Choosing a Which Trusted Trader For Your Next Job
As a “normal Joe” and fully paid up member of society (rather than a heart of stone contractor!) I feel a customer’s pain when looking for a tradesperson. There are so many “horror” stories out there about “Rogue traders” it’s daunting and I can sympathise as I’ve been a victim too. It’s the feeling of vulnerability that gnaws away at you because who other than the very person you want to employ has the knowledge that you don’t!!
Questions are raised such as
- how much should I pay?
- Who’s a reputable installer?
- Will they turn up when they said they would?
- Will they answer/return my calls?
Sound familiar – of course they do, because nobody wants to be ripped off!
Previously I’ve written blogs on customer confidence and this time I want to promote further reasons why a customer of AB Aerials is in safe hands when choosing the right tradesperson for your next job
AB Aerials – A Which? Trusted Trader
Recently AB Aerials as business has undergone the process of becoming a Which Trusted Trader (WTT). There are a lot of “Find a Trader” platforms out there but we wanted to go for the “Gold Standard” as Which have a “rich history in rewarding good services, products and businesses for the benefit of UK consumers”. Well, I’m glad we decided to go with Which as their whole philosophy is centred on customer protection.
There is a rigourous assessment process which other trading sites just don’t have. This involves substantiating individual’s professional qualifications, company credit status, continuous customer feedback and AB Aerials signing up to a Code of Conduct and Ethics. Any of which are breached and you’re down the road!!! Hence, the customer is protected from “Rogue Traders” and charlatans. For instance, if you’re quoted for work there is an arrangement for a 14 day cooling off period and you can cancel and if you’re unhappy with the work WTT offer a free arbitration/dispute resolution service (all this can be found in the Complaints Procedure of the website). Ultimately every stage of the work process is geared to customer protection and the responsibility to provide an excellent service falls to AB Aerials or else there will be consequences, be that legal or financial!
I have to say it was a relief when I got the good news and been told AB Aerials had been endorsed by WTT as this meant that the work practices of our business were of a high standard and WTT would be confident in promoting us. What made this even sweeter was that we were told that only 1 in 4 applications were successful. Pat on the back all round then!
Out of interest, I typed in aerial and satellite installers in Sheffield on the WTT site and only two other businesses appeared. One was based in Humberside (say what!!) and the others were an electrical contractor stating they do audio-visual work and as it happens they sub-contract this work to AB Aerials anyway. The question has got to be asked why aren’t there any other similar businesses with WTT? The answer is, of course, it is unlikely they would meet the standards required and those that have applied have been unsuccessful.
So why go with anybody else? Go with AB Aerials – for a better resolution!!
Contact us today to see how we can help you. Which? Trusted Traders are renowned for customer service and value so you are safe in the knowledge your installation will be treated with upmost care.
Moving house or renovating? Don’t forget your TV and audio connections!
AB Aerials can take the strain!
We’re not going to get our hands dirty with the likes of lifting your solid oak chest of drawers in and out of the loft, but what we can do is enhance your televisual experience in your new or extended house. A bold statement.
I can’t tell you how many times I get asked “can you put a TV point in my lounge?” and I turn up only to find that the house has already been redecorated or refurbished. Well, I could tell you and it’s about once a week!
I don’t know the reasons for this but the audio-visual (AV) aspect is always overlooked. The plumbing, electrics and where to fit your new furniture take priority and last on the list (if at all) is the poor relation AV. It’s so disappointing and frustrating for the customer on realising that in order to get the telly in the far corner next to the tropical fish tank half of their newly plastered and painted wall will have to be chiselled out to get the appropriate cables to where they are supposed to be.
The same is true when moving house. A spot of preplanning is necessary as to where you want to park yourself to watch TV once settled in.
Have you considered your CCTV, TV installation, Satellite installation or TV wall mounting solutions?
Are you planning a house move? What about your TV and audio connections?
If you’ve been planning a move or had the builders and architects round to plan your loft conversion, it’s time to get ruthless. Look at the layout of your home and work out where everything is to go. Be proactive and make arrangements for your future televisual entertainment.
What to look for in your next audio and AV engineer.
The most important factor, as with all trades works, is to get a competent and reliable contractor. Essentially ensure that they are qualified, insured, CRB checked, use industry approved materials, does not leave site until the work is commissioned and gives a decent guarantee. It’s always worth get testimonials and recommendations too!!
Once you’ve decided on your friendly neighbourhood AV man get him over to see what your requirements are and where you want stuff siting. This is equally applicable to CCTV installation and data points around the house. If you’re having work done a good way to save yourself a few quid is to get the electrician to pull-in coax, data and HDMI cables as he’s already doing this with his cabling as electric sockets are always likely to be close to aerial and satellite points (see why today is a good day for 4k). Additionally if you’re having a TV wall mount get the sparky to put an electrical socket along side an aerial point behind where the TV is to go as well making provision for HDMI leads, data cables and the TV’s power cable – nothing worse than having dangling cables on show. There’s no point getting two tradesmen to do one job.
It’s always prudent when installing CCTV to site the recorder device out of sight so it doesn’t get whisked away by a light-fingered thief thus negating have such a system in the first place. I recommend putting the recorder somewhere like the loft so get your understanding electrician to install a couple of double sockets up there so all the equipment will be hidden.
Essentially, here at AB Aerials we try and side step the old idiom “failure to plan is planning to fail” so whilst the opportunity to make plans is apparent take it and future proof you new or renovated house and sit back and watch TV over by the tropical fish tank. The alternative is unthinkable!!
Leading independent TV aerial and satellite installation company in Sheffield.
If you have any questions regarding this article or you need CCTV, TV or Satellite installation (including wall mounting!) be sure to contact us today. We are here to help!
What’s your dog watching on TV?
It’s common knowledge that a dog is a man’s best friend who’s pampered and treated better than the kids. And why not, they’re more loyal, obedient and responsive. However, up until recently, the poor pooch wouldn’t have been able to watch TV with the same quality of viewing as those dastardly kids due to what’s known in the scientific world as “Flicker Fusion Frequency” i.e. the three F’s.
Refresh rate of your television; humans vs dogs!
Human’s (including children in that grouping) require around 16 to 20 images per second to perceive a continuous image whereas Rex and his pack need closer to 70 images per second. Older televisions refresh images 50 to 60 times per second and because a dog’s visual system is sensitive to flickering (which apparently helps them perceive motion) a dog’s brain may “read” on screen imagery as a dancing flip book or strobe light effect.
In that case, thank goodness for technological advances as new television models have a refresh rate of 70 images per second. So if you want your dog to watch TV alongside you had better nip out to the January sales toute suite!!
Avid followers of AB Aerials blogs (both of you) will be aware that criteria for the purchase of a new TV can be found in “8 top tips to choosing a TV” and “A good day to buy a 4K TV” previously drafted as an infomercial.
The one doggy issue televisions cannot cater for is the sound quality because no matter what fantastic sound bar you may get or super subwoofer installed (pun very much intended) the difference in hearing frequency ranges between humans and dogs mean that loud noises may be painful to old Rex. So if your wonder pup is jumping up and down for no apparent reason to “Later .. with Jools Holland” on a Friday evening it’s probably because Muse or Noel Gallagher are playing one of their raunchier numbers and it may be a case of “get down Shep” or your ears drums will be perforated.
So if your dog’s getting overly excited by the new season of Game of Thrones it’s more likely that it’s because your new TV refresh rate is better than the old telly rather than the prospect of Cersei Lannister walking naked around Westeross, which of course is why half of GoT viewers tune in!
New TV Aerial Installation – for the dogs too!
If you need a new TV aerial installation for your new television, or if you are looking for multiple rooms to watch your new television set up with then you could do a lot worse than to contact us. We are 5-star reviewed and take great pride in our work, to make sure you’re aerial installation, satellite set up, home AV and CCTV are all in the best shape possible!
8 top tips to consider before buying a new TV
Don’t you know that Christmas is round the corner?? I bet an inordinate number of wish lists have TV’s firmly etched on them. So following on from my highly interesting and informative blog “A good time to buy a 4K TV” I thought it prudent to release to the world a checklist of things to consider when buying the said 4K TV or any other TV to that effect. These 8 top tips to choosing a new TV are what I advise my customers on a daily basis but also what I apply to my home TV and audio visual set up. I have factored in these 8 tips to be as honest and as open as possible.
- Choose the right screen size!
Start with the bleedin’ obvious as one can’t fit a square peg in a round hole. Bigger may not always be better too. Always choose a screen size appropriate for the distance you’ll be sitting from it otherwise you may feel engulfed in the film that you’ve decided to watch on a Saturday evening in. Not nice if it’s 50 Shades of Grey.
2. Screen Resolution
This determines the sharpness of the image and vary between 720 pixels (p), 1080p or full HD. Manufacturers are largely moving towards HDTV’s, Ultra HD and 4K which are your best bet for future proofing
This refers to the number of times the screen image is refreshed per second. The rate is measured in hertz (Hz) and you may have come across 60Hz, 120Hz or even 144Hz. The greater the refresh rate the smoother the flow ad there is a reduction in motion blur.
4. HDMI Ports
I’ve recently overlooked the fact that the TV I bought only had 2 HDMI ports. D’oh! Ended up having to introduce a HDMI matrix, at some cost I might add, to increase the HDMI capacity. The more ports the merrier, starting with at least 3. Be aware to ensure that they support HDMI 2.0 to accommodate future Ultra HD sources
Speakers are a must as most TV sound quality is poor but may not necessarily be required in a small room. The siren of wonderful picture quality may draw you on to the rocks where you’ll be metaphorically smashed to smithereens by the dreadful tinny sound coming from the corner of the room. Don’t be frugal, get a sound bar/plinth/speakers etc.
6. Colour Depth
Most recognised manufacturers don’t disappoint in this department. Look out for TV’s that serve up 8 bits per channel (or more). This ensures the TV is able to create enough depth to satisfy the human eye and present a photo-realistic image.
7. Curved or flat TV?
I think that this really is a first world problem. An existential question such as “to be, or not to be”. Personally I think curved TV’s have run their gimmicky course. The theory was that the screen followed the shape of the eye making the curves of the picture look sharper than flat TV’s. But if you’re little Billy shoved to the end of the sofa and away from the optimal seating position the picture geometry/image may look distorted. So flat TV’s it is.
8. Smart TVs
In general, the Smart TVs can connect to the internet and can stream content that way. It comes with certain apps including Netflix, where some connect via Wi-Fi. If you don’t want wires and want a clutter-free life, a smart TV might be the best option.
How can I help you?
AB Aerials are the leading choice for aerial installation and repair in Sheffield and South Yorkshire. Contact us to find out how we can help you make the most of your TV and home entertainment!
Why 4k TVs are a worthwhile (and affordable) purchase
The times they are a changing. Why now is the time to invest in a 4k TV.
The rate of change in Twenty-first Century technology can do most people’s spud in! I think the last time Joe Public could just about keep up was when the 3 field system of crop rotation was introduced in the Middle Ages. Things change so quickly but I hope to answer the question why I think now is the time to invest in a 4k TV for your home.
It’s guaranteed that as soon as you walk out of the shop the new TV you’ve bought will be immediately superceeded with an even newer and shinier one! It’s a cross we all have to bear. However, after spending an inordinate amount of time altruistically researching the subject I can announce to the world that NOW is the time to buy a 4K TV for the following reasons – so carpe diem in your face bitches.
Firstly, and at last, the prices are reasonable. Of course, you can buy the TV equivalent of the Salvator Mundi but I’ve just clicked on the John Lewis website and you can pick up a 40” SMART Ultra HD TV for less than £400. Say what!!! For the short-sighted amongst us a 55” equivalent will knock you back £650, just saying.
Thirdly, Netflix, Amazon Prime, and even YouTube are all offering video streaming in 4K. Costs may vary for the increased spec of the product, but hey you can’t buy a Rolls Royce for the price of a bicycle (see my last blog post!!).
Fourthly, PS4 and Xbox One have 4K capability. The PS4 Pro at around £350 is man enough to play games in 4K with HDR light support. The same is true of the X Box One X model at £450. Lower spec models only support HDR graphics. The X box One S can also power 4K video if you’re looking for a good 4K Blu-Ray player.
The future is now for 4k
Finally, 4K / HDR visuals will be the new default standard. Buying a 4k TV is future proofing yourself so buying a regular HD TV would be a big mistake.
The current state of play in relation to 4K content provided by terrestrial, cable and satellite based TV is that it is limited. The greatest access is through internet based services, but as Del Boy used to say in Only Fools and Horses this time next year we’ll all be millionaires owning 4K TV’s. Didn’t he?
If you need an aerial installation to support your 4k upgrade then contact us! We are the leading aerial installation company in Sheffield and South Yorkshire. We are super proud of our customer reviews collection so please go check them out (see the Google pop up that shows 5 shiny gold stars)!
On a final note, who remembers this from the old analogue days?
How much should a new aerial cost?
Online there are a gazillion aerial, satellite and CCTV companies that eulogise bargain basement offers. You can take the view that these are genuinely great opportunities or sceptically too good to be true. So just how much should a new aerial cost?
For example, a competitor of mine in Sheffield is stating a “digital” aerial installation for £38 and a CCTV installation for £99. Remarkable as the cost of materials is greater than the overall work!
When I’m shopping around for products and services I’m looking for value for money, that is, in cake terms, “worth the calories”. Money well spent is the whole package including what you’re actually offering as a product as well the services. This includes the initial contact experience of a web page landing or a personal phone call, to turning up on time, clearing up after yourself and making sure everything works prior to leaving. The standard of the service should not change for any customer.
The only variable should be the different price of products.
The whole process must be seen in terms of the customer. Lack of knowledge is vulnerability which is often exploited by the unscrupulous. A friendly tone and helpful guiding hand on how to tune a television or how to playback recordings on a CCTV recorder cost nothing but are priceless to a customer lacking in confidence.
At AB Aerials we gain customers attention and confidence by offering incentives such as:
- No vat charge
- 2 year guarantees
- Free call outs for surveys and diagnostics
- After sales service
- Phone lines open until 10pm and answered straight away
The right package for you
A range of products are available to suit the individual’s purse but all are industry approved from cables and aerials to CCTV cameras. The difficult part is to give an exact cost to a customer without actually going to see the job. How long is piece of string? Even if we say costs start from £x customers often take it that £x is the actual price of the job!
Nobody should be afraid to ask for a no obligation quote/survey which is of course mutually beneficial.
Additionally, when embarking on costly project such as multiple television points or a 4 camera CCTV install it goes without saying to get a number of quotes. Look for the company that gives you value for money. It may be the cheapest option but rarely. Ask yourself the question “will a £38 aerial” or “£99 CCTV install” really give you what you’re looking for? What you want to pay is what you want to pay but don’t expect a Rolls Royce for the price of a bicycle.
Are you tired of losing trust in the trades industry? We are putting a stop to this! That’s why we showcase our 5 star reviews on our home page .
How can we help you? Contact us for your satellite, aerial and CCTV requirements. We will talk you through the options available to you and will never offer something that is completely unsuitable for your needs.
Check out some of our happy customers on our Facebook page !
Don’t be afraid to reach out. We are here to help get your satellite, CCTV and television back on track.
Now here’s a thing. Customer confidence. Can be a scary place out there, in unchartered tradesman’s world, finding the right bod for the right job. I should co-co, having just been ripped off £300 myself by a trickster (not what I called him at the time) believing I could get a good deal on some CCTV equipment. Needless to say, a debt recovery company are sending him scary court summons, and the like, which will eventually lead to his just desserts – spotted dick, hopefully.
I live in a world of digital aerials, Freeview TV, satellite installation, Freesat, TV wall mounts and CCTV. Exotic, I know, but unbelievably peppered with bad apples, ne’er do-wells and blaggards. I could say that these types stand out like sore thumbs what with their squints, limps and left handed handshakes but unfortunately it’s not that easy to distinguish them. They move in the aerial. Satellite and CCTV universe just as normal mortals do using cheap materials, misdiagnosing, half completing jobs, overcharging and never returning to the crime scene unlike any decent, self respecting criminal.
Just saying, you never know who’s gonna be a smiling assassin or a genuine Mr. Darcy in hard hat (notwithstanding other essential personal protective equipment). What to do to find a decent tradesman and, in this scenario I’m trying to create, a wondrous digital aerial, satellite and CCTV installer? Well, let’s take a good example of such a being i.e. ME. What have I got that others haven’t (and possibly crave)?
You wouldn’t get Wayne Rooney to build a space rocket. What’s required is somebody who has relevant and current qualifications. In this case a Registered Digital Installer (RDI) who would be trained and approved by a Licensing Board. Also it’s worth checking their ID number to ensure they are currently registered.
Doesn’t necessarily go hand in hand but if a chap isn’t a RDI it’s unlikely they will be have Public Liability Insurance. If they drop a hammer through the conservatory roof or drill through your waterworks they’ll be off and you’ll have to pay the bill.
3. CRB checked
This is the Criminal Records Bureau that monitors public convictions. Given the choice I’d want somebody in my house with a clean record than not. An RDI has to produce a CRB certificate to the Licensing Board to become registered and if you want to see mine it came through the post last week.
4. References and testimonials
These count for something. My customers have been kind enough to give video testimonials, testimonials on Google, Facebook and Yell.com as well a number on my website – check ‘em out.
5. Uses Industry approved materials
Why wouldn’t you use decent materials. Look out for the Kite symbol it’s shown on all of the digital aerials, satellites and cabling I use. Cheap means expensive in the long run.
6. Guarantees work
It’s written in stone, well on my website, receipts and now in this blog, that I will give a two years guarantee on all works and materials. Howzat?
7. Doesn’t leave site until the works are completed and commissioned
Goes without saying that if it ain’t working don’t pay ‘em. If the job has be done correctly there’s no reason for it not to work. Some people will always find an excuse and dash with the dosh.
So you could do worse than to follow these box-tickers. If you have any questions relating who and who not to allow on to your roof and in your house call me, Steve, on 0114 2341189 for a free and no obligation chat about increasing your confidence in contractors.
I tell you what’s been going mental recently is the number of people wanting their TV’s wall mounted. I say to them “good for you”. It looks great, seeing a telly miraculously floating mid-wall out of the way of tiny and often grubby paws. Also it frees up space that can be utilised for lets say a wine rack, a beer refrigerator or perhaps a book shelf (boring!!).
What is sometimes overlooked is how is that hovering TV is going to be powered, how will it get it’s signal and how can I connect my blue ray DVD to it? In other words where will the necessary evil cables go? Don’t ask me I haven’t seen your lounge/kitchen/bedroom but what I would say is this:
Check the proximity of your electrical/aerial/satellite sockets
Do they require moving?
Do you want your cable to be chased in to the wall or are you happy to have them in trunking?
Questions, questions innit – but your installation could look like this (or better)