Thursday, September 22, 2011

Damn the Propane Bastards

Even though we've been living in our new house for almost three months, the surprises keep on coming.  (See previous post)

Our house is heated with oil.   I successfully had our first tank of oil delivered - ouch!  But it was something I expected, so no big deal.   I was surprised, however, to find out it will be the end of October before they can come clean our furnace.   Hubby and I are kind of hesitant about turning on the heat without a professional checking out the furnace first, so we're just praying for warm-ish weather until October 24th.

We also have a propane tank which is used for our stove and hot water heater.  Before we moved in, I called the fuel places in the area, and determined that Haffner's had the best prices.   The company the old owners had was Energy North.

When I called to find out about switching companies, I was told by both companies that we would have to keep the propane tank from Energy North until the propane was used up, as they do not want to move tanks with propane in them.   Makes sense.

The night before we moved in, I called Energy North to find out about having the propane turned back on and having someone come and see if there were pilot lights to be lit, and make sure everything was working okay.   Unfortunately, they knew at that point that I was switching to another company.  They did send someone, and everything worked out so we could move in.

Yesterday, I was finally able to have Haffner's come and switch tanks.   When I told the guy that the old company was Energy North, he said to be careful, that they don't take kindly to having customers leave them, that they'd probably say there'd be a charge to come get their tank, and that if they refused to come get it, I should threaten them with calling the Fire Dept., who would force them to come get the tank.

I called and the lady put me on hold for 5 minutes or so, and then came back and told me I can't leave them because I signed a 1-year contract!!   I said, no, I did not and she insisted she had it with my signature on it.  I said I had no copy of that contract, that I never had any intention of being their customer and that I was not honoring any 1-year agreement.  She then proceeded to tell me that if I broke the contract I would have to pay a $300 fee!

At this point, boiling mad, I told her there was no way I was paying a fee, that they should come get their tank and that she should send me a copy of the contract before I decided what to do.

And that's where it stands.   I will definitely fight with them tooth and nail over this.  If I signed anything, it was an agreement to let them come on my property and turn my propane on.

If a threat of getting my lawyer involved (anyone know a good lawyer?) doesn't work, I will tell them to leave the tank here in the backyard for a year, I won't buy any propane from them and that will fulfill my contract.

1 comment:

Joan J said...

UGH UGH and UGH. When I run into these companies that think they rule the world, I have a line that works wonders... I'll share it but use it sparingly. "My brother-in-law (so there's no last name check) works at the State Attorney General's Office, so let me just give him a call..." LOL No kidding, it works :)

Good luck! Stick to your guns!