Home Depot Pushes Free Assembly That Isn’t All That Free

homer

When shopping for a grill at Home Depot, Amy and her spouse had a requirement that they didn’t think was too onerous. They wanted a grill that had not yet been assembled, so it would fit in their car and so they would only be able to blame themselves if it were put together wrong. “But…but…but… FREE assembly!” insisted employees at their local store, dragging them into an illogical spiral where “free” actually means “we can rent you a truck for $19.99.”

My spouse and I shopped around for a new barbecue grill and found one that we liked at Home Depot. After looking around at the pre-assembled grills, we solidified our choice. My spouse approached the customer service counter and asked if they had the barbecue still in the box as there were several on the floor already assembled. The customer service representative indicated that they offer free assembly so we wouldn’t have to assemble it. We understand this concept, it’s nice and all, but I have a mid-sized SUV which won’t hold an assembled barbecue grill and, not to be mean, but I don’t trust someone else to assemble something that creates fire from propane and hope that they screwed in all the nuts and bolts. Also, most of the floor models were scratched (stainless steel lids and knobs) and only two of them had the instruction manuals.

So, again, my spouse asked if the customer service representative could please check the back for one in the box. She sighed rather loudly and called. She mumbled something about people “wanting it IN THE BOX” (like this was a new concept). When she hung up, she said they would check and call her back. Twenty minutes later, I asked her to call again since they must have forgotten about it or are having trouble locating one. She again sighs at me and places the call. She asks “Did you find it yet? Yeah, they are STILL waiting” (as if we would leave after a certain period of time). After a few minutes, another employee walks up with a phone to his ear. Apparently they are now less than 10 feet from each other and talking to each other on the phone.

The other employee comes up to us and says there are 10 grills in that store but he can’t find any in the box. He counts how many are on the floor already pre-assembled, seven. So the two of them start looking on the computer again. I look over and count how many pre-assembled grills there are, I count 10. I mention that there are 10 on the floor. The guy from the back counts again. He agrees. Then he tells us how their assembler recently quit. I’m thinking he must have assembled everything in the store and assembled himself out of a job!

Back to the customer service representative who asks us if we want one pre-assembled since the “assembly is free.” We decline as it will not fit in our car and she immediately suggests that for $19.99 we can rent one of their trucks. Uhm, no thanks. I asked her to call another Home Depot in the area to check if they have the grill still in the box. This request was met with a glare from the representative, another sigh and she reluctantly called another Home Depot.

After a few minutes on the phone, she says they do not have one in the box. Of course. She then asks “Did you want me to call another store?” in the most sarcastic, valley girl tone. Uhm, no. She again suggests that we can rent one of their trucks for $19.99. So, in essence, the “free assembly” is not free. It costs you $19.99 to rent their truck to get your pre-assembled grill home.

I left negative feedback on Home Depot’s website. I received a call from their manager almost a week later. She indicated that she would be happy to deliver the grill to our home. And how soon would that happen? Well, she has people going out in our area in two days. So I would have to wait two more days, then I would have to take off work to be present for the delivery, and I would have to tip the boys who drop it off. Somehow, the “free assembly” is still not so free.

I declined her offer, she asked me why. I told her how I don’t like nor appreciate Home Depot finding a way to rip me off for their so called “free assembly” and it is apparently throughout ALL Home Depots, not just the one near my home.

Thanks Home Depot for trying to charge me more! The moral: nothing is ever FREE!

Comments

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  1. AustinTXProgrammer says:

    Doesn’t sound like they ever pushed free delivery. It’s also possible that the OP could have borrowed a truck, asked a friend for help, or even possibly laid the seats down in their mid sized SUV and put the grill in flat.

    And as far as an item that makes fire from propane? Those parts are nearly always preassembled. After spending 2-3 hours putting together my new grill 2 weeks ago I think preassembled is the way to go.

    • Captain Spock says:

      I fail to understand why they should have to “borrow a truck” or “ask a friend for help” when all they want is the original manufacturers box that will fit in their vehicle that they have with them.

      • Raszy says:

        Then they should not of opted for free assembly. Pretty cut and dry I think.

      • longfeltwant says:

        Why should they “have to”? If they want the grill, which is only available pre-assembled, then that’s why they would “have to”. If they can forgo the grill, then they don’t “have to”. It’s a simple case of availability.

        I think this article is a little weak. An item a customer wanted wasn’t available, and the customer was dissatisfied by the dry wit of the counter jockeys. This story is unremarkable; it is par for retail.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          Did commenters suddenly turn anti-consumer today, WTF?

          The business practice is anti-consumer, since they are preventing the OP from purchasing a grill in the manufacturer’s box. Some people actually don’t like pre-assembly. Home Depot should always have stock on hand for these people; otherwise you risk alienating your consumer base.

          This is a very easy to understand consumer stance.

          • StarKillerX says:

            Maybe they did have some unassembled but they sold already.

            We don’t know as the OP didn’t say as she was to busy complain that she “would have to tip the boys who drop it off” if she had it delivered.

            She wanted something a certain way, they didn’t have it that way and offered her several alternative and she’s all butt hurt over it. Meanwhile from the tone of her letter it’s a fair bet that had she not been offered any of these alternatives she would have been butt hurt over that as well.

            This story basically boils down to OP going on a rant because the store didn’t have what she wanted, for whatever reason.

            Maybe I should send in a complaint to the site, last week I went to buy stick of pepperoni, but the evil corporate entity, in a midst of an anti-consumer frenzy they cut all the sticks in half. Why should I be forced to buy two half sticks when I wanted a full one? This is obviously unfair and requires immediate federal regulation, and probably a multi-million dollar lawsuit, to resolve!

            • Anubis says:

              I have to call out the tipping part. HD policy is to never accept tips. If the OP had to tip, it was his/her own choice. There is no way there is required tipping for delivery.

    • J. Cohen says:

      Why are we all okay with Home Depot pre-assembling all of their grills, but fly into a rage when Best Buy open up every computer system to do what ever it is the geeks think needs to be done?

      • chucklesjh says:

        Maybe because Best Buy charges you for everything and tends to screw it up? OP had other options such as borrowing a truck, or as AustinTXProgrammer said, lay it in flat. My neighbor brought home an average-sized grill in his Subaru Outback, and it isn’t considered a “mid-size SUV”.

        • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

          I have a Honda CRV and have managed to haul a grill home with it, along with things far larger than a grill.

      • jimbo831 says:

        What a dumb question. Best Buy charges you money for “whatever it is the geeks think needs to be done.” Home Depot on the other hand was not charging any extra. If this guy wants a grill not assembled so badly, why not order one from Amazon, or try another store. Most of them will be pre-assembled though.

    • CommonSense(ಠ_ಠ) says:

      WTF???
      They made right with an OP and then OP was a jerk to the manager.
      They could have dropped it off and put in their backyard.
      Why would the OP have to tip for free delivery???

      It sounds like the OP really did not want the grill as the manager went above and beyond to deliver a fully assembled grill for free.

      FYI, if I was the OP I would have removed some screws to separate the grill to fit in my SUV then put it back together when I got home in the first place.

  2. Torgonius wants an edit button says:

    Um, you don’t want the free assembly, so why are you complaining about it?

    They never promised free delivery.

    • J. Cohen says:

      Home Depot is one of those big box store for the do-it-yourself type. Don’t they think that their customers might just want to do-it-themselves when it comes to assembly?

      It’s often hard to tell if the floor models have all the parts, accessories, and manuals. And they tend to get scratched and dented.

      • GuyGuidoEyesSteveDaveâ„¢ says:

        When’s the last time you assembled your own garbage disposal or washing machine?

        • Timbojones says:

          When was the last time you bought a garbage disposal or washing machine that came from the manufacturer “some assembly required”? Installation, sure; removing the shipping interlocks, sure. I have done those things with a washing machine rather than have it delivered and installed. If I wanted a garbage disposal I would install it myself.

  3. rlmiller007 says:

    1. Most people would love to have this pre-assemled. 2. It’s not Home Depots fault your vehicle is too small. 3. They offered a solution within their means. Home Depot wins this one. No one is forcing you to “Rent” the vehicle so the argument is false. F.Y.I. I hate these big box stores but what else are they supposed to do. Load it into an employees car and deliver it?

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      You’re blaming the OP for having a smaller car, instead of blaming HD for not having an un-assembled grill for them to purchase?

      Sorry, I don’t buy into your just-world hypothesis http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Just-world_hypothesis

      • ajaxd says:

        A lot of stuff in HD requires a large vehicle – it’s a store that caters to home improvement and construction. Besides, it doesn’t take long to take off some of the parts of the grills that are sticking out – like trays, legs, etc… – it will fit in a mid-size SUV just fine. It the time it took to type this complaint the OP could have had the grill already. The gas burning piece comes pre-assembled even in boxed grilles – that complaints is also not valid.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          “it’s a store that caters to home improvement and construction”

          No, it’s a store that caters to people from general homeowner to general contractor.

          Home improvement and construction? Why would they even have grills if not to appeal to homeowners? If they targeted ONLY construction they wouldn’t even allow homeowners in, they’d have to be contractors with a business license.

          And, since it apparently needs to be said, not every homeowner has a truck that can fit a fully assembled grill. But nearly all of them have a car that can fit a grill in the box. Duh.

          • GrimJack says:

            I would say that a store where 95% of the merchandise they sell would be used in home improvement or home construction absolutely ‘caters’ to home improvement and construction customers.

      • Such an Interesting Monster says:

        Why would you blame a store for not having an item you want? They didn’t have the item she wanted in the form she wanted it. That wasn’t their fault. They did their best to accommodate them, yet they consistently declined.

        Suck it up and try Lowes. Or Walmart. Or Target. Or maybe not be such an entitled, whiny, and aggravating customer.

        Y’know, if it didn’t fit in their car she could have bought one anyway and had them partially disassemble it so it would fit. But noooo, that would have been too easy and wouldn’t have aligned with their arrogant quest to buy one completely unassembled in a box.

        • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

          Why would I blame the store for not having the item I want?

          WTF? Why WOULDN’T I blame them? They are the store, tasked with having goods on hand for me to purchase.

          Who the hell am I supposed to blame? The Toothfairy?

          Come on!

          • Such an Interesting Monster says:

            Don’t be retarded. So if you’re looking for a specific item and a store doesn’t sell it you go off the rails? Or do you shrug and try another store? Please, just stop already.

        • HogwartsProfessor says:

          Bullshit. There’s not one thing wrong with wanting to buy an item new in the box. What if I were buying it at the end of the year and wanted to store it until I could use it the next summer? I’ve bought display models before, but there are times when transport, etc. are simply easier with the item in the box.

          Imagine a scenario where the customer was moving soon. I know this isn’t the case in the original article, but suppose they wanted the grill for their new place, but didn’t want to try and move it assembled to prevent damage?

          Also, if they took it out of the box, it becomes OPEN BOX. How do I know some jackhole employee didn’t leave something off? They said only two of the grills had the manual. That is no longer a complete item; it is USED with parts missing.

          • Such an Interesting Monster says:

            Absolutely nothing wrong with wanting an item in an unopened box. But Home Depot apparently does not offer such a thing. So instead of being obnoxious and annoying everyone around you how bout you just find a store that does sell what you want?

            If Home Depot knows that the vast majority of their customers see pre-assembled grills as a bonus then of course they’re going to pre-assemble as many as possible. This is just good business. Cause I’m betting no one is going to want to wait around to have their new grill assembled.

            Wait, I see it now… this future Consumerist post:

            “Home Depot makes me wait while they assemble my grill, wants to charge me for ‘free assembly’

            Jackie writes in to tell us of the harrowing experience she had at Home Depot. Let’s all wish her a speedy recovery from this ordeal that has left her shaken, stirred, and with a lost faith in humanity.

            ‘My husband and I were shopping at Home Depot for a grill and noticed they were offering free assembly. We thought this was great as my husband is a numbnut who can barely tie his shoes, let alone assemble a device that converts propane to fire. But much to our chagrin, none of the grills were assembled! They were all sitting in the original boxes! When I inquired about having one assembled for free the girl rolled her eyes and told me that it would take at least 45 minutes as their one and only assembly person was on break. Unacceptable! My time is valuable! I’m special! I can’t be expected to wait around for a free service! What is this, Sears???

            So I insisted she call around and see if another Home Depot nearby had one assembled, cause I’d much rather waste my time and gas by traveling to another Home Depot than simply wait here. She rolled her eyes and sighed, made a few calls and nope, none assembled. By now my husband and I are livid that Home Depot wouldn’t have exactly what we wanted pre-assembled and waiting for us when we just happened to wander in looking around. I mean, they’re a store, they should always have what we want, right?

            Fed up with having to wait we left. I immediately went home and filed a negative review of Home Depot for not having exactly what we wanted when we wanted it and expecting us to wait while one of their minimum wage workers had the audacity to not come back early from his break. Much to my surprise 2 days later I got a call from the store’s manager offering to not only assemble the grill I wanted free of charge but to also deliver it to my home, also free of charge. I was outraged! Doesn’t she know I would have to take a day off from work to be home for the delivery AND have to tip the delivery person??? I mean, honestly, the NERVE! I’ve been a loyal Home Depot customer for the last 342 years, having spend at least a quarter of a billion dollars there, but after this I’ll never, EVER shop there again!”

            And yeah, don’t even try and tell me it wouldn’t ever happen.

        • DogiiKurugaa says:

          The way the article reads also seems to indicate they had several of the model they wanted assembled. If that is the case, may I ask why they did that? It almost feels like this is a blatant attempt at a moneygrab by Home Depot. Anyone who doesn’t have a large enough vehicle or a friend to bum off of would have to pay $20 to rent their truck if they wanted the grill that badly.

          • Jawaka says:

            “May I ask why they did that?”

            Probably because most of their customers prefer to have them pre-installed rather than having two spend two hours putting it together themselves. And God forbid that they provide a solution for people who don’t have a large enough vehicle to bring it home. Those bastards.

        • Anubis says:

          As someone who works for HD, THIS is the correct response. I’ve had to partially disassemble grills all the time to fit them in the tiny cars people bring for their huge purchases. It’s pretty normal, just a pain for us. But it’s normal for people to buy a product that they intend to pick up later, and asking HD to partially disassemble it before they return is also acceptable.

          Still gotta say something isn’t right about the OP. Tipping is not acceptable @ HD. We can’t accept tips, so the whole “tip the delivery people” thing isn’t true at all.

      • Jawaka says:

        I’m blaming the OP for making a big deal out of nothing. Go home, order the stupid grill from their website and have it delivered or get it from another retailer. No retailer has an obligation to have what you want in stock.

      • MonkeyMonk says:

        Essentially this story boils down to: Couple goes to HD to buy a grill, HD is out of stock on the grill they wanted. HD offers a slightly alternative product at the same price. Alternative product is too big for couple’s car so they decline. That’s it.

        Sure. We can maybe blame HD for not having the grill they wanted in stock. But this happens ALL THE TIME in retail.

        There is literally nothing to see in this story.

        • Dieflatermous says:

          They weren’t out of stock, they had 10 of the model the customer wanted… all of which were already assembled and scratched up and missing instruction manuals.

          The rest of the world calls those “floor models”.

  4. Raszy says:

    Free delivery and free assembly are two different things. One is for bringing it to your house and the other is putting it together.

  5. Blueskylaw says:

    From what I understand, the grill assembly is free if you buy it already assembled. The OP’s problem was that she didn’t have a vehicle large enough to accomodate a pre-assembled grill which is not Home Despots fault. They didn’t have a grill in the box, they suggested renting a truck for “only” $19.99 and you refused.

    In essence, assembly is free if your car is big enough to hold it already assembled.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      The car issue is not HD’s fault, sure. But not having unassembled inventory is.

      • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

        It may very well be a case of having little demand for the product unassembled. One or two people across many many stores may not warrant not selling a $200-1000 item. If 99% of the people want it assembled, they run the risk of having a box sit there never being purchased.

  6. Dagny Taggart says:

    Unless you are required to rent the truck if you buy the pre-assembled grill, assembly IS free.

    Your real issue should have been the length of time it took to determine if they had any unassembled grills.

  7. cameronl says:

    Doesn’t smell quite right. HD is a warehouse store. There is NO “in the back” to check.

    • IphtashuFitz says:

      “In the back” for stores like Home Depot really means in the overhead shelves where inventory is stored. They regularly restock from the upper shelves using those standup forklift thingies. On top of that there usually is a smaller “back” area that’s used for unloading delivery trucks and short-term storage before they can move larger items out to the retail floor for storage in the overhead shelves. Just because they’re a warehouse store doesn’t mean they don’t deliver and stock inventory away from the customers. It’s much safer that way.

      • Golfer Bob says:

        Agreed. There isn’t much room for big ticket storage in the back warehouse and it’s not really the business model. If they wanted one “in the box” so be it, but they needed to bend a little to be accomodated instead of being whiney and patronizing over not getting what they wanted the instant they wanted it.

      • humphrmi says:

        Indeed. Years ago, I worked for a local home improvement store in the Chicago area, managing the “back” warehouse. The “back” warehouse could hold about one quarter of the inventory that the sales floor could hold. Mostly it was used to hold the next seasonal item, which they had to buy early and store until it went out. For instance, fake Christmas trees would arrive around September / October and have to sit in back until mid-November (no Christmas creep when I worked there). There was no room in the “back” for excess current inventory, if all the grills on the sales floor (which were all the grills they had) hadn’t sold by September they were blown out on sale or shipped back.

  8. kranky says:

    Grill assembled for free. OP can’t transport it that way. HD offers truck rental. OP declines.
    HD offers free delivery instead. OP declines.

    And somehow this means free assembly isn’t free? And it’s a way for them to rip you off? It’s ripping you off because they don’t have unassembled grills?

    • Blackadar says:

      Exactly.

      OP sounds like an incredible whiner.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        To be fair, the free delivery was after several days, and would still take 2 days.

        Or, she could have gotten a grill the day she entered the store if they just had one un-assembled.

        • StarKillerX says:

          Well I might have agreed with you if the OP hadn’t written

          ” ….I would have to take off work to be present for the delivery, and I would have to tip the boys who drop it off. Somehow, the “free assembly” is still not so free…..”

          Before this they seemed a little like they were whiney and looking to be offended, but after reading that part there was no doubt in my mind that in this case they surely are being whiney and are going out of their way to find things to complain about.

          • Elizabeth B says:

            I think the part about having to take time off is necessary. If she loses 3 hours, she loses the pay that comes with those hours or she loses time on her weekend or whenever she has to make up those hours (not every job has this option). A free delivery isn’t free if it means losing income to do it, when she could have had it during her first trip to the store.

            • StarKillerX says:

              The fact that the OP would need to take time off of work is meaningless as it as an alternative to try and please a customer because they didn’t have the item packaged in the way the OP wanted.

              Also, let’s not overlook the OP also was crying that it wasn’t free in part because they “..would have to tip the boys who drop it off…” which I think shows that the OP is going out of their way be unhappy, and in fact it actually makes me question if it was the store employee or the OP who had the attitude in the store.

              • Blackadar says:

                Yep. It was the tipping comment that made it easy to side with Home Depot here.

              • humphrmi says:

                “the OP is going out of their way be unhappy”… you hit the nail on the head, and unfortunately we see a lot of that here. After they offered free delivery, I probably would have sighed and said “Fine, thanks, when will you be out?”

        • longfeltwant says:

          Yeah. But they didn’t, and there’s nothing wrong with that. A normal customer would have simply shrugged and left, because the store didn’t have what he wanted.

          • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

            And you’d probably blame them for that too.

            I just sense a lot of Friday OP hate.

    • Jules Noctambule says:

      If I have to take a day off work to wait for a delivery, it isn’t exactly ‘free’ to me since it costs me a day’s pay.

    • Extended-Warranty says:

      I’ll say it. Some women are impossible to please. I’d be inclined to think that this is generally the way the store sells the most of its grills (still, I wouldn’t have set up all of them). Having worked with the public, I’ve seen very few people uninterested in a free assembly, some people even make the purchase because of it, and returns are way more likely. She was offered FREE DELIVERY of an item that had FREE ASSEMBLY, and what did she do? Complain about how hard it made her life, especially having to “tip the boys”. That line is one of the most snide remarks I’ve seen in a while.

      I saw the box that my grill came in, and it was WAY bigger than the finished product. They need to be packaged well to avoid damage. I’m sure if the OP purchased one with damage, she’d be even more pissed. Did all of the extra sytrofoam and cardboard make it more compact for your car? I’m really interested to understand how the box fit, but assembled unit did not.

    • DerangedKitsune says:

      Frankly, I wouldn’t trust the assclowns at this HD to assemble my grill if I was the OP. The sheer customer disservice exhibited by the floor staff, the statement that their assembler walked off, the lack of quality of the floor units…. yeah, no way in hell would I want to do business with that place. If they gave me the whole unit free, with free delivery, I’d still sell it off just to be rid of it.

      Can’t blame the OP for not wanting to do business with them, though the reasoning could hvae been better/clearer in the post.

  9. AtlantaCPA says:

    Can we please have the title changed to reflect something close to reality?

    • TheBusDriver says:

      “Woman is pissed she has a car that is not big enough to load a grill, and does not want to pay $20 to rent truck from Home Depot” would not get people to click the link.

    • Extended-Warranty says:

      Woman offerred free assembly and free delivery, scammed by having to tip the boys!

  10. deathbecomesme says:

    What a douche. It’s not their fault you can’t find a friend with a truck. They have a service ($20 truck rental) specifically for people who don’t have trucks but need one. Just because they offered it doesn’t mean they were soliciting one thing(free assembly) but gave another. They DO have free assembly, it’s just not free to you because you don’t have the equipment to get it home. That’s your problem, not theirs. AND you left negative feedback! I hope you left negative feedback about the employees attitude and not the fact that you don’t have a truck so can’t get the grill home.

    • StarKillerX says:

      Well, their attitude makes me question their comments about the attitude of the store’s employees.

      Complaining that the delivery isn’t free because they would “have to tip the boys who drop it off.” Seriously?

      • MrEvil says:

        Back when I worked at Lowe’s there was a strict no tipping policy for drivers and loaders. No doubt the same goes for Home Depot.

        • Anubis says:

          Yep, there is a strict no tipping policy at HD. The OP is trying to find excuses to be unhappy.

  11. atthec44 says:

    Assembly is free, renting a truck isn’t.

    End of story.

  12. maxamus2 says:

    You lost me at the end when you said you would have to tip the delivery boys. Who the frack tips delivery boys? Pizza delivery maybe, but that’s it.

    • JoeTheDragon says:

      Pizza delivery people drive there owns cars and need the tips to cover car costs as the store does not pay that much for each run.

      • shepd says:

        Can pizza delivery people not claim miles in the US?

        Just wondering, because up here in Canada, if your employer cheaps out and refuses to pay directly, you just fill out a T777 and claim against your taxes. You get quite a lot of money for your miles. You get somewhere between 40 and 50 cents a km, which would pay for gas and maintenance if you drove a motorhome.

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      It must be a regional thing — In many parts of the country, it’s pretty much the norm to tip someone who delivers appliances or furniture, if the task involves more than just a curbside drop off.

  13. RandomLetters says:

    I’m with the OP that I don’t like preassembled items. I had one to many times finding something not done right (the eliptical where Sears (I know, I know) forgot to bolt the arms to the frame sticks out in my memory). Now I look online to see what is offered, decide between them, then call the store before driving to them. If they don’t have it in the box I move on to the next store’s website. A little research saves time and a lot of frustration.

    • Jimmy60 says:

      I hate pre-assembled items because I love assembling things. It’s one of the things that brings pure joy to me. Pre-assembled is a significant reduction in value to me. I may have taken the grill but I would have insisted on a steep discount to represent the loss of value to me.

    • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

      I’ve seen the pre-assembled grills in HD and Lowes and they are NOT properly assembled for permanent use. The nuts and bolts are often loose and clearly the employees do this hastily. On top of that, you’ve got an item that’s been on the floor for months and touched by who knows how many people.

      I’m with the OP, and don’t care if assembly is free or not. I’d rather do it at home where I can do it myself, right the first time, and by doing so have a more intimate understand of my appliance and how it works.

      • AtlantaCPA says:

        That’s part of why I ordered my home depot grill online instead of buying in store. I actually enjoy putting it together too!

      • RandomLetters says:

        I did have fun with Sears when they couldn’t find the bolts that were supposed to hold the arms to my eliptical. They wanted to order them for me. I told them to go ahead then went to the tool section and got a flathead screwdriver and an allen wrench and disassembled their floor model for the two bolts I needed. Then I went back to the guy in sports and told him that when they came in to use them to put his back together.

    • Geekybiker says:

      I’m with you here. I hate preassembled stuff. Who know if it was done right, or is missing parts. Who know what has been damaged while sitting on the sale floor. Those grills are *used* as far as I’m concerned.

    • Anubis says:

      I wish everyone would shop like you. I always have people show up at our store and get upset the item they wanted wasn’t there, or like the OP, the manner they wanted wasn’t available. We have a website that will tell you if the item is in stock. There’s a phone # you can call to check to see if the item exists. You can order the item online and often gets free shipping. There is no excuse for customers to just show up, demand the item they want to appear out of thin air, and then take it out on minimum wage staff that they wasted their time and gas coming to our store.

  14. synimatik says:

    I kind of agree that this is an ill placed rant. Also, “I don’t like nor appreciate” means the exact same thing… So, yeah.

  15. chiieddy says:

    The assembly isn’t free. Home Depot grills are approximately $20 – $50 more than anywhere you can buy it unassembled.

  16. Jeff asks: "WTF could you possibly have been thinking? says:

    1. Bribe friend (a six pack usually does it) with truck to follow you to the store and pick it up.
    2. Buy assembled grill.
    3. Load grill onto friend’s truck.
    4. Enjoy!

  17. Citizen says:

    after reading this letter I bet the OP also had a sarcastic tone with the associate that was trying and failing to help her. Also I see no where that Home Depot said anything about free delivery, so I have no idea what the headline is about.

    • StarKillerX says:

      Yeah, after reading the whole letter I questioned who had the attitude problem in the store that day.

    • Princess Beech loves a warm cup of treason every morning says:

      I was wondering if the Wells Fargo EBT lady just happened to be shopping in Home Depot, too? Seems like the “valley girl” reference is getting popular. :P (http://con.st/10030213)

  18. Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

    I think the low un-assembled inventory is nation-wide for grills. That’s how they operate, and I dislike it as well.

    • Dave B. says:

      Probably because they don’t want to get sued because some idiot that can’t even assemble a ham sandwich decided to try and put a gas grill together and ended up blowing the back of their house off.

      • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

        No, that is not why. It’s because a large of people are too dumb to assemble a grill. Or lazy. I find it rather fun.

        • Dave B. says:

          “It’s because a large of people are too dumb to assemble a grill”

          Ummm, isn’t that what I said?

          • Loias supports harsher punishments against corporations says:

            No, you said they’d blow themselves up and HD would get sued. No one would get sued, they’d just be sitting there with 30 parts and no idea how to assemble it.

          • Coleoptera Girl says:

            Not exactly. You said, “they’ll assemble it wrong and sue” and Loais said, “they won’t complete the assembly at all or will end up with a non-functional grill.” Besides, you can’t really sue of you assembled the grill. It’d be your fault if it scorched your yard or exploded because you assembled it wrong. You’d be able to sue if HD (or any other store) assembled the grill improperly, though.

        • StarKillerX says:

          Or maybe most people simply have better things to do with their time then assemble their grill?

          Let’s be honest here, it’s not like they are challenging to assemble or anything and instead are just another time sink.

  19. Phildogger says:

    Amy sounds like a real PITA. Did she clutch her pearls while speaking to the employees? Lady, either borrow a truck or GTFO. And comments like “valley girl tone” just make you look even worse. Do us all a favor, Amy. Beat it. I’m sure there must be a Starbucks or 3 you can hit on your way home. Enjoy a Mocha-Cookie-Soy-Half Caf-Chino (Chocolate Shake) on your way home, and try not to let those hourly wage earners ruin your day.

  20. DrPrepperSC says:

    Just delete this story and thank Home Depot for trying to do a good job. Some people can not be helped.

  21. TennesseeJeff says:

    In addition, what prevented the OP from ordering online and having it delivered to their home? It would have been in a box then. And delivered…..

    • Such an Interesting Monster says:

      But then she’d have to take off a day from work waiting for the UPS guy and feel a faint twinge deep down inside about possibly having to tip him.

      NOT FREE!!!!!!

      • VintageLydia says:

        I’m so glad your employers offers unlimited PTO but simply taking off of work at such short notice isn’t possible for everyone.

      • Jules Noctambule says:

        Where do you work that taking a day off won’t cost you a day’s pay or use up a vacation/sick day? I want to work there, too!

        • Such an Interesting Monster says:

          So you never ever order anything online because you have no way of being home for the UPS guy? Or do you find some way to figure it out and make it work for you?

  22. AtlantaCPA says:

    I’d like to summarize the comments so far:
    1. The OP is a serious whiner.
    2. Pre-assembly is either awesome or sucks, but you should have a choice.
    3. Free assembly means they assemble it without charging you more than unassembled, costs related to your personal choice of transportation are not the store’s fault.
    4. Friday morning is not the time to test the patience of Consumerist Commenters.

  23. Here to ruin your groove says:

    Considering these sorts of posts (whiny rants) keep making their way onto the site, how about a poll if readers find the OP’s complaint to be ridiculous or justified?

    • JMK from CT says:

      Whats whiny about it? She went to HD to buy a grill still in the box. Simple. She didnt want an assembled one. The store clerks should have told her that they didnt have any in a box. The OP then should have gone elsewhere. What part of ‘the grill wont fit in my vehicle’ didnt the store clerks understand? If the clerks had listened then understood the issue there wouldnt have been a problem. No, they insisted that the OP buy a pre-assembled unit.

      • longfeltwant says:

        They said there were ten units in the building, and all ten were assembled, therefore there were none unassembled. They listened and offered to solve her problem with a truck rental. She declined. Somehow, the OP felt aggrieved about this situation.

        The only part of this story which sounds bad for Home Depot is that the clerk wasn’t thrilled to be dealing with this customer. Perhaps the clerk was unreasonable; perhaps the OP was a whiner, a hypothesis supported by the rest of the details.

        • VintageLydia says:

          And yet if Best Buy does the same thing with its laptops, we Consumeristas rage and rage and rage. Perhaps the tone of the letter was whiny, but the complaint itself is valid. It’s not like the grills come to the store assembled. Assembling is a service they provide. It’s also one they can’t always assume every customer ever will choose just because it’s free.

          • Such an Interesting Monster says:

            Oh I’m betting that’s very much what they do assume, and rightfully so. I have to imagine that the vast majority of people looking to buy a grill see “free assembly” as a major selling point. Home Depot knows this and makes a point of assembling every one that they have because the chance of getting someone like the OP is extremely slim.

            • VintageLydia says:

              I’m sorry but I’d rather not retailers make choices for me. If the grills came off the truck preassembled, that’s one thing. Hell, if it were store policy to never sell a grill unassembled, it’s a stupid policy but I’d be less irritated. But it’s billed as a choice the consumer has and I think it’s pretty valid for a customer to be mad that the choice is made for her. She has very valid reasons to not take them up on their offer beyond the lack of pickup truck (she notes in the letter some grills were missing parts/manuals some were all scratched up.) And I assure you, she is not alone. Several commenters on this article noted they feel the same way about preassembled items. HD advertises having a choice about assembly but in reality they don’t.

              It feels like we’re in the bizarro world of consumerist. We can all agree the tone in her letter was whiny, I think, but I never would think the complaint itself would be under question here at C-ist.

              • StarKillerX says:

                Your right, they didn’t have what she wanted, an unassembled grill, but that does not make HD some horrible company because they offered her an alternative. Also as they didn’t have what she wasn’t the OP should have moved on rather then continue her self entitle ranting and ravings.

              • The Colonel says:

                The difference is that Best Buy charges for optimization. If Home Depot charged 50 dollars to assemble the grill, and then had all of the grills assembled, therefore everyone had to pay the 50 dollars whether they wanted it or not, then the situations would be the same.

              • Such an Interesting Monster says:

                They never advertised a choice. All the grills were pre-assembled at no additional charge. That was the one and only option. If this was unacceptable you simply leave and find another store, not make a giant stink about it.

          • RandomLetters says:

            Your Best Buy analogy is off a little bit. If HD took the grill out, assembled it and then added a beer holder, a set of BBQ tools and a other items and refused to sell it to you without those items then it would be the same.

            • VintageLydia says:

              I’ll agree the analogy doesn’t work 100%, but one can also argue that it’s unreasonable to expect every grill buying customer will have easy access to a pick up truck while almost all of them could fit an in-box grill in a vehicle they already own. You have to question why HD would assemble the ENTIRE stock of a large product except to drum up the now needed truck rentals. Truck rentals they wouldn’t get if things were left in box.

    • toadboy65 says:

      I agree completely. That would make the site more unbiased and, I think, more interesting.

    • StarKillerX says:

      That’s a good idea

  24. Golfer Bob says:

    Wow, I’ve never read a complaint letter drafted through a Spielberg / Scorsese collaboration.

  25. donjumpsuit says:

    I am imagining all the “Sighing” going on is valid. I rarely have employees “Sigh” when I have a valid logical question to present to them which falls within their responsibilities as an employee. I only have people “Sigh” when I continue to pester and act like a bitch.

    • CrazyEyed says:

      Thats what I was thinking. Judging by the language of the OP, I’m sensing the OP had some questionable body language such as eye rolls or attitude when presenting her logical questions.

  26. sirwired says:

    They don’t force you to rent the truck; you just happen to need to. It’s not like they’d refuse to let you take the thing away in your buddy’s pickup truck. The assembly still sounds “free” to me.

    It doesn’t surprise me they don’t have any unassembled grills. Often stuff like that is not designed for user assembly (lots of fiddly little parts to get lost), so the store just goes ahead and assembles them as soon as they come in the door.

    • bnjjad says:

      A grill that is marketed to a consumer that comes from the factory in a box is not designed for user assembly? Have you ever built a Grill? Not that difficult. Besides, who in their right mind would want a person working at Home Depot (who, lets be realistic, is not a grill assembly expert from whatever company makes it) for minimum wage stuck in the back putting 100 grills together on the floor to have assembled their grill? Not me.

      I agree though that the assembly is “free” but its not being very consumer friendly. I actually only have 1 friend that has a truck and who knows if he could be available to get it for me (he is a firefighter). I would probably be in the same situation.

      • Awesome McAwesomeness says:

        I would imagine that someone who puts together hundreds of grills is far more of an expert than the average Joe who wants to assemble it themselves. Just because someone works at Home Depot does not make them a raging idiot incapable of putting together a grill.

  27. Here to ruin your groove says:

    Home Depot Pushes Inefficient Gas Monster on Green Loving BBQ Enthusiast

    Jerry loves the earth. He also loves a really good steak. When he saw a deal at his local Home Depot for grills with free assembly, he must have thought he hit the jackpot! His day was quickly ruined by the staff who informed him that grills are big and that he might need some help getting it home. They even had the audacity to mention that they rented trucks (14mpg, RIDICULOUS) for a reasonable price. Regardless, Jerry was determined to get his way.

    “In the nicest way I could, I told that snotty customer service twerp that I shall have my grill without the need of his stupid gas eating truck and that they would need to accommodate me…”

  28. Verucalise (Est.February2008) says:

    I have had the same issue, but at Lowes- no unassembled BBQ’s available. What did my Lowes do for us? They removed the two side shelves on the BBQ, leaving the actual BBQ put together, and it slid into my van very nicely on it’s back.

    OP, you could of asked them to remove the extra pieces on the sides that prevent it from fitting in your SUV. You could of gone to their website and ordered one. You could of even ASKED THE STORE TO ORDER YOU ONE and it would of been about 3-5 days and you could of received one.

    I understand it’s a real PITA when a store puts everything together for you and you don’t want it.(much like BB’s optimization of their laptops) But there are different venues to pursue. I don’t see the store incredibly wrong in this scenario besides jumping the gun and assembling every grill they have in stock.

  29. bonzombiekitty says:

    I can understand being annoyed that they don’t have a grill that is not already assembled. That is a valid complaint.

    But don’t whine about free assembly not really being free. Assembly IS free. The cost of the grill is the same whether you buy it in box or assembled. The fact that the only way you, personally, could get an an assembled grill home was if you rented a truck does not mean that the assembly isn’t free. They weren’t going to make you rent a truck, they just offered it as a means of getting the grill home. Then they offered free delivery which you, understandably, did not want to agree to as it would take even longer and conflicted with your schedule.

    A better complaint:
    “I went to Home Depot and attempted to buy a grill. However, I needed the grill to not be pre-assembled as I had no means of transporting an assembled grill.

    When I asked the employee for an un-assembled grill, I was treated very rudely as if I was being a nuisance. The employee then took a very long time to find that there was not an un-assembled grill. At one point the employees stated that there were 10 grills in stock, 7 of which were assembled even though I could clearly count 10 assembled grills on display.

    Without an un-assembled grill my only option was to rent a truck, which I was not willing to do. After leaving negative feed back, a manager called and offered free delivery. But that was several days later, would take an additional two days, and would require me to take time off from work. So I declined.

    Because you did not have an un-assembled grill, you lost a sale.”

  30. Kanenfawder says:

    Everybody seems to be missing the point here. The problem isn’t that the assembly is or isn’t free. The problem is that the assembly isn’t optional.

    This is no different than if you wanted to buy a laptop from a brick and mortar store. You don’t want any of their extra crap installed. You don’t want it optimized. You don’t want them to have unboxed it. But all those things are free (or not, if you somehow ended up at WorstBuy), and they’ve already done them for you! Why would you want one new in the box?

    • bonzombiekitty says:

      I think we get the real issue, however the OP focused much more on the “Free assembly isn’t free” issue:

      “So, in essence, the “free assembly” is not free. It costs you $19.99 to rent their truck to get your pre-assembled grill home.”

      “I don’t like nor appreciate Home Depot finding a way to rip me off for their so called “free assembly”

      “The moral: nothing is ever FREE!”

      • Anubis says:

        Oddly enough, there are some enterprising customers who *gasp* would take it upon themselves to disassemble the grill enough to make it fit in their vehicle. Believe me, if the box (which is quite large) would fit, then you could probably remove the lid of the grill and it would fit in a similar space. Maybe it wouldn’t work in this instance, we’ll never know. However, it does seem strange that so many people look to others to solve problems for them, when they could be just as happy if they took a second to solve the problem for themselves. Why is everyone so helpless these days? Consider, I get paid the same whether you buy that grill or not. I get paid the same whether you leave happy or not. Yeah, I will try to help you because I’m a decent person, but shouldn’t you be more motivated to make things work than I am?

    • Nigerian prince looking for business partner says:

      I think it’s more like expecting a store like Best Buy to have laptops without an OS pre-installed.

      There is a market for laptops without an OS but so few people are looking for such a product that it isn’t worth it for Best Buy to stock any. They might offer to wipe the harddrive for you but you’re still paying the same price as if it came with Windows.

      I’m guessing the overwhelming majority of grill purchaser want their grills pre-assembled. It’s probably in Lowes & Home Depot’s best interest to get them assembled as soon as they’re off the loading docks.

    • Golfer Bob says:

      No, the problem is the self entitlement and the “customer is always” right BS. The store sells the items they way they want to sell it and to make money the way they want to make it. It’s your choice to buy it or not but forcing every store to bend to your every whim is ridiculous. Where does it stop? Apparently it doesn’t – can’t have any bad customer reviews (no matter how whiney and embelished) submitted to headquarters.

      I could see if there was some actual bad customer service here. They didn’t have the item on hand unassembled and tried several times to accomodate them. It wasn’t advertised to be there unassambled, it wasn’t switched from free assembly to a fee. The customer is being unreasonable and just wants to be a victim for the sake of it.

    • u1itn0w2day says:

      The problem wasn’t assembly. The problem was the op’s logistical issues. It was the op that couldn’t transport an assembled grill in their vehicle.

    • longfeltwant says:

      Correct. That is the issue, and it is not an issue. If you go to a store and the product you want to buy is not in the condition you want, then you don’t buy it. That’s totally normal consumer retail experience, and there is nothing in it to complain loudly about. At most, gripe about it to yourself while driving over to the next store.

  31. kjamesh89 says:

    I don’t think the OP would be happy if the Queen of Englad delivered it herself, after all, you would have to offer her some tea as a thank you. Archetype of a bad consumer.

    • spartan says:

      Thanks for the visual i,age of Queen Elizabeth II wearing one of those Velcro back braces. I still have to wonder whether the crown goes over or under the Best buy baseball cap.

  32. VintageLydia says:

    Although I think her reaction is a tad on the whiny side, I agree with her and think some of it is justified. My husband and I are the same way. We’ve rarely had a preassembled item (assembled in store) that was actually assembled correctly. There is always some bolt missing or something put on backwards or whatever. I also feel like its, well, not QUITE bait and switch, but close. Sure, if you have a pickup truck right there with you, no big deal. You’re covered (if you don’t care about preassembly) but not everyone has a pickup truck. Not even close. But most grills can fit in most vehicles while still boxed. So I look at HD preassembling the same way I see Best Buy “preoptomizing” most (if not all) of the stock. Either way you’re coming in and expect to pay one thing but now confronted with paying more because a decision a store made for you. One they really have no right to make. Even of you had a friend with a pickup you could borrow, you’d still have to leave, arrange a time to meet with your friend, and possibly pay THEM for their gas and time (either through booze, food, or cash.)

  33. Sarek says:

    Stop blaming the OP. I had the same conundrum. The assembled version of the grill I wanted would not fit into my little sedan. Yet the online comments said this particular grill was very hard to assemble. (I have previously assembled several grills myself.) Other online comments said the Home Depot version exclusively came with some better components than available elsewhere.

    I discussed this conundrum with the Home Depot salesman, who turned out to be an asst. manager. He also suggested renting the pickup for 19.99 for 70 minutes. While that would have been enough time, I live alone, and it’s a 2-man job to load and unload this grill. The manager told me to return the next day and he’d handle it. So I did. The manager got another employee, and the 2 of them put an assembled grill into the HD pickup, drove the 12 minutes to my house, unloaded it, and brought it around back for me! They would have even carried it up the stairs to the deck if I had so desired! I offered them a $20 tip, and he said, no thanks!!!

    Great service from HD, and they have ensured customer loyalty.

    • Golfer Bob says:

      Oh stop. Your story says exactly why the original issue is an example of a whiney, self entitled person. When faced with a grill too big and too cumbersome for you and your car, you didn’t throw a tantrum and complain, right? Although Home Depot accommodated you out of good customer service, it was really your responsibility to get the item home either on your own or by asking or hiring someone to do it for you. The fact that many people live alone or don’t own trucks is exactly why these stores offer free delivery and truck rentals.

      They knew they were going to have transportation issues and they should have planned ahead beyond plan A – getting a grill in a box. These folks could have solved the problem by asking for help from friends or family, making plans to rent a truck or having the store order one in a box or accept the store’s offer of free delivery.

      Instead, they chose to be victims for the sake of being victims just because they couldn’t get what they wanted at the exact moment they wanted it and the frustration that resulted was misplaced and blamed on poor customer service.

    • regis-s says:

      You’re right. That was great service from Home Depot. Just because these employees didn’t choose to do the same for the op doesn’t mean they were offering terrible service.

  34. Slow-talking Walter, the fire-engine guy. says:

    Does HD have the market cornered on gas BBQ Grills??

  35. u1itn0w2day says:

    I have to side with Home Depot on this one. I understand the OPs frustration of not being able to get one in a box but if they don’t have one in a box they don’t have one in a box. Delivery shouldn’t be confused with assembly. Logistics is the OPs or any customer’s responsibility. This situation shouldn’t be a surprise to Home Depot either.

  36. mentok1982 says:

    When I bought my grill from Lowes I had to wait about 6 minutes for the employess to find a fetch a boxed grill. I wanted one in the box because it fit in my dad’s Rav4 and I wanted to enjoy the process of assembling it with my dad.

  37. Negentropy says:

    Our Home Depot leaves preassembles outside on display with NO cover!!! Can you say rust??? Also the brand name plates on some were corroded so bad they were half gone.
    I went online to Sears ordered, used promo code, got confirm email, pick up in 2 hours time…
    And knew that it wasn’t “Pre-weathered” or put together by someone who doesn’t care….( I can use a screwdriver)… took about 45min, probably at least the amount of time op spent at HomeDepot with no grill at the end……

  38. MrEvil says:

    Ummmm, I’m pretty sure the Big Box chains have a very strict no tipping policy for their delivery people. Lowe’s did when I worked for them 10 years ago.

    Amy is the type of customer I call a finder. They go around with a huge chip on their shoulder like the entire planet owes them something. When you try to please these people they just find something else to complain about. Like having to tip a delivery driver that isn’t expecting a tip (because his employer forbids it).

    I think the manager at Home Depot is handling this quite reasonably, comping a delivery fee because they can’t deliver a grill in it’s unassembled state.

  39. Moniker Preferred says:

    Ya know…. as I read yet another Moron Story, I find myself wondering WTF is the role of Consumerist? That is, apart from shilling for Consumer Reports. providing a platform for people to post snappy responses.

    Why doesn’t the Consumerist Staff just shortcut the comments? The staff is presumably capable of giving some legitimate advice to the commercially abused, and are surely capable of telling morons that they ARE morons, and then posting the result here so we can be entertained (as the site’s policy says).

  40. DAS37 says:

    Maybe try Lowe’s, if possible. I bought a grill from them last year. While they had a ton of pre-assembled models out front and in the store, there were still plenty of unassembled ones in the box too.

  41. evilpete says:

    Yea, I had problems buying a unassembled garden/ park bench once

  42. VeeKaChu says:

    At my Home Depot last year, we bought a pre-assembled Weber grille that we posited would not fit in our Jeep. The employees then very helpfully offered to dis-assemble it enough to fit. Took ‘em about five minutes, and we left very happy.

    This story doesn’t reflect on HD as a whole, but demonstrates the wide disparity in customer care from location to location.

    • u1itn0w2day says:

      I think Home Depot helped contribute to letting this situation getting as far as it did. I’m surprised with all the standard procedures employees use in these stores they don’t have a process or memo for customers who insist on new in the box. This can’t be the first customer who insisted on new in a box. Actually just bringing up the topic at a meeting should be enough to prevent complaints and wasted time.

      • Anubis says:

        Your assumption is that there never were any grills still in the box. What if there were, but they happened to all be sold out? It does happen.

        Also, there’s something consumers need to learn: the less of a jerk you are, the more accommodating employees are. Notice how in this other story, the associates offered to disassemble the grill, but not for the OP. My guess as to why: I get paid the same whether you buy that grill or not. I offer to do extra work and keep you happy if I feel like it. If you’ve made my day worse by being a pain, I’m going to let you flounder on your own. If you never come back to my store, then I don’t have to worry about you and some other store does. This makes me happy.

  43. There's room to move as a fry cook says:

    “and I would have to tip the boys who drop it off.”

    Really? I’ve never tipped delivery men and never knew it was expected.

  44. The_Fuzz_53 says:

    Le grille? What the hell is that?

  45. Kyle says:

    All these posts slamming Amy and her spouse about finding an alternate way to get a pre-assembled grill home ignores the basic fact THEY DON’T TRUST HOME DEPOT TO ASSEMBLE IT PROPERLY AND WANT TO DO IT THEMSELVES.

    Sorry for shouting, but apparently reading comprehension is at an all-time low here at Consumerist.com.

    • kranky says:

      Was easy enough to comprehend for me. The OP claimed free assembly isn’t free, and it was a ripoff. That was the reason she left bad feedback. That’s why she was upset. Her position was simply ridiculous on that front.

  46. Jawaka says:

    Oh No, she sighed loudly??

    Call 911

  47. SteveHolt says:

    WHY MUST I FAIL AT EVERY ATTEMPT AT MASONRY?!

    Perfect pic for this story.

  48. mikeMD says:

    During the seasonal promotions at the start of grill season, my local stores have tons of assembled grills parked out front but when I asked for a boxed one they took me indside where the patio furniture and lawnmowers were on display. There were both assembled and boxed units there.

  49. Princess Beech loves a warm cup of treason every morning says:

    I just think the whole kerfuffle would’ve been avoided if:

    #1:
    HD should have to clearly state if a product is only available pre-assembled. Otherwise, they should have stock of pre-assembled and a few un-assembled ones. [Of course, I don't know much about internal store policy]
    #2:
    – “Can you please check if you have this product in the box at the back?”
    – (checking) “We checked, and unfortunately, we do not have any. Are you sure you do not want to grab the pre-assembled ones? The item is assembled for free for your convenience, however, we apologize that the item cannot fit in your vehicle. We can deliver or you can rent one of our trucks at $xx”
    – “No, thank you. I really would like the unassembled version of the product. Do you have other stores that may have it?”
    – (make a few calls to other nearby HD locations) “No, we’re very sorry. You will have to try another store.”
    – “OK — thank you.”

    YMMV

  50. motoracer1486 says:

    Good job Home Depot for bending over backwards by trying to help this jerk of a customer. You can’t win them all!

  51. Buzz says:

    The best thing about this story is the “Homer” picture above.

  52. syxx says:

    Bad customer.

    If you want to know if another store has one call them your damn self. Why would you make the employee do it and then relay the information to you.

  53. IraAntelope says:

    We bought one in the box at HD…on that day, they wanted $10 to assemble. Would not fit in our car assembled, but it would have been ten bucks well spent. What a project! All the pieces were there (although some do not really attach, and fall off often) but instructions were not great. Anyway it works.

  54. Anubis says:

    Haven’t read any comments yet. I work for a HD. This is the opposite of what usually happens to me. Most of the time people refuse the boxed grills, want the one already assembled, and then demand we find a way to fit it in their tiny, tiny cars. So we spend about 20 minutes finding tools to disassemble parts of the grill, only to have part of it hanging out of their car and having to tie it down best we can.

    That said, I can’t defend what happened here. If the customer service associate was rude, there is no excuse. However, keep in mind that the peons who work @ HD have no authority over how many grills get assembled. Also, we often have a dozen customers asking for help at once (since hours are being cut and staff is slashed to the minimum), so it’s easy for the associate to miscount the grills on the floor or just be too tired to do things perfectly.

    However, I have to call out on the tipping thing. HD policy is that we never accept tips. If you feel obligated to tips and find it annoying, don’t project that on to others. The delivery offered would have been free as in “no money from you to HD” and that’s an acceptable thing.

    Also, HD will hold products for you. You could pay for the grill, put it on “will call”, and ask us to disassemble the grill for you so you can pick it up later. There’s always a solution. Again, not saying that the op’s experience was acceptable, but remember us peons have no authority or ability to do anything about what you complained about. I don’t even know if managment could’ve helped either, but there are other solutions that we can work with.

  55. acatchyscreenname says:

    This is just embarrassing BBQ grills are not nuclear reactors and it is pretty simple to go over the instructions and make sure the fittings and screws are tight. Just admit that your car wasn’t big enough and leave it at that.

    And then when the manager called, why not just ask him to order one in the box and that you would come get it? Oh, because if you did that, you wouldn’t have anything to complain about.

  56. Uphoria says:

    I don’t get it. This entire interaction was ” I want new in box ” – you should have just gone out the door at the moment the girl wasn’t helpful.

    I will never understand why people give stores second chances. if a clerk did ANY of that to me, I would have walked off, got a manager and walked him back to her, and asked her again to nicely help me since last time she wasn’t even trying.

    People get away with acting like a jerk because consumers take jabs left and right. Stand-up for yourselves.