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August 25, 2006


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I have to agree about Sears, especially since they joined with KMart. Their service used to be great but has diminished especially with appliances. My friend has a Kenmore refrigerator which quit on him suddenly and he called for service under his extended warranty. They told him it would be 10-14 days before they could come out to look at it. What's he suppossed to do in the mean time. His food is spoiling and his daughter's insulin is becoming useless. I can see making someone wait for a convenience item such as a washer, or a TV, but a refrigerator is essential. Not to mention that my parent's TV has a weird purple spot in the upper left corner that Sears technicians claim to be unable to see. 3 times into the shop 2 weeks at a time and no repair completed. Sears Sucks, and so does Kragen auto parts.

I will also vouch for Bed Bath and Beyond, having had a great experience recently using their bridal registry. Amazon I have also had mostly good experiences with. I haven't used Vanguard, Olympus or Costco, but if I ever have need or inclination I'll lean more towards them than competitors off of the good recommendation.

I also have to say that Sears is horrible. I had an expensive dryer I bought there. It died at 2 years, 2 months. For a $400 dryer. To me, that is unbelievable. Then, I called for sears to come fix it, on my dollars. The repair person NEVER showed up. I had to call them to find out that they canceled my service appointment, without telling me. I will never buy another product at Sears or Kmart.

my god. what a f'ing nightmare for you. my limited dealings with Sears was not great either. I had them give me an estimate for a/c and installation. After several calls and miscommunications later, they came and gave me an overpriced quote.

It's so sad good customer service is so rare and we are amazed when we encounter it. Please add Michaels and Home Depot to the Sucky List. Why do you think customer service is so bad? Employees do not care (are they paid too low, no training?). Where's the pride? Managers don't care, and are just clocking time?

I have to say I'm convinced about Sears.

I'm going to also put in my two cents and stand behind Costco being a winner due to great customer service. That might have something to do with the fact that the company's CEO actually cares about his employees (at all levels of the organization).

How about contacting Media Relations?
Here is there info:


Media Inquiries
The contact information below is provided for journalists only. Customers are asked to call the appropriate Customer Service number.

Sears Holdings Media Relations
3333 Beverly Road, B6-277B
Hoffman Estates, IL 60179
Phone - (847) 286-8371
Fax - (847) 286-5500
E-mail - Feedback

For other inquiries, please call Sears Holdings at (847) 286-2500

IMO, bloggers qualify as journalists, right?

Good Luck!!

Sorry the idea didn't work, at least it was worth a try. I think Media Relations and even perhaps the Better Business Bureau are worth a try in this case.

We're planning to purchase a home soon - as of now Sears is definitely out.

Thanks all. Maybe I will give the media people a try. ;-)

I abandoned Sears long ago. If you encountered quality and customer service problems only recently, you've been lucky!
If you are considering K-Mart avoidance, what about other retailers Sears owns? One I run hot and cold on is Lands End. At one time, Lands End was at the top of my list for quality and customer service; then Sears bought this mail order retailer. Quality seems to be slipping to reach a point where retail sales through Sears stores matches other store clothing lines.
Good luck with your exercise machine!

PS. I consider Vanguard an excellent choice for investing.

Sears won't see any more of my money. I've been attempting for two months now to receive a refund on a part I returned. Highlights:

-Ordered $50 part
-Realized the next day I didn't need part
-Called to cancel part
-Sears: our system doesn't handle cancellations (what?!). Send it back to us when you receive it.
-I received and returned the part a few days later
-I've held 6+ conversations with their 800 call centers--no resolution

My advice: don't shop at Sears. If anything goes wrong, they will drown you in bureaucracy betting that they'll outlast you.

I've had similar problems with the Sears Ellipticals. We bought the most expensive model at around $500. Out of the box it had: at least one bad weld, a stripped bolt, a poorly fitting (probably badly drilled) hole. And that's all I discovered so far. I should have brought it back immediately, but I figured I could keep it running cheaper than buying one for 10x the price. I'm handy, but I'm starting to wonder if it is worth the time.

Many years back, I worked at sears - including a stint fixing/building exercise equipment under maintenance agreements as well as in sales. Things you should know: sales people have a M/A quota. M/A are pretty much free money to sears, so sales people get bullied, miss out on bonuses if they don't hit their quota. The guys servicing the M/A vary widely from store to store, but since sears typically doesn't pay well, you usually don't get great service. (caveat: info is prior to K-Mart "merger", but most likely still true)

I should have mentioned that the darned Elliptical (Pro-Form XP 110, if anyone's interested) is creaking again, from somewhere above the flywheel this time. I'm going to have to take it apart and see what's wrong this time.

It used to be that sears had "Satisfaction Guaranteed Or Your Money Back", much like REI and EMS have. Is it still printed on the back of the receipts? If so, you might have luck marching down to the customer service department, with the broken machine in one hand and receipt in the other, and politely ask them to refund your money. I've seen it work before, although again it depends who's on the other side of the desk.

I feel like a complete idiot for not researching before buying an elliptical at Sears recently. Frankly, I figured that Sears would stand behind their least they used to. Unfortunately, we bought the first Freespirit elliptical a couple months ago and after our son spent well over an hour putting it together, we found out it was faulty and had to be returned right away (a major pain in the ass). We then decided to give the product another try and the second one seemed to be fine until a few weeks ago when it started making some bad noises in vital areas....our big mistake was not returning it IMMEDIATELY upon hearing the funny noises because when we finally contacted them about the product, it was already over 30 days. Soooooo, we are in the situation from hell with them now!!!! Man I wish we looked for these kinds of reviews first......I actually thought Sears had the best customer service and that they would never screw over a customer like they are with us (and obviously countless others).
We were reluctantly given the option of getting our money back if we agreed to paying the 20% re-stocking fee...which is more than $80. The fact that the item is faulty and we have spent so much time and energy dealing with the matter already, the last thing I think we should have to do is pay them any money!!!
Well, I guess it is certainly a harsh lesson learned. We are telling everyone to avoid buying exercise equipment from Sears. We are also wondering if we should bother making ANY major purchases from there any more! We have spent THOUSANDS of dollars at Sears over the years and they certainly don't seem to care if they lose us as customers. Man, we are some choked!!!!
Thanks for this venue for speaking out.....

Good luck to you!

next time read the return/repair policies before buying. if you don't like them, then don't buy the product peabrain.

STR --

Read the whole series, peabrain. I DID read all the policies -- Sears just won't do what they said they would do.

I would like to add The Great Indoors to the list of 'don't buy from this company'. They are part of the Sears group. My issue started when a 3rd party company, employed by the Sears group- to deliver a washing machine/dryer that was purchased at The Great Indoors, was installed. Negligence on the part of the 3rd party resulted in thousands of dollars of water damage to my home.
I bought from The Great Indoors, thinking that as a Sears company, they would provide the customer service and installation, and stand behind their product. That has all changed!
No one knows who is doing what, and I am now stuck trying to get the 3rd party to pay for the damages. The Great Indoors isn't liable because they used Sears delivery, and Sears delivery isn't liable because they employed someone else to do the job! Exhasperating! And I will NEVER again purchase from Sears, The GReat Indoors or Kmart, EVER! Before you buy anything from these companies and get it installed, make sure you know who is doing what-otherwise you will be screwed when something goes wrong, and it will! It's bound to, with so many hands in the pot!

I don't feel so bad now. I had a machine that I used often and failed completely during the warranty period. The flywheel actually split in half. They came out to fix it and it was never right. Of course just after that it again fell apart, the shaft literally split in half. I was too busy to be able to wait around on the repairman three times like I did last time to fix it so I put it off, only to find out that they would have fixed it or at least attempted to fix it, if I would have notified them within 90 days a fact that they did not feel compelled to tell me at the time of the initial repair. The reapairman was a nice guy and told me it makes more sense to get a new one, unless you can talk the 800 number into authorizing the repair of their shoddy prior repair. Of course they did not and I will not pay them to re-do another crappy job. Looks like I will be hunting for a new elliptical this weekend

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