Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Another Example of High Quality JUNK....

I had a different topic in mind this morning about my next posting but an early morning shopping trip changed all that. I went to my local Target store and arrived just as they were opening up for the day. I went there to purchase an item for my mother but that has nothing to do with my story.
After picking up the item I went there for I happened to be in the TV section. Since we were looking to buy another TV for our bedroom I started looking at the items and their prices. I noticed a very good deal on a 26" Westinghouse LED HD TV, LCD265 series. It was the size I was looking for and had the features I wanted and it was on sale. It must have sold very well over the weekend because a sign next to the TV said it was out of stock. Another customer was standing there and saw me looking at the display and said that he was waiting on the same TV and "they are bringing more out from the back". To make a long story short they did bring a couple out and he purchased his and I bought one also. 

Fortunately, I live very close to the store and drove straight home. I put off setting the TV up until I did a few other chores I had. About three hours after I bought the TV I unpacked it, unwrapped all the paper around it, opened up the numerous bags and attached the stand. I then put it where I wanted it to sit and connected the cable connection and the power cord and turned on the TV, following the instructions. Nothing. A two-tone gray screen and a thin black horizontal line across the entire screen. It was supposed to go to a "set-up screen" but that never happened. I tried everything. Twice. Then three times. Still nothing but that same gray screen.

I finally admitted defeat to myself and called the number for service at Westinghouse. After waiting for 20 minutes listening the worse classical music I ever heard a human answers and asks if she could help. 

I explained what was happening, or I should say what was not happening, and I could hear her turning the pages on her preprinted instruction sheets. I did everything she instructed and of course the TV never worked for her either. She finally admitted what I had known all along, the TV was "defective". She said I could pack it back up and ship it to Westinghouse since it was still under the one year warranty. Actually it still had almost 364 days, 20 hours and 45 minutes of warranty left. But I said that was not going to happen because I wanted it out of my house right now. No packing, sealing, labeling, hauling, etc for me. I knew I was stuffing it all back into the box it came out of and driving back to Target for a refund. So I unhooked it all, crammed it halfway back into the box with all of the paper and plastic that came with it and drove back to Target.

I wheeled the TV into the store and after waiting in a line for longer than I had hoped I finally made my way to the return cashier. He could see that I wasn't smiling and by the looks of the partially boxed up TV with paper and plastic cellophane hanging out, he could probably tell I wasn't there to tell him how happy I was with my purchase. I calmly explained that I had just bought it that morning, took it home, set it up and it did not work, even with the help of the robot-like service person at Westinghouse. I did say that he night not have to even worry about it because I was weighing the cost of the TV and my anger about the situation and trying to decide if I would rather just take it out of the box, lay it in the middle of the isle and jump up and down on it until it was the size of a toaster. Or, since it was very cold outside I could set it on fire in the parking lot. 

He looked at me as if to figure out what method of returning the TV I preferred. I calculated the cost of losing the money I paid for the TV and the money it would take to bail me out of jail and decided to just return it in the box for a refund.
After looking disappointed that he wasn't going to have a story to tell his wife that night and that he wasn't going to get interviewed by Eyewitness 12 News, he processed my return, handed me my receipt and with an ever so slight smirk that I think I detected he said, "Have a nice day".

So that's my TV story for the day. They win again. The manufacturer. The retail store. I lose. Again. Another "brand new" item straight out of the box and it doesn't work. Another "Made OUT of the USA" product that performs as another example of horrible workmanship. But I bet it was cheap for Westinghouse to have this produced in China by a 12 year old kid named Mi Wage Lo. But I can promise you one thing. I will never again buy anything with the Westinghouse name on it. And I'm hoping my friends and family and readers of this blog never buy a Westinghouse product either. I should have realized that their slogan said it all..."You can be sure if it's Westinghouse"....because it won't work.

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