Lawsuit: Furnace company allegedly skipped permits on hundreds of furnace installations to cover shoddy work

A Westminster-based heating and cooling company for years has intentionally avoided pulling permits on hundreds of jobs it did in Denver, in part to avoid the scrutiny of city inspectors over allegedly shoddy and dangerous work, according to a lawsuit seeking to shut it down.

Mile High Heating & Cooling and its owner, Kevin Dykman, 50, are accused of failing to pull the permits to install furnaces, hot water heaters and air-conditioning units over the past five years – and at least once telling a consumer that they had. They also used unskilled or uncertified workmen to do the jobs, the civil lawsuit by the Colorado attorney general’s office alleges.

Like many of his technicians, Dykman has no formal training in his field, known as HVAC, and holds no certifications or licenses in it, the AG lawsuit says. Before starting his company in 2012 in Arvada, Dykman worked as a call center customer service representative, the lawsuit says.

His son, Kasey Dykman, 24, is the manager of the business and is also named as a defendant. The Dykmans did not wish to comment.

Unlike plumbers and electricians, Colorado does not license HVAC installation or maintenance technicians, but some municipalities and counties do. In Denver, for example, they are captured under the mechanical contractor license and must pass an exam and have a minimum number of hours of training.

The state estimates Mile High has installed about 1,000 furnaces in the Denver metro area since it began operating. Virtually every city requires a permit for the installation of a furnace, but the company rarely got them. AG investigators say they culled through a sampling of the company’s records and found Mile High had obtained permits on just seven of 95 installations.

The elder Dykman allegedly instructed employees to “tell consumers that they can and should ‘waive’ building permits,’” the lawsuit says, and that allowing a city inspector into a home risks them finding issues with other areas of the house.

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The younger Dykman told investigators that permits were merely a way to “give the government money,” and that the majority of inspectors “don’t know what they are doing,” the lawsuit quotes him as saying.

The lawsuit cites testimony from several former, unnamed employees who were concerned that untrained technicians were putting consumers at risk, even though its advertisements promised “expert” service from “certified” technicians.

“If somebody’s servicing a piece of equipment that is untrained and they do something wrong … a homeowner can be susceptible to … carbon monoxide poisoning, gas leaks which can lead to fire, explosions,” according to one of the former employees.

The state lays out two instances in the lawsuit in which city inspectors in Sheridan and Denver separately found the company’s unpermitted furnace installation work to be faulty and dangerous.


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