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Old 11-04-2019, 06:08 PM   #1
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Legitimate charge or Rip Off

I recently had to take my one year old 5.0ta to an authorized Dometic service center for a repair on my Dometic furnace. Thinking that since it was still covered by Dometic’s two year warranty, I was expecting the repair to be at “no charge “ .
However, I was told that it is customary for customers to pay a one hour diagnostic fee ($129) to find the problem and any other charges would be paid by Dometic. This is certainly not the way it works for auto warranty repair.
As it turned out, the problem was only a sail switch that needed minor adjusting and there were no additional charges. However, I am still left with a $129 bill that I wasn’t expecting.
I was quite satisfied with the service, but my question is if this diagnostic fee is in fact customary or was I “ripped off “ and should look for a different service center the next time?
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Old 11-04-2019, 06:14 PM   #2
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Could call ahead and find out if your next choice of a service provider has this policy or not, or call Dometic to make sure there’s no double dipping going on with this last guy.
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Old 11-04-2019, 06:28 PM   #3
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If I recall when Dometic was replacing the refrigerators in the Escapes under warranty, there was a one hour labor charge, even if it took them longer, which it did. I was willing to pay that to get a better unit. Perhaps now that it is fixed, next time that fee maybe waived if still under warranty, since no diagnostics would be needed?
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Old 11-04-2019, 06:41 PM   #4
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When I had the local mobile Dometic tech diagnose and replace my fridge there was just a $60 charge for the home service call, nothing about a 1 hour charge. Try calling another shop and see if they do the same.
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Old 11-04-2019, 07:29 PM   #5
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I had the same thing happen with a Dometic service guy who swapped out my A/C under warranty. Dometic covers his time to do the exchange, but not the service call.
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Old 11-04-2019, 07:55 PM   #6
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But he took it into a service center. No service call. IMHO should not be charged. (Unless the warranty states he's responsible for service charges and they only cover parts.)
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Old 11-04-2019, 08:24 PM   #7
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Escape should cover the "deductible" if Dometic doesn't refund you. This is not an extended warranty and even with my kitchen appliances with an extended warranty there is no deductible if I need a service call.

The fridge swap was a different situation to me and to hear someone getting an at-home swap for $60 is amazing- good for you! I took mine in to Dometic Authorized place and they told me how much crapola they had to deal with doing Dometic warranty work. Last year they stopped doing RV repairs and do diesel RV work only now.
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Old 11-04-2019, 09:13 PM   #8
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I've no idea what they mean by "customary". The repair is either covered under warranty or it isn't. The repair facility is reimbursed both for parts AND labor by Dometic in the event of under warranty repairs. A so-called "diagnostic fee" is just a labor charge. The only thing not reimbursed would be a trip charge for out of shop work. I hate to say it but I smell a ripoff by a shop that's unhappy with the standard labor reimbursement by Dometic and wants to pad it.
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Old 11-04-2019, 09:55 PM   #9
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From talking to the guy who swapped the fridge, Dometic is erratic on their check writing, they pay, but it can be many months.
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Old 11-05-2019, 06:44 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BILLB View Post
I recently had to take my one year old 5.0ta to an authorized Dometic service center for a repair on my Dometic furnace. Thinking that since it was still covered by Dometic’s two year warranty, I was expecting the repair to be at “no charge “ .
However, I was told that it is customary for customers to pay a one hour diagnostic fee ($129) to find the problem and any other charges would be paid by Dometic. This is certainly not the way it works for auto warranty repair.
As it turned out, the problem was only a sail switch that needed minor adjusting and there were no additional charges. However, I am still left with a $129 bill that I wasn’t expecting.
I was quite satisfied with the service, but my question is if this diagnostic fee is in fact customary or was I “ripped off “ and should look for a different service center the next time?
Recently had to have work warranty done on fridge at Corpus Christi Rv place. They checked things out and with Dometic arrived at the decisions to replace the board.

No cost to me at all. Good people there. Been in business 45 yrs. Easy to see why!
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Old 11-05-2019, 06:49 AM   #11
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I do not think Escape is liable for any of this Ross as the warranty is clear, the individual components have their own warranty, of which the furnace is. Escape's warranty applies to the structure, not the accessories. Any payment from Escape would be for goodwill not liability.
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Old 11-05-2019, 08:30 AM   #12
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Escape should cover the "deductible" if Dometic doesn't refund you. This is not an extended warranty and even with my kitchen appliances with an extended warranty there is no deductible if I need a service call.

The fridge swap was a different situation to me and to hear someone getting an at-home swap for $60 is amazing- good for you! I took mine in to Dometic Authorized place and they told me how much crapola they had to deal with doing Dometic warranty work. Last year they stopped doing RV repairs and do diesel RV work only now.
Our local RV shop stopped doing warranty work for Dometic because it was a money losing proposition ( Low reimbursement rates and having to wait months for payment )
If all I had to pay was a $60 fee to be able to actually use my Dometic warranty I would be thrilled but as it stands now it’s nothing more than a sheet of paper

** NO ; I AM NOT BLAMING ESCAPE FOR DOMETIC’S LOUSY CUSTOMER SERVICE **
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Old 11-05-2019, 10:20 AM   #13
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I do not think Escape is liable for any of this Ross as the warranty is clear, the individual components have their own warranty, of which the furnace is. Escape's warranty applies to the structure, not the accessories. Any payment from Escape would be for goodwill not liability.

You're right; Escape has no duty here most likely, even with their 2 year "bumper to bumper warranty", which is a reminder of the term puffing. With at least one supplier- Carefree- one must have Escape initiate any warranty claim and they will not talk to the customer.

Just reinforces the need for MacGyver training being essential to owning any RV! Not so much about saving money as it is reducing hassle factor to hitch up and take the trailer somewhere and then sometimes discovering they did not do the job right.
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Old 11-05-2019, 01:44 PM   #14
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Hi: All... Who owns whom? I don't think there are many components it an RV, no matter what kind, that aren't owned by Dometic. Their warranties are no guarantee that your RV ownership will be cost free!!!
No one but me had to pay for the acid spill on the floor from a cracked battery. I thought about sending a bill to the roads dept. in NFLD but saved the stamp price at least. Alf
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Old 11-15-2019, 11:50 PM   #15
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Here in central coastal California, shops charge $70 to $120 for an "in shop diagnosis fee" or "I'm coming to you fee" which applies whether or the misbehaving part is under warranty or not. If it is under warranty, then when they get the parts, there is no additional fee. Yes, everyone warned me that RV's are like boats -- holes in space you pour money into.
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Old 11-16-2019, 12:01 AM   #16
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I'm thinking the alternative is no shop, no repair.
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Old 11-16-2019, 08:35 AM   #17
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Just reinforces the need for MacGyver training being essential to owning any RV! Not so much about saving money as it is reducing hassle factor to hitch up and take the trailer somewhere and then sometimes discovering they did not do the job right.
Amen. The RV service industry needs to be bolstered with more techs and better training. It is sad that I had to study the schematics, diagnose and fix the 25’ slide on my neighbors Winnebago Adventurer Class A when the shop improperly diagnosed the problem. Only one tech at Winnebago (that you pay to speak to) provided any decent information. He was ready to take it out to the factory. It shouldn’t have to be this hard to get decent work done by a shop.
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Old 11-16-2019, 10:45 AM   #18
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Hi: All... My RVTech was asked to repair a leaky roof on a newer "Stick built" trailer. He took one look and told the cust. to take it back where he bought it for warr. work. Seem the rubber roofing was cut too short so the Mfg. used a few tubes of caulking to finish it off!!! Alf
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