Circuit City ripoff: repair fraud while cleaning Richmond Virginia
Bought a JVC miniDV camcorder at Circuit City in 2002. Was talked into a 4-year extended warranty plan, paid $250 for the plan. Was told to bring the camcorder in for an essential annual cleaning covered by the plan.
Used the camcorder lightly, never any problems. In Feb 2004, decided to exercise the cleaning option: brought the camcorder into the local Circuit City (Racine, WI). Was told that the cleaning is done at the facility in Tennessee(?), with a one-week turnaround.
Two weeks later got an automated phone message that parts were ordered. Called the center and was told that the camcorder required a major repair, luckily, covered by the warranty.
A month after the drop-off, received the camcorder back with a long list of replaced items. Put a tape into it to view: the tape got chewed up and ripped apart. Put a brand new tape in it: got chewed up again. Called the center, got connected with the repair technician. He said the camcorder was eating tapes when he received it for cleaning that caused him to replace parts.
E-mailed Customer Service advising that the camcorder worked perfectly up to the moment I dropped it off for cleaning and asking to (1) look into a possible fraud situation at the repair facility, (2) replace the camcorder that THEY ruined with a new one, (3) reimburse me for the repair of my old chewed tape and replacement of the second (new) tape. Customer Service replied that they'd only replace the camcorder after the second failed repair attempt and asked to bring it back for service.
Dropped it off again. Sent repeated e-mails to Customer Service asking for reimbursement for ruined tapes. Got a call from Deanna F., Customer Support Coordinator, Contact ID # 443894633 who said the camcorder was broken, the tapes were cheap, and I should stop complaining. Finally, she agreed to send me a $10 certificate. I inquired about the $10 with her on 4/11/04 via e-mail - never got a reply or a certificate.
Received the camcorder after another month in repair with yet a longer list of replaced components. The components don't have the JVC marking as the original one did. In short tests, the camcorder appears to function Ok - so far...
MORAL: Circuit City doesn't care about their loyal customer base (I spent $$$K for electronics there over 5 years - I'll never set my foot there again); their Customer Support is unaccommodating and dishonest; their repair people break perfectly working items to emulate workload; their repair quality control nonexistent. Sounds like a perfect combination to keep me away.