Bowie, Maryland
1 comment

Let me first say that thankfully we aren't paying for the first year of coverage with AHS. Caldwell Banker is paying for the coverage as part of our negotiations when we purchased our home.

So the first issue we called AHS about is the sump pump in our basement. The sump pump would run at times that it shouldn't and basically shake the entire house as well. This happened 2-3 times a day. So, we called AHS and they said yes the sump pump is covered. They schedule a company to come out and so far so good.

The company called us, we set up an appointment, the company arrived as scheduled and inspected the sump pump. The repairman immediately told me that more than likely AHS was NOT going to accept the claim because the sump pump had our air conditioning systems condensation lines running into the sump pump well. But, he proceeded to explain to me what the fix would be. The repair guy went out to his truck, to put together the estimate for repairing the sump pump. He came back in and walked me through everything they would do if AHS happened to approve the claim. While he was doing that, my phone rang but I let it go to voicemail. The repairman continued to explain that the sump pump would have to be replaced and that the condensation lines would have to be relocated so that an dedicated pump could be installed to take the water from the AC units outside and not into the sump pump well. Replacement cost for the sump pump between $245 - $275. Cost for the dedicated pump for the condensation lines $545. To say the least I'm thinking this is absurd. He left and said that they'll be in contact if AHS approves.

So back to that phone call... it was AHS. Before the repair guy could even get out the door, AHS was calling to let me the claim was denied. Apparently the repair company's office had already sent the claim request to AHS. Their reason for denying the claim is because my sump pump is not for "ground water" only. Since the condensation lines from the AC units were draining into the sump pump well, that was reason for them not to accept the claim. I did check my policy and there it was in parenthesis "ground water only." I called AHS to ask why would there be such a restriction and the only thing they could say was it's for sump pumps that handle ground water only. No one would ever answer the question why it was restricted to ground water only, especially since it is very common to see condensation lines draining into sump pumps wells. It really only makes sense when you think about. So, I said to AHS, what happens if my basement floods before I get the sump pump fixed and causes damage to my AC unit that is in the basement located right next to the sump pump well, she said the AC unit would be covered but the sump pump would not. All I could do was laugh and say, so AHS would rather pay to repair an AC unit that has been damaged due to flooding (which more than likely would mean replacing it) than to simply fix a sump pump because the AC condensation lines run into the sump pump? She paused and repeated the AC unit would be covered. I said okay fine. I hope my basement doesn't flood before we repair the sump pump ourselves. I'm sure AHS is betting on the likelihood that the chances of a basement flooding while waiting on a sump pump repair to be done is about the same as seeing a pig fly. So they will risk the possibility of having to pay out considerably more to repair an AC unit versus just simply fixing the sump pump to prevent other potential issues. Bottom line to me the customer is, you just helped me make a decision NOT to extend the one year warranty once it expires because AHS has put into place fine print that will keep them from having to perform certain repairs.

Since the above denial, we have initiated a second claim to have wall ovens repaired. The first company they sent out said the control panel on the wall ovens would have to be replaced. He said that AHS would cover it and they would be back in contact with me once they got an estimate on the parts required for the repair. The following week, I was checking emails and saw a notification that some other company would be in contact with us for the same repair. it also said the previous request had been completed... which it had not. So I called AHS to find out what was going on. AHS had entered the second request for the oven repair because the first company stated to them that they do not service the brand of ovens in my home. I said that is not what the repair guy stated and they said well they called us to say they wouldn't be able to do the repair so they are sending someone else out. Of course now I'm thinking will I have to pay an additional $75 for this second company to come out. AHS said no. However, I'm still annoyed that I now have to take time off for this second company to come out. So, when the second company called I asked if there was anyway to be specific about the time they would come to inspect the problem and I detailed to them what the problem was. They were nice enough to commit to calling me 30 minutes before their arrival time so that I would not have to sit at my house for a full afternoon waiting on a repair person.

The day of the repair they did call as they said they would and I met the repairman at my home. I detailed to him the problems we were experiencing and he said, okay, there's nothing he could do right then because the entire control panel would have to be replaced. Which by the way made sense given the issues we are experiencing are linked to the control panel. He went on to say that because of the brand it may take a couple of weeks or longer before they can get the part because it may have to come from Europe. So, he took down the serial numbers, and even took pictures of the ovens. I told him that another company had looked at the issue as well but AHS said they determined they couldn't repair the oven. This repair guy said, okay no one had indicated this was a second call for service by AHS. But he didn't make a big fuss about it and said okay so you don't have to pay us the $75. I liked his honesty. He asked who was the first company and told him their name and he said they never should have been sent in the first place because they are not an authorized repair and maintenance provider for this brand, so they wouldn't have been able to order the replacement part. Which took me back to my call with AHS when the second request was entered by them, I asked are you guys ensuring that the service providers you send are qualified and authorized to service soecific brands. They said we only deal with service providers who can service all major brands. I said what about non-major brands? My ovens are Miele's which isn't considered a major brand in the US. So, I said you guys need to ensure that the next service provider can indeed service Miele. It was that call that must have prompted AHS to call the second company again to ask if they serviced Miele and it just so happened that they do. I make this point to say, make sure that if you call AHS to place a request to ensure they know the brand of the appliance that needs to be repaired or you'll go around the world finding the right repair company. Please be aware that their online service request system does not ask the brand of the appliance that needs to be repaired and they have no way of knowing if the service provider can service your specific brand.

At this point, we are waiting on the part to be ordered so the repair can be made. At least that is what we're being lead to believe at the moment. I will update this review if AHS tries to get out of this repair. From what the repair man told me, this is going to be an expensive part. It's even possible that the part is no longer available because of the age of the ovens being close to 10 years old.... We'll see what happens.

Product or Service Mentioned: American Home Shield Warranty.

Reason of review: Bad quality.

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I'm surprised that they said they would cover the AC if it is damaged due to flooding in the basement...I thought it didn't cover flooding? I am curious because we have two sumps in our basement, along with our washer and dryer. So if the sumps fail, they would pay for the washer and dryer?

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