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Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby rajagainstthemachine » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 9:15 am

x9200 wrote:I pay 240 a year for 3 units to be serviced 4x a year, this gives $60 per trip. Fair transportation costs would be ~$20 leaving $40 for a 20min of work done by 2 people. Sounds to me pretty fair. An electrician just to hang one lamp from the ceiling cashes $40. Don't confuse fair with reasonable.


paying an amount is one thing, the whole procedure of the service is something i can quite easily do myself without blowing up 240$ a year. i can do the 20 min job x 3 = 1 hours work of cleaning an air con every three months and save the 240 for a flight trip somewhere?

x9200 wrote:Never happened to me.


Never happened to you doesn't mean it doesn't happen across the country!, you'll soon have the agent ringing you up after you've signed up saying oh well the landlord wants you to use this particular service company A, or we recommend using company B, sometimes agents show up for the first time when the servicing happens and then they wink at each other etc etc.. :-"
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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby x9200 » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 12:21 pm

rajagainstthemachine wrote:
x9200 wrote:I pay 240 a year for 3 units to be serviced 4x a year, this gives $60 per trip. Fair transportation costs would be ~$20 leaving $40 for a 20min of work done by 2 people. Sounds to me pretty fair. An electrician just to hang one lamp from the ceiling cashes $40. Don't confuse fair with reasonable.


paying an amount is one thing, the whole procedure of the service is something i can quite easily do myself without blowing up 240$ a year. i can do the 20 min job x 3 = 1 hours work of cleaning an air con every three months and save the 240 for a flight trip somewhere?

i believe you, you are very talented, have a lot of time and willing to service every single item in your apartment by yourself but it doesn't mean everybody has it that way and more-over it doesn't make the price not fair or a rip-off

x9200 wrote:Never happened to me.


Never happened to you doesn't mean it doesn't happen across the country!, you'll soon have the agent ringing you up after you've signed up

And? Have i said it was universally correct or this is you who actually generalized in this paragraph and above? Or you just preferred some more aggressive conversation? Maybe you send some hidden or even open signals like helplessness or something? Do you have any statistics supporting your claims on this nation-wide ploy of the agents with the aircon providers or you just use double standards?

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby rajagainstthemachine » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 12:44 pm

x9200 wrote:i believe you, you are very talented, have a lot of time and willing to service every single item in your apartment by yourself but it doesn't mean everybody has it that way and more-over it doesn't make the price not fair or a rip-off


i didn't state that everyone felt that way, I only stated I felt that way..it my was opinion.you are quite welcome to disagree with it.

x9200 wrote:And? Have i said it was universally correct or this is you who actually generalized in this paragraph and above? Or you just preferred some more aggressive conversation? Maybe you send some hidden or even open signals like helplessness or something? Do you have any statistics supporting your claims on this nation-wide ploy of the agents with the aircon providers or you just use double standards?



your statement "Never happened to me." seems to suggest that it never happens at all ?

whats the underlined sentence got to do with anything at all? now you are suggesting i am helpless? are you in the mood to troll/argue pointlessly?
Also, I don't need to have statistics to support what i've said. and i speak because of my first hand experiences and what happened to me and several other colleagues/friends etc the agent was insisting i use a specific air con service company, while i had another company that was willing to do it for cheaper rates.
once again trawl through these boards you might find this isn't the only thread talking about air con servicing. 8-[
might want to have an aspirin and calm down too.
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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby x9200 » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 1:09 pm

rajagainstthemachine wrote:
x9200 wrote:i believe you, you are very talented, have a lot of time and willing to service every single item in your apartment by yourself but it doesn't mean everybody has it that way and more-over it doesn't make the price not fair or a rip-off

i didn't state that everyone felt that way, I only stated I felt that way..it my was opinion.you are quite welcome to disagree with it.

x9200 wrote:And? Have i said it was universally correct or this is you who actually generalized in this paragraph and above? Or you just preferred some more aggressive conversation? Maybe you send some hidden or even open signals like helplessness or something? Do you have any statistics supporting your claims on this nation-wide ploy of the agents with the aircon providers or you just use double standards?


your statement "Never happened to me." seems to suggest that it never happens at all ?

Eee, nope.

whats the underlined sentence got to do with anything at all? now you are suggesting i am helpless? are you in the mood to troll/argue pointlessly?

One of many possible hypotheses why you apparently had multiple encounters of the describe type why at least some other people, despite of living in SG much longer had no such experience at all.

Also, I don't need to have statistics to support what i've said. and i speak because of my first hand experiences and what happened to me and several other colleagues/friends etc the agent was insisting i use a specific air con service company, while i had another company that was willing to do it for cheaper rates.

So this makes your point more valid then mine or proves anything, or what? I just said I (I, me, not everybody on this planet) have a different experience and you persistently suggest it's a common thing.

once again trawl through these boards you might find this isn't the only thread talking about air con servicing. 8-[
might want to have an aspirin and calm down too.

I wrote at the very beginning of this thread, I see some valid points for the status quo. Nobody addressed these points so far.
Also, clearly nobody is forced to sign a TA with some aircon related clauses not acceptable to this person so what is this all whining about? Actually if one doesn't like it, can not change it but still signs it, this person is a part of the very problem he or she whines about, or not? It's a part of the deal, a damage rising from the fact that unlike you or me, there are many people around who would just ruin the aircons if not obliged by TA to service it regularly. And there is no practical way to properly monitor the quality of the maintenance. It's the same for paying part of the taxes to sustain police force or the army. It's because the world is not a perfect place so you still have to pay even if you know karate, taekwondo or even have an airgun. At least for the aircon you can try to negotiate the deal.

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby lilith » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 1:13 pm

While I can't be sure about this nefarious nexus between agents and aircon service companies, I can say the chances of getting your aircon serviced without getting the runaround is pretty darn low.

Never happened to you? Congratulations

Going off point there but yes, servicing every 3 months is too frequent and if it says so in the contract, try to disagree with it before you sign but it does seem like it will always be the tenant's responsibility to service the aircon. I imagine every 6 months would sound about right even if it's on 24/7

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby JR8 » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 4:46 pm

x9200 wrote:Also, clearly nobody is forced to sign a TA with some aircon related clauses not acceptable to this person so what is this all whining about?


I think it can be more subtle than that with air-con. For example what has happened with our last two places is the inventory came together with copies of receipts the previous tenant had for work done (air-con, laundry of curtains, etc) at the time of their check-out. The agent then said ‘Those are the companies the landlord uses, so please use them. As we have seen other companies are not good, and you wouldn’t want to do it elsewhere cheaper, then we find there is a problem and the work needs to be done again with the place the landlord requested [/subtle NOT]’.

In the event last time their [ironic] laundry wasn’t contactable, no address, just a ‘handphone number’, which went to voicemail. So I got a quote from elsewhere, told the agent their laundry wasn’t responding, and told the agent that unless they had reasonable Grounds to object I’d go ahead with the quote I had. And that’s what happened. I used our local dry-cleaner since I’d known him years and liked/trusted him. And he told me how he would have to sub-contract out the work, since even his shop’s equipment wasn’t suitable for large items like that. Despite that it cost something like 1/2 what the previous tenant had paid via the landlords suggested supplier.

Similar happened with the air-con. ‘This is who the landlord uses, (therefore this is who you should use), and you are overdue sending me a copy of your annual contract with them. And remember if it is out of service and there are any problems found that this will probably be very expensive for you[/subtle NOT]’.
And then I pointed out we don’t use air-con so why should I service it, when any tenant obligation is to return the property in the same condition (less fair wear and tear) as in which it was originally received. The agent then tried to argue that if air-con isn’t regularly used it suffers damage. Anyway, that ended up with me not getting a contract but getting a ‘one-off’ service at our point of check-out. A one-off however is more expensive per-visit/basis than under a contract. But as I told the agent, at least it doesn’t mean I have to sit around for 1/2 a day once a quarter, waiting for engineers to show up to pretend to do work that isn’t necessary. Actually getting a one-off is not that straight-forward to arrange, as they are hell-bent on selling you an annual contract lol – follow the money.
During our tenancy generally speaking the LLs agent wasn’t interested in contact or dealing with repair issues we had. Her attitude to getting a copy of an air-con contract and receipts for laundry from her recommended source in comparison took up at least a dozen e-mails and phone calls, perhaps two dozen. ... Oh gawd, those AND getting the timber bedroom floors polished. You’d have thought those floors were long lost panels from the fabled Amber Room, such was the discussion, inspection, and chin-stroking that went on about them. Oh and of course providing receipts for polishing from her contractor.


lilith wrote:While I can't be sure about this nefarious nexus between agents and aircon service companies, I can say the chances of getting your aircon serviced without getting the runaround is pretty darn low. Going off point there but yes, servicing every 3 months is too frequent and if it says so in the contract, try to disagree with it before you sign but it does seem like it will always be the tenant's responsibility to service the aircon. I imagine every 6 months would sound about right even if it's on 24/7


Follow the money. The agent ‘recommends a contractor’ with heavy hints verging on threats, then scoops commission, apparently when and only if they get a copy of a contract or receipt. If that doesn’t go to plan expect your depo to get hit. Given FTs don’t know much about such local methods, are here and gone/haven’t time for this bull$*, plus no simple method of recourse then it’s too simple to roll over and comply... and still get fleeced on the depo.

Oh to see an agent writing a blog revealing such sc*ms ... $ch... schemes, but that might be as taboo as betraying the mafia’s code.
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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby x9200 » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 5:34 pm

I think it is a combination of how lucky (or picky) you are with the LLs and roughly the same for the agents. Before the current one (the agent) we had a classic local type and she lasted with us only two weeks - she quit by herself. Our current agent told us - you are difficult, but you can justify and explain everything you request. The bottom line is still, this is your TA you have to accept so if you are not comfortable with some terms, communicate it to the LL. If you think you have a case and act reasonably and the LL does not accept it, just find another place. The aircon problems we discuss are something very minor comparing what a shi**ty LL can make up for you.

Overall, it happened only once to me some service was suggested and it was suggested directly by the LL for the third party insurance.

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby lilith » Wed, 16 Mar 2016 6:02 pm

I would love to see that blog. I wonder if it would be possible to put a google alert on it. There will be those who will defend it but the fact of the matter is; the aircon servicing industry here is a quagmire of bullshit, populated with ah bengs who can't even pronounce the word 'Capacitor' . The very thingy that was nicked from my aircon when I went off to the kitchen to get the beng a drink.

How do i know this?
Because the second company that came in to fix my no longer working aircon said "Eh Miss..where your Capacitor ah?" I saw no need to correct his pronunciation but immediately knew I was screwed.

Having said that though, I did find professional help. Courts. The megastore, not the legal one.

Oh to see an agent writing a blog revealing such sc*ms ... $ch... schemes, but that might be as taboo as betraying the mafia’s code.

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SB Sky Blue Aircon Engineering - watch out

Postby dvn » Sat, 19 Mar 2016 11:05 am

The company uses bait-and-hook marketing trick to get the service order by slightly under-pricing general cleaning. The pricing that follows is completely out of the market. For example, they quoted $160 for fuel top-up (non-inverter A/C), the tip up needed was 20% of the tank capacity. Another reputable company (V-Cool) charges $20 nett for the same exact job, which means SBV Skly Blue charges 8X. The SB Sky Blue quoted $200 for chemical cleaning of each unit in my condo. V-Cool quoted $150, so SB pricing is 35% higher for the same job. Contacting the office resulted in re-iteration of "this is our company policy".

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby x9200 » Sat, 19 Mar 2016 12:18 pm

^for the above, I try to follow this principle: I don't let the guys who maintain my aircon to do anything extra or any repairs. Unless I really trust them, what is not the case for my current company.

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby maneo » Sun, 20 Mar 2016 2:07 am

x9200 wrote:
rajagainstthemachine wrote:I also think there is a nexus between agents and air con service companies, the agent recommends certain companies and gets a payout on the side.

Never happened to me.

This might be possible when the landlord has relatives in the aircon servicing business.

x9200 wrote:The point is that no aircon unit needs to be serviced that frequently.

Older aircon systems may have small drain pipes that get clogged with algae.
When blocked, the fan coil unit (FCU) will start dripping.
Have seen this occur in 4-6 month intervals, with variation likely due to differences in the humidity challenge.

Otherwise, periodic servicing consists mainly of cleaning the filters and vacuuming out the cooling vanes.
This could probably be done on 6 month interval (or longer).

A landlord may specify a service provider, but it's more likely that they have found someone with reasonable competency that won't damage the systems by doing unnecessary things (just to get more revenue).

Note: edited to fix quoting & add comment about landlords relatives.
Last edited by maneo on Mon, 21 Mar 2016 8:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby JR8 » Sun, 20 Mar 2016 3:38 am

maneo wrote:A landlord may specify a service provider, but it's more likely that they have found someone with reasonable competency that won't damage the systems by doing unnecessary things (just to get more revenue).


I'm doubtful re: 'specify'. They might suggest it, but I can't see how they could oblige you to enter into a contract with a 3rd party.
Last place we rented the agent 'specified' an air-con contractor; but they gave me a silly quote. I sourced tips from friends/family, identified one who is ISO badged to the hilt, got a quote, sent it to the agent and explained the situation and that we intended to go ahead with the latter.

This is above and beyond why a tenant should be liable to maintain the landlords fixtures and fittings during the term, rather than the usual position of the landlord being liable to maintain the consistency of their performance during a tenants stay.

I appreciate that air-con service is so embedded within the culture of renting in SG that many people might be beyond questioning it. But if you consider it afresh it is a very unusual concept. p.s. I wonder if it has ever been legally challenged.
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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby maneo » Sun, 20 Mar 2016 3:58 am

Who is responsible for periodic aircon servicing is negotiable.
Potential tenants can push back on this when dickering about the rent.
In a renters' market, potential tenants can get landlords to agree to service the aircons periodically.

As for aircon service providers, you do not need to enter into a contract.
You can opt for a pay as you go.

Furthermore, if the "suggested" provider is ridiculously expensive, you have every right to find a more reasonable one. One with good references and certifications should not be a problem.

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby Strong Eagle » Sun, 20 Mar 2016 4:19 am

maneo wrote:
Strong Eagle wrote:
rajagainstthemachine wrote:I also think there is a nexus between agents and air con service companies, the agent recommends certain companies and gets a payout on the side.

Never happened to me.


x9200 wrote:The point is that no aircon unit needs to be serviced that frequently.

Older aircon systems may have small drain pipes that get clogged with algae.
When blocked, the fan coil unit (FCU) will start dripping.
Have seen this occur in 4-6 month intervals, with variation likely due to differences in the humidity challenge.

Otherwise, periodic servicing consists mainly of cleaning the filters and vacuuming out the cooling vanes.
This could probably be done on 6 month interval (or longer).

A landlord may specify a service provider, but it's more likely that they have found someone with reasonable competency that won't damage the systems by doing unnecessary things (just to get more revenue).


You got your quotes completely bass ackwards.

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Re: Aircon servicing every 3 months - Tenant Pay?

Postby Strong Eagle » Sun, 20 Mar 2016 5:36 am

x9200 wrote:
Strong Eagle wrote:
x9200 wrote:I pay 240 a year for 3 units to be serviced 4x a year, this gives $60 per trip. Fair transportation costs would be ~$20 leaving $40 for a 20min of work done by 2 people. Sounds to me pretty fair. An electrician just to hang one lamp from the ceiling cashes $40. Don't confuse fair with reasonable.


Never happened to me.

The point is that no aircon unit needs to be serviced that frequently.

Even if it runs 16/24/7?


Aircon people in Houston would salivate at the cleaning schedules in Singapore. From mid May to mid October, aircon runs 24 hours per day, seven days a week. Temps are at least 33 to 35 C during the day, often surpassing 38 C and reaching 40.

Night time is in the 26 C range but most houses become so superheated during the day that aircon runs just about as frequently at night.

Most people service the aircon ONCE per year, beginning of season. Clean mold out of evaporator drain line. Use garden hose to clean condenser coils. Check freon levels. Most evap coils are never cleaned because they are hidden in the plenums in the attic.

It's not like you can do anything to extend the life of a sealed compressor. Or a fan motor.


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