Nonetheless here we were with expensive systems that did not work and they concentrate the mind on the whole question of servicing - very expensive if you go for maximum packages and not guaranteed in every case to avoid expensive repairs. The dilemma is that of buying some peace of mind through service contracts or dealing with faults ad hoc as and when they occur.
This has given problems from the outset. The make is Aritco, made in Sweden and supplied by Southampton firm Evo Lifts. The people who fitted it and who would be needed for service and repairs are in Sheffield, which is a long way from Settle.
Lifts are complicated things with many electronic safety devices designed to fail quickly and safely when they detect the slightest error. The risk of failure is high therefore and the opportunities for self help are limited. Evo Lifts charge £202 + VAT for a service + £75 an hour + VAT for anything over an hour. Steeper than our stairs. Having talked me through various unsuccessful self-help options to get the lift going they withdrew telephone support saying they
"will not be able to give any technical support (to a local engineer) unless they are an approved distributor which I don’t believe they are.... so I won’t be able to assist him any further over the phone."
That, following a great deal of very helpful and much needed telephone support in the past didn't seem to me to be exemplary. A pretty poor do in fact.
The lift has been most efficiently repaired by local firm Foulds Lifts (est 1907!). Their annual service charge would be £60 + VAT Happily therefore we have found a local firm with many Aritco lifts already on service contracts.
The Rainwater Harvesting System
Kingspan Envireau are based in Northern Ireland and their telephone help line is beyond reproach. Concerned, friendly and effective. What turned out to be a serious and fundamental problem with the system was diagnosed after a very detailed set of tests that I was able to carry out involving numerous telephone calls all handled with great patience and concern for the customer. A service call charge of £280 + VAT would have applied had Kingspan Envireau insisted on that course. That represents a lot of mains water before it is cost effective.
Well done Kinspan Envireau.