Nikon Fixes One Problem With My Camera, May Have Caused Another

The D90.

Nikon says that Max’s camera has “evidence of physical damage.” That’s all very well and good, but the shutter problems caused by the alleged damage happened sometime between when the camera’s flash issues were repaired at Nikon and Max took it out of the box when it came back. He pressed the shutter to take a picture, and it jammed. It wasn’t jammed before he sent it in. Nikon wants a fee to repair this damage, which would be no problem for Max if he had actually caused it. He says he didn’t.

He writes:

Hi! I’m having trouble with Nikon’s repair service, and I was
wondering if you guys have any advice or contact info for someone
helpful at Nikon. The short story is this:

The flash on my Nikon D90 DSLR was broken. I sent it in and paid about
$225 to have the repair performed. When I got the camera back and
tried to take a picture, the shutter jammed on the very first shot. I
called up customer service and told them what happened, and they said
to send it back in and that there was a 60 day warranty on repairs.
You can guess what happened next: the service department won’t fix the
camera without me paying them an additional $225. They say that there
is “evidence of physical damage,” which is fine, I guess, except that
the damage occurred while the camera was in their custody (they made
no note of any shutter issues on the original repair invoice). Even if
the damage occurred on the return trip, they handled the packing and
shipping. And since I was never able to take a single successful
picture, at this point I don’t even know if they managed to complete
the original repair to the flash!

Now the customer service department is ignoring me, so I’m kinda
stuck. I’ve attached a PDF of my trouble ticket with support (read it
from the bottom to the top, the first note or two was about an earlier
payment processing problem) and the attached UPS tracking info that
shows that I reported the issue on the very same day that the camera
was delivered to my house. I even tried sending a tweet to @NikonUSA,
but I was ignored. I just want my camera returned to me repaired, for
the original amount that we agreed on.

I really have enjoyed my Nikon camera, and before all of this I’d even
been excited about the newly announced D600. Now, I’m not so sure that
it’s a great idea to buy another Nikon product, and you can imagine
what I’m going to say when my friends and family ask me about this
sort of stuff.

It doesn’t seem like I’m alone in problems with the service
department: LensRentals.com recently wrote an article about their lens
repairs and they’ve noted that the quality of the Nikon service
department is low,
and to top it off, Nikon has now stopped selling
parts to independent repair shops, so you don’t even have a choice of
having your gear serviced elsewhere.

We don’t have any current contact info for Nikon, but our friend Chris Elliot does.