Charlotte TV repairmen discuss their business
Do you repair all brands of TVs?
Vakovsky: "All brands and models, yes. It could be Sony, Toshiba, Samsung, Phillips or LG."
Avram: "Yes, we fix everything - all models, all brands."
Dixon: "Yes, all brands. Some parts are harder to find. I repair all the rest of the sets."
What's the most common problem you encounter with TVs?
Vakovsky: "I would say the most common problem is with the internal power supply."
Who we talked to
Igor Vakovsky, owner
Don's TV Service
9247 Lawyers Road
Vasile Avram, owner
10403 Park Road, Ste. B
Lesley Dixon, owner
Dixon Bargain House & TV Repair
1010 Concord Ave.
Avram: "Ninety percent of the problems are the power supply."
Dixon: "Plasma TVs have a module in the center. They last only two or three years."
How do you charge?
Vakovsky: "We charge a flat fee on repairs. Anything under 35 inches is $69, and anything over is $150."
Avram: "For TVs it's $40. It doesn't matter what brand. For plasma it's $50. For VCRs, it's $35."
Dixon: "It depends on the set, parts and labor."
How long have you been in business?
Vakovsky: "Don's TV was established in 1950, but the current management is from nine years ago."
Avram: "I have 35 years of experience."
Dixon: "I've been open since 1974 in Monroe. I've been working on TVs since 1954."
Will you make a house call? If so, do you charge extra?
Vakovsky: "We charge $99 for a house call."
Avram: "Yes, it's $100."
Dixon: "No, I don't. I haven't in about 15 years."
Are people more inclined to get their HDTVs and plasma TVs fixed or buy a new one?
Vakovsky: "If the repair will be less than 50 percent of the original value, I'd say eight out of 10 customers will fix them."
Avram: "When you pay $2,000 for a unit and it works only for a year, you don't throw it away. You get it fixed."
Dixon: "Well, they come here and want them fixed. I don't even repair them because it's expensive."
Do you believe your profession is a dying one?
Vakovsky: "It's up in the air. Because it's a new generation of TVs, we don't know how often they're going to break."
Avram: "No. Electronics are electronics. When television repair ends, we'll start doing another kind."
Dixon: "Good Lord, no. I just turned down four repairs this morning. People realize the older TVs are better, so they want them fixed."