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Acer America Corp - Acer Laptops = Bad Products/Service
Posted on Wednesday, September 24th, 2008 at 6:54pm CDT by Richard F.
Product: Acer Laptop Model 5105
Company: Acer America Corp
In mid-August of 2007 I purchased an Acer laptop from Circuit City in Wayne, NJ. The laptop came with a 1 year factory/manufacturer's warranty.
Approx. 3 months later keys started falling off of the keyboard. I called Acer who logged the complaint and said they would call me back.
A few days later, a new keyboard appeared in my mailbox.
I am not a technician and have no idea how to remove the old keyboard and install the new one.
However, I have a friend at work who works in the IT department and he replaced the keyboard for me. All was fine.
Naturally, Acer tells me they have NO record of this ever happening.
Then, in June of 2008, about 2 months before my warranty was about to expire, the laptop started acting up.
USB ports wouldn't work. The laptop would not recognize anything plugged into them (printer, jump drive, iPod, etc.).
I called Acer tech support and they walked me through a few steps to try to resolve the issues.
I had to uninstall and reinstall drivers and while I was on the phone with them, the laptop seemed to respond a little better.
At least it recognized my printer and 1 of the 3 USB ports.
As soon as I hung up the phone with tech support, the laptop started acting up again.
Then the mouse stopped working (it plugs into one of the USB ports).
Then the built in mouse/touchpad stopped working.
The built in web cam stopped working.
Then the laptop wouldn't even turn on. Couldn't get it to boot into Windows.
Called tech support back and they said I needed to send the laptop in for repair. This was on/about June 29, 2008.
I asked them to send me a box to ship it in and to provide me with a prepaid shipping label for FedEx, UPS or similar.
They said the laptop was covered, but shipping was my responsibility.
I argued that if their laptop was defective, then they are responsible for shipping charges. They flatly refused.
It cost me just under $50 to ship the laptop to them via UPS Ground Service.
About 3 weeks went by and I didn't hear from Acer so I called them. They advised the motherboard was defective and they had to order a new one.
However, the motherboards they use come from Taiwan and they weren't expecting another shipment until on/about Sept. 15th!!!!
I asked them if replacing the motherboard would impact the contents of the hard drive because in actuality, this laptop was purchased for, and belongs to, my 14 year old daughter
and it contained all her schoolwork, digital photos and downloaded songs, which she paid for.
Acer replied that sometimes the hard drive had to be wiped out and other times not. No way to be certain.
Then they proceeded to lecture me about how I should have backed up my hard drive before sending it to them for repair.
I reminded the technician that their defective product crashed on me so how did he expect me to back up my data before shipping it to them?
Upon reflection, he agreed. (Don't you hate it when you know more than they do? Very scary.)
It was at that point that the technician said if I didn't want to wait until Sept. for a replacement motherboard, Acer will send me a refurbished laptop as a replacement.
I said I bought a NEW laptop and I don't want someone elses broken/fixed laptop.
I also said since all the data on the hard drive belonged to my daughter, I had to check with her to see what she wanted to do, wait for it to be fixed and take a chance her data wouldn't be lost, or accept a used model that assured us her data would be lost. I told the technician I would call back tomorrow. Went home, spoke to my daughter and she said she'd wait for her laptop to be fixed.
When I called Acer back the next day and spoke to them again, this new different person said they would pull my hard drive out of my laptop and send it to me so I could take it somewhere and copy the contents of the hard drive. The only catch....if they didn't get the hard drive back in 15 days, they'dd charge me $150.00. I was forced to give them my credit card number, but agreed.
A few days later Acer sent me a hard drive and they even enclosed a prepaid FedEx shipping label so I could send it back at their expense. Miracles do happen.
So I took the hard drive to Circuit City and asked their Firedog department to copy the contents of the hard drive onto a portable hard drive I brought in with me.
This they agreed to do for $107.00 I went back to Circuit City 2 days later and picked up my laptop hard drive and portable hard drive. Went home, hooked up my portable hard drive and NOTHING was on it.
It was empty. In my opinion, I don't know what hard drive Acer sent me, but I don't think it was the one that was in my daughters laptop.
Now I had to go back to Circuit City, spend 45 minutes talking to all different managers who finally agreed to refund my $107. What a nightmare.
The next day I packaged up the laptop hard drive and shipped it back to Acer. I kept the tracking number and made sure the package was delivered and signed for.
It must have gotten to the right place/people because Acer never billed me the $150 they said they would.
Now it is nearing the end of July, or maybe it is early August. I come home from work and guess whats at my door, a note from FedEx saying I have to go to their Facility to pickup a package.
We weren't expecting the laptop until mid to late September, but there it was! My daughter was sooooooooo excited.
We plugged it in, turned it on and ERROR messages come flying out all over the screen. The laptop was not fixed!Totally USELESS. Daughter was hysterical.
I get on the phone with Acer and their technician tells me to send it back.
I tell him Acer sent me a broken laptop so they need to send me a prepaid shipping label. He refused again and again and again. It was like talking to a wall.
I asked to speak to a supervisor....sorry, they've all gone home for the evening. So Ace's support staff work, unsupervised, for hours at a time. Nice company!
I hung up the phone and called back the next day. Got a supervisor who immediately gave me a code # to bring to FedEx and FedEx would print out a prepaid shipping label at Acer's expense, so off goes my laptop back to Acer. 3 weeks goes by and back FedEx comes with my laptop....all fixed, right? NOT!!!! Completely useless. Same error messages on the screen. Won't boot up. Daughter in tears!
The next day I take the laptop to Circuit City (guess I didn't learn my lesson the last time). They quickly determine the reason the laptop isn't working is because there is NO hard drive in the laptop.
Basically, Acer received the original hard drive back that I shipped them, but the Acer genius technicians never put it back in. According to Circuit City, they have a way to test laptops booting them off of a cd-rom if they can't boot them off of the hard drive. So I go home and call Acer the next day. Must've spent 45 minutes on the phone with one of their supervisors who tried to tell me I never returned the hard drive so they kept sending it back to me without a hard drive. What idiots! Another 15 minutes on the phone and his research determined the hard drive was returned, but they discarded/destroyed it upon receipt.....so all my daughter's data is lost afterall. He gave me a new code to bring to FedEx to have my laptop sent back to them and they will install a new hard drive and (allegedly) all original factory installed software and the operating system (I don't believe this will happen for a minute).
So my laptop is on it's way to Acer for the 3rd time. Meanwhile, they've had my laptop since the end of June, my daughter has nothing, lost everything and the warranty expired with our laptop in their hands.
I filled a complaint with the BBB weeks and weeks ago. Got a call from Sarah with Acer 2 days ago. She apparently responds to complaints from the BBB (Sarah's # is 800.845.2237).
I explained everything to Sarah and asked her the following question. If Acer replaces the motherboard, why does Acer only warranty the motherboard for 90 days? It is brand new, just as if I bought a brand new laptop. Acer needs to cover it for a year since the original one died after only 7 months so clearly 90 days isn't long enough.
On top of that, my manufacturer's warranty expired in the middle of last August while Acer had it for nearly 3 months now. Sarah steadfastly refused to compensate me for this loss of time on my warranty as well.
She said, I'm sorry, we don't do that. She repeated that same mantra no matter how I explained it. She made it quite clear she couldn't care less that because of Acer my daughter lost all of her precious digital photos, songs and school work. She was very good at apologizing and then refusing to take responsibility or action on my behalf. I told Sarah that for our trouble and aggravation, I expected nothing less than a complete bumper-to-bumper factory warranty for another year on our fixed laptop. She said no. What I really want and what Acer should offer my daughter is a brand new, upgraded laptop. That's what a reputable company that stands behind their product should step up and do.
I have a file documenting the shipment of my laptop back and forth to Acer as well as all of Acer's service request numbers. Although this case/issue has been ongoing for 3 months, apparently Acer needs to confuse matters further by assigning a new service request number each time I call them to discuss the matter.
I strongly suggest to anyone reading this that they do not purchase any products manufactured by Acer. I've also filed a complaint with Circuit City letting them know that selling poor quality products that manufacturers don't stand behind is a poor reflection on them.