Krups Botches Coffeemaker Repair, Replaces Shorted-Out Appliance

The Krups XP2070 is not a cheap coffee maker. Trevor received his as a gift two years ago. It sold for around $300 then, and it would be reasonable to expect the appliance to work for more than a year. While Krups accepted the machine for repairs, fixed it, and then graciously extended the warranty when it failed again. Trevor determined that the root problem with his XP2070 hadn’t been fixed during either repair, and it had been returned to him to break again. Was he stuck shopping for a new coffeemaker?

He wrote to Consumerist:

I was given a Krups XP2070 Coffee/Espresso Combination machine as a gift in September 2009. It worked wonderfully for us until approximately October 2010, at which point the machine failed to turn on. Krups CS graciously extended our warranty by 60 days and we sent it back for repairs. When it was returned to us, it worked for approximately 6 months, and in February 2011 it again failed to turn on. Again Krups CS agreed to extend the warranty and again they made the exact same repair they made the previous time.

Now this week, again my Krups device is no longer working. On my own, I’ve determined that the espresso water is leaking out of the machine and shorting the system. However, when I explained to the CSR (and manager) I spoke with that they’ve made the incorrect repair twice now and would have to make the correct repair this time, they refused, stating that the warranty has long since expired and they have extended it for me before.

I agree that Krups has been gracious in extending the warranty for me in the past, however they did not make the correct repairs and therefore the problem persists. Krups should either 1) repair my product in a satisfactory way so that it works for more than 6-8 months at a time, 2) replace my product for a brand-new unit that does not have these problems or 3) give me a full refund for this product.

Great complaint letter. No rambling, explains what happened and Trevor’s desired result. The best part: it worked. At the same time that he wrote to us, Trevor sent this same letter off to the CEO of Krups USA. I was getting this story ready for posting when this update came in:

I sent a letter yesterday detailing my issues with a combination coffee/espresso machine that was given to me as a gift. It was sent to the CEO of Krups USA and the president of Groupe SEB North America (their parent company), who apparently forwarded it on. Here’s the response I got this morning from someone who had obviously been sent the email from the president of North America:

I am in receipt of your email to Mr. Lixfeld dated 11 OCT 2011. After reviewing your comments I agree that some action needs to be taken to remedy the situation, and restore your confidence in the Krups brand. I have authorized the Krups After Sales department to send you a new combi model XP2280. This new product will be shipped directly to your home address of [address removed]. If this address is not correct please let me know. I believe you will be satisfied with this new model and improved function. If you have any further questions or concerns, feel free to contact me directly.

Hooray! Enjoy your delicious espresso of victory, Trevor.

Comments

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  1. pgh9fan1 says:

    I make my own coffee at home. Oh, wait….

  2. Mr. Fix-It says: "Canadian Bacon is best bacon!" says:

    Man, I haven’t had my coffee yet today… Stop taunting me, Consumerist! D:

  3. dancing_bear says:

    I wonder if the original people Trevor interacted with worked for an offshore outsourced call center. I have had a bear of a time with these people related to a few products and services lately, they have very limited authority or ability to properly research things. It’s not their fault.

    In one case I was talking to a Filipino about not being paid $1500 for over a month, and how that is a lot of money and was making my month very tight. I felt awful: From a previous corporate call center job I held (in HR), I know these folks make less than $4000 a year, to work midnight shift too.

    • belsonc says:

      I’ve found that to be the case for even onshore call centers, too – sometimes, the person’s hands are just tied; when you call in with something that’s the exception to the typical call, they can’t do much to help you and you have to go over their head. It’s not their fault they can’t help you, it’s not that they’re doing anything wrong, it’s just that they may not have the authority to do what needs to be done. Case in point, Verizon – I was having issues with my Thunderbolt and given how old the phone wasn’t, I wouldn’t accept a refurbished phone – I didn’t pay 250 dollars or so for a refurb for >90% of the length of my contract. I wrote a letter to the VP of Customer Service for my region, and ended up with a new Charge and Verizon ended up with a long-time customer who’s going to stick with them and recommend them to other customers. :-)

      • belsonc says:

        Also, for a little further information – this was my second Thunderbolt and I was still having the same issues, and all they could offer me (they even said this was the most they could do) was a refurbished phone.

      • AustinTXProgrammer says:

        When I worked in tech support a very long time ago I generally couldn’t get my manager involved unless the customer requested it. I once spent 20 minutes saying the same thing as many ways as I could so I wouldn’t sound like a broken record and the jerk on the other end of the phone never once asked to go over my head. I so wanted to tell them ask for my manager, I can’t initiate that…

    • Cat says:

      I love it when I get a call center in the Philippines – I can identify the accent, and I have a somewhat limited vocabulary of Tagalog. I greet them in their language, they laugh, and they give me the best service they can. Agreed, though, in many cases their hands are tied.

      $4000 a year is a decent wage in the Philippines – many families survive on less than $1000 a year. But, they are expected to arrive early and stay late, off the clock, long hours, taxes are high, and benefits are nearly non-existent. I just consider this when I’m hating my job.

  4. XanthorXIII says:

    Krups stepping up the customer service game. That’s how you do it.

    • scoosdad says:

      That’s how you do it? Only after the customer is rebuffed by customer service after two failed repair attempt and has to go whine (good whine, though!) to the CEO’s office? That’s not how you do it. How you do it is to take care of it at the frontline customer service level.

      Why is it that lately you have to go all the way to the media or to the CEO’s office on anything and everything just to get the company to do the right thing?

      /well someone has to take over for Andy Rooney now that he’s retired

  5. Icky says:

    Well written letter to Krups. Well handled response and resolution. I love it when a plan comes together.

    I almost wish there was a page on this site where we could see a tally of:
    Issues against a company – Negitive resolutions – Positive resolutions

    That would aid the conscious consumer like myself decide how to speak with my $.

  6. ray4jc says:

    too bad they don’t sell laptops

  7. Wasp is like Requiem for a Dream without the cheery bits says:

    I need coffee.

    • mauispiderweb says:

      coffee or Coffee?

      • McRib wants to know if you've been saved by the Holy Clown says:

        WHEN IS THE CONSUMERIST WEDDING AND WILL THERE BE AN OPEN BAR?

        • mauispiderweb says:

          Ooooh open bar … I am SO there!

          • Wasp is like Requiem for a Dream without the cheery bits says:

            You know this is not the first time that a marriage between me and Coffee has come up. If I could handle human contact I’d totally marry the hell out of that man, he’s freaking dreamy.

            It will be a destination wedding, all you have to do is pay your way there. There will be a massive party at the hotel, and yeah, I think we can swing for open bar. If there is one thing Consumerist commenters need is an open bar.

  8. phil says:

    After two Krups coffeemakers, admittedly lower-end models that still failed far too quickly, I’ve given up on Krups.

    The second one failed like the OP’s, with a water leak. As a fairly serious DIYer, I was convinced I could fix it. Wrong: The metal water heating assembly was simply a bad design that was executed poorly; a spot weld resulted in a internal crack that simply couldn’t be repaired.

    Krups still makes great looking designs – but my experience has been that they’ve had problems following through. I’m pleased that their customer service came through for the OP – but I won’t be surprised if the new one shows up with a similar problem.

    • rpm773 says:

      Considering the operation of these things involves heat, steam, liquid, moving parts(?), and digital circuitry, I’d wonder how durable the less-expensive models (Krups or otherwise) are over the long-term.

      At least that’s what I wondered when I looked at them 10 years ago, and decided a simple but decent-quality coffeemaker was all I really needed/wanted.

    • CrankyOwl says:

      I bought an inexpensive Krups coffee maker which lasted 10 years until the thermostat gave out & the machine started spewing great clouds of steam. I’ve been looking for another Krups, but it looks like neither Target or Fred Meyer sells them.

  9. TheWillow says:
    • Cat says:

      My coffe maker: FREE.

      I joined Gevalia Coffee club, got free coffee maker with a pound of coffee – then quit the club. I paid $14 for the coffee, IIRC. Too bad, they’re not giving them away right now. But it’s an awesome coffee maker, I’ve had it over 5 years. Even at full price of $28.50, it’s a good deal. The coffee was pretty good, but overpriced. I discovered that the key to good coffee is the coffee maker, more than the coffee, and this one makes great coffee even from cheapo store brands.

      http://www.gevalia.com/coffee-makers/Stainless-Steel-12-Cup-16960-pd.aspx

  10. oldwiz65 says:

    I am surprised they actually paid attention to him. Most of the time when you buy the high end appliance, whether it’s a coffee maker or a stove or a refrigerator, they tend to break more easily. Getting them fixed is usually very difficult. I always steer away from the fancy high end appliances and stick to the moderately priced ones.

    Some manufacturers simply can’t build reliable appliances unfortunately.

  11. Laura Northrup says:

    I’d also like to point out two things for the record here.

    1. I have a Krups espresso machine and a Cuisinart steel coffee maker that cost a combined $37. (The former came from a thrift store.) I spend the savings on really good coffee.

    2. I see the appeal of combination appliances, but don’t like them. Because when half of it breaks, you’re going to need to replace the whole thing.

    • Cat says:

      I couldn’t agree more about #2.

      A TV with a Blu-Ray built in? No thanks. The TV will outlive the Blu-Ray, it will cost too much to fix – even if I do it myself – and I’ll have to buy a stand-alone player anyway.

  12. rockamon says:

    While Krups accepted the machine for repairs, fixed it, and then graciously extended the warranty when it failed again.

    What does that even mean? While they did that…what else happened?

  13. duffman13 says:

    This is what happens to products when they have too much technology in them. The more tech we have in them, the more stuff there is that can go wrong. I have a similar Krups combo machine but it doesn’t have the digital controls, and it has been working great for 4 years now – nothing to short out.