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Huntsville Woman Fights A/C Company Over Improper Installation, City Forces Repairs

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) - Temperatures have been hot across the Tennessee Valley this summer. One Huntsville homeowner says she's still hot regardless of the temperature outside.

Willie Bell Turner says the air conditioning unit inside her home was not working correctly.

Turner emailed WHNT News 19 when she couldn't get the matter resolved on her own.

The story involves the installation of an air conditioning unit inside Turner's home. The company installed a unit that wasn't big enough to cool her home. The dispute hinged on additional labor costs Turner didn't feel she should have to pay since it wasn't her fault the wrong size unit was installed.

WHNT NEWS 19 discovered some other things as the case unfolded.

We first visited Turner's home in July. Turner told us about the air conditioning unit she bought in October 2010 from Moore's Refrigeration. The homeowner noticed a problem when the weather started warming up in the spring of 2011.

"It was hot and the thermostat stayed on 80 degrees and would not go to 73 degrees like I had it set on," said Turner.

Turner showed WHNT NEWS 19 her contract with the company and her receipts. She says she paid more than $5,000 for the unit, technician visits, a thermostat and duct work. She says none of it made her feel cooler.

"I feel like I can't trust the company. I've been hurt because it causes me stress," said Turner. "I've been stressed out. My diabetes is out of whack."

Turner checked with other air conditioning companies. She says they told her the A/C unit she purchased wasn't big enough for her house. Turner says Moore's Refrigeration agreed to install a bigger unit, but would only do so if she paid $225 more in labor costs. That's when Turner reached out to WHNT NEWS 19's Venton Blandin.

WHNT NEWS 19's Venton Blandin called on the help of another heating/air conditioning company in town. The company is state-certified and has an A+ approval rating with the Better Business Bureau. The company did a load calculation, which is a top-to-bottom inspection of a home's air flow and insulation. Technicians with the station's independent company found several problems with the installation done by Moore's Refrigeration.

"I feel that I have been let down by the company," said Turner. "I've been put out there on a whim and they don't care."

The owner of Moore's Refrigeration acknowledged his technicians did not do the load calculation even though the Alabama Board of Heating, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractors requires it when any replacement or new unit is installed.

WHNT NEWS 19 contacted Huntsville's inspection office. The office director was not aware work had been performed at Turner's home. The director said the company got permits, but never got the required inspection following installation.

After our call, the city's inspection office got involved, reaching out to Ed Moore, the owner of the A/C company. These calls yielded results. The inspector says Moore agreed to make all necessary corrections for code compliance.

WHNT NEWS 19 recently returned to Turner's home and saw Moore's Refrigeration employees working inside the home and out.

"I feel great. I feel relieved that Fighting for You, Venton and WHNT NEWS 19 have fought for me," said Turner. "Now, I am getting what should have been done in the first place."

We've learned Moore's Refrigeration agreed to swap A/C units at no additional charge.

"I said 'Thank you Jesus.' I was so excited. I was really excited. I said then 'God works through Venton and WHNT NEWS 19. I am so grateful," added Turner.

WHNT NEWS 19 wants to thank Ed Moore of Moore's Refrigeration for addressing this matter and making things right for Willie Bell Turner.