Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Good and Bad of Chinese New Year at Our House

Chinese New Year as I mentioned, had been building up momentum in our Seremban neighborhood (which has a large Chinese population) for days before February 3rd.

The Good: We can enjoy big non-stop fireworks from all directions surrounding our house for days and days....

See video of fireworks seen from our office window

The Bad: On the eve of February 3rd (Chinese New Year) our water heater electric switch suddenly turned off causing the power on the second story to go out. We figured out it was the power source to the Joven Water Heater that was tripping our safety switch, so we turned it off and regained power. With the Water Heater power off, we quickly used up our hot water in the storage tank. The next morning I called Joven to get a repair person out to the house as the water heater is still under warranty. He told me that Joven wouldn’t be reopening until Thurday, Feb 10 (which would be 8 days past when the water went out). I told him that would be too long for us to be without hot water and he laughed at me, I mean really laughed at me. He told me that his office has been closed since January 31 and no one was getting serviced. This really upset us, how can a big company (I think the largest in Malaysia for electric water heaters and instant water heaters) just close down for 11 days without any back up service help? It really turned us off on Joven and I wouldn’t buy a Joven product again for this reason.

After calling all the plumbers and electricians we worked with on the house, none of them were available to come out to look at the situation, even non-chinese were on holiday! Apparently, Malaysia has not grasped the idea of holiday over-time pay. On Monday, Feb 7 we were able to get an electrician to the house, where he confirmed that the electric switch and wiring to the hot water heater were not faulty, so it had to be the Joven Water heater that was faulty. But he wouldn’t go up to the attic to even look at it claiming it would nullify the Joven warranty if he did.

At this point we were pretty desperate for some hot water as we had already gone 6 days without hot showers. We were lucky to get our plumber C who helped B with the kitchen to come out to the on Tuesday, Feb 7 (the day he was back from his vacation!) to install an instant water heater that we had already bought for the second Guest Bedroom’s Bathroom (formerly the Maid’s Room where there was no hot water installed or A/C hook-up). We had planned to work on the electric wiring for the bathroom and the electric sources for the ceiling lights before painting the room in about a month and planned to install the instant water heater. But, now we were desperate and decided to get the instant water heater installed. The worse part about this is that we had already purchased a JOVEN INSTANT WATER HEATER as we had had no problems with Joven in the past. It pained us to install another product by Joven, with its crappy service, knowing we could very well have a problem with it as well. But Shong Heng Hardware was closed for Chinese New Year and other appliance stores were as well. We had no choice but to use it to get the hot water rolling. I will post more on the Instant Water Heater installation soon.

Oh, Joven did finally show up on Wednesday, February 9 (7 days after our Joven Water Heater broke) to fix it as an emergency repair. The service person was from KL. The ‘element’ in the system had blown, although Joven has no idea why. We are still waiting to hear if they are going to charge us for the repair or if it is included in the warranty. Maybe we should have gone with solar heat after all...

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