A Bit Of History
It was 1985 and I was working as a sales rep for Salem Restaurant Equipment. When business was slow I would spend time in our maintenance shop watching our refrigeration technician.
I'm sure I annoyed him but he patiently answered my questions. After a number of visits he suggested that I read the book he had brought with him. The name of the book was Commercial Refrigeration and Air Conditioning. Over the many months, I referred to the book often until I felt I was familiar with the basic concepts of refrigeration. During this time I applied what I had learned to the equipment in the shop that needed repair. I purchased more books relating to refrigeration and continued practicing on refrigeration units in the shop.
As time progressed I met other tech's that had been in the business for many years. I would always asked questions about certain problems I was having in regard to repairing a particular piece of equipment. All these people contributed to my knowledge of the business and is greatly appreciated. I always asked questions if I wasn't sure. (If you don't ask you don't learn.) In the mean time I took educational courses at a local community college that included refrigeration theory, electrical principles and advanced trouble-shooting techniques. I also completed the Oregon State required brazing classes and obtained my certificate.
I learned more and more and eventually felt comfortable repairing all of our refrigeration equipment without the need of an outside technician. After many months of shop work and a lot of help from fellow service technicians I felt confident enough to take some service calls. This continued for two more years until the company permanently closed it's doors. I then obtained my Oregon State contractors licence, a business phone listing and ventured (somewhat apprehensively) out on my own. To promote my business I went knocking on doors. I stopped at restaurants, hotels, bars and taverns, convenience stores, nursing homes, wineries, et al. in Salem and surrounding cities. I would introduced myself and give them my business card and adhesive labels that had my contact information.
Anecdote: Recently (2015) I received a call from a fellow who had a beverage dispenser that needed attention because it wasn't cooling. He told me he got my phone number off my sticker on the machine. When I arrived at his place of business I did not remember the unit but I did see my very faded sticker and it was one of my originals that I had printed around 1993. Those stickers have proved to be invaluable beyond all my expectations.
Earning the respect and trust of my clients has been my number one priority since I began this business 33 years ago.
Thank you for reading. Richard Moor