Have you ever had a furnace give up the ghost in the dead of winter? We have and I’ll tell you, once that has happened, you’ll go to any length to make sure it doesn’t happen again. So when our furnace repairmen kept on saying “Your furnace is really getting old,” we started to think, ask questions and look around.
It didn't take much to find out that furnace life is, on the average, about 15 years. Ours was 22 years old. We also learned that installing a furnace during the winter can lead to frozen pipes. And that our old furnace was very inefficient and that we well might be eligible for the current government rebate of up to $1500. All that was well and good, but the hard part was choosing the HVAC contractor.
I don’t know what we would have done without Angie’s List. Thanks to Angie’s List, we were able to narrow our search to a few highly rated installers and were able to read evaluations by real members—not anonymous crackpots who may have an ax to grind.
Then we visited the Better Business Bureau’s website for more in-depth information such as information on current and past lawsuits.
Now we were able to compile “Simms List.” When we compared All Temp to the other vendors, they had the lowest price and the most favorable payment terms. In fact, our salesman, Mike Clark, was so flexible about payment, we actually traded up to variable speed for a quieter unit and became eligible for a government rebate.
We also did some independent research on furnaces and were advised that Carrier is the most reliable residential furnace. Since both Carrier and Bryant are virtually the same equipment—same box, different label—and since All Temp is a 5-time recipient of Bryant’s prestigious "Medal of Excellence,” we chose All Temp.
So? How did it go?
In our experience, it’s a relief when a tradesman shows up at all, so we weren’t perturbed when we got a call at 7:30 am. Our technician and his helper were on our doorstep! We hurried up and got dressed and they went to work. Our furnace and water heater are together in a narrow closet and we were warned that they might need to take out the water heater to remove the furnace, but our technician, John, was very pleased that he didn’t need to do that.
He and his helper, Sal, carried our old furnace out and cleverly tucked our new Bryant Variable Speed furnace with Aprilaire 500 humidifier under our old central air conditioner. A new thermostat came with the package, too.
Though we were pleased with the installation—they were done around 3:30—we still had some questions. Was it always that loud? Just how does the thermostat work? Should the furnace fan be on all the time or will the auto setting be best? A couple days later, we received a visit from Field Supervisor Lynn Siegler, customer satisfaction expert. Lynn understood exactly how to explain how things worked and why they worked that way. He adjusted the furnace so it would be less noisy. He set our thermostat and explained as he went along so I could do it later. He clarified when we would want the fan set to "on" and when we would want it set to "auto." Most of all, his relaxed, helpful demeanor put me at ease to ask any question I had. His visit really built my confidence in our new heating/air conditioning system.
You get good at what you do in 71 years
In 1938, the waning years of the Great Depression, Walter Mehrholz, scraped together all his money and opened the business which would become All Temp.
Today, All Temp remains a family-owned and operated company, selling quality furnaces, air conditioning, boilers, air purifiers, humidifiers, ventilation, water heaters, and provides expert equipment installation, tune-up and repair services. One of Bryant's highest-rated dealers in the nation, All Temp also rated a Superior Service Award on Angie’s List, a Better Business Bureau BBB Accredited business, as well as Bryant’s Gold Medal of Excellence.
Factory-trained technicians, installers and knowledgeable sales people comprise Bryant's oldest and largest, family-owned dealership in Chicagoland. In addition to Bryant products, they also sell, service and repair all brands of heating, cooling and comfort products such as: Carrier, Honeywell, Lennox, Rheem, Amana, Aprilaire, American Standard, Ruud, Trane, York, Weil-McLain, and others.
4363 W. Montrose
Chicago, IL 60641
Toll Free (800) ALL-TEMP
Naperville (630) 369-7150
Downers Grove (630) 810-1888
Bolingbrook (630) 783-0455
Northbrook (847) 559-9100
Morton Grove (847) 965-0202
Winnetka (847) 441-5521
North Shore (847) 920-9200
Chicago South (773) 284-5500
Chicago North (773) 481-2000
Chicago Northwest (773) 588-6500
Chicago City Central (312) 588-6500
Chicago Near East (312) 421-0065
Fax: (773) 481-2112
Or visit www.alltemp.com
Photos: All Temp, Angie’s List, Better Business Bureau and Herb Simms for Chicago Splash