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BBB: AC repair scams on the rise

BBB: AC repair scams on the rise
Posted at 10:17 PM, Jun 09, 2021

TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — Air conditioners aren’t the only ones working overtime now that triple digits are back and here to stay. The Better Business Bureau is warning people about scammers offering air conditioning repair services during this time of year.

“Any time there’s kind of a crisis situation the scammers are always looking for ways to take advantage of that,” said Sean Herdrick.

Herdrick is the Director of Marketing and Communications, at the Better Business Bureau Serving Southern Arizona. He says, scammers capitalize this time of year.

“A lot of the times these scammers...they’ll cold call people when it’s hot and they’ll try to say hey we’d love to come by and take a look your place and see if everything’s alright. And what they’ll do is they’ll ask for a direct deposit or ask for a payment up-front and they’ll do it through a payment that can’t be tracked, whether it’s Venmo or gift cards,” he added.

Brandon Schamahorn with Strongbuilt Plumbing, Air & Solar says they’ve been getting a lot of calls for servicing.

“We’ve reached over that 100 degree day...102. I think we’re starting to see a lot more demand of units going down.” added Schamahorn.

He says if you need a new unit, Strongbuilt would first get you approved. Then, once the install is complete and running, they bill you the next morning.

So, financing is done after the job is complete.

Schamahorn says while they have enough technicians to go out, there’s still a shortage of installers. This is a reality Herdrick says scammers will take advantage of.

“They’re going to be putting ads on Craigslist, on Facebook. All over the place,” Herdrick told KGUN9.

He says if they contact you, the first thing you should look at is whether or not they have an up-to-date contractor license.

In the meantime, here’s what you can do to maintain your air conditioning unit:

“Definitely make sure there’s no brush against it. Nothing’s laying against it. It’s as simple as taking a water hose and rinsing off the condenser coils outside and making sure you’re at least changing that filter once a month,” said Schamahorn.

If you think you’re being scammed, the BBB says it’s best to go to bbb.org/scamtracker and report it.

“Maybe you can save someone else from being scammed,” said Herdrick.