My mother’s flatscreen television is her pride and joy. I know she loves and cares for me, but her flatscreen has less mouth than I do and about the same amount of curb appeal. After owning it for fewer than two years, it stopped working. The screen wouldn’t light up. It made a clicking noise whenever she unplugged it and plugged it back in. To say my mother was peeved would be an understatement. She called on
unpaid worker me for advice. Being a superwoman kind soul, I called the television manufacturer on her behalf to report the problem. The customer service rep told me that the warranty on the television had expired, and it would be at least a $150 charge to have a repair person visit the home to assess the problem. The company would have a service repair person out in a few days. Meh.
Something about a barely 2-year-old television going dead didn’t sit well with me. I definitely didn’t like the idea of my mother paying $150 for a television repair on a relatively new electronic appliance. I immediately Googled the name of the company, flat screen and recall. Sure enough, that line of television had been known to go out of service after just under two years of use. Lawsuits had been filed. To fix the problem, a $5 part was needed. Being the angelic daughter I am, I called the company and let them know that my mother would not be paying for any repairs and they should repair the television for free. I also let the customer service rep know that I knew about the lawsuits and the $5 fix for the problem. I didn’t yell, but I spoke firmly. The associate on the phone put me on a brief hold before saying that the company would repair the television for free. Yay! Within three days, the repair guy came out to my mom’s home, fixed the television, which also needed a new screen – not just a $5 part. The charge: $0.
Now, my mother is bragging to all of her friends about my super powers! Yes, I care!
The Frugalista Takeaways
1) These electronic companies will put anything on the market. I knew to check for a faulty product online because I once bought a new computer that I discovered had a design flaw. My friend, who owned the same computer, found an online fix for the problem. The computer company NEVER ONCE admitted that they put a bad product for the public to purchase.
2) A lack of warranty doesn’t mean you don’t deserve a free repair.
3) Google is your friend when it comes to under performing products and appliances Google the name of the product + recall to see if there is a design flaw or other complaints about the item.