw in the $85 service call charge, and some labor, and I'm sure we would easily have been talking $500.

beenthere 01-23-2012 05:17 AM

Lets not debate.

This site is here to aid DIY.

Enough said.


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