After a horrible January, sales for February are already grand.
It's been a really cold few days, and yesterday was when it really seemed the coldest. Jaimee and I woke up to a house that was around 48 degrees, a little colder than we usually keep it while we're sleeping. We turned the heat on, but no heat was to be found. One of our pipes was frozen and there was water all over the floor in the basement. It wasn't a good way to start the morning.
First, we checked the water leakage problem and found it to be unrelated to both the frozen pipe and the heat problem. Next it was time to tackle the old furnace.
After removing a few covers and watching it for a few cycles, I had the problem narrowed down to the fan motor. At that point I ripped out the phone book and started down the huge list of heating and cooling places, starting with the full page ads, getting quotes on how much it was to replace it. The standard was around $100 to just come out and diagnose the problem, then around $75-100 per hour, plus cost of parts. It was a lot.
I then started going to the lesser-quality ads in the book only to find most of them closed on Saturdays. Then I saw the ad for Earl's Heating and Cooling, glowing, calling to me, whispering "moderately priced.... moderately priced...." I called them up and the Great Earl himself answered with a "YYYEEEEEAH." I knew I had found my man.
I told him the problem and he said the price would be $150 total and he'd be there in 30 minutes. I'd been sitting in a 50 degree house for 2 hours by this point and everything was numb. I didn't have time to price hunt anymore, and was sure I couldn't get it done for cheaper than that anyway.
Earl came, he saw, and he conquered. My diagnosis turned out wrong, but not completely wrong. He replaced the parts that needed it and charged the quoted price, and heat and happiness was one again restored to the house. Earl himself was a classy gent and very friendly, and I'd recommend him to anyone who asks me for a heating and cooling guy. Thanks Earl, wherever you are. You're my hero.