Can't Repair Dishwasher, Terrible Customer Service
Never have I spent so much time and been so frustrated in trying to get an appliance under warranty serviced. Here's the condensed version (our notes could fill several volumes):
We bought a new Kenmore Elite dishwasher in Feb 2010. Features we wanted were: front controls, SS tub, and TurboZone wash. Got it at a fair price as the new models were just coming out.
After 9 months, dishwasher couldn't complete a full cycle. We researched the web and found out there was a high failure rate with the circuit/control board. Called repair on Nov 30th and told them unit needed a new board. Appointment set for Dec 3. Repairman came and agreed. Had to order the part as they do not stock item on truck. Part to be shipped to our house in a few days and appointment was set for Dec 10th for installation.
Got a call from Sears on Dec 8th to state that part will be backordered with a shipping date of Dec 19th. Delivery could take up to a week. We went to the store to see if we could speed up repair. With the holidays approaching, that was too long in our opinion to repair a Kenmore. We were referred to 'Sears Solutions'. Since the 9 month old dishwasher couldn't be repaired in a reasonable time, we asked for our money back as we would go elsewhere. Sears refused. They did offer to exchange for a model of equal value (not equal features) as they do not carry our model any longer. We refused as the model they offered did not have the features we had with the original. We would have to pay the difference ($200) if we wanted a model with the feature we had currently. Also, had we accepted the lesser model, the warranty with that unit would end when the original one did. We refused and elected to wait for the repair.
On Dec 19th, we received a call and was informed that the part was again backordered until Jan 15th. At that point, we are very upset and were referred to a 'Blue Ribbon' case manager (CP). Since it would be 6 weeks for a repair of a Sears Kenmore (they don't stock parts for their own line?) we again asked for our money back or a model with similar features. Again, we were offered a cheaper model. We asked to speak to CP's supervisor but was told by CP that he was the final arbitrator of our case. At that point we ended the discussion as we were getting nowhere.
On Jan 3rd we received a letter from Sears Blue Ribbon that they have been trying to contact us. We called Sears and was told by a different representative that CP placed in the case notes that he tried on 3 separate dates to call us. We checked our phone records (ours keeps a list of in- and outbound calls, including calls attempted when the line is busy). There were no record of any calls attempted by Sears. We told the representative that unless CP had anything new to offer, we were not interested in speaking with him.
CP left a message on our voice mail on Monday, Jan 10th stating that he was informed that we wanted the replacement dishwasher. We called back to inform him that was not the case and to question him about his 'calls'. We got his voice mail that stated he would return the call by the end of the next day's business. We did speak to a different representative and found out the part is again backordered...now to Feb 15th. Needless to say, we did not receive a return call by the end of Tuesday. By this time we started placing our story on the MySears Community webpages. No one could help us since a case number had already been assigned with a Blue Ribbon representative
On Wednesday, I left another message with CP requesting that he call my cell. He finally did call on Thursday but to my home instead of my cell. My guess is that he would rather leave another message than to speak to us directly. My wife answered the call and asked him about the phone calls that he reported making in his notes. His answer was that he must have 'mis-dialed'. Three times on three separate days? I don't think so. Again his only offer was an exchange for a lesser model. He did manage to say that any letters on the matter written to the president of Sears would end up on his desk. Talk about accountability.
So after 6 weeks we still do not have a functioning dishwasher and will not for at least another 4 weeks (at best). There's no guarantee that the part will arrive by then either. We had had the delivery date for the part canceled 3 times and am on the 4th. Sears apparently cannot stock replacement part for their own Kenmore Elite line. They can't repair their own line in a reasonable amount of time and they refuse to refund our
money so we can go elsewhere. Their only offer is a 'take it or leave it'..accept their offer of a cheaper model or wait endlessly. If I wanted fewer features, I would have purchased a cheaper model.
Needless to say, we will never step foot in another Sears store and have begun to seek a remedy through other avenues.