Conned 2 - part 6
Monday January 10 was a very bad day. I got home from play reading, and had lunch
and was about to go out to bridge, when I noticed a very bad smell in the kitchen - chemical smell. It permeated the whole space, and I new that ten minutes previously, it had not been like that. I hadn't used the gas cooker at all in making my lunch, so it wasn't that I had left the gas tap on.
I opened the door of the boiler cupboard and it was worse - so immediately I thought there was a gas
leak. I turned off the boiler, opened the doors and windows and went to call the gas board. They took some details, and told me how to turn off the gas at the mains, and then to go back and smell in the
cupboard again - and it was less of a smell. They said they would come out within the hour. They got here about half an hour later.
The man tried all the gas appliances and pipes and could find no problem. The smell had gone away because the doors and wndows had been wide open. He did think there was a faint after smell in the boiler cupboard, but nothing he could put his finger on.
He turned on the gas burner on the cooker without lighting it.
"Smell that," so I did.
"Was your smell like that,"
"No," and I was definite about that.
"Could it be from that machine?" I asked, pointing out the "magic" box.
"I have never seen one of those before, so I haven't got a clue. What does it do?"
"I changes the way the water goes through the radiators, and deoinozes it or something," I said vaguely.
"If you had a new boiler, it would do that automtically. Then you wouldn't need all that."
"It's supposed to make my gas bill much lower," I said in defense of my choice.
"And has it?"
"I don't know," I admitted.
"Well, call us out if you are worried again, but this time, it wasn't the gas tha was your problem," he said as he left.
I called the company, still in my panic mode, because I hadn't made up the smell. I left a message that I got a horrible smell and I was sure their machine must be at fault and something was majorly wrong. This time the receptionist did call me back, and somebody was promised for the next day but I had heard that before. And they didn't come.
The smells recurred about every other day, and sometimes were worse than others. I tried
to find out a common reasons between them. But sometimes they came in the morning, and sometimes at lunch, and occasionally in the afternoon. On each occasion, as I checked the boiler, the temperature gauge would be somewhere between 70 and 80 degrees. There is a pressure release valve on the new machine. It was my guess that that was blowing each time I got the smell. I was really scared that the whole boiler would blow up. The water pressure was going down
steadily too, although there was no obvious water on the floor of the cupboard.
Sure enough each day that week I had a phone call from the company saying somebody would be around later, and then, after lunch, another phone call saying they couldn't make it that day, but would come the next. The excuse one time was snow in Essex, and the engineer's windscreen wipers weren't working properly.
I of course had told my daughters all about these problems and they were insensed on my behalf. I was highly encouraged to contact the director who had helped me before when I had the problem with the noise. And he had given me his phone number. So I called, and left a message on his
He didn't get back to me.
The promises happened and were not fulfilled each day until on Friday when I was rung to say that again nobody was coming. "Maybe," the receptionist said, "it would help if our inspector could come around, just to get a better idea of the problem. But I can't give you an appointment for him to come until February 1.
My daughter encouraged me to try the director again, so I did and this time he did answer. I told him that I kept having appointments made to deal with the problem, and then the engineers never came.
He said, “I understood your problem was sorted.” So I went through it all again.
He said he thought the smell was caused by there being some air in the system which the machine needed to expell perhaps due to the system not being completely cleaned out before it was installed (their fault) and he promised somebody would come the next week.
The smells continued but not every day and not always as unpleasant. Sometimes I noticed
them when I came in the house, but I had no way of telling how long ago the explosion had been previous to my coming in.
Finally Febrary 1st arrived. It was my friend Harry again, and I almost hugged him. I said, “I am so glad to see you. I have been having problems for weeks and weeks, and nobody has come.”
So Harry tried his best for me. He figured that it just might be caused by a release of water from the machine, and he even found a smattering of small dark flecks and something that looked like a trail of dried water behind the machine that I hadn't noticed. He suggested maybe a screw on the back of the machine hadn't been fitted properly and if it was challenged by water under pressure, it might well release some steam. He took pictures of all this, and sent them to the company. He couldn't
really see how the smells could be related however unless there was dirty water in the system. And in his report, he said, “Follow up is required asap. Mrs. Day is very anxious about this problem.”
He told me that probably what would happen is that they would have to take the system apart, drain it again, and redo the entire thing. It would take all day. And he topped up the water in the boiler for me again, the gague having gone below the 1.0 mark that is recommended