What to expect from a hearth dealer?

graywings123August 11, 2010

In reading the websites of gas fireplace manufacturers, they encourage you to buy from their local dealers and discourage internet sales. It makes sense from a safety standpoint.

So I was surprised to learn how hands-off my local hearth dealer seems to be. He doesn't pull permits (the customer does it), he doesn't run the gas line (Customer has to find someone to do it), and he has the customer contract separately for installation with an installer he works with. He says the installer is wonderful and has done this for decades, but it is still a separate contract.

Is this the normal procedure with hearth stores?

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If he can't be bothered to do his job, it's time to find another dealer.

It's his job to have an installer under his contract as far as I'm concerned, so if there's a problem later on, I can call the place where I bought the stove and get the problem resolved.

When I bought my woodstove, the installer did everything. Since no permit was required, that wasn't a problem, but the installer did everything else, from placement, to the chimney to cleaning up afterwards.

And he didn't leave until we were satified.

But as far as a permit goes, if the dealer says I must get it, I would. It's no big deal.

But it sounds to me the dealer in question here isn't capable of doing anything else other than sales. Which tells me he's on a shoestring and probably won't be around long. What if the unit needs service? Will he tell you to go someplace else for that too? If so, Buh Bye!

    Bookmark   August 12, 2010 at 7:04AM
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The manufactures make this recommendation to protect their dealer base, not to protect you. Like you have just found out, let the consumer beware.
If you are a very hands on type person. There can be a very high savings by buying on the internet. Most manufactures can walk you through most problems, but be prepared to find your own installer.


Here is a link that might be useful: Nevels Stoves

    Bookmark   August 14, 2010 at 3:25PM
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I would advise against buying online for one reason. Service. If something goes wrong with the unit, I want the LOCAL guy who sold it to me to service it, not someone 3,000 miles away who will tell me to contactt a local stove shop or the company, who in turn will tell me to contact who I bought it from.
And when I buy a stove I want the ONE company to handle everything, not contacting a dealer, a shipper, (They don't come by UPS. And the truck driver will only bring it to the tail of the truck. Bring a forklift, as you are responsible for getting it OFF the truck and into your home.) an installer, etc. Not when there are many LOCAL people who can work with me.

I went into my stove shop, www.the stovery.com and bought the stove of my choice,(Regency F1100) made arrangements for them to install it the following week, the installer came in a "Stovery" truck, and in 3 hours had it all installed and up and running.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 8:27AM
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