Furnace suffers installation blues

How to handle contractor who denies responsibility
Published on May 13, 2009

DEAR BARRY: My home has continuous problems with the forced-air heating system. Each time we pay for repairs, it runs for a few days or a few weeks and then quits. One heating contractor said the system was not installed correctly because the return air opening is too small. But I spoke with the contractor who installed the system, and he insists that everything is installed properly. How can I get the original installer to acknowledge the mistake and make the system right? --Tom DEAR TOM: In debates of this kind, the contractor has the advantage because he is an expert in his field and you are not. If he says the return air opening is large enough, who are you to argue with the expert? To get a leg up in this dispute, you need some solid evidence to support your position. For example, a copy of the manufacturer's installation manual for the furnace, showing the required dimensions for the return air opening, would settle the argument decisively. You should contact the man...