I think winning an argument or more a dispute against a company when you’re the consumer and they’re the big company out to screw you is a great thing! In fact its so great that I try to win these kind of victories often… It puts you on a moral high ground thats quite unlike winning other things!
Recently I have been unfortunate (or maybe fortunate) enough to purchase a pair of Shure E2C headphones (or even earphones) that happened to break not once but twice. The first time was fair enough, just claiming under the warranty and you should expect them to replace it free of charge no questions asked, which is exactly what happened. When it happened the second time though, and much sooner that the original fault I was fairly annoyed! I was annoyed to such an extent that I complained that the actual earphone design must have some terrible fault if it was to fail so darn easily, with the cable freying and the loss of sound in one ear! These are £60 earphones, things like this shouldn’t happen! Through my complaining about the design of the earphones, they happened to take pity on me and upgrade me to E3C’s, which I’m happy to say are much much better. Though I think I’m lucky, this whole upgrading regime might be normal customer policy, but at least my attempts felt fruitful!
I think that its always worth complaining when something is wrong or not as it seems, as the saying goes, the “Customer is always right.” So I can never be wrong apparently. Even if the product is out of warranty it worth giving complaining a go… In Britain under the sale of goods act of 1979, traders must sell goods that are as described and of satisfactory quality. This means that the goods should last for a “reasonable amount” of time, this generally being a longer period than the warranty, so you are still ‘protected’ after the warranty runs out of you are prepared to argue your case.
On the topic of out of warranty repairs/complaints, I have a digital radio at home that is failing fairly miserably considering it has only been at home for less that 2 years and has been in the same place that whole time, thus eliminating any human fault. The volume control fails occasionally and the volume suddenly increases and cannot be changed… But what is more annoying is the screen, which is damn useful on digital radios may I add, fails fairly often. It might work fine just after you switch it on, but then it descends into garbled gobbledygook with Russian characters!!! The back light then flickers for a bit and then finally switches off, and finally the screen dies and all is silent in the lcd world of the digital radio’s screen. So… Argos here I come to get a replacement/refund/repair!
It is also worthwhile buying at John Lewis because aside from matching prices, they also have an extra year guarantee on electricals, which is very useful!
More consumer victories/tales next time!