Nintendo Repairs Out-Of-Warranty Wii In One Day, For Free

Joseph writes:

I have a first generation Nintendo Wii and I recently bought the game Boom Blox for it. When I put the game in to start playing it would often lock up at the health warning screen and I would have to restart my Wii by unplugging it since no other method would work.

Here’s what happened when he contacted Nintendo for help.

I first expected it was a problem with the disc since Gamestop sold it to me as New when the case was opened already (another story for another time) but the disc was in perfect condition. I also noticed my other games were acting weird and my Wii channels would give errors that they couldn’t load properly even though they were. This prompted me to go online and see what I could do.

I work in tech support and moderate some support forums so I hate when people don’t look for answers before asking questions or calling for help so I went to the Nintendo forums to see what I could find. Unfortunately there really wasn’t any information about errors with this particular game or any Wii related defects that fit what I was experiencing. I was wary about getting email support but it seemed to be Nintendo’s preferred next step so I sent an email to them with everything I was experiencing.

I was surprised when a day later I got an email stating my problem would probably not be best handled using email correspondence and to call in. I called in and the person on the phone (I wish I could remember her name) was very nice and very helpful. She quickly looked up my account with Nintendo and immediately suggested I should send my Wii in for repair. She said it would probably waste my time troubleshooting the issue further since it wasn’t anything she’d seen and seemed beyond any fixes she could offer. She noted that I was a few months out of warranty but offered free shipping and free repair anyway without me even bringing it up. I immediately received a shipping label and sent the system in the next day.

I was bummed not having anything to play for what I’d expected to be a month long fix and was shocked to receive an email on the day they received the package stating they had received it and repaired it the same day. They also shipped it back out to me that day as well! So all in all it took one week from start to finish to submit a help request and have a fixed Wii returned to me. It has worked great ever since and I no longer have any problems with it. There are so many places where this could have been a bad experience but Nintendo really did a stellar job. They provided fast responses and did more than they needed to make sure I was a happy customer and will continue to purchase their products. Great job!

Nintendo, what the hell? We don’t know what you’re up to with this “good customer service” routine, but pulling shenanigans like this doesn’t keep our tipline stuffed with complaints. Please think about this the next time you offer to repair a broken Wii.

Comments

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  1. raleel says:

    Good job nintendo! makes me happy that I chose a wii, and makes me happy that I lent it out to 4 different families to convince them that they are worth it.

    • Nic715 says:

      @raleel: Makes me wish I could afford a Wii…or find one when I actually had the extra cash to shell out!

      Can we be friends? Mine haven’t embraced the idea of lending out their Wii’s for a few days…they just can’t fathom going a day or 2 without playing it! And me…I’m always down for a game of Wii Bowling!

      Glad to hear Nintendo’s manning up with their customer service nonetheless…

  2. Dyscord says:

    This doesn’t surprise me. Nintendo repaired my DS Screen for 20 dollars less than normal even though physical screen damage isn’t covered under warranty. Only took two days too.

    Of course, as everyone knows, Nintendo builds their systems like friggin tanks. Guess they learned their lesson with the NES.

  3. ajlei says:

    I’ve never had any repair issues with Nintendo but with my Wii playing Super Smash Bros Melee the way it is, I might have to see into that. But I’ve never had an issue spending money on Nintendo products, since they’ve always seemed to make things right if there are ever any issues. I just hope that Nintendo stays this way, because as long as they do, I’ll always be faithful to them.

  4. P_Smith says:

    Nintendo, what the hell? We don’t know what you’re up to with this “good customer service” routine, but pulling shenanigans like this doesn’t keep our tipline stuffed with complaints.

    Peters and Waterman said in their book, “In Pursuit Of Excellence” that one dissatified customer will tell ten people, but one satisfied customer will tell one.

    Is is any surprise you don’t hear much about Nintendo doing things right and little about problems with them?

    • twritersf says:

      @P_Smith: This reminds me of an experience I had with Palm many years ago. I dropped my PalmPilot(!). The screen was cracked. I was aghast. I called Palm tech support. They said the repair (actually, a replacement with a reconditioned one) would be a flat $100, which seemed entirely reasonable to me. They sent me, overnight, a packing box and label for overnight shipping back to them. They turned it around the day they got it, and I had my “new” PalmPilot in my hands the next day. The reason I explain what happened it is often, when I’m having a conversation with someone about customer service (more often than not, some company’s poor customer service), I chime in with this story. I’ll tell anyone who will listen. I was so impressed, it stuck in my mind, being so memorable. And it is my hope, slight as it is, that this story might actually inspire others in the customer service industry to aspire to equal heights.

  5. fonetek says:

    Microsoft ought to take a lesson from this. My Xbox 360 was two months out of warranty and they charged me 100 bucks to fix a bad DVD drive. (When you google “Insert Disk” for xbox 360, hundreds of complaints come up. Think they would have the same level of excellent customer service?? NOPE!! You just get routed to Call Center Hell in India. I love my wii and this just goes to show that a company like nintendo stands behind their product! Shame on you Microsoft.

    • NightSteel says:

      @fonetek: When your products aren’t defective right off the production line and therefore don’t require hundreds of thousands of warranty repairs for issues you should have fixed before mass production, you have the luxury of providing service on a few units that are out of warranty.

    • junip says:

      @fonetek: I got that same “inster disc” error on my xbox 360. The difference here is that mine was defective straight out of the box, and I checked, the serial on the machine matched the box, so no one swapped it. Way to go microsoft. My boyfriend was super pissed as he’d been looking forward to the new console all day. Lucky me though, I was able to return it and get a new one since we’d just bought it. Here’s hoping it never breaks..

      I own 3x as many nintendo consoles as anything else. (2 DS lites and a Wii). Gotta love em.

    • djsyndrome says:

      @fonetek: you bring up a good point – and as the three-year RROD warranties start to expire for launch consoles this winter, those will no longer be free repairs for some folks.

      Of course, now that the Arcade is only $199, it would cost little more to buy a replacement console than to ship it in to Microsoft. Hmmmmm.

  6. HalOfBorg says:

    “Nintendo attempts to close down Consumerist with good service!”

  7. Norislolz says:

    This is a lot different than Sony’s “Oh you don’t have your original receipt? Then you obviously stole it! You get no warranty!” policy. Great job Nintendo!!!!

  8. SScorpio says:

    Nintendo has great customer service from my experience. I purchase a Wii on launch day and I discovered that I was one of the people with bad flash memory from the initial batch. I called Nintendo the following Monday and spoke to someone about my issue. They determined the problem was hardware related and allowed me to do a cross ship. I received my replacement Wii the following Wednesday and then send back my broken one in the provided box with the label from them.

    The only bad part about the whole experience was their hold music. They had orchestral versions of classic Nintendo songs; however, you only got to hear about 30 seconds of each before a your call is important to us message and then a new song started.

    • Dyscord says:

      @SScorpio: lol. Was the bad part the hold music itself? Or the fact that it changed constantly?

      Regardless, if that’s the only bad thing you have to say about nintendo’s service…well, that says something.

      • coren says:

        @Dyscord: Probably that it changed. I’d buy a cd of orchestral classic themes, I think.

        @PipeRifle: I don’t know how warranties transfer in the case of a sale of a product, but either way that’s another case of above and beyond.

        I’ve heard rumors that if you call in for support for NES and SNES they still make an effort to help you, and the classic “blow in it” technique is amongst the troubleshooting techniques.

        And I’d love to see a “Best Company in America”. Unfortunately, we’ll have to start it in the final four with Apple, Nintendo, Zappos and a mystery contender, but hey, what can you do?

  9. kinickie says:

    My boyfriend has had to send his Wii back twice because of bad graphics memory. Both times they simply replaced the Wii. The first replacement wasn’t shipped to us for a week after they received his defective one and had none of his user data transferred. It ended up having the same problem after three weeks. Thankfully, Nintendo seems to have gotten a bit better at handling Wii repairs and the second time they transferred all of his user data to the new one and shipped the replacement two days after receiving the defective one.

  10. notme93 says:

    Nintendo as a company has never let me down since I bought my first NES.

  11. Sukasa says:

    Not particularly surprising to me, either. Had an old GBA SP ($150 at the time) that got partially crushed. Unfortunately, the damage wasn’t covered by warranty so it cost $82.50 to fix, but it was definitely a fast fix, and apparently they kept the old unit ‘to have a look at the damage pattern’.

    ..Though, I have found out that the DS self-destructs if you manage to put the battery in backwards.

  12. BrianDaBrain says:

    I have no particular love for the Wii or it’s motion controls and Fit Pads, but I love this story. Kudos to Nintendo.

    • Ubermunch says:

      @BrianDaBrain:

      I have no particular love for the Wii or it’s motion controls and Fit Pads

      That makes one of you…

      And, as an owner of both, I can say that you are missing out.

  13. GothGirl says:

    I love my Wii. :-)

  14. theblackdog says:

    Things like this are why I love Nintendo and continue to buy their products.

  15. shaggybrown says:

    Nintendo has a great repair department. My kids broke their DS. It was out of warranty so I was ready to buy a new one. At the last moment I decided to contact their warrantly support.

    They were able to fix it as good as new, for a reasonable cost, and I got it back in less then a week. I could not have been more pleased.

  16. cubsd says:

    I love when I read positive stories on this blog. Mind you, I’m not saying I don’t like the negative ones, they are usually more entertaining. But instead of just a collection of posts about where not to spend your money, I like the word-of-mouth about places that care about your business.

  17. PipeRifle says:

    I purchased two used DSes, one with a cracked hinge and one with some dead pixels. The rep I spoke with about getting them repaired was the only person I’ve even dealt with in a customer service capacity that was willing and able to apply logic to a problem.

    My case was that every new DS came with a 90-day warranty (or whatever it was), and the DS had only been out in the states for less than that time. So whether or not I had the receipt, these two must be still under warranty, right? The guy said “Yep, makes sense to me,” sent me a tag, and I got two damn-near new DSes in about a week. Stellar all around.

  18. Mr. Guy says:

    way to go nintendo.

    deadspin has their hall of fame. how about a consumerist hall of fame for companies that consistently offer outstanding customer service? i imagine that zappos would probably be in there.

  19. jojo319 says:

    I had a repair issue with my Wii as well. I’ve had to deal with them about 3 times. Every time they were GREAT. First of all, they were obviously located domestically. They were very polite and sounded like they enjoyed their jobs. I actually had a guy try to put a custom case on my Wii, thus voiding the warranty. He was unable to put it back together. I literally sent them my Wii in a lump of parts and missing screws! They charged me a small fraction of what they should have. I think it was around $50. Got my Wii back within a week!

  20. liz72701 says:

    We had the exact same issue when trying to play a game on our Wii. I was about to take the game back as defective and then found out that this problem can sometimes occur if you leave your “classic” controllers plugged in while playing a Wii game. Unplugged them and no more problem.

  21. brent_r says:

    I’ve always gotten good service from Nintendo with only one exception on their website.

    Years back, I was trying to register a new Gamecube game with “My Nintendo” and the website came back that the key had already been registered. I e-mailed for support with that issue and never got a response.

    In retrospect, I’m betting a Gamestop employee took the key and registered it for himself while they were gutting the game boxs and putting the disks in the drawers.

    Beyond that one issue I’ve always been extremely happy with Nintendo. Not to mention their near indestructible products.
    (I had a gamecube fall 4 feet bounce off the top of bedpost then plummet another 4 feet onto a concrete floor and other than a small chip in the plastic the machine was perfectly fine.)

    • dragonfire81 says:

      @brent_r: Kudos on that. I have NEVER broken any Nintendo console or handheld despite how much wear I put on them.

      My original NES still works like charm. Props to Nintendo for QUALITY service and products, something you find far too little of these days.

      • megsuma says:

        Our Wii actually had this problem as well – it was a fan that stopped in the back of the unit and it would overheat. Eventually, we had to un-plug it and plug it back in. Ours was still in warranty, but Nintendo still repaired it excellently! We actually sent it in for the Smash Bros. fix, and they threw in the fan fix for free. We were to expect up to seven days and got it back in three.

        @dragonfire81: My original NES is still running smooth too : D

  22. Torgen got 99 problems but the PAXFlu ain't one says:

    @Joseph: Did your Wii have any distinguishing marks? If not, they may have sent you a refurb. That way they can take as long as they need to fix your Wii, and if/when it’s fixed they can send it to someone else. It’s a good way to handle repairs until you get someone with a customized case.

  23. chucklebuck says:

    My one experience with Nintendo customer service got them my loyalty. Super polite, helpful beyond what I thought I’d get, and fast – I couldn’t have asked for more.

  24. Anto103 says:

    Good old Nintendo, I had a first generation Gamecube and it lasted for years, even though I dropped it down the stairs twice and it fell of my bedside shelves thee times and it still survived. It did eventually die though from regular wear and tear though. She was a grand old Machine.

  25. Con Seannery says:

    I have a Wii, and while I’m disappointed with the games out for it (though I don’t buy many), that think feels like it’s built like a tank. And the one or two times I have had to call their tech line, I’ve been satisfied.

  26. PillowTalk says:

    Wow, I wish they’d extend this sort of service for the Nintendo DS Lite. There’s a common problem with the power button breaking (I turned mine on one day and the button simply caved in). However, despite my unit still being under warranty (received it for Christmas ’07), Nintendo claims the power button problem falls under “user damage”, and it’ll cost me $62.50 to fix (half the cost of the unit itself). I haven’t been able to play my DS for over three months simply because I don’t have the money to fritter away on having it repaired. I wouldn’t mind if I had broken it, but it was a defect in the product! Geez. I normally love Nintendo, but that’s something they need to work on.

  27. ShirtNinja says:

    I’ve got nothing but praise for Nintendo’s customer service. My Wii was crashing while loading games sometimes, so I gave them a call. This is a launch unit. The first surprise I had was the wait time. It was under 5 minutes. The 2nd surprise was when I actually talked to a person, he spoke perfect English with no accent. This person answered every one of my questions accurately and quickly, and when he didn’t know an answer, he actually went to talk to his supervisor and asked them to confirm. He sent me the shipping info I needed to get my Wii off to Scarborough within a matter of moments after hanging up the phone, and my Wii was gone for a grand total of two weeks. It came back with a new DVD drive and no further issues.

    Yeah, 3rd party support still kinda sucks for games (but it’s getting better), and it doesn’t have wiz-bang graphics of it’s major competitors, but damn do they have fantastic service, and that makes up for it when the merchandise fails.

    • Eilonwynn says:

      @ShirtNinja: It’s stories like that that made me happy to buy mine – Several friends reported similar experiences, and the games (especially paper mario!) are great for even people like my mom. ~Lerren

  28. ars_workerbee2 says:

    yeah, and then stupid me, whose barely-out-of-warranty wii breaks, so i fill out the form online to send it in for the paid-for repair.

    maybe if i had pitched a fit it would have been free.

  29. lotusangel42 says:

    When we were kids, my brother and I decided to see how strong the SNES really was, so we stood on it an jumped up and down on it. Not even a crack. It still works great to this day! Really is tank-tough!

  30. BullLifter says:

    To go along with the other Nintendo tank-console comments: When I was younger a neighbor’s dad dropped kicked his Gamecube into a brick wall one day. Aside from some scuffs, it worked great for years afterward.

  31. trujunglist says:

    That reminds me of the story where the guy called up Nintendo about his broken Wii, and the lady came on and said “Oh, why don’t you just bring it in and we’ll have a look?” The guy was like “What? Ok.” and it turns out he was only like a block from their headquarters. Took it in and they fixed it. He took pictures of the place, but I can’t be bothered with a URL.

  32. Dyscord says:

    I think we’ve all heard of the 1st Gen Gameboy that got hit with a mortar shell and still runs. I cant remember where I heard that. it was a few years back.

    If Microsoft had consoles as tough as Nintendo’s, they would have a perfect system.

  33. chiieddy says:

    There’s a known error with early Wii’s. Something with the disk reader. It started manifesting with Smash Bros. and at that point, Nintendo said they’d repair all Wiis with the problem for free (in warranty or not).

    We sent in our box and had it back within a week. It was lovely.

    • brent_r says:

      @chiieddy: I’ve read about that.
      Apparently it was just that the early drives were very sensitive to dust in the air. The fail rate was significantly higher for smokers and in dusty environments.

      Usually it was not a problem that the lens was a little dirty, but on some big games like Smash Bros. which were on dual layer discs the issue manifested itself and that’s how it got mainstream attention.

  34. parad0x360 says:

    My launch Wii was somehow stolen when I moved. I spent about 6 months trying to buy a new one. I sent an email to customer service to try and get my VC games back and in turn they gave me a phone number that wasnt made public.

    I called and the phone was answered by a person on the second ring. They told me they dont normally do this but due to the fact that my Wii was stolen and they could see I had purchased so many VC games and I was obviously a big fan.

    They needed my credit card number or friend code. Neither of which I had because that card had expired and who knows their friend code?

    I called the bank and managed to talk them into giving me the number for my old debit/check card but they would not give me the EXP date.

    Lucky for me I had it memorized because of all my online ordering, so I called Nintendo and in about 5 min they said I could redownload all my games.

    At the point normal customer services says goodbye. Not the lady from Nintendo! We had a 15 min conversation about our favorite Nintendo classics and future games. I was just floored by how nice I was treated.

    I do have to say normal Nintendo customer services reps are not nearly as helpfull but whoever they handed me off to was nothing short of excellent.

    • mzs says:

      @parad0x360: I think we must have spoken to the same lady. There were two that did this secret/special case move over your VC downloads back when I had my problem. When I called-up the same thing happened but there was a bunch of friendly banter with the other one sharing the cube as well. It really was human. When I spoke to them one immediately knew it was a launch Wii and wanted to learn how I got it. I told how I waited outside in freezing rain all night and they really seemed to get a kick out of the story.

      Sadly NoA moved most of the jobs done in Washington state to California not too long ago, so these two wonderful employees may no longer work for NoA. I also later got a call from one of them saying that they had forgotten to add my 600 or whatever it was points I had to the new system. When does that ever happen, you get a courtesy call back?

      What happened with me is I had a launch Wii that for a long time was not working right and finally broke and I needed to get it repaired. UPS messed-up and it took three weeks for me to actually get a Wii back. This one worked for a few minutes and then I got a “System memory is corrupt” error message. My wife made a video of my reaction:

      There are some unintentionally funny youtube comments there as well as my embarrassing man-child reaction.

      When I called customer support the next day they were simply fantastic. What they did is they shipped me a new Wii right then and I went and shipped the broken one back. When they got it, I called this number and they did the VC transfer. But it was always fun to talk to the NoA customer support. For example I learned that a lot of people break the early Wii models when the DVD mechanism sucked in the SD card because they put it in the place where the game discs go.

      Another time I had a wii mote stop working so I called and I said I do not know when I bought this one (they all look the same) and the fellow on the other end said it does not matter and simply replaced it. They also repaired my cousins’ launch Wii not too long ago outside of the warranty for a very reasonable $80.

  35. Hockeypuck says:

    It’s not like they had any around to sell you, so it was either fix it or have you buy an XBox :-P

    In all seriousness, Nintendo has always been great in my experience.

  36. Kloud says:

    I once had a GBA SP that was dropped and no longer displayed video, and Nintendo repaired it out-of-warranty. Being about 12 at the time, my parents helped me handle the situation and they were impressed with Nintendo’s support in the situation as well.

  37. Angryrider says:

    This is a shining example of customer service.
    However, this is always to be expected from Nintendo.
    Don’t be surprised, it’s an Asian thing.

  38. gabi says:

    My favorite thing about Nintendo customer service? The “on hold” music is either the Ocarina of Time soundtrack or the Mario theme.

    Also, when I had my Wii repaired I was in a pretty big rush, and forgot to sign the check that I mailed along with it. They sent me my (REPAIRED) Wii with the unusable check, and told me to either send a new check or call them at my convenience and pay with a credit card. They repaired it and sent it back without payment. The mind boggles.

  39. Ahh Nintendo is awesome like that.

    My sister had dropped her DS and so the power wouldn’t boot back up or anything. So I called up Nintendo and even though it was a year out of warranty they gave me a discount on the repair. Though I did still have to pay for shipping. But hey it was a year of warranty.

  40. TheMurderer says:

    This is why I love! They probably save up all of their good customer service since I’m sure just about NO ONE calls in with a problem with their Wii. They are tough little machines.

  41. MomInTraining says:

    I am going to pile on with the praise for Nintendo. My son’t DS kept cutting off. I called and they were very nice.

    They have a handy option where they will take your credit card and send you out a refurb unit immediately. Then, when you get it, you send back the broken one in that box. So you never have to be without your DS.

    Now if you keep both of them, they charge your card. I even forgot to send it back in the required time. Did they charge me? No, they sent me a reminder e-mail to send it in. Not only that, but they gave me a new 1 yr. warranty on the refurbished DS.

    Nintendo products are a little pricey, but it is worth it for a company who truly stands behind their products.

  42. CyberSkull says:

    I’ve had good experiences when I’ve sent off for Nintendo repairs as well. Microsoft and Sony, they both screwed me over (My 1-year old 360 has been sent in for repair for $99, I am assuming they will screw me.).

  43. magnus150 says:

    Nintendo has always been really good for customer service (at least to me anyhow), they gave me a new DS for FREE when I used an ammonia-based cleaner on the screen, tearing it to pieces (I’ve learned my lesson, trust me). No questions asked, I just explained the situation and they sent me a box. I wish all companies treated customers like this!

  44. CalebAlcidice says:

    At least, it seems obvious from the comments above. I’ve always had
    good experiences with Nintendo, but my favorite is when my GameBoy
    Color had a battery acid leak. I called tech support for advice on how
    to clean it up, and they immediately told me not to touch it, to just
    send it in and they’d replace it with the newest system. And they did
    – a week later I got one of the late-model DSes (the folding ones) in
    the mail, brand-new as far as I could tell. Probably they were just
    trying to avoid a lawsuit, but I was more than pleased with their
    response.

  45. wiggatron says:

    [sarcasm][shaking fist]Damn Nintendo and their beyond excellent customer service![/shaking fist][/sarcasm]

  46. mariospants says:

    I dunno, 50/50 for me and Nintendo: the yellow screen DS lite debacle, constant problems with my Wii, the scratches and coffee they spilled on my Wii when it went in for repair (I literally handled it like it was made of Playboy Bunnyâ„¢ Fur when I installed it and it was spotless when I sent it in for repair) and the fact that I had to send in my Metroid Prime 3 disk in three times because they kept sending my original (fuxored-from-factory) disk back to me.

  47. Jordan Lund says:

    Sounds like they might have upped their service level since 2001… My horror story 9/25/2001:

    So here’s my first experience with Nintendo’s warranty system:

    Earlier this month I had been playing Bomberman in the wee hours, got tired, turned off the GBA and put it on a wire rack with some other gaming equipment. The next few days were kind of warm, really sticky warm, I didn’t feel like playing games so I didn’t get the GBA urge for a while. The day Advance Wars came out I popped by the store after work, picked up the game and came home to try it out.

    As soon as I pick up the GBA I see a big, black “D” shape in the center of the screen, just off to the left a bit. It’s about 2 inches tall and an inch wide. “Oh, crap!” Well, I put in the game and power it on to see what would happen, the game looks fine on the inch or so to the left of the “D”, but on the right it’s hopelessly scrambled.

    The next morning I call Nintendo’s warranty service and speak to David. I explain the issue and he states that Nintendo can’t help me because it’s obvious I broke the screen. “Excuse me?” He goes on further to say that because the pixels are black with the power off it’s the type of problem that can only be caused by an impact on the screen and impacts on the screen aren’t covered under warranty.

    Now the problem isn’t that I’ve been playing games for 20 years and have never broken a machine, it’s that I’m an A+ certified computer hardware technician. I’ve seen more broken LCD’s than I can think of, this didn’t look at all like a broken LCD. It looked like a whole bunch of pixels revolted and turned black all at once. If you press on a broken LCD in most cases fluid will ooze out and the screen will discolor around the crack. That doesn’t happen with this unit because there was no crack for the fluid to ooze out of.

    (My personal theory is that the liquid expanded due to heat and caused an internal rupture. In other words, a defect in mfg. Ergo a warranty repair.)

    David doesn’t want to hear it, so I ask him for the name of a local shop that does Nintendo authorized repairs. He directs me to Sharper Video in Portland, OR.

    Here I get the runaround, AGAIN, from ANOTHER guy named David. (I swear I’m not making this up.) He tells me that they can’t do anything because it’s an impact fracture. So I go through the story again, show him how to identify an impact fracture. I even make him a deal. Open the case, examine the LCD, if there’s any physical damage I’ll pay to repair the unit. If there is none then I want Nintendo to take care of it under warranty.

    David tells me “We can’t do that.” Why not? Well, apparently their deal with Nintendo is that they don’t actually repair anything. They just send the units directly to Nintendo.

    So I call Nintendo again, speak to the same David AGAIN, I tell him look… The warranty is for defects in manufacturing, in order to prove a defect in manufacturing the case must be opened. The authorized repair center they sent me to apparently isn’t authorized to do any repairs. I tell him the same thing, if it’s a broken screen I’ll pay to have it fixed, but if it’s not they are legally bound to the warranty and I intend on holding their feet to the fire on it.

    So David talks to his supervisor and gets an RMA for me to return the GBA at their expense using a special Fed Ex shipping code.

    Today I get a replacement GBA back in the mail:

    Repair total : 49.00
    Less Warranty : 49.00-
    Balance Due : .00

    Enclosed was a photocopied sheet with a checkbox marked by hand:

    “We have reviewed your description of the incident and conclude that evaluation of your components is necessary. Since the evaluation process can be lengthy, we have exchanged your components with product from our inventory and extended your limited warranty for an additional 90 days. We also cleaned or exchanged any games that were sent in with the system and checked them for proper operation.”

    Here’s the kicker though… A few weeks later I saw a display unit at Fry’s with the exact same defect in the screen. Same shape and location.

    • mzs says:

      @Jordan Lund: One of my kids left a GBA SP in the car one summer and it had something like that after a few days, only it was more asterisk shaped. It was our fault, there are heat and humidity storage and operating limits on electronics. I just threw it away. Nintendo was extremely gracious in your case.

  48. Kevinber says:

    Are you sure you didn’t get a replacement? They could have just cloned the data and sent you an new one.