Saturday, August 29, 2009

why you should never buy Samsung appliances but should always shop at Lowe's

99% of you won't care about this and I'm fine with that. I just wanted to get this out on the internet so Samsung would know that I was not screwing around when I said I would tell everyone I could how poorly they treat customers. This is not humorous like dooce's similar post because I am not ready to find the humor in the situation. I'm sure soon I'll look back on this and laugh but right now I'm leaning more towards the stabby end of the emotional spectrum.

By now I'm sure everyone knows that dooce had washing machine issues and was able to twitter her way to a fixed machine. Well, on the same day that she took to twitter my eight month old fridge died. But because I don't have over one million twitter followers and I'm not a New York Times bestselling author Samsung basically told me to take my broken fridge and blow it out my ass. Actually, I'm getting ahead of myself.

On Tuesday I called Samsung to let them know that my fridge, which is still very much under warranty, was not maintaining a cool temperature. They arranged for a repairman to come out on Wednesday and I thought all was right with the world. Wednesday came and the repairman arrived, looked the fridge over and declared that the inverter was broken and the whole thing needed to be unplugged. He gave an estimate of Monday for repair. I promptly yelled a little bit upon hearing this, because Monday was unacceptable, there was no way I could function without a fridge for that long. The repairman, scared for his life and wanting to appease the hormonal crazy lady, said he could get the part and install it on Thursday. He swore the things in my freezer would be fine overnight and I tried my best to believe him.

Thursday morning arrived and the repairman was back at our house, inverter in hand. But upon installing it he found that it did not work. And he didn't know when he could get a new one. And now everything in the freezer was really doomed. And please crazy lady don't kill me. I was left feeling really helpless, what with more melting food than I could cram into my garbage can and the idea that no one knew when my fridge would be working again. So I followed in dooce's footsteps and took to twitter. Turns out Samsung wanted to prove that they know how to provide good customer service, unlike that evil Maytag that Dooce was dealing with and they responded to my tweet right away. Unfortunately all they could do was give me information I already had, so it was back to Samsung's customer service number for me.

The multiple calls to Samsung's customer service department started rationally, I calmly explained to the customer service rep that with a two week old, not having a fridge was not an option. I explained that we were being forced to go out to eat three meals a day and I had no way to store breastmilk. I explained that going out to eat that much costs a crapload of money and sucks up a lot of energy that I just don't have right now. But upon being told that all they could offer me was $200 to cover the cost of the food spoiled, I lost it and the tears started. I asked if they could express ship the needed part and was told no. I asked if there was anything else they could do and again was told no. At this point I was feeling rather defeated and was also crying into the phone. I had no choice but to give up for the day.

Friday morning brought a renewed desire to get the situation fixed, mostly because I had finally received confirmation that the inverter would be arrive on Thursday, as in six days later. And keep in mind that the first inverter didn't fix the problem and there was no promise the new one would either. Also, I have family and friends arriving on Thursday so not having a fridge was absolutely not an option. So back to Samsung's customer service line I went, but this time I got someone that understood why I was upset and, while she couldn't help me, she was able to pass me through to the highest level of customer service representatives. I was told that these reps are able to make decisions based on individual cases and she really thought they would be able to offer me an acceptable solution. She was wrong.

The rep that I was passed through to was the rudest, most uncaring and unhelpful customer service person I have ever dealt with. She barely listened to the situation before declaring there was nothing she or Samsung could do. When I asked if the part could be found locally instead of waiting for it to ship from New Jersey, she said "Probably but we can't help you locate it." I asked if we could put a plan B in place on the off chance that the new inverter arrived and did not work. This way I wouldn't have to wait another week for Samsung to figure something out, we would know exactly what we were going to do. She said no. I asked for a new fridge. She almost laughed at me. At this point I really lost it, which I think is totally understandable. I called the situation bullshit. I called my fridge a $2300 pile of crap. I told her I would badmouth Samsung to every person that I could and I would never recommend a Samsung appliance to another person. And then jparks came and took the phone away from me because I was not helping the situation.

At this point jparks was the more rational out of the two of us and took over explaining the situation and again asked for a new fridge. She gave him the same answers she gave me but with a little more explanation. Turns out Samsung's computer system is down until Tuesday and they are ceasing to function as a company until then. But she also pointed out that even once the system is back up there is nothing they can do to fix our situation. At this point even jparks was at wit's end and saw that the situation was not going to get better any time soon, so he gave up.

Now remember by Friday I had been without a fridge for three days and by Samsung's estimate I would be without it for another six days. (at one point I was told the part was on back order and no one knew when it would be available again) I had exhausted myself trying to get any kind of help or compassion from Samsung so I decided to try something that seemed like a long shot. A really really long shot. I called Lowe's customer care line because that's who we bought the fridge from and I was really desperate. The customer service rep listened to my story and then put me on hold. I thought for sure she would come back to the line and tell me there was nothing they could do, I mean that would be par for the course. But! BUT! She came back and connected me to my local Lowe's where the amazing manager informed me they would be delivering a new fridge THE NEXT MORNING.

After three days of the worst customer service from Samsung, to have Lowe's step up the plate with one five minute phone call blew me away. Keep in mind that Lowe's owed me nothing because the fridge was covered under Samsung's warranty. Lowe's could have told me there was nothing they could do and I would have totally understood, but they didn't. Their customer service has officially blown me away and in the future I will purchase all my appliances from Lowe's, although none of those appliances will be Samsung.

As I type this, Lowe's delivery men are in my kitchen installing the new fridge. (also, Samsung discontinued my fridge. Lowe's only had the upgraded, more expensive one in stock and that's what they sent me. Because they are not jerks) I can not stress enough that if you are interested in new appliances you should buy them through Lowe's and stay far away from Samsung. I repeat, for the sake of this popping up in Google searches, do not buy Samsung appliances. The experience I had with their customer service department is unacceptable and I would not wish that on anyone else. It's great that Maytag stepped up to the plate for dooce and her washing machine, but that's the kind of customer service we all deserve, even if we don't have one million twitter followers. I may not be famous, but I deserve the same level of care as someone that is. The $2300 that I spend on my fridge is not somehow magically less than the $2300 a celebrity would spend.

Samsung, you have screwed up and it is unacceptable. I hope you learn from this that all customers matter, all phone calls to your customer service line should be met with a caring representative who actually has the power or know how to fix the situation, and you should believe an angry customer when they say they will tell everyone they know how crappy your service is.


  1. this is fucking incredible. I had been following Dooce's saga on twitter, so when I heard that you had a similar problem, I half thought you were joking. I mean, was this the official shitty appliance week? Anyways, i'm so glad that everything worked out, but i'm sorry that you had to go through that nightmare. It never ceases to amaze me, the extent to which SOME companies just get it (customer service, that is) and others just blatantly don't (ie. Samsung). I will definitely spread the word. The companies that will survive the next decade are the ones who understand the social media is not a joke. whether you take it seriously or not, it's real and you have to learn how to treat your customers with respect or else. million twitter followers or not, no one deserves the kind of horrific customer service that companies like Samsung are still engaging in. Kudos to Lowe's! I want pics of the new fridge! ;)

  2. Hmm -- you may want to update your ad network. It's just chosen to put a Samsung ad right next to your post. :)

  3. I love Lowe's. I have yet to actually shop at a Home Depot since buying our house because I have been so in love with Lowe's.

    Anyway, it seems everyone is having huge CS issues lately. My latest blog post is actually an open letter to Comcast cable, although the rep who commented hasn't actually emailed me back but I have cable and internet now so they can bite me now.

    Although Whirlpool sucks. Our townhouse came with a Whirlpool fridge --- the very same one, in fact, that came with the house we've been renting. About three months into our lease, the fridge went on the fritz. The ice dispenser in the door doesn't work and the lights go all blinky when you get water. Our leasing agent said the motherboard (seriously! in a fridge!) fried and they didn't want to fix it because it was too expensive. (That's a whole other issue right there.) Lo and behold, the fridge at our new house has the same problem except the ice maker doesn't even work. It's a good thing I have novelty ice trays from IKEA. I dread to even call a repairman; I don't think it's under warranty and I just kind of expect to get screwed on repair prices at this point.

    ANYWAY. That is AWEsome of Lowe's to hook you up. If I could make out with Lowe's, I totally would.

  4. I'm so sorry you had such a horrible experience, but I had to comment and say that I love Lowe's as well. In fact, I stopped going to the other orange place all together because of the amazing customer service I receive from Lowe's on every single purchase we make at their store (we just moved into an older house and we've been there on almost a daily basis). So glad it worked out for you!

  5. Wow, that's pretty amazing of Lowe's. Will definitely keep them in mind for the future.

  6. yes, yes. samsung sucks, lowes rules.


    put truman in the new fridge and take a picture of that, if you want. i mean GEEZ, woman! (don't close the fridge door. just lay him gently on a shelf.)

  7. How dare you call for an all out boycott of something just based on your experience! Where is your social responsibility?


    I'm shocked. I'm so glad Lowe's helped you out. It will always amaze me, in this day and age, why customer service is so lacking. We have options for everything, so if you piss us off, you lose loyal customers. You weren't looking for a new fridge. You were looking for help and customer service within the realm of normal. And for them to fix something that was broken, that you paid more for with a warranty so it would be fixed in a situation just like this. UGH!

    I'm all for never buying a Samsung product. YAY LOWE'S!

  8. $2300 and a warranty and they can't even be bothered to be POLITE when they're telling you to shove it out your ass? Don't they realize you haven't slept in, ohhh, 11 months now? I would have murdered someone, with just the power of my MIND!

  9. ayiyi. this scares me because my parents JUST bought a samsung. dad didn't want to, but the electroluxe they bought didn't get cold enough for him so he had it picked up & replaced w/samsung. fortunately, they bought it from lowe's. i hope that your new one (and my parents') don't have any troubles.

  10. [...] at Formation of Me recently posted both her good and bad customer service experiences on her blog. Good for Lowe’s, but not so good for Samsung. When she couldn’t get her [...]

  11. I have had the same experience with Samsung on one of their TV's. Their customer service is deplorable. I will never buy another Samsung product and I tell everyone that will listen about their poor customer service.

  12. I have the same issue with Samsung but with a twist. Upon notifying Samsung about a problem with our fridge still under warranty, they were not able to find a repair person to come to our house (we live in a suburb of Washington DC; not rural Timbuktu). In the end they decided to offer us a prorated reimbursement check only if we cut off our electrical plug and mailed it to them prior to sending us a check; leaving us with no working fridge and with the task of removing it. I told them I wanted my fridge fixed not their check. They told us to take it or leave it. Unbelievable; add us to the Samsung Sucks Bandwagon!!!!

    BTW, since we are a Premium Rewards Member at Best Buy we decided to buy it from them. They told us they would have replaced it if we had bought the Best Buy Premium Service plan. Since we didn't, it wasn't their issue. A lot of good it was to be a reward member; I feel they left us hanging too. I wished we would have bought it at Lowes.

  13. The samsung service is worst in the world.I have been a samsung fan bought a Front loading washing machine- It never worked properly after 6 months the power pin stopped working the salesman took it for replacement which was never replaced. To my horror the entire machine was burned down emittinghuge smoke after another 6 months just after the warranty closed.
    I bought a Samsung DUo mobile from TATA INDICOM during republic day 2007 offer - i had a problem with the touch screen after i made hundreds of calls to various Customer care ncenters it took hem 3 months to get that problem fixed.
    I did not learn from the mistake
    Again i bought SMSUNG W 299 model again in January 2010. Now it showed a problem with the speaker and i have been contacting the Customer care from past month and the part never arrives along with other parcels.
    God only knows when i am hoing to get the speaker back.

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