<rant mode engaged>

I've worked fast food, I've worked retail, and in doing so I've developed a healthy disdain for people who just do a shitty job at doing their actual job. I don't expect to be treated with excessive fawning, but I've embarrassed my family by looping back through the drive through to complain when I get the wrong burger or they forget my fries.

But my scope and scale on what needs complaining about vs. what I can just ask an employee "hey, would you fix this?" has changed since buying a house. At the house level, there's a far more obnoxious level of fuckuppery based in this "you need us, we don't need you" attitude that 90% of contractors and repairmen seem to have. I find it absolutely infuriating because, unless you're the sole person in town certified to make this repair, I don't need you. I do need the repair done, but I don't necessarily need you to do it. And at the house-sized price level, there's no reason to not be polite.

Last week I had a local appliance repair shop come out and look at our dishwasher. I watched videos on diagnosing and repairing it myself, but in the end decided there was too much risk of me breaking something unrepairable, so we called a professional. They charged $80 just for the privilege of coming out. The guy came in, we talked about the problem, I turned on the dishwasher so he could hear the sound, he nodded, then took out his iPad to start giving me quotes on getting a new motor. Turns out this is a common problem and they keep these motors in their warehouse because they're so often needed. We put a down payment on getting that repair done and he went back to the shop to have their dispatch call and schedule the replacement.

A friend of ours said we should've called a different repair guy, but we'd already put a down payment. But by the end of the week, the shop still hadn't even called to schedule the repair, so I thought, what the hell, I'll have this other guy take a look. He showed up today, listened to the noise, then asked if the shop guy had looked at the negative wheel spacers under the razzaframmer support. I shrugged and said the guy didn't even open the dishwasher. New guy tutted, pulled the kickboard off the dishwasher, stuck his hand inside ... and the noise stopped. Turns out we didn't need a new motor, it was just a loose housing around one of the pumps. New guy charged us $50 for his time and labor and went on his way.

So I called the shop back and told them to cancel the repair and give us a refund. After some back and forth, they agreed to refund our deposit - minus $80 for their visit charge. Cue me almost losing my mind. I pointed out that not only has it been a week since they got our deposit and they still haven't called to schedule, their guy didn't. even. diagnose. the problem. They responded that they had quoted me $80 for the on site before even coming out and I tipped over the edge. I'm not paying you to come out and not do anything. Your guy didn't even do what you're charging me for him to do. When they didn't budge, I added, that, fine, they can charge me the $80 for not doing any work - but if they do I'm taking $50 of the refund and filing a BBB complaint against them.

I got my full refund.

I also spent 20 minutes raging around the house and scaring the dogs because god damn.

Fuck you, shady repair people. Fuck all of you.

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