Service, part 2

I need to catch up on some open-ended posts/topics–and, for various reasons, I’m doing an unusually crappy job of it. Even by my low standards. This is a start…

On May 22, 2013, I posted “Service, part 1“–an upbeat (at least in how it turned out and in the generally good attitude of all involved) service story about the Social Security Administration. Here’s the thing: SSA doesn’t precisely have to treat customers well so it can attract them. SSA doesn’t go out looking for customers. But I’m generally impressed with how things were handled.

A less positive story

I’ve already told this story, in a January 27, 2013 post: “Panasonic Case #29866973: A sad unfinished story.”

It’s now a little more than four months later.

Nothing has happened.

I consider this unsatisfactory customer service.

Yes, we eventually got the set repaired. (It’s still working. It’s still the best picture I’ve ever seen–in THX mode–on a reasonably-priced HDTV, when it’s working. We hope it keeps working for years to come.)

Did Panasonic owe us anything? That’s hard to say. When you have what’s usually rated as the brand with the best reliability, you don’t expect circuit board failures just 25 months after purchase of an $1,800 set, especially when that set’s only used about an hour or two a day.

You also don’t expect to be referred to an Authorized Panasonic Service Agency that misdiagnoses the failure (while talking to Panasonic reps), charges a VERY high price for the diagnosis, and quotes an outrageous price for the repair–and wants to take the set away to do that repair.

Oh, and you probably don’t expect that the same circuit board will fail not too long after it’s replaced.

I believe Panasonic should at least pay for the overpriced mis-diagnosis. But I’m not going to hold my breath.

Do we love the set? Yep.

Would we buy another Panasonic if/when this one needs replacing? Almost certainly not.

Nothing more to say here. Soon (hah!), I’ll wrap up another unfinished post or two.

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