Replacing the oven in Unit #2

Apartment unit #2 tenants complained that the oven did not work any more and they couldn’t cook their turkey over the Xmas holidays. I went there to check it out. Sure enough, the oven was but a bunch of rusted iron in shambles. I decided to buy a new one instead. Too bad that I cancel the home warranty plan or it could have been replaced by the home warranty company just like Unit #1. That goes to tell you. You never know when you need the insurance. That’s why it’s call “insurance.”

So I went to Home Depot on 1/07/08 and found a GE 24″ JRS06BJBB single-oven for $550. The sales lady advised me to wait until the week after, as GE is having a 10% sale that week. I did and I was glad. Indeed, Home Depot had the same unit for $500 + $25 rebate. Not a bad deal. I bought it on 1/17/08. The question was whether I should have them install it or not. Since this is an electrical work with lots of fire liability, I figured I should have the professional install it. I paid $120 for the service + $29 for the haul away. The salesman told me that if I can remove the old unit before the delivery guy shows up, Home Depot can haul it away for free. After much thinking and procrastination, I decided not to remove the old unit – it’s too heavy and I was afraid of finding something I was not familiar with.

The oven was delivered at 7:30am on 1/19/08. The tenant received it but I was not happy to be woken up 7:10am on Saturday morning as part of the process. On Tuesday, 1/22/08, the service guy showed up around 11:15am. I was informed by my tenant per my request and I quickly went there to check it out. The service guy informed me that 1) the circuit breaker needs to be replaced, 2) the junction box is not up to code due to anther branch circuit, and 3) the new oven doesn’t quite fit into the old oven hole. #1 and #2 can be tolerated but #3 is an immediate issue. Not good. It would cost me another $95 to have it fitted. I had no choice. As it turned out the service guy, Greg, spent nearly two hours trying to fit the new oven into the newly cut-out/reinforced hole. Due to the short conduit to the junction box, he had to add another electrical junction box. At the end, I was glad I spent the money to have it installed by an expert. There are simply too many complications when dealing with something like this, especially for an old apartment.

My main learnings: 1) Should have bought the home warranty from a different company and kept it. 2) Go mainstream on appliances. The built-in oven has since gone off mainstream from the 1960’s, resulting in excessive premium. The same combo unit of stove and oven would have cost about the same price without much installation – just plug it in.