My $200 Washer

About a week ago, I posted this Instastory on my new $200 Samsung washer and I promised I would blog about it. Right after that I got De Quervain's tendinosis (Tendonitis in my thumb) and I couldn’t type. That’s another story for another time.

So here’s how I paid $200 for a brand new washer, I’m going try to keep it as short as possible because this post would be entirely too long.  Some of my readers that know me personally know that I bought my house about four years ago..to my new readers WELCOME and I bought my house four years ago which is where this story kind of starts. Before actually moving in my house, I purchased a brand new Samsung Washer and Dryer from Best Buy/Pacific Sales and because I am a responsible and paranoid consumer I also purchased the five year warranty.

Fast forward to May 2016 and my washer would start to get horribly off balance during the spin cycle. We would stop it, rebalance the clothes, and start it back.  Not to mention that the Aqua Jet function would shoot water all over my wash room floor. Finally, I had enough and called to file a warranty claim. I told them exactly what was happening, spin cycle is messing up and Aqua Jet is making the washer leak. The warranty company (Warrantech) sends a repairman from Big Kountry Appliances. This repair guy says that it’s the motherboard (computer part) orders several parts and does something to my washer. It works fine for about two or three weeks and stops. Long story short, I had to call Warrantech about three times and by the third call in July (It’s been about two months and my washer wasn’t working correctly), I wanted a replacement. Around this time I had also decided that senior management at Best Buy needed to know how a loyal customer was being treated (Not my first time e-mailing senior management or the CEO of a company, I’ve done it with Sprint and FedEx). Now you must be thinking that by the third phone call, I had literally cussed someone out. My immediate family know that I can cuss like a sailor, but I did not.  I remained calm just in case someone wanted to review the phone calls. After all, I didn’t want to seem like a crazy lady. I was going to kill these people with kindness (you know the whole catch more flies with honey thing). After, calling on both July 11th  and July 12th , I started to work on my e-mail immediately and I sent it to Shari Ballard, Senior Executive Vice President and President, U.S. Retail, and Trish Walker, President, Services at Best Buy on July 13th.  

Good Afternoon,

I am writing to express both my frustration and concern with the warranty process. On December 29, 2009, I purchased a Samsung washer, dryer, and refrigerator from the Pacific Sales store located inside Best Buy in Humble, TX the service was great and like a responsible consumer I purchased the five year warranty plan. For years, I have raved about the level of customer service that I received during the sale, referred a few people, and also purchased a Bosch dishwasher and LG gas range. Needless to say, I’ve had no major issues or major complaints. Well this all came to a screeching halt when I started having issues with my washing machine. The following bullet points will include an outline of my frustrations:
May 17, 2016: Called warranty department (Warrantech) regarding the washer not spinning correctly as well as leaking when using the Aquajet function. Big Kountry Appliance Repair (Big Kountry) was contracted to do the job. The repairman came for about 5 minutes and told my husband that the computer/electronic board was malfunctioning and needed to be replaced. Parts were ordered and the washer was “repaired”.
June 1, 2016: You would find my surprise when I used the washer and the Aquaject function and water was all over my wash room. Another call was made to to Warrantech in which Big Kountry was sent back out again and the issue was again “fixed.”
June 9, 2016: Well we are still having issues. This time the washer would fill with water, but drain right back out again leaving me with wet dirty clothes. Once again another call was made to Warrantech and I was told that Big Kountry had lost their contract with Warrantech and A&E Factory Services would be sent out. Did I mention at this point I am still having an issue with the Spin portion of the wash cycle? The A&E Factory Services repairman told my husband that the Big Kountry repairman did not properly place the hose back into the wall which caused the washer to automatically drain. Also, the spinning problem was due to the fact that the washer tub had a suspension issue. Parts were ordered and the issue was once again “resolved”.
July 11, 2016: Washer remained on spin cycle with 1 minute remaining from 8:30 pm Sunday, July 10, 2016 to 8:00 am Monday, July 11, 2016. The cycle only ended when I paused and unpaused the washer. Also, the washer is filling with water (not draining this time), but not actually washing my clothes, leaving me with dirty wet clothes. In order to drain the water, I have to cut the washer off, place it on Spin (which makes the water drain). Once again, I called Warrantech. By now you would understand that I would be quite frustrated as my washer has not worked properly for almost two months (I mean wouldn’t you be upset as well?). I spoke with Jaylyn and explained to him that at this point I would like a replacement. The repairman has already been out on three separate occasions and I’m still having issues. Jaylyn told me that I purchased a Repair Plan and not a Replacement Plan (I’ve never heard of a Replacement Plan) and that Warrantech would continue to repair the machine until there was a limit reached and then possibly get a replacement. Jaylyn also told me that Big Kountry would be sent back out. I explained that I did not want Big Kountry to come back out as I feel like the first repairman actually made the machine worse. I also explained that I was told that Big Kountry had lost their contract with Warrantech. Jaylyn told me that Big Kountry was contractually obligated to fix the issue and that he was sending my case to another department and I should expect a call.
July 12, 2016: Well, no phone call. Therefore I called Warrantech back and spoke with Pamela. Pamela really didn’t read the notes so I had to explain the issue all over again. She also told me that I should expect a phone call in three to five business days as they (Warrantech) was looking into a second opinion and next course of action. Instantly, I wanted to speak with a supervisor, but apparently none were available and I should wait one business day for a phone call from the supervisor. So in addition to my washer not working (I can’t use it at all right now) since May, I have to wait one business day to talk to a supervisor and then another three to five business days for a second opinion to come through.
So at this point I’m sure you can understand my frustrations with Warrantech and Pacific Sales/Best Buy (after all Warrantech and their processes are a direct reflection on your company). I did a little digging to see if I was the only one having these issues and I am not. I’ve included screenshots below.

I would hope that Pacific Sales/Best Buy would like to do right by it’s customers. After all word of mouth is the best form of advertisement. I would also like to think that one of Pacific Sales/Best Buy’s primary values is to create a great buying and warranty experience for the consumer. However, I can’t say that this has been a great process for me nor can any of the consumers that complained above.

Sincerely,
Crystal Terry
Loyal Pacific Sales/Best Buy Customer

The very next day, I had another issue with Warrantech and was preparing another e-mail ; this time to the CEO of Best Buy. Well before I could do that, I got a call from someone at Best Buy’s corporate office, Derek, and told him about my frustrations and he told me that the replacement process would be initiated and promised me $100 check as I told him that I would need to go to the Laundromat. Now as you can see above, my original washer and dryer are both gray and I had a strange feeling that Warrantech was going to offer me a white washer and I was not having any parts of that. So I patiently waited for Warrentech’s offer and just like I thought, they offered me a white washer or $569. Umm no ma’am, I paid $699 for my washer and I wanted my full $699 back or a gray washer. So I sent Derek another e-mail stating my issue, especially since I felt like the Big Kountry repairman started the downward spiral by replacing the motherboard.

Good Afternoon Derek,
Unfortunately, I am very dissatisfied with the offer below. The washer they are offering is white, of course as I stated, I do not want a white washer as my dryer is gray; especially when I paid extra for that color. Also, I was not given the option to purchase a warranty for the replacement. Due to the fact that I have been dealing with this issue for almost two months and the repairman from Big Kountry Appliances did not fix the original issue, but only made it worse, I fee as though I should be offered a full refund of $699. At this point I am very disappointed with the level of service I’ve received. Please look into the matter. I would be more than willing to accept a store credit in the amount of $699 so that I can purchase another machine and warranty from Best Buy, but I just cannot accept the offer below.

As I said before, I ‘ve purchased several appliances from Best Buy based upon the fact that the customer service has always been excellent, but at the moment I cannot promise that I would continue to purchase appliances from Best Buy if the warranty process is this much of a hassle.

Going forward, I no longer want to deal with anyone at the warranty company. I would prefer to speak with you only.

Thank You,
Crystal

I was told that if I accepted the offer from Warrantech, Best Buy would send me another check for $130 to make up the difference. So at this point I have $799.99 coming in the mail. Now I’m not sure if this is a coincidence or not, but about a year ago I saw a washer sitting in the front of Lowe’s and I instantly told my husband, that I saw this new washer that I really wanted. I raved about all of the settings, how it had the soaking basin, and how big it was on the inside, but I didn’t need a washer, because the one I had was only three years old and working like a charm.

 

Well wouldn’t you know it, Lowe’s was having an appliance sale and that exact same washer was, you guessed it $799. It’s regular $1,199 and the sale was going to end the very next day. I got off work, picked up my husband and we ran to Lowe’s!!! So with the $799 I had coming from Best Buy, that covered the full price of the washer and all I had to pay for was the 5 year warranty, new hoses, and taxes which came out to about $215!!!  Bam!! This just goes to show that sometimes being patient really pays off. Now let’s just hope I won’t have to repeat this cycle again in 2020.

I’ll try to post a review of the new washer sometime this week!!