Update from Ralph Bristol Morning News - BBB Middle Tennessee can be heard Fridays at 7:40am on the Ralph Bristol Nashville Morning News, WTN 99.7 (FM Radio)
Company uses bogus addresses and false claims to entice consumers.
[November 4, 2010 Nashville, TN] Are your allergies bothering you? Having trouble breathing? Need your air ducts cleaned? If you're not having trouble breathing now, you just may if Klean Air Care Services owned by Scott Phelps has the opportunity to come to your home.
This company is running advertisements in Nashville, Chattanooga, and surrounding areas offering air duct cleaning services for $89.95. The ads claim the company's sanitizing treatment kills H1N1 in 3 minutes and HIV in 1 minute, offers whole house fogging using moldicide and other mold controlled preventatives, state they are Certified Mold Remediation Contractors with CMI and CMRC certifications, and indicate they are fully bonded and insured listing a license number of TN0000621850. The ads also state the company is locally owned and operated, and the company's website (www.Kleanaircare.com) advertises a physical location on Industrial Park Drive in Nashville - but BBB's investigation into the advertised claims tells a different story.
BBB's research revealed Klean Air Care Services is not licensed to use products that kill viruses or mold. In fact, the company is in violation of Tennessee's Application of Pesticides Act, which requires a company providing or offering for sale any custom pesticides, disinfectants, or fungicides to have a pest control charter. When BBB checked into the professional looking certifications and the advertised license number, BBB was unable to verify their authenticity. The Davidson County Business License Office verified this company is not properly licensed to conduct business in Davidson County. Industry professionals advised BBB that those CMI and CMRC certifications meant nothing and were put in the advertisement to trick the consumer into thinking the business is highly qualified. And those claims of being locally owned and operated with an address on Industrial Park Drive...BBB was unable to verify local ownership, and the United States Postal Service says there is no such address.
How can you avoid falling victim to an air duct cleaning scam?
- Check the Company Out With BBB. Before setting up a visit, check the company out with your Better Business Bureau first. Ideally, the business will be Accredited by BBB or at least have a good rating. Pay close attention to the name of the business you're researching because unscrupulous outfits often choose a name that is similar to an existing business that has a solid reputation. To check out a business's Reliability Report or locate a BBB Accredited duct cleaner visit www.Nashville.BBB.org
- Verify Licensing and Other Credentials. Contact the state's licensing boards to verify proper licensing and/or the business license office in the city or county where the work is being conducted. Confirm any advertised credentials, and make sure the issuing firm is a reputable organization.
- Look for the Fine Print. Ads and contracts may contain fine print, which the business might think will absolve them from honoring their advertised price. Always ask plenty of questions and get to the bottom line of what it's going to cost you before you sign on the dotted line.
- Get a Second Opinion. If the duct cleaner discovers that you have a mold problem, get a second opinion. Mold remediation can cost thousands of dollars so you'll want expert advice on how to take care of it.
- File a Complaint with BBB. If you believe you've been misled by a business, file a complaint with your BBB online at www.Nashville.BBB.org. Even if BBB isn't able to resolve the issue for you, the complaint can serve as a warning to other consumers about the business.
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The BBB of Middle Tennessee, Inc. was founded in 1961 as a non-profit Tennessee organization serving 38 counties in Middle Tennessee and 7 counties in Southern Kentucky. The first BBB was founded in 1912. Today, BBBs serve communities across the U.S. and Canada.
Serving as the 'ethical gatepost' of our communities, BBB fosters and promotes ethical business practices and self-regulation standards that build consumer trust in the marketplace. BBB services include business reliability information, complaint resolution services and consumer and business educational information. In 2008 BBB Nashville handled over 4.0 million services requests via our web site www.nashville.bbb.org.
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