Service is a time-honored tradition for the Neff family, owners of Triple A Air Conditioning and Heating. Their legacy of skillful service has been earned and handed down over three generations. After serving 4 years with the US military, Grandpa Neff was looking for a job in the 1940’s when he realized he could fix just about anything he put his hands on. In 1949 he found his repair skills were most valuable in the heating and air conditioning repair industry, and the first generation of family service began. But, in those days working for yourself meant “enlisting” your family to help.
So when his son, Keith, was just 11 years old he began serving the family business as the tool runner in the truck for his dad. Keith saw firsthand that if it was broke, his dad could fix it. He remembers that in the beginning his dad would have to tell him what tool he needed. A quick study, Keith soon became good at predicting what tool would be needed next. Each tool had its own designated spot so both, father and son, could easily find them without fail.
One day while working with his dad in a customer’s attic, Keith correctly predicted his father would need a crescent wrench to complete the repair. But, when he looked at the designated spot in the toolbox for the crescent wrench, it wasn’t there. Keith looked everywhere in the attic. “I knew if I had lost it, I would be in some serious trouble”, Keith remembers. As expected, Keith’s father asked for the crescent wrench. After telling him it wasn’t there, Grandpa looked in the toolbox himself to no avail. Grandpa sent Keith down to the truck and told him exactly where to look, saying it had to be there. Panicked he had lost it Keith climbed down the ladder and sprinted to the van. He looked everywhere his father told him to. But the wrench was simply not there.
Worried about how they would fix the air conditioner without the wrench, Keith climbed the ladder back up into the attic to tell his father the news. Frustrated, Grandpa Neff sent Keith back down the ladder telling him, “Don’t come back without it!” Keith ran back down the ladder again and searched every nook and cranny of the truck, but the wrench still wasn’t there.
Returning back up the ladder to the attic, Keith told his father the news. Grandpa began searching the floor around him and feeling in all his pockets. Startled, he suddenly pulled the crescent wrench out of his own back pocket. Relieved, both Keith and his father started laughing. Keith continued to work for his dad running up and down that ladder through his high school years. “It never failed, anytime he would send me to get the crescent wrench, I would always make him check his back pocket before I went down.”
Keith graduated from vocational school and worked for other companies to gain the technical experience he needed to add to his “hands-on” training. After marrying his high school sweetheart in 1987, he decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and open his own family business. Just like his father, second generation Keith found if it was broken he could fix it.
As Keith’s own family grew, history repeated itself. If no babysitter was available, the kids, Dustin and Hannah, went along with him. Sometimes Dustin quietly played nearby with his G.I. Joes while his father successfully completed the job. Daughter Hanna grew up in the office too, where “love notes” posted in her father’s desk drawer still remain.
Soon enough Dustin, the third generation, had the responsibility of bringing the crescent wrench to his father. Running back and forth to retrieve tools from the truck, while his friends were out playing every summer, Dustin discovered he too enjoyed helping customers and fixing their problems. By the 8th grade he knew he wanted to serve in the family business for life and announced he was going to “go to college and come back to make the family business into something”.
Dustin began his focused “on the job training” the summer before his freshman year of high school at Flower Mound Marcus. While most kids slept in, Dustin was up at 5:30 AM and in the truck with his dad by 6:00 AM every morning to soak up all the wisdom he could. As promised, after graduation he completed his formal education at Texas A&M. In 2013 Dustin returned to work fulltime in the family business with a new perspective on serving customers that included adding advanced technologies to the family’s inherited skill set.
Now serving customers for three generations has allowed Triple A to build lifelong relationships with their clients. In fact (except for the fact that they don’t have to run for the wrench) customers become more like family members. Recently, a lifelong customer called to return Dustin’s G.I. Joes left at his home over 20 years ago.
Grandpa is not here to see it, but the legacy of skillful service he began in 1949 continues to help families in the North Central Texas area. The Neff family honors Grandpa’s legacy by sharing his handed down superior repair skills and generous spirit with their customers. And now, the third generation is incorporating today’s technological advancements for the home to make Triple A’s repair and service even more outstanding. It’s something they know Grandpa would be very proud of.
As just one of their raving fans said, “ I absolutely love Triple A! They are very customer-service focused and I trust them. From the office staff to the team in the field, this is one A-Class group of people”. At Triple A Air Conditioning and Heating great service runs in the family.