I'm not too happy because I feel taken advantage of. Heard my AC buzzing early on a Saturday morning so called Radiant. Was told that because it was "off hours" that a $159 trip fee would be applied. Seemed excessive, but they said someone was in the area and could visit soon and I was working to clear a fallen tree from the storm, so I decided to accept it. The service technician shows up and within a few minutes said the problem is that ants had gotten into the contactor outside and that it would be $350 to replace it. Note at this point that the compressor & contactor is less than 6 months old--it was installed last summer. I didn't have time to deal with anything except the tree at that point, so said fine. After another few minutes, he said he was done and the AC seemed to be working normally. Surprisingly quick service call.
Later in the day after I'd finished clearing out the fallen tree I had time to research what was done. My first twinge of dissatisfaction came from finding that the part he installed in a few minutes actually costs $9. I understand markup and the cost of carrying inventory, but 4000% markup on a common part does not seem right. What's more, I also found out that the problem of ants getting into contactors is a very common problem in the southwest, and that there are sealed contactors which prevent this from occurring. These sealed contactors cost $40-50, but it eliminates the problem permanently.
From an HVAC maintenance standpoint, it sounds like a great business model to charge customers several hundred dollars for trivial maintenance every few months. However, I'm not going to be one of those customers. I am going to buy one of the ant resistant contactors and install it myself. It's a trivial job for anyone with the slightest of mechanical abilities. And I will not be calling Radiant again. (I did leave a message with Radiant to ask them about this situation, but their serve manager never called back)