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Dodgy Heater Installation – who to complain to?

By CLM - 31 May 2012 5

Hi All

I had a heater installed in January last year by a company in Fyshwick – and of course I presumed the installation of my heater was safe.

I called in early May to say the heater was coming away from the wall and asked them to fix it, then again two weeks later – didnt hear back from either call.

This week, while the heater was running, it fell completely out of the wall, landing face down on the carpet where my 12 month old daughter was playing minutes before. It remained running until it was switched off, and the gas pipe appeared bent. A burning smell continued for some time.

Whilst the  company sent someone out at lunchtime that day, who advised that the heater is broken both inside and out.

It had been held on only by two 20mm screws – one of which was not entered straight into the plastic casing. Clearly the installation was inadequate for the size and weight of the heater – and this negligence put my family and my home at risk.

I requested verbally and then in writing for the heater to be replaced, but they have refused. They have offered a repair, but I am not confident in their statement that the unit is safe – in fact I am not confident in their competence to provide me with a safely installed unit at all.

I am really worried about this, what if they have installed other heaters poorly and one falls on a child??

Can someone tell me who I can complain to about:

a) the dodgy installation – they should have their practices checked; and

b) the refusal to replace the heater.

Thanks in advance,

CM

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5 Responses to
Dodgy Heater Installation – who to complain to?
CLM 4:02 pm 02 Jun 12

Ray Polglaze said :

I think the first step would be contact the Office of Regulatory Services (ORS) on their general phone number of 6207 3000. They should be able to refer you to the relevant specific agencies. These would probably include both Worksafe and Fair Trading. I would contact both these agencies. Worksafe may have a role because businesses have a responsibility to ensure the safety of not only their workers but also members of the public. Fair Trading would have a role in terms of product safety.

It’s also a good idea to take photos. These can be useful and compelling.

This is the web address for the Office of Regulatory Services (ORS) home page:

http://www.ors.act.gov.au/

Thank you very much Ray, I will give them a call on Monday.

CLM 4:01 pm 02 Jun 12

Rawhide Kid Part3 said :

Now let me get this straight. You had this faulty gas heater since January 2011, a year and a half ago? And you still insist on using this faulty heater at the risk of your child?

No, the heater was fine until three weeks ago – and I never dreamed it would actually come off the wall. Of course I wouldnt let my child play near it if I thought that was even a remote possibility.

But really, thanks for making such a useful comment. Much appreciated.

Ray Polglaze 2:01 pm 01 Jun 12

I think the first step would be contact the Office of Regulatory Services (ORS) on their general phone number of 6207 3000. They should be able to refer you to the relevant specific agencies. These would probably include both Worksafe and Fair Trading. I would contact both these agencies. Worksafe may have a role because businesses have a responsibility to ensure the safety of not only their workers but also members of the public. Fair Trading would have a role in terms of product safety.

It’s also a good idea to take photos. These can be useful and compelling.

This is the web address for the Office of Regulatory Services (ORS) home page:

http://www.ors.act.gov.au/

Rawhide Kid Part3 11:20 am 01 Jun 12

Now let me get this straight. You had this faulty gas heater since January 2011, a year and a half ago? And you still insist on using this faulty heater at the risk of your child?

shirty_bear 9:50 am 01 Jun 12

While I don’t have any actual advice, I sympathise. There’s a basic folly in getting an incompetent to fix their own incompetence, but you’re already committed and you deserve better.

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