LADSON, SOUTH CAROLINA -- This is a copy of the letter I am sending to W. Bruce Johnson, CEO of Sears:
I am writing to you in the hopes that you will rectify an ongoing problem I have with your company. I have been a loyal Sears customer for many years, but I am so disappointed in the way my situation has been handled that I have serious reservations about any future purchases.
I purchased a 37" Sylvania TV/DVD combo, model number LD370ss8 on 1/10/08. At that time I also purchased your 3 year Master Protection Agreement. The total cost for these 2 items was $1300.73. In February of this year the DVD player component ceased to function. When you attempted to play a DVD, the unit would make a loud cracking noise and the whole thing would shut off. At this time, I am still attempting to get my unit fixed.
These are the steps I have taken, and the results so far: (1) Last of February, 1st call to Sears, scheduled repair for 3/12/09 which was first available date; (2) Repairman ** makes service call on 3/12/09, diagnoses problem to be defective DVD player, tells me he must order part and reschedule service call to install part. Part will be shipped to me via UPS. Cost under protection agreement on service receipt listed as $192.00 for labor, $ 217.31 for parts. Service call rescheduled for 3/26/09, first available date.
(3) I cannot be here for 3/26/09 repair, so I call service department to reschedule appointment, appointment rescheduled for 3/31/09 between 8am-5pm; (4) On 3/31/09 I wait all day for repairman, at 3:30pm my husband receives call at work that repairman is overbooked and cannot make this day's appointment. Call is rescheduled for the following Thursday 04/09/09, first available date. Repairman ** tells my husband that we will be his first appointment on 04-09-09 due to the inconvenience of having waited in vain for him on 3/31/09.
(5) On 04/09/09 I wait for repairman to arrive. At 11:00am, I call Sears repair line to inquire about service call, since we were told we would be first on his schedule and were expecting him around 8:00am. I am told that we are scheduled for an 8:00am-5:00pm appointment, and they have no idea what time he will get to me. I call the repairman's cell phone number that he gave me on his prior visit, and he rearranged his schedule to get to me as soon as possible. He tells me that he had requested me to be his first visit of the day, but was ignored. He reaches my house at approximately 1:00pm.
After replacing the DVD player with the new one, the unit still does not work. He decides that the replacement unit is also defective, and in addition, now thinks that there is a power source problem, so he also orders a replacement for the power supply. Cost under protection agreement on service receipt listed as $192.00 labor and $ 499.79 for parts. Repairman ** now tells me that he placed a rush on the parts order and reschedules the appointment for 04/16/09. He tells me that when the parts arrive I can call him and he will work me into his schedule sooner than 04/16/09.
(6) On 04/15/09 I call Sears Repair because the rush ordered parts have not arrived yet. They check with UPS and discover that the delivery is not scheduled until 04/17/09, so the service call has to once again be rescheduled. I request an early morning appointment so I will not have to once again waste all day waiting for a repairman. I am told that the only appointments are 8:00am-5:00pm, but that they will put on the paperwork that I request a morning call. The earliest available appointment is 04/21/09.
(7) On 04/17/09 the parts arrive, the box flaps are half open and the 2 boxes containing parts are very smashed. When I call Sears I am told that we'll just have to see if they work when the repairman arrives; (8) On 04/20/09 I receive a computerized confirmation call for my 04/21/09 service between 1:00pm-5:00pm. This after I specifically requested a morning appointment.
(9) At 11:00am today, 04/21/09, the repairman called my husband at work to let him know that we were his first afternoon call and that he would be here at 1:00pm. At 2:00pm, when he still has not arrived, I call Sears Repair and speak with **. After explaining my frustration with this process and trying to find out when the repairman is coming, ** apologized for the poor service I have received, offers to forward the matter to his supervisor and request a call back for me. He also tells me during this call that if the matter is not resolved during this repair call, under my Master Protection Agreement, I am entitled to receive a replacement TV/DVD combo.
(10) At 3:00pm today, 04/21/09, having still not received my service call, or the promised call back from ** supervisor, I go online and find the phone number for your National Customer Relations department. I call this number, 1-800-659-7077, and speak with **. ** also apologizes for the poor service, looks on his schedule and tells me the repairman has entered his approximate time of arrival as 3:20pm. After I explain my frustrations to him, he looks at the records and also states that if the service is no completed today, we will be eligible for a replacement TV/DVD combo.
(11) At 3:30pm the repairman, **, calls to tell me that he will be at my house within 30-45 minutes. He arrives at 4:15pm. After replacing both parts on the machine, neither works. He now also thinks that there are other problems with the set, including the ribbon connections. I inform him that 2 customer service representatives told me that if the set could not be fixed today, we would qualify for a replacement, and he calls into that department.
They tell him that they will call me to handle the issue in a few minutes, he gives me a receipt showing that the problem still is not fixed, with a list of all the parts he now thinks would need to be ordered in order to fix the set. He does not order them because I have been told that we would receive a replacement TV/DVD if he couldn't fix it today. He leaves. The receipt he gives me lists the cost of today's labor as $192.00, needed parts cost as $591.54.
(12) About 15 minutes after the repairman leaves, ** calls from One Source (?) and tells me that we do not qualify for a replacement, we'll have to schedule yet another repair call. I explain to her that I was told by not one, but two different reps that we qualified for a replacement TV/DVD if the problem could not be fixed today, and that the repairman didn't ever bother to order more parts for this reason. She became very rude, told he that she could find no record of my speaking to ANYONE, and we weren't getting a new TV.
At this point, I asked to speak to her supervisor. She refused, stating that a supervisor would tell me the exact same thing. I told her that I didn't care, I wanted to speak to a supervisor anyway, that I wasn't going to argue with her. She finally put me on hold to see if she could find a supervisor.
After being on hold 10 minutes with no further communication, I dialed the number to the National Customer Relations center on my other phone. I tried to reach **, the man I spoke with earlier, but could not reach him. The gentleman I spoke with transferred me to another department which he thought could be more help, One Source. This time I reached someone named **, who, after looking up my records informed me that I was absolutely correct, I did qualify for a replacement TV/DVD combo.
After speaking with her for several minutes, ** finally came back on my other line to inform me that she had located a supervisor. At that time ** came on the line, and I asked ** to hold while I spoke with **. I told ** that I had another person from her department on my other line, and that she had affirmed what I had been telling everyone, that I was eligible for a replacement set. ** proceeds to tell me that ** is mistaken, and that I do not qualify.
At this point I put ** on hold, go back to **, explain to her what is being said, and then she says that she guesses she was wrong, and I'd do better to deal with **. So I go back to ** and explain the whole situation to her. ** tells me that the repairman hasn't been specific enough about the problems in his notes, they have to determine that it is more cost effective to replace the set than to repair it, etc. etc.
I gave Tricia a list of the costs so far according to the receipts I've been given, and the projected costs of the parts the repairman estimates that he would need for another repair call. Total projected parts and labor come to $1344.64, to fix a TV/DVD combo that cost $1300.73 including the price of the 3 year service agreement and tax.
Now I ask you, does this seem cost effective to you? This doesn't even include time I have spent waiting for the repairman, and rescheduling service calls, and speaking with representatives on the phone, all to no avail. I tried to explain this to **, but I was wasting my effort. Her only suggestion was a reschedule of the service call for tomorrow. Once again, she could not guarantee me a time only that it would be between 1:00pm-5:00pm.
What exactly he is supposed to do at this service call is beyond me. He has ordered no parts to try again to repair this set, but for some reason I have to sit here and wait for him again tomorrow. I guarantee I can tell you what will happen at that time. At that time he will tell me that he has to order new parts, and we'll need to schedule another call.
Can you please explain to me how this makes sense? Are you so anxious to lose your customers that you're trying your best to drive them crazy? Is this how you would like to be treated? Your staff is inept, dishonest, and completely useless. I see now why Sears is a brand that will soon go the way of bankruptcy. Have you taken a look online lately to see what your customers are saying about your company? I suggest you take a look at the following websites:
There are many, many others as well. At these sites you will find page after page of disgruntled customers who have purchased defective items, especially appliances and electronics, and have received horrible service from your repair department. Maybe the best course of action for those of us who can't seem to get the service we paid extra to get is to file a class action lawsuit against your company. I would be willing to bet that it wouldn't take much effort to find people willing to do this, or law firms willing to help. Maybe you think that would be the best use of your profits, defending yours company in court or paying out a ridiculous settlement to the lawyers?
VIRGINIA BEACH, VIRGINIA -- In August of 2007 I purchased a 32" Samsung TV from Sears and took out their Master Protection Agreement. This is what they call it!!! A year and a half later while watching a movie the screen went black. After troubleshooting all my options, I called my cable repair and they were out the very next morning. They confirmed that the problem was the TV. I called for service and was told I could not have a service person until 11 days. IF I was purchasing a new TV I'll bet they would be out the next day and not in 11 days or they would lose the sale.
The service person said I could rent a TV and they would reimburse me. However, I would need to pick it up and install it myself. Please picture a 66-year-old woman strapping a 32-inch TV on her back and then crawling on the floor trying to install the TV!!!
When I asked to speak to a supervisor, none was available. And, one did not call me back. I was further told I should watch the TV's in other rooms of the house. Therefore, it was suggested that I spend the day in the bedroom. Can most of us who have to work to this??? When she offered a $10.00 coupon I declined. I will no longer EVER purchase anything in a Sears store.
I called back on Sunday, and guess what?? Supervisors do not work on Sundays. And, the service person was chuckling. I guess it is funny to anyone else until it happens to him. I had an even worst experience with Samsung and would NEVER purchase from them either. I am not happy about waiting, but my complaint is really about the extreme ill-trained and ill-mannered people that these businesses refer to as "customer support reps".
GLENDALE, CALIFORNIA -- I bought a Sears Master Protection Agreement for my TV which I had bought four years ago. I told the representative who I was speaking to that my TV had a problem and they told me that if I bought the Master Protection Agreement they would fix it for me. A technician came to my house two weeks later and informed me that the TV was not fixable and left.
I then called Sears and a customer service representative told me that since it was not fixable that they would replace it. I called the next day wanting to know when I was going to get my new TV and I was informed that they had cancelled my Master Protection Agreement without my consent because they were not allowed to sell it to me in the first place, because they aren't supposed to sell warranties on products that already have a problem. They could have called me the next day and let me know that my plan was being cancelled instead I had to find out for myself two weeks when the technician came.
I need my TV replaced as that is part of the protection agreement that I signed up for. If they weren't supposed to sell it to me than they should have let me know that in advance or at least the next day. After spending three days talking to incompetent employees and managers one of who is **, who either put me on hold or just hung up on me, I was told that there was nothing they could do about it.
What kind of service is Sears providing? If the employees aren't knowledgeable about what they are offering then they shouldn't provide it. I have emailed my complaint to CNN and posted it many consumer websites to let others know that Sears is a very fraudulent and deceitful company and the only service they provide is lying to their customers. The bottom line is that I bought this plan so that they could fix my TV, their associate told me that if it's not fixable then Sears would replace it. I need my TV replaced as soon as possible.
I purchased a refrigerator from Sears 5 years ago - a french door bottom freezer, branded Kenmore Elite but made by Amana (according to a very seasoned Sears repair tech). Fortunately I purchased an MP agreement at the time. Honestly it was almost by accident: the fridge was a floor/display unit and the salesman basically threw it in. As it appeared I was getting it for free, I didn't argue. Thank goodness.
The fridge was not great & I had several repair visits but though aggravating all were free. Then, when the unit was about 4 1/2 years old, the compressor went out. It was replaced for free but the fridge was never the same. The interior water dispenser froze solid, and vegetables etc. froze in the produce bins. Nothing the repair techs did made any difference.
After the obligatory number of unsuccessful service visits I called and invoked the lemon clause. The reps I spoke to did due diligence and then approved a free replacement unit to the tune of $2250. Though I'd rather have had a trouble free fridge from day one I can honestly say that Sears has been true to their agreement. So, on balance I'm a satisfied customer!
LITTLETON, COLORADO -- I purchased the TV 11/07 for $1,400 and purchased the warranty for $299 covered for 3 years. I had the service technician come out about 10 months after the purchase for the once a year annual maintenance and thought it was a joke. Granted it was no cost to me, but I could have done a better job of cleaning the TV than he did.
About 3 months later I noticed a line going through the top portion of the screen. I had the protection so I figured I would milk the $299 for every dime. The tech came out, took 5 min looking at the TV, told me he could replace the back panel for $1,300, plus another $200 in labor. He told me since I only paid $1,300 for the TV, it was uneconomical to repair.
Long story but the result was a $1,300 credit to go buy a new TV at no charge to me. Another good thing is that the 3 yr warranty I purchased now transfers over to the new TV. ZI did not think it was worth it at first, but am sure glad I got the warranty.
RICHARDSON, TEXAS -- I purchased my 51-inch rear projection Hitachi at Sears about 3 years ago with a master protection agreement. In that time I have had a recurring problem of the screen going white, pink, green or black. The first call I made was about the problem was right after I received the TV. The lady on the phone told me it was a common problem with the cable provider and not the TV.
A year later I moved and had a different cable provider and different cable box. Of course the problem kept occurring. So I called Sears and the technician had no idea what the problem was. Needless to say the technicians have continued to come out and not figure out what the problem is. When I called to have my TV replaced I was told that the technician visits were considered adjustments, not repairs and my TV could not be replaced.
I spent an additional $200 for this master protection agreement only to have to take 6 days off of work and have no resolution to my problem, except a $50 gift card for my trouble around Super Bowl time. Seriously? I will never buy anything from Sears again. Their products are a joke.
DALLAS, TEXAS -- We bought a brand new a/c unit back in September of 2007. The total price of the unit was close to 5800.00 and the Sears representative ** convinced us to purchase the 5 year master protection plan so that we could have our annual preventative maintenance check for free as well as other extended warranties. We went ahead and purchased this plan for an additional 680.00.
Fast forward to end of July 2008 and everything is falling apart. It is amazing how disorganized the company is. We called to make the appt. for preventative maintenance and that in itself took over a week and a half. We made the appt. and the DAY OF that the technician was supposed to come out he calls (the window of time was 1-5 and he called at 5:10pm) and tells us he checked with the warranty dept. and we are not covered for preventative maintenance.
We then have to proceed over the next several weeks in making 10-12 phone calls to various departments until we finally get a copy of our contract mailed to us. It states plainly on the contract that we purchased the master protection plan and what the cost was.
I contacted the national consumer number that Sears provides and they in turn transfer me to the warranty department. The warranty department checks the system and tells me they can't even find a receipt for the purchase in connection with the account that was opened specifically for the purchase. In the end they ask if I can fax THEM a copy of the contract that THEY sent me. Are you kidding me?
So far this is where we are and to be honest I have little faith that this is going to resolve the issue. At this point we've been trying to get this appointment done for four weeks now and we have paid out of pocket for a service that so far they have refused to give us.
YARDLEY, PENNSYLVANIA -- SEARS - We purchased a treadmill 2 years back. We relied on SEARS service and purchased a Master Protection Plan to cover our expensive buy though I thought it's a waste of money. But it came to use when our treadmill got stuck at an inclined position and stopped working.
We called up Sears and fixed an appointment. It was scheduled on a Thursday. The time window was VERY SPECIFIC- 8AM-5PM. I have no idea why they can't give more specific window. I took off from work, stayed at home waiting for the SEARS technician. I received a call at 3pm. "Madam, Our technician called in sick. Can I reschedule it for tom?"
It was my husband's turn to stay back at home. The entire day nobody showed up. We called them at 5.00 and very casually the customer rep said "Oh sorry madam. Can we reschedule it for next Friday?" We were furious. But we thought it is our necessity and agreed.
The schedule was made for today. The technician called up at 9 am when I was in the shower. I called back immediately and they said we will inform the technician. I was happy that finally we are going to get it fixed. In the afternoon I called up just to confirm the appointment. The rep said "Oh sorry madam. The technician has left your area. Would you like to reschedule?" Is there a solution for this arrogant system. Does SEARS respect its customers and their time?