The catch is, there is no catch.

Over the past two days, I had the opportunity to meet the winners of our Oldest Water Heater Contest, and it was a really great experience! Both couples turned out to be really nice people, and were good sports about me being there to take some pictures to share with our readers.

Mr. & Mrs. Scott of Aston

Mr. & Mrs. Scott of Aston were the official winners, with a 23-year old water heater.

I’m going to backtrack a little here – I know a lot of people (including the winners!) were pretty confused at how we ended up with not one, but two, grand prizes to award. When we sorted through the contest entries here in the office and tallied up the age of the water heaters, not everyone on the team was aware that some manufacturers use a 20-year date code cycle. So, for example, a water heater with a serial number of AC12345 could either be from March of 1984 or March of 2004. And this led us into a situation where the customer correctly reported their information to us, and it checked out as a valid serial number which was the oldest of the entries we received. Of course, as soon as our plumbing team saw the water heater, they discovered the mistake. Rob, our plumbing manager, made the decision on the spot to award a second prize so that we could both keep our commitment to the Seminole’s and also to the family with the actual oldest water heater, the Scott’s.

Mr. & Mrs. Seminole

Mr. & Mrs. Seminole were the “bonus” winners!

Which brings me to something that really caught my attention as we arrived for the installations. After the initial “Oh wow, I never win anything, I still can’t believe this is happening!” they asked how much the installation of their free water heater would cost. It took a few minutes for both Bernie, our VP of Sales and Marketing, and Rob to really bring home the fact that free is free and there wouldn’t be a charge for any of the work. It got me thinking that we’ve all become conditioned to The Catch. We’ve all had that moment of elation where you think you’re getting a great deal, only to be let down when you find out about all the hoops you need to jump through or that it’s a “deal with major purchase only”.

Sometimes, though, the catch is that there is no catch – it really is a free water heater (or two!). So I want to thank Rob and his plumbing team for sponsoring this contest, our friends at US Supply for supplying the prizes, all of our customers who entered, and especially the winners for letting us stop by and take some pictures to share with everyone. Being a part of that was a pretty great way to end my week!

Joe the Plumber brings the water heater in for installation

Plumbing manager Rob Wagner, right, and Plumber Joe McLaughlin prepare to install the water heater for Mrs. Scott

Until next time,


PS – Check out more pictures from our contest winners’ installations on our Facebook page!

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