• Report: #607288

Complaint Review: Sharp Electronics

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  • Submitted: Tue, May 25, 2010
  • Updated: Sat, January 07, 2012

  • Reported By: Al — Morehead City, North Carolina USA
Sharp Electronics
Internet United States of America

Sharp Electronics Their warranties on their small lcd TVs is a total scam Internet

*Author of original report: In response

*UPDATE Employee: Problem is NOT with Sharp

*Author of original report: Re-read what I already wrote

*Consumer Comment: In reply to your last posting..

*Consumer Comment: It should be covered under manufacturer warranty then..

*Author of original report: Further in response to comment

*Author of original report: Response to Consumer Comment

*Consumer Comment: Can you be sure no one else dropped it?...

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After purchasing a couple of thousand dollars worth of TVs, including a great 42 Sony LCD HDTV, some computer equipment, and other items at the Best Buys store in Jacksonville NC, I made the mistake of buying a small (15) Sharp LCD TV for use up on a high shelf in my kitchen. The set received very little use during the 7 months that Ive had it and was never handled at all, as the set was controlled exclusively through my DISH HD DVR remote control. Then one day when I turned it on it was simply dead. It would not power up at all.  


About a week later, when I found the time to make the 45 minute trip to the Best Buys store where I bought it, I tried to turn it on again, and this time, it did come on, but all I got was a series of thin multi-colored vertical lines down the center of the screen, with another irregular shaped pattern of smaller lines at the bottom of the screen.


When I took it in to the customer service desk at Best Buys, I was told that I had to pay them $24.95, which I did for them to send it to Sharp for repair.


About 2 weeks later they called me & told me that the problem with the TV was a result of mistreatment or damage of some kind, and was not covered by the warranty. Needless to say, the TV was not damaged, dropped, struck, or even moved, from the day it was first turned on till the day it failed to work 7 months later.


When I picked the TV up at the store, I was told that I could take the matter up directly with Sharp if I wanted to. I thought I already had. It was then that I found out that I had paid Best Buys, not to ship the set to Sharp, but rather to their own Geek Squad which I suspect is probably located in a room, right behind the customer service counter in the store.


I also found out the truth about Sharps warranty. When I purchased the set, during the inevitable pitch from the salesperson to get me to buy an extended warranty, I asked my salesman if the set had the same basic manufacturers warranty as Sonys (one year parts & labor). He told me it did. When I read the fine print on the warranty however, I found out that the one year parts and labor warranty was only for Canadian buyers. In the USA, the warranty is one year for parts, but only 90 days for labor 


This of course creates an opportunity for both the manufacturer and the store to turn warranty work into a separate profit center. They can easily afford to give you a 50 cent part for free and then charge you $50 to $100 for labor to put it in, and of course the consumer has no way of knowing if it took their technician any more than a few minutes to make the repair.


When I got the TV home I called Sharp. After waiting on hold for an interminable amount of time, I was told that I could send the TV in to Sharps repair department, but that it would cost me anywhere from $50 to $90 for them to diagnose the problem, and of course that fee did not include shipping costs, or the cost of the repair at all.


I told the representative that the set had not suffered any damage at all, but my comments fell on deaf ears. Either I would have to acquiesce to throwing more good money after bad, or I could just throw the TV in the trash.


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 05/25/2010 10:39 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/r/Sharp-Electronics/internet/Sharp-Electronics-Their-warranties-on-their-small-lcd-TVs-is-a-total-scam-Internet-607288. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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#1 Author of original report

In response

AUTHOR: Al - (USA)

Your assumptions not withstanding, the facts about the warranty are exactly as I related them to be.

I live alone. Nobody touched the TV after it was first placed on the shelf where it was used. Something simply went wrong inside the set. 

My comments about Best Buy are also true. They lied to me when they told me they were sending it to Sharp. And while I don't think the salesman did so intentionally, they lied to me about the warranty on the set when I bought it.

I could contrast this experience with a problem I had with A larger SONY TV many years ago. I took it into a Sony service center just before the 1 year warranty expired. They fixed it, no questions asked. THAT's the way a warranty is supposed to work. 

The small print in the warranty on the small Sharp set says all that needs to be said.
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#2 UPDATE Employee

Problem is NOT with Sharp

AUTHOR: Lycian W - (United States of America)

I realize I have come to this a bit on the late side, but my awareness of this site was only just started today due to an issue with another company.  Despite your request to the last poster however, I would like to make the below statements.  Allow me to start out by saying I'm making an assumption that the unit was purchased sometime in 2007 or 2008, as I'm fairly certain that the 15" tvs were no longer manufactured after that point (definitely not after start of 2009).

Starting with your first post and working my way down, The lack of power suddenly to your unit suggested a possibility of the power supply being at fault.  Granted, when you mentioned the multicolored lines when you had it taken to Best Buy to have them look at the unit, I knew at that point it was potentially the equivalent of the graphics card for the tv, or worst case scenario the lcd panel (which still is always 80-90% of the value of the television).

Now, on to the next segment, your statement of "I also found out the truth about Sharps warranty. When I purchased the set, during the inevitable pitch from the salesperson to get me to buy an extended warranty... When I read the fine print on the warranty however, I found out that the one year parts and labor warranty was only for Canadian buyers. In the USA, the warranty is one year for parts, but only 90 days for labor"

This is erroneous to all of my experience working with sharp (approximately 1 1/2 years).  Item one, no matter the warantee period purchased through Sharp, parts, labor, even shipping for this direct repair only item, would be covered if there's manufacturer defects in the unit, and the only things I've experienced that are not corrected is direct physical damage.

Now, before you grow angry at what I mentioned just then, please understand that I am quite aware that to your knowledge it has not seen any abuse, mistreatment or the like. I'm not making any accusation that you did anything to the television, only what my experience has shown.  More likely than not, it could have been something in shipping or handling of the unit.  I've seen more than my fair share of forklift failures as I call them, but that's neither here nor there.

The second item to correct, is that the greatest irony is that, being a Canadian procedure trained rep, we don't offer extended warantees to Canadians anyway, though I've never had an explination why.  The fact that your statement of showing only 90 days of labor coverage is NOT something sharp does.  Granted, your assumption that the parts would be covered only costing about 50 cents is a bit exaggerated.  While i've never worked directly with the servicers or have direct access to parts costs, usually a part costs at least 25-50 dollars, depending, and in cases of larger tvs, does not count the near 500 dollars that is paid to have the servicer perform with prompt service and so on for house calls.

In this case, the next thing you stated about needing to ship the television sounds accurate, as for whatever reason that had not been explained to me, almost all of the tvs 23" or smaller, as well as combo units are only repairable at the factory.  Now, I find that to be rather unsensible, but if your unit were covered under warantee, there would have been shipping labels sent, there would have been packaging sent, and pretty much everything covered as long as there's a defect in the unit (again, short of damage)

The only response initially to the consumer who responded in post 1 that needs to be added to the above, is that I've had too many personal stories of damage directly to a unit while the parent or another figure was away and once the tv gave a pattern indicating (95% of the time anyway) that the tv knew the panel was broken, they nodded (heard it over the phone) and said they had their suspicions.  Again, not saying that this happened, especially if you live alone, since you haven't said anything of that nature I will assume you are alone, no pets, and no accidental run-ins with vaccuum handles (Yes, I've had that one.)

I have no idea where you had retreived that listing of warantee coverage, but as stated before, no matter the country of the North American continent, minimum of one year parts and labor, and in us, shipping to facility.  Granted, if the best buy techs have said that it was damaged, while they aren't a SASS (Sharp something service center, no idea why they used that initial...)

The Consumer's posting of "Best Buy has nothing to lose in this case, since you paid shipping anyhow. They sent it out to their repair center, which is authorized to diagnose and service Sharp LCD TV's." seems relatively accurate, with one probable exception, one of "their" centers.  Not necessarily a Sharp certified center.  Granted if you were in their warantee period (bearing in mind you bought a tv that was last made in 2009 at latest, you didn't have a warnatee through Sharp unless receipt proved otherwise)

Simply put, you still have the option or opportunity to call directly even despite it being about 10 more months later.  I couldn't guarantee the likelihood of coverage if they do have a way of detecting physical damage to the unit, but if there's an issue in the unit, lets put it this way; I've seen tvs despite the age or who covers the warantee period get taken care of ultimately because the customer felt THAT upset over it.  Its a bit of work and stress all around (on your part as well as ours, because lets face it, wen you get angry and vent it out, even a friend will feel the tension), but it has happened.  It may take having mentioned that you posted a report here, in which case my position may be in jeapordy saying that (as there's always policies about reporting procedural stuff that is only to be give under some circumstances), but hey, it gets you closer to what you're looking for anyway, and I'm reasonably sure the information will be accurate unless you provide a serial number/PoP that I assumed incorrectly.

If you've already thrown out the tv or something else like that, There probably won't be much able to be done regardless and i'm sorry to have wasted your time reading it and mine for typing it and thinking it through off duty, but if there's the off chance of it helping, that's why I work where I do.
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#3 Author of original report

Re-read what I already wrote

AUTHOR: Al - (USA)

You just wrote:



"The TV has a one year warranty at least that covers labor."



Which shows that your reading comprehension skills are severely challenged. My complaint clearly, is that the labor is NOT covered by the guarantee after 90 days.


I didn't make my report so that I could get into a debate with someone who is not involved with either Best Buys or SHARP USA. I have no idea why you're wasting my time with your inane & repetitive comments, and would appreciate it if you would just butt out.


Please do not make any further comments on this report.
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#4 Consumer Comment

In reply to your last posting..

AUTHOR: Ronny g - (USA)

I know it sounds to you like I am defending BestBuy but I am simply telling you how they work. When they ship items to the service centers they are wrapped in thick layers of protective plastic in the back, which is removed before given back to the customer. They generally ship a bunch of items at once to the service centers and they are placed in cages.

If they didn't actually send it out, it would only be because it was physically apparent that abuse or accidental damage occurred. If not, the shipping charge was to ship it out.

as far as what you posted about geek squad...

"Geek Squad Agents and Installers are ready to take the hassle out of your technology woes. They have the know-how and skill to set up, install or repair your computer, network, home theater solution and car audio, video and navigation systems, no matter where you bought your gear."


"So much for them not doing repairs. I don't believe the set ever left the store."

You are reading too much into that statement. The only thing they can repair in store, is computers, and many times those have to be sent out as well if it is beyond their skill to repair the specific problem. What you quoted is simply to let people know they can bring items in to geek squad no matter where they bought the gear, but it does not say they repair or diagnose LCD TV's in the store.

The geek squad agents currently only are trained on PC's, and there are two types of Geek Squad installers, home theater, and mobile electronics (autotechs). They are able to repair INSTALLATION related issues, but they do not do any actual repairs to broken or defective electronics merchandise. "Geek Squad" is a branding so perhaps the service centers are considered Geek Squad as well, that I do not know, but at in in-store level, no agents can repair a TV, period.

If you do not believe me go take another 45 minute drive to the BestBuy and have a peek in the room behind customer service and you will not see anyone working on TV's, but a bunch of them wrapped in plastic getting shipped out or returned. The room where they take it does not have doors but just plastic strips hanging down..very easy to peek inside when an employee enters or leaves.

But my advice still stands, call corporate and deal with Sharp..you have a legitimate complaint if the TV truly shows no signs of abuse or accidental damage. Sometimes like with any large retail chain, they do not always handle all issues correctly at the store level and corporate has on occasion did the right thing in cases like this.





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#5 Consumer Comment

It should be covered under manufacturer warranty then..

AUTHOR: Ronny g - (USA)

Best Buy has nothing to lose in this case, since you paid shipping anyhow. They sent it out to their repair center, which is authorized to diagnose and service Sharp LCD TV's.

The service center determined it is not covered under warranty. or as you stated..."the problem with the TV was a result of mistreatment or damage of some kind"

Were they any more specific then "some kind" of damage? The TV has a one year warranty at least that covers labor..so only Sharp stands to lose anything. And you stand to lose if you can't defend the damage they claim has occurred. I can understand you lodging a report here if the TV truly did not see any misuse or accidental damage.

I would contact BestBuy corporate headquarters as I am sure that Sharp does not want to be on BestBuys bad side..and as well, try to be more aggressive with Sharps customer service. That is about all I can suggest.

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#6 Author of original report

Further in response to comment

AUTHOR: Al - (USA)

You're right...

I should have read the fine print, but I got lazy, and I paid for it. After the fact however, I checked out the industry standard, & here's what I found: 

  • Sony: 1 year parts & labor
  • Samsung: 1 year parts & labor
  • Toshiba: 1 year parts & labor
  • Mitsubishi: 1 year parts & labor
  • Panasonic: 1 year parts & labor
  • Akai: 1 year parts & labor
  • Pioneer: 1 year parts & labor
  • Planar: 1 year parts & labor
  • Phillips: 1 year parts & labor
  • Sharp: 1 year parts & labor IN CANADA ONLY
  • Sharp: 1 year parts & only 90 days labor in USA

  • I believe that the salesman probably wasn't lying intentionally when he said they all had the basic 1 year P&L warranty. Like me, he assumed Sharp was the same. But now I have to ask the question, why?

    Why should the warranty that I get in the U.S. be different than the warranty they offer in Canada? It's the same product isn't it?

    To elaborate further, I'm sure nobody else touched the set because I live alone. No kids, & even my cat can't get up on that shelf. And if he had knocked it off the shelf, I would have found it where it fell.

    Also, I didn't say they'd charge me $100 for a 50 cent part. I said the idea of free parts without free labor, could lead to them charging someone $100 for the labor to install a 50 cent part. After all, how is the consumer supposed to know what's involved in installing the part?

    Your conclusion seems a bit odd. The retailer makes a profit from the sale, in part, so he can give the buyer product support of some kind. If I have a problem like this with any item I buy from Sears, or Lowes or Home Depot, I take it back to the store, and the store deals with the manufacturer. 

    In this case, I got screwed twice. The folks at the store told me I was paying them to ship the set to Sharp specifically. Then, when they gave it back to me, they told me I could send it to Sharp on my own if I wanted to... When I got the set back, it wasn't in a box of any kind, it was exactly as I gave it to them, even to the cord being wrapped around the base in the same way. Best Buys now has their "Geek Squad" On the website they say: 

    "Geek Squad Agents and Installers are ready to take the hassle out of your technology woes. They have the know-how and skill to set up, install or repair your computer, network, home theater solution and car audio, video and navigation systems, no matter where you bought your gear."

    So much for them not doing repairs. I don't believe the set ever left the store.

    You say you worked for Best Buys before. The way you're defending them makes it sound like you work for them now.
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    #7 Author of original report

    Response to Consumer Comment

    AUTHOR: Al - (USA)

    In response to your question:


    Yes, I'm sure nobody else dropped it, because I placed it on a high shelf in my kitchen after I bought it. It worked perfectly up to the point where it died. It was never moved from day one. The only physical contact I had with it was to wipe off the dust on the screen with a cloth a few times.
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    #8 Consumer Comment

    Can you be sure no one else dropped it?...

    AUTHOR: Ronny g - (USA)

    A few things I should clarify since I worked for BestBuy before.

    Bestbuy does not repair or diagnose TVs in some little room behind customer service. The only thing in those rooms are where they put stuff that is getting sent out, or returned..and the Agents may do some computer work there. No one in the store is qualified, or authorized to service or diagnose televisions. Those are sent to an AUTHORIZED service center where they determine cause of failure, and fix it if they can.

    Now when you say you found out the "truth" about Sharps warranty...why didn't you find this out when you purchased the TV..did someone steal the warranty card? Granted what the employee told you could be wrong..but most manufacturers warranty is one year parts and labor so perhaps the employee made a blunder..but regardless the employee did not buy the TV so you always need to check the manufacturers warranty yourself. If you don't like the warranty, return it for full refund or store credit within 30 days.

    The "inevitable pitch" to buy the "extended warranty" is for the customers good as well. To note..BestBuy does not actually sell extended warranties, they sell "service plans" which run concurrent with the manufacturers warranty, but generally cover more, and for a few years longer, but those plans have nothing to do with the manufacturer. The plans break down on an LCD TV to around 5 cents a day, but that does no good anyhow if the damage is not covered.

    I don't think they charge 100 dollars for a 50 cent part. I am sure there is a mark up but if the screen is damaged on your LCD TV..it is going to cost a lot more then 50 cents, that is probably the most expensive part of the TV.
    Nobody wants to call you a liar...but unless you were with that TV alone 24 hours a day..how do you know someone else did not drop or damage it when you were not around and then kept quiet? I did that when I was a child if I broke something to avoid repercussions..try to cover it up..but I always got caught somehow and experienced the tough love.

    I will say after reading this report, that I am a little disappointed in Sharp. They should not charge you to diagnose anything. They should have you ship the TV to them, tell you if it is covered under warranty or not, and give you an estimate for repair, or fix it under warranty if they can not verify abuse or accidental damage and ship it back.
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