Solve It 7: Stove Scare

It wasn’t a sound Jackie Coolidge expected to hear last fall – all she was doing was baking some meatballs in her oven.

“I thought it was the smoke detector,” she said.

No, Jackie’s dinner wasn’t burning. The sound was coming from her carbon monoxide alarm. Panicked, Jackie went outside and quickly called the fire department.

“Upon entering the house, they had their meter, they weren’t even close to the stove, it started to register the carbon monoxide levels,” Jackie told us.

Dangerous levels of the potentially deadly gas, and firefighters told Jackie it was coming from her range.

And when the gas company’s inspector showed up, his meter showed the same thing.

“He tested it and he got 100ppm, and said to me, ‘It’s a good thing you didn’t take a nap because you may not have woken up,’” Jackie said.

The gas company disconnected the range and tagged it as “hazardous”. Jackie only had the stove for about a year and a half but now it was unusable.

She called Sears where she purchased the range. The company sent out its own technician who Jackie says got a similar reading but told her it was safe.

So Jackie called the gas company again. “I spoke to one of the managers there, and she said, ‘What did he get for a reading?’ and I said, ‘135ppm.’ She said, ‘No way.’ She said, ‘We are not turning the gas on because it’s unsafe,’” Jackie told us.

She was stuck. Despite many calls and letters, she couldn’t get the store to replace her stove.

“They kept saying, ‘It’s out of warranty, there’s nothing we can do.’ I said, ‘This is not your typical warranty issue. This is a hazard!’”

That’s when Jackie called Solve It 7.

Robert Harnais is the president-elect of the Massachusetts Bar Association, and he says the company should rectify the situation immediately.

“They shouldn’t delay. Somebody could get injured, somebody could lose their lives, so in this case, the company should jump at the chance to rectify an issue like this,” Harnais said.

We reached out to Sears directly to tell them about Jackie’s situation.

A few days after our call, Jackie got a call from Sears. “He said, ‘We just received an email from corporate that we are to give you $1,300 to replace your stove,’” she told us.

Great news! Jackie went right over to the store to shop for her new range.

A Sears spokesperson sent us the following statement in regard to Jackie’s situation:

“Sears takes pride in providing its members and customers with quality products and services. We’re pleased to report that Sears replaced Ms. Coolidge’s range on Dec. 31, even though her protection agreement had expired several months ago. We’re happy to have resolved this to her satisfaction.”

“I want to say thank you so much for helping out! It really does work when you step in. And if you do have a problem with anything, call Solve It 7,” Jackie said.

Solve It 7 is here to help on a wide range of issues, and we’d love to hear from you. Send us an email at solveit7@whdh.com or give us a call at 617-367-7777.