Home & Garden

The Great Water Heater Rental Scam

  • Last Updated:
  • Oct 22nd, 2017 11:07 am
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
21 posts
2 upvotes
chimaican wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 11:26 am
Another thing you need to look into is whether you have ABS or PVC piping. Not sure what province you're in but you may also have to tack on the cost of replacing the piping as well.
Okay, will have to check that at home later in the evening. Am in ontario and I have a PV50 currently installed.
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7270 posts
2292 upvotes
ON
If the vent piping is black, you'll need new.
If it's white you're fine.

Pay the $100 or pick up fee and run away while you can. Be glad you got out so cheap and not in year 2 of a new tank contract.
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
21 posts
2 upvotes
aqnd wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 12:33 pm
If the vent piping is black, you'll need new.
If it's white you're fine.

Pay the $100 or pick up fee and run away while you can. Be glad you got out so cheap and not in year 2 of a new tank contract.
Thanks! Last week a technician came for leak fix and he only advised a replacement tank to my family. My family told him, we will choose to call in to request for replacement later (nothing signed).
I just called enercare to ask for pickup fee and details about the existing contract signed by previous owner and they said last week they have a new replacement rental but they have no record of my previous rental water heater. (My sellers agreement indicates water heater rental) and I have been paying 26$ as my rental until now. I asked the leak in the tank is not fixed. They indicate they don't have any record for prior water heater on their file (and they have on record that a new tank replacement on 28th july and no record prior to that) and if I need the leak fixed it will charge me.
I said if there is no record, was I incorrectly charged for a year and they say their system is down and someone will call me within 24 hours from water heater dept. The calls are excruciatingly long and am being kept on hold every now and then. I am getting anxious now suspecting a deliberate tactics given that the current tank is leaking.

Any advise please. It is pretty urgent, I can wait for their call for a day but I suspect this is getting complex.
Sr. Member
Oct 13, 2014
967 posts
402 upvotes
Somewhere, ON
This is direct from the rental agreement prior to Sept., 2010:

At the end of the useful life (as stated by the technician to you)
††
of your present water heater, you are not obligated to rent and we are not
obligated to supply replacement equipment, unless we mutually agree at the time.

AND if the WH is within its useful life (less than 15 years old):

If you choose to have Direct Energy disconnect, remove or retrieve the rental water heater, in most cases there
will be a $75.00 charge for these services. (There is no
charge if you are more than 32km (20 miles) from a
Direct Energy return location or if we fail to retrieve your water heater within two weeks of your request or your
water heater has been rented for 15 years or more.)

It would appear your WH is not longer your responsibility or cost.
“When you marry the right woman, you are ‘complete.’ If you marry the wrong woman, you are ‘finished.’ And, if the right one catches you with the wrong one, you are ‘completely finished.'"
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
21 posts
2 upvotes
rcmpvet wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 3:38 pm
This is direct from the rental agreement prior to Sept., 2010:

At the end of the useful life (as stated by the technician to you)
††
of your present water heater, you are not obligated to rent and we are not
obligated to supply replacement equipment, unless we mutually agree at the time.

AND if the WH is within its useful life (less than 15 years old):

If you choose to have Direct Energy disconnect, remove or retrieve the rental water heater, in most cases there
will be a $75.00 charge for these services. (There is no
charge if you are more than 32km (20 miles) from a
Direct Energy return location or if we fail to retrieve your water heater within two weeks of your request or your
water heater has been rented for 15 years or more.)

It would appear your WH is not longer your responsibility or cost.
Thank you so much. So, given that it is end of life, enercare will take it away. (likely 75$ fee) and I am free to get a new one from a store like home depot, right?
Sr. Member
Oct 13, 2014
967 posts
402 upvotes
Somewhere, ON
dealwiththedeal wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 3:53 pm
Thank you so much. So, given that it is end of life, enercare will take it away. (likely 75$ fee) and I am free to get a new one from a store like home depot, right?
There should be no fee if at the end of the useful life. FYI here is a link to the contract (pre-2010), you really should have it in front of you when you call Enercare:

https://www.enercare.ca/sites/default/f ... itions.pdf
“When you marry the right woman, you are ‘complete.’ If you marry the wrong woman, you are ‘finished.’ And, if the right one catches you with the wrong one, you are ‘completely finished.'"
Newbie
Jun 5, 2016
21 posts
2 upvotes
rcmpvet wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 7:34 am
There should be no fee if at the end of the useful life. FYI here is a link to the contract (pre-2010), you really should have it in front of you when you call Enercare:

https://www.enercare.ca/sites/default/f ... itions.pdf
Thanks! Yes, I spoke to a different number for cancellations in enercare which was more cooperative and indicated once my new tank installation is done I can call and request to have it removed from my basement at no cost and will be removed from within a week. They did offer me first 3 months rental free and then 6 months rental free and then 1 year of plumbing etc service. I politely declined and all seems ok as of now. Now, I go back to looking for new tank, most likely home depot (rheem) or bradford white whichever effective cost is lower.

Thanks guys for the inputs provided, really helped making a decision and this thread has been very helpful.
Member
Jul 22, 2015
265 posts
46 upvotes
Kitchener, ON
I've often wondered why water heaters are so frequently rented. Soon, you will see more furnace/AC rentals too and new home buyers will need to assume those contracts!

I've purchased a new build and of coarse, it comes with a rented water heater from Reliance. I'm not sure what the buyout amount will be at this point as I haven't moved in yet, but I've heard that I can just get them to remove it before I get my first bill and I can just install a new one from another company. Anyone heard this before or had any success with it?
Deal Fanatic
User avatar
Oct 6, 2010
7676 posts
1876 upvotes
Toronto
Acheewawa wrote:
Aug 2nd, 2017 10:10 pm
I've often wondered why water heaters are so frequently rented. Soon, you will see more furnace/AC rentals too and new home buyers will need to assume those contracts!

I've purchased a new build and of coarse, it comes with a rented water heater from Reliance. I'm not sure what the buyout amount will be at this point as I haven't moved in yet, but I've heard that I can just get them to remove it before I get my first bill and I can just install a new one from another company. Anyone heard this before or had any success with it?
I believe this was covered already in this thread and you would need to buy it out after 2 years.
t3359 wrote:
May 13th, 2016 9:56 am
...The magic eight ball would randomly say things and logic would never work. The eight ball is just a gimmick and a waste of time and effort. So equivalently, there is no possibility to "debate" you.
Deal Addict
Jan 25, 2007
2689 posts
700 upvotes
Paris
rcmpvet wrote:
Aug 1st, 2017 3:38 pm
If you choose to have Direct Energy disconnect, remove or retrieve the rental water heater, in most cases there
will be a $75.00 charge for these services. (There is no
charge if you are more than 32km (20 miles) from a
Direct Energy return location or if we fail to retrieve your water heater within two weeks of your request or your
water heater has been rented for 15 years or more.)
SON OF A ^*&%%&*((. I fought with them so hard when my water heater died. First to even PRODUCE terms and conditions that were in effect at my assumed acceptance of such terms in 2007 when we bought our house. Then we fought that I had to return the water heater to a service centre in Kitchen (easily 40 kms from my house) between 9-11am or 1-3pm and I couldn't return it any other location as "they are geo tagged" or pony up $60ish bucks for them to pick it up.

In the end I returned it to the Burlington depot which couldn't have been more than 4 mins away from where I worked and they accepted them 8am to 6pm. The Burlington depot was about 66 kms from my house.

Edit: I'm so mad right now I want to call them up and yell at them some more. This all happened 6 years or more ago.
Gbill2004: Thanks but I'll just smell the couch before/if I buy it.

jonnyb: I go in there like PICASSO and toss the glue everywhere, I don't care what house I'm on.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
24832 posts
2570 upvotes
East Gwillimbury
Here is my story, builder installed the hot water heater in February 2017. And I took possession in June. Was told that I couldn't get occupancy with out a hot water heater.

On the 27th of July, Cricket Comfort sends me a contract to sign. The rental agreement is $43.04 + HST, the term is 180 months (15 YEARS!!!). Third party billing through Enbridge, I quickly called Circket and was disconnected several times. Eventually got through and talked to Rita.

She explains to me that it is an Energy Star Home and this is a special tank. I can't just replace it with any conventional tank. Blah, blah blah. Then she tells me at the back of the contract is the buy out schedule. See attached


IMG_0299.JPG



You believe the cost? I checked online and no one lists pricing and I can't find this model in the big box stores. It is a GSW 6G50 76N VC02 110. Which means it is a John Woods Enviro Sense Power Vented Unit, 50 Gallon capacity 76,000 BTU. After a searching for awhile, I decided to just call an HVAC company and was quickly quoted $2,200, installation included

I call Cricket back and was going to blast them. No way I was going to pay more than double retail for the unit. She quickly drops the price to $3,200 + HST and says she can't go any lower. It is still $1,000 more than a new one (granted, the one I have is only 5 months old)

She then tells me that even though I haven't signed the contract, they have my information because the builder sent it to them and they already setup billing with Enbridge. I want to terminate the contract and she wants to charge $500 termination fee because the builder hasn't paid any rental fees since it was installed. Then there is a disconnect charge, fee to come and pick up the unit etc.

I was so fed up, I just paid the $3,200 + HST on the phone. I figured with all the extra fees and hassles it would probably cost $1,000 after all said and done.

They're all thieves
Last edited by Gee on Aug 4th, 2017 3:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7270 posts
2292 upvotes
ON
Gee wrote:
Aug 4th, 2017 3:01 pm
Here is my story, builder installed the hot water heater in February 2017. And I took possession in June. Was told that I couldn't get occupancy with out a hot water heater.

On the 27th of July, Cricket Comfort sends me a contract to sign. The rental agreement is $43.04 + HST, the term is 180 months (15 YEARS!!!). Third party billing through Enbridge, I quickly called Circket and was disconnected several times. Eventually got through and talked to Rita.

She explains to me that it is an Energy Star Home and this is a special tank. I can't just replace it with any conventional tank. Blah, blah blah. Then she tells me at the back of the contract is the buy out schedule. See attached



IMG_0299.JPG




You believe the cost? I checked online and no one lists pricing and I can't find this model in the big box stores. It is a GSW 6G50 76N VC02 110. Which means it is a John Woods Enviro Sense Power Vented Unit, 50 Gallon capacity 76,000 BTU. After a searching for awhile, I decided to just call an HVAC company and was quickly quoted $2,200, installation included

I call Cricket back and was going to blast them. No way I was going to pay more than double retail for unit. She quickly drops the price to $3,200 + HST and says she can't go any lower. It is still $1,000 more than a new one (granted, the one I have is only 5 months old)

She then tells me that even though I haven't signed the contract, they have my information because the builder sent it to them and they already setup billing with Enbridge. I want to terminate the contract and she wants to charge $500 termination fee because the builder hasn't paid any rental fees since it was installed. Then there is a disconnect charge, fee to come and pick up the unit etc.

I was so fed up, I just paid the $3,200 + HST on the phone. I figured with all the extra fees and hassles it would probably cost $1,000 after all said and done.

They're all thieves
If you were recording that call and she indeed said you had not signed a contract with them, you'd be off scott-free.
Deal Expert
Aug 2, 2004
24832 posts
2570 upvotes
East Gwillimbury
aqnd wrote:
Aug 4th, 2017 5:40 pm
If you were recording that call and she indeed said you had not signed a contract with them, you'd be off scott-free.
She was asking me to sign the contract which they had mailed me. Said it has to be sent back within 10 days, but they had all my info because the builder gave it to them. Billing with Endbridge was already setup.
Deal Fanatic
Apr 20, 2011
7270 posts
2292 upvotes
ON
Yeah, so you could have told enbridge to remove the billing as they don't have authorization (a signed contract), and you have the proof of them saying so.
Sr. Member
Aug 18, 2009
593 posts
78 upvotes
Toronto
So I recently purchased a resale home (less than 2yrs old) with a Cricket rental unit. I took possession in April and I've been paying my Enbridge bill since then. However, the bill has no mention of the rental unit.

Is it possible that the original owner never signed a contract with Cricket and thus billing was never set up? Could it be that the rental unit has fallen through the cracks by now since it's been installed for nearly 2 years already?

If I do nothing, what are the possible scenarios that may play out?

Side note: the original owner is also the builder (custom home)

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