Californian contractor helps customers fix their radiant heating problems and teaches them about different product options in the process
Tom Schefer takes pride in providing his customers quality radiant heating installations. And while he can say the same of most of his competitors in the Santa Rosa, California, area, he says there are times when his business, Schefer Radiant, is called in to fix a problem with another company’s installation.
“On boilers these days, if you put them in according to the directions, they work great,” Schefer says. “But we find places where other people have put them in and we’re wondering what they were doing because they’re failing.”
For example, at a large apartment complex that had many 120-unit buildings, a contractor installed new boiler systems but didn’t check the air pressure in the expansion tanks. The boilers began to fail after only two years. Schefer Radiant was called on to get everything in working order again.
“There are companies around where I never see their work,” Schefer says. “That is a sign that they are doing the right things, but I still think we’re the most thorough of all the companies in the area. One thing that helps us is that we service our product after we’re done. Other companies only do the installs and won’t come back to do service work. We’ll do it all.”
A significant part of helping customers is educating them about different products, Schefer says.
“We let them know what we’ve had good luck with. That’s part of our job,” he says.
If customers ask for a cheaper boiler, Schefer tries to explain why that might not be a good idea.
“There are cheaper options, but if we install those, we’re just looking for trouble,” he says. “I want to put in something of quality so I can walk away and not have to go back every month and fix some little thing because we didn’t put in a superior product.”
Read more about Schefer Radiant in this full profile featured in the July issue of Plumber magazine.