When a product advertises that you can assemble it in 10 minutes, should you take their word for it? Our wrench-wielding colleagues down the hall at Consumer Reports decided to test Hamilton Beach’s claim that a customer could assemble one of their gas grills in 10 minutes, equipped with only a screwdriver, but with the help of a friend. Their verdict? The grill doesn’t take as long to assemble as similar products, but it takes more than 10 minutes. [More]
Daryl left his grill behind the last time he moved, which was very sad. Now he’s a homeowner and wanted a new one as the grilling season kicks off in the Northeast, where he lives. Still in the box. To assemble himself. If you’re a longtime Consumerist reader, you see where this is going. [More]
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.”
The bad news: Sears has started channeling the Geek Squad, pre-optimizing all merchandise in stock before customers have a choice in the matter. The worse news: they’re failing at it terribly. Ron tried to purchase a gas grill on sale at Sears. He placed his order online for instore pickup, only to discover that all of the grills in stock were already assembled. Fine, except an already-assembled grill won’t fit in his car. The only bright spot for consumers: unlike Geek Squad, Sears doesn’t even have the foresight to charge for the optimization service.