Intermittent Computer Issues? Lenovo's Repair Center Will Break Them All The Way

P.’s Lenovo netbook had a wonky USB port that would stop working when the item plugged into it was jostled a little bit. Fortunately, Lenovo’s repair center is capable of fixing problems like that. He sent the computer in, but didn’t want to pay $700 for repairs on a computer he had purchased for $400.

I purchased a Lenovo Thinkpad X120e netbook type computer in April 2011.

About 6 months into owning the computer, I noticed one of my USB ports would disconnect if I jiggled the device that was attached to it a little. The port would work fine for a mouse but I wouldn’t use it during a file transfer since it might disconnect in the middle of a transfer.

My warranty was going to expire soon so I contacted Lenovo Customer Support and spoke to a friendly CSR who asked me a few questions and determined that the system board would need to be replaced. She said she would send a shipping box which arrived the next day. I went ahead and packaged it up and sent my computer on it’s way to the service center.

A couple of days later, a person from the service center called me and informed me that they checked out the computer and determined the USB pins were ripped out and that it was my fault and it wasn’t under warranty. The cost was $700 to replace the board which is odd since the computer itself cost me a little over $400. I didn’t argue with the CSR and asked if they could ship it back thinking that since that USB port worked for my mouse, that was all I’d use it for.

I got my computer back the next day, installed the hard drive and memory that I took out before I shipped it to the service center and fired the computer up. I went ahead and put my Logitech nano wireless mouse dongle into the, at the time what I thought was a partially working USB port only to find that Windows said that the device I plugged in wasn’t recognized. I pulled the dongle out and looked into the port hole and noticed one of the pins on the middle USB portion was totally pushed towards the back of the port. Suffice it to say that I now had a totally dead port. Thanks Lenovo service center.

I called the 800 number back and talked to a CSR and told him my dissatisfaction with the dead USB port and that I’d like to talk to a Supervisor. He told me that I’d have to send in my computer again and that was the only way to get it resolved. He also informed me that the service center is a totally different entity from the call center. I asked him to transfer me to the service center and I wanted to talk to a Supervisor over there. I was going back and forth with him about wanting to talk to a Supervisor but he kept insisting it wasn’t going to do me any good. He finally said he was going to transfer me and he put me on hold. I waited a few seconds and realized that all this was futile and I hung up. The CSR called me back right away and apologized for the disconnection but I told him I hung up on purpose and I was just going to live with the dead port. He suggested that I take 30 minutes out of my time and take my computer to a service center and get a second o
pinion there. I agreed and asked him for a local center. He told me to go to a website and that it would tell me where a local one was. After I hung up with him, I went to the website only to find that the website just went to an Error page. This wasn’t going well.

I was going to email Rory Read as I’ve seen other Consumerists do with great success but I know that he is now the CEO of AMD. I tried to find an email address from the Lenovo website that I could send a letter like this to but none of the names that I found looked too promising.

So all in all, I have this laptop that I haven’t had for even a year with a dead port. I have an HP laptop that is almost 4 years old without anything broken on it. I’m going to be in the market for a more robust laptop soon to do more heavy duty computing and Lenovo could count on them not being on my shopping list.

Thanks Consumerist for listening. You guys rock!