I purchased a 50' Hitachi LCD 720P HDTV on 11-22-05 from the ABC store in Waterford, Michigan which cost $2,300.00 plus tax and extended warranty. In addition to the TV, I purchased another $6,000 worth of household appliances and electronics and purchased their 5 year extended "Warranty Plus" on everything at that time.
The TV began having intermittant problems of powering off & on in January 2008. ABC Warranty Co. called Universal TV Repair Co. service (248-682-2255) in Waterford to pick it up, which they did on 2-11-08. They replaced the Light Engine and returned the TV to me on 2-13-08 as "repaired".
After plugging the TV in and turning it on, it powered off again and this time would not power back on. I called Universal TV and they picked up the TV for the 2nd time on 2-14-08. On 2-22-08, Universal TV replaced both the Ballast and Lamp. When neither fixed the problem, they emailed Hitachi for advice.
According to Universal TV, they weren't able to connect with Hitachi for advice until 3-7-08, at which time Hitachi suggested that the Light Engine replaced on 2-12-08 may have been defective and ordered a 2nd Light Engine. At this time, Universal TV's repair bill totaled $1,445.54 with ABC Warranty Co.!
By 3-17-08, 5 weeks from the TV's initial service pickup, I had run out of patience. Universal TV was saying that they still hadn't received the 2nd Light Engine from Hitachi. In the meantime, they had swapped some parts with another 50' LCD 720P HDTV in the shop & my TV began working! When they switched those parts back to their original TV's, mine still continued to work. Universal said they didn't know what to make of it, but felt a connection "must have been jarred back into place or something". Huh?!?
After 2 weeks of my phone calls to Universal TV, during which time they insisted they ran my TV without incident, my TV was finally delivered back to me on 3-31-08, after 7 weeks of service. Much to my surprise, after the TV was plugged in and ran for 10 minutes, it again powered off then on then off then on then finally off for good. I couldn't believe it! They said they ran it for 2 weeks straight without incident! So, back on the phone to Universal TV I went, where an irate owner (Keith) admonished me for insinuating they did a poor job repairing my TV. Sorry, but it was picked up & delivered twice and remained broken.....what am I supposed to think?!
Finally, I figured I needed to get ABC Warranty Company involved since it was they who were paying for this poor service. Big mistake!! They obviously employ the rudest customer service agents on the planet!! When I asked for details on the warranty, they refused. I wanted to know what the policy was for time-out-of-service and I wanted to know "how much was too much" when it came to dollars spent on a TV such as mine, and what their policy was for replacement on units deemed "unfixable".
Again, they refused to answer. I placed more than a half dozen calls to different Customer Service Agents and one so-called supervisor called Eve, all of whome refused to give me details about the warranty I purchased, saying "it is up to ABC Warranty's discression to decide how long to work on a unit and how much to spend".
On 4-4-08, I received a call from "Pat" at ABC Warranty Co. who barked that they will not replace my TV because Keith at Universal TV says he's not willing to declare the TV "unfixable" and now wants to pick up the TV a 3rd time and replace the Digital Module and possibly, if that dosen't work, resolder all of the connections and get the 2nd Light Engine changed out to a 3rd one.
In other words (in my opinion) he basically wants to keep this cash-cow in his shop for as long as he can milk ABC Warranty for repair costs. And ABC Warranty Co. is refusing to replace the TV (likely) because they've dumped so much money into it already that they're not willing to walk away from it and pay out for a new unit. Pat firmly told me that they have the right to work on the TV "indefinately" and to invest "as much money as they choose" into it. When I asked for a copy of a warranty contract listing terms, again she refused.
So, I have a $2,300. TV that dosen't work sitting in my living room. When I asked them to send it to another repair shop, they refused saying they have too much money invested in Universal TV on theis unit (I wonder....does ABC perhaps have a financial interest in Universal TV or visa versa?). They're saying either I agree to have ABC enter a 3rd repair order & allow Universal TV to pick up my TV again (to be held indefinately until Universal either fixes it or admits defeat) or they will assume I am refusing service and thus voiding my warranty.
2 months....I want to sue......I want to picket....I want to scream.
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