John had read here on Consumerist dazzling “Above and Beyond” stories about out-of-warranty Canon cameras that the company had fixed for free because of a mechanical defect. He had a camera that was mostly functional, but didn’t work in extreme temperatures. He sent the camera in for warranty repair, and learned that it wasn’t eligible for a free repair, but they could fix it or send him a refurbished newer model for $170. Too bad. John already has a second camera, though: could they send it back to him? No. Could they apply that same “customer loyalty program” discount to a more expensive model so John could stay with Canon, but upgrade? No.
I have had a Canon A85 for years, the camera worked fine except on very hot or cold temps where the CCD screen would blank.
I saw the post on the out of warranty repair replacement, contacted Canon, sent the camera in for repair.
Two weeks pass, no notice ( mail or email ) a call to their service center showed they had received the camera and it was at the repair location. A few days later received a notice that there was additional corrosion damage ( camera worked when I sent it) that it could not be repaired. A repair invoice for $170.00 was sent with notice that under Customer loyalty program I could purchase a refurbished camera for the $170 as replacement.
Side note, I also have a Canon SX 110 as my primary camera. The contact at Canon mentioned one model type that could be sent as a replacement for the $170 payment, the model was similar to my SX110 and had a $299 price tag)
I mentioned that the a85 was my second camera, my primary camera worked, and rather than charge $170, was there a lower end model they could send instead. Answer “No”
While on call I looked at Amazon and communicated to the Canon rep that there are several cameras for sale on Amazon that are well under $170.
I asked if there was a possiblity instead of the camera they were offering, could they provide a discount on a D10 (underwater camera) even if it was a refurb. Again, it was the one model they offered or nothing.
I explained I sent in a working camera, ( albeit with a flaky CCD) and that now I was being offered buying one refurb model at a discount or nothing. they said that is correct. I asked if they could reassemble my A85 and return. ( answer “No, it is no longer functional). Subsequent calls to Canon service were same answered, transferred to Customer loyalty representative, same answer, transferred to sales representative, it seemed they were all following a script and would not budge from being able to buy this model for $170 or nothing.
I have always liked Canon cameras and have owned several, but it seems that Canon support has dropped from the time the original post on Consumerist Blog.
That could be, but remember: out-of-warranty repairs are the exception, not the rule. Not that that’s any excuse for Canon to take your camera apart and not send it back.
Above And Beyond: Canon Replaces Broken 5-Year-Old Camera For Free
Canon Is Far, Far Nicer To You Than They Really Need To Be
Canon Fixes 5 Year Old Camera For Free
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