Consumers Speak: Circuit City and PNY’s Awful RMA

Gizmodo’s own Travis writes:

I have been a deal hunter since I was in diapers. Normally 95% of my technology related purchases come from Newegg, who have a fabulous RMA service, but when I caught a deal at Circuit City online a year ago I couldn
t resist. I picked up the PNY 6800GT video card. Well on my 2^nd day of owning the card the first contact point on the AGP bus managed to burn to a crisp. Since there is not a Circuit City anywhere near my town of Bumsville, KS I was forced to start making calls. Circuit City happily obliged that it would be much easier and quicker if I just went through PNY for my warranty. Well those assholes lied. Two months later I had myself a brand new refurbished replacement card.

Here is how their phone service works: you call, guide yourself through many stupid automated lines and finally get queued for a person. An hour later if nobody has felt like taking your call, they tell you shit out of luck and call back later. I got this at least 50% of the time I called. Although, the few times that I was able finally talk to someone, it did expedite the warranty process because I was able to drill the phone representative to look up information and make calls to get me taken care of.

Two months later when I received my refurbished card I was once again angry to all hell because the warranty documentation clearly states that I would receiver a new card in exchange because it has been less than a month since my time of purchase. At that point I didn
t care anymore and kept the card because I did not want to play phone tag with PNY anymore. Then like any other angry consumer I swore to never buy from PNY again, but I am too much of a sucker for a good deal and picked up a PNY USB flash drive because it was on sale a few months later.

Since we’re always so negative around here, we’ll ask a question in reverse: What’s the best RMA experience you’ve ever had?


Edit Your Comment

  1. nweaver says:

    Best return: on motorcycle gear (wrong size): No questions asked, ship it back, they will ship out the replacement even before they get the old one back. Only cost was the additional shipping.

    They even have the process automated.

  2. DeeJayQueue says:

    Stompers Boots in SF will do the same thing, NQA returns for size. I even got a little extra in the box the next time.

  3. dancemonkey says:

    Actually, Compaq. Years and years ago, the HD crashed on a Compaq computer I had (I have vowed however never to buy HP/Compaq ever again, for other reasons). I called, the CSR gave me an RMA number, a shipping box arrived the NEXT DAY to ship back the computer (I packed it while the Fedex guy waited patiently, then handed it right back to him). Less than four days later my old computer arrived with a new hard drive.

  4. Jim Kosmicki says:

    Without a doubt, Terry’s Village. They are a company selling tchotkes that are related in some way to Oriental Trading. They are based here in Nebraska, so that gets them some strong points, but their customer services has always been fabulous.

    They occasionally send out catalogs where you can get 50% off everything if you purchase at least $500 of merchandise. My wife simply sends the catalog around the office to drum up enough orders, and then we submit it as one order shipping to our address. Because they are selling statues and other potentially breakable items, sometimes the merchandise does come broken. All it has ever taken is a quick call (they answer quickly)explaining the situation, and the replacement is shipped out the next day.

    There was even one item that had to be re-shipped twice because it wasn’t packed properly to avoid breakage. The second time the service rep took the information, then went down to (or called down to) the shipping office, had them open up the new item and confirm that it was not broken, and called back to tell us that it was going out unbroken. We were told that that if this one arrived broken, to call back (and we got a specific name to request to talk to) so that they could determine where the breakage was occuring.

    I know this isn’t the tech merchandise the people usually comment on, but they are an excellent customer service provider.

    (I was also very happy at how quickly and well packaged my first Woot order came — but I haven’t had to return anything to them yet)

  5. greghard says:

    Never had a GOOD one, but the best was at Gap. Yes, I said it, you heard me correctly.