I Think Maybe I Used To Own An Asus Laptop

Dave owns an Asus laptop. Well, he kind of vaguely remembers owning an Asus laptop. He’s had it for four months, but it’s spent the last month at the repair center, not being repaired. The system claims that it’s waiting for parts, but no one is able to explain what that means, or when he might expect to see his computer again.

On January 19 of this year, I ordered a $1000 Asus Republic of Gamers laptop from Amazon. After a few weeks, I noticed the battery would intermittently fail to charge. Re-inserting the plug would usually fix the problem, but it got progressively worse. A little over a month ago, I noticed the plug was hot to the touch and far more “droopy” than a plug should be. I unplugged it, called Asus, and arranged for warranty service. I shipped the laptop back at my own expense (their RMA process does not include insurance, nor does FedEx allow you to add insurance to an RMA shipment) on April 5th. Now, more than a month later, it’s still in repair. Their RMA tracking site shows that it’s waiting for parts, and everyone I talk to is generously described as “unhelpful”. Between their broken English and comically cliche promises to “resolve this promptly”, I still don’t have a laptop.

It’s not like I went with the cheapest laptop manufacturer I could find. I thought Asus was a reputable brand with decent quality control. That’s a large part of why I chose them. Now, as a result, I’m left without a laptop for five weeks and counting while they “promise to escalate the matter to the urgency attention and escalate it”.

Is there anything I can do? Asus doesn’t seem to be able to give me a working laptop, so can I just get my money back? Is this sort of thing covered under the Magnuson Moss Warranty Act? Help!

Magnuson-Moss may come in to play depending on what the Asus warranty says, and how long it states repairs are allowed to take. Yep, that means tracking down the actual warranty and reading the fine print.

Alternately, if you used a credit card (and some debit cards) to purchase the item, they extend your warranty and may provide additional protection. Same with the retailer where you bought the computer, Amazon.

Comments

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  1. Extended-Warranty says:

    Next time, don’t buy a laptop from Amazon.

    • jtaylor2d says:

      Shouldn’t matter where he bought it, an Asus warranty is an Asus warranty.

      • CurrentGeekSquadEmployee says:

        Sucks that they don’t cover shipping or insurance costs though.

        • jtaylor2d says:

          I agree, which is typical with many PC companies. I’m a Mac guy so getting a computer fixed is usually a painless process with many avenues of getting it fixed.

          • shepd says:

            You should be able to get it fixed painlessly, after all you paid 3x the price for the same hardware.

            I bet if your Rolex stopped working in warranty you’d have a great warranty repair experience, too.

            • jtaylor2d says:

              Yawn…

              Bringing up Mac vs PC debates I see. I was merely pointing out that when my Mac breaks, I can take it to the local Apple store or Apple Reseller and they fix it in a back room, generally less that a week.

              PC companies generally don’t have local places to get warranty work done and almost always involves a mail off.

              • Jaynor says:

                Hahahahahaha – “Yawn”. You initiated the Crapple vs PC debate here.

                Yes – Apples are easier to repair (ice-cream would be easier to sell if I only sold three flavors). Yes – they have stores that you can take your device to.
                No – they don’t have anything they can do about haughty derision. You’ll need to find a doctor for that.

              • Coffee says:

                Aren’t you cute.

    • GMFish says:

      I don’t understand why this is a problem with Amazon. They didn’t build it. And any retailer would make you use the manufacturer’s warranty after four months. So he’d be in the exact same situation if he bought it elsewhere.

    • Dave B. says:

      I fail to see how the place of purchase has any relation to poor support from Asus, please enlighten us.

      • syxx says:

        because if he bought it at a store he could just bring it back instead of having to deal with asus over a lemon

        • Dave B. says:

          Going in for one repair doesn’t make it a lemon, the issue is Asus’ poor turnaround time, not multiple repair attempts, so my original question still stands.

          • regis-s says:

            Perhaps that’s part of the problem. Maybe an inordinate amount of time in the shop for repairs should qualify it as a lemon.

        • chucklesjh says:

          Bring it back to the store after 4 months? What would you have the store do? They would simply say “It is out of our return policy range, call the manufacturer.”

    • Overheal says:

      I find it kinda funny half the people saying “Oh it doesn’t matter where he bought it” would have blamed Best Buy if that’s where it was got.

  2. Marlin says:

    Asus has really dropped in quality and customer service the last several years.

    I skip them when shopping anything tech.

    • Overheal says:

      I am forced to agree. Even hear stories about bad support on their motherboards (though their boards still tend to be quality)

      I think as far as their mobile products like tabs and laptops are concerned though they are starting down the long road of losing their credibility. They should probably stick to making components.

    • ChuckECheese says:

      I agree. My last ASUS (and it will remain the last one I buy) had an odd LCD failure after 6 months. It had a 2 year warranty with the 1st year covering even accidental damage. They first claimed they wouldn’t warranty repair it because it was caused by something I’d done (what?) I pointed out the warranty covered accidents for the 1st year. Then my computer disappeared for over 2 months. Repeated calls and emails led nowhere. Their warranty said “repairs completed in 2 months or replacement.” So I sent them another letter explaining I wanted a replacement per their warranty. I also filed a complaint with my state’s AG consumer affairs. The computer arrived on my doorstep less than a week later (it was overnighted; FedEx just dropped it at my door). The bezel connections to the lid/LCD were broken on one side, there was hot glue oozing out the side of the bezel onto the lid, and there was a dent in the notebook’s cover. It was like ASUS crowbar-ed the LCD from the lid.

      I got a Samsung last week. Hoping that’s gonna be better.

  3. The_IT_Crone says:

    I’m a little confused, because ASUS *is* pretty much the cheapest laptop brand you can find. That part of he letter is really pointless. I guess so is this part of my comment. Hmm.

    Ok but seriously, sometimes parts are “constrained.” They may actually be waiting for a part, and you’ll have to wait as well. It DOES happen- especially if a certain line happens to have a high failure rate. I’ve seen it with cheap and expensive brands alike.

    • Snapdragon says:

      I wonder if there’s still a problem with parts coming out of SE Asia after the typhoon devastation.

      I don’t understand why they can’t just replace it–unless a replacement is also not available.

      • The_IT_Crone says:

        That is *exactly* what I was thinking.

        I do agree that a replacement laptop should be considered, but it’s not reasonable to EXPECT it this early in the game. I’d say 2 months or so (for this company) is warranted.

    • dush says:

      You’re thinking of Acer

      • The_IT_Crone says:

        No, I’m thinking of ASUS. Now Acer is a cheaper company, but I don’t think they even MAKE a cheap gaming laptop like the OP purchased.

        • kobresia says:

          Oh, they do! It’s co-branded with Ferrari or Lamborghini, or both!

          No, I’m not kidding.

  4. scoutermac says:

    When my DVD drive on my ASUS gaming pc started randomly opening on it’s own. I took me two weeks of phone calls to get them to send the replacement drive. I also had to pay the shipping for UPS to send the old part back to ASUS in California. I felt this should have been included. At least Dell, HP, and Lenovo include shipping.

  5. MrEvil says:

    ASUS makes great products and they do have pretty good quality control. Just hope you don’t get that one bad unit out of a thousand because their service is total crap.

  6. vyper says:

    I wish Apple would license out their mag power connector. I have an asus netbook and am on my second power adapter and have had problems using 3rd party replacements. The netbook replaced an alienware laptop where the dc jack had come lose from the motherboard. Seems to be a common issue with laptops these days.

  7. markvii says:

    IMNAL, but know a thing or two about Magnuson Moss. You could play the “breach of warranty” card, for failure to provide a timely repair. The caveat is that what actions or lack of action constitute refusal to honor the warranty is not well defined. Personally, I’d draw a parallel with the typical automotive lemon law, which says that a car that’s in the shop for more than 30 days over the course of the warranty is a lemon.

    Given that the item came from Amazon, I’d try to enlist their help. If Asus can’t get their act together, I doubt that getting legalistic is going to get them to take action.

    • ChuckECheese says:

      My ASUS warranty actually stated that they would replace the computer if it would not be repaired within 2 months. Dunno if that’s still the case.

  8. pitawg says:

    This sounds like the wall-wart for my ASUS Transformer. It overheats to scorching temps. It stops powering the unit once in a while. Stick it in the freezer for a little bit, take it back out, then it works again for a while. (Not handy since it is also a USB2 data connection, using the USB3 cable, with a custom over-volt 15v supply. Will allow data to computer via USB2 function, but will not charge from the 5v coming from a computer. So you’re out of luck unless you get the voltage up to 11v minimum on the cable.)

    This is the same experience many others have reported. Seems like the power convertor design was bad. It also looks like they spread usage of it and it’s kin to more of their product offerings. They may be locked into using this due to contracts with manufacturers.

  9. bluetech says:

    You should either ask for a replacement since they are unable to get the required parts in a reasonable amount of time or a warranty extension to cover the time you have been without it

    • Harrkev says:

      Or, you could ask for a pony. Seriously, you can ASK for anything you want. Getting it is the hard part.

  10. dandadan says:

    A word to the wise, Asus and Sony are essentially the same machine. And both companies hate their customers. I have had the experience with both companies and it did not go well.

    As a service tech there are machines you DO NOT BUY or work on.

    1) Sony – Machines are OK service is like going to war with them
    2) Asus – Poor quality control, bad OEM software and enhancements – Service does not exist and when you get it, they don’t know how to fix their own products.

    We had some of the new Asus laptops with dual integrated graphics on them. Only problem was the drivers were bad. Asus website was sending out bad drivers. We had to go to the manufacturers site (Nvidia) to get the drivers to work. Awfully put together technology. They don’t stay with a model long enough to get it working smoothly, then they come out with an entire new way of doing things and abandon the old one. So essentially nothing works well.

    My advise is to get rid of the machine and get a reliable one. Dell XPS machines are the same as Alienware inside for hundreds less and they are actually a decent machine.

  11. Halfabee says:

    I drooled over the ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) laptops on Amazon last year but there were numerous bad reviews complaining specifically about the adapter connection failing on several ROG models. I bought an ASUS N Series instead and it has been rock solid. If you bought an ROG laptop there, you couldn’t say you weren’t forewarned.

  12. SigV says:

    I had a very similar experience with Toshiba. I’ve owned 4 Toshiba laptops. I’d had good luck with them in the past. But, my last machine was a lemon. I didn’t have it a month and I had to send it in for repair (bad DVD combo drive). After 30 days in the shop, they finally admitted they couldn’t get the parts. And, since it was now discontiued, I reluctantly agreed to replacing it with the next model down. It’s been in the shop as well (touchpad quit).

    I wont’ be buying Toshiba products anymore.