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Good Thing He’s Full Of Hot Air

, , , | Right | April 1, 2022

A guy brought in a flute for repair, and it turned out it needed all the pads replaced. He did not want to pay our repair price, so he instead bought a set of pads at a quarter of the cost of the repair.

Customer: “I can figure it out myself. I’m an engineer!”

Me: “Okay. If you have any trouble, bring it back and we’ll be happy to repair it.”

It turned out that he was a software engineer! But the best part is that he came back a week later to buy a whole new flute because, and I quote:

Customer: “That one is a piece of s***! I’m glad I didn’t spend a lot on it.”

We just laughed after he left.

In Desperate Need Of Cooling Off

, , , , | Right | February 9, 2022

I do repair work for beverage equipment — vending machines, glass door coolers. etc. My company provides the equipment and keeps ownership of it. We do all repair and maintenance of the equipment. Customers are supposed to call us as soon as there is a problem, NOT try to fix it themselves. We do NOT charge customers to repair the equipment, since we own it.

I receive a service call for a cooler not cooling at a children’s play/party business. I arrive within two hours of the call being dispatched — company policy is to respond within twenty-four hours — and am met by the woman in charge.

Customer:Your cooler stopped cooling. First, it started freezing drinks days ago! We turned the thermostat off to defrost it and then turned it back on. Now it won’t cool at all!”

This is a HUGE red flag for me. Customers aren’t supposed to try and fix things; that’s what we do. Also, I recognize the problem being described. If caught early, it is a quick fix — ten to fifteen minutes. At this point, I’m going to have to take the whole refrigeration system out and back to the shop.

I have to raise my voice to be heard over the loud games and louder kids.

Me: “I really wish you had called us as soon as the cooler stopped working. It can be fixed really easily if caught early, but now your cooler will be down for a few hours.”

I go out to my truck and get a handcart to wheel the refrigeration system out.

Customer: *After I come back in* “I talked to our office. We placed three work orders and you didn’t come! This is terrible service!”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I only received the work order this morning. I don’t know anything about other work—”

Customer: “It doesn’t matter! You work for the company; it’s all of your faults! Also, since you sprung this on me by surprise, you need to move this cooler into the back and bring our spare cooler up front. I can’t be running to the back every ten seconds to get a cold drink!”

The cooler in question is eight feet tall and weighs around five hundred pounds empty, over double that full (which it is). The cooler is on rollers, but it’s NEVER safe for one person to move a cooler this size. Also, the place is carpeted and full of kids running around. Even if I had help AND the cooler was empty, this is an equipment move that I would have to refuse for safety reasons.

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t do that. It’s not—”

Customer: “I don’t care if it’s not your job. You work for [Company]. The coolers belong to [Company]. You will do this!”

Me: “I can’t.”

Customer: “I’m calling back and they will make you do it! Don’t you leave!”

She calls our service desk while I take the refrigeration system out to my truck. I come back in because, at this point, I know it will be more trouble for me if I just leave. I hear her on the phone with the service desk, explaining that she just needs a small cooler moved around. After a few minutes on the phone, she hangs up and tells me the service desk says I can move the cooler.

Me: “As I told you before, I can’t move it by myself! It’s unsafe!”

Customer: “If you don’t, I’m going to make a huge complaint!”

Me: “Go ahead.”

And I left. At that point, I had done nothing wrong, but I wanted to say a lot of things that would actually get me in trouble.

I went back to the shop and repaired the refrigeration system. I also let my manager know about the situation. He told me to take one of the shop guys with me when I went back and send him in so I won’t have to deal with the customer. Putting the refrigeration system back is an easy one-man job, so I was not putting my work off on someone else.

The return trip went without issue. The shop guy told me that the customer was very smug that she got her cooler repaired the same day — not unusual at all — and apparently felt that her complaints got me in trouble. 

Afterward, we checked to see if there had been any other work orders placed for that cooler. There were none except for the one I responded to.

Impossible To Repair That Kind Of Attitude

, , , , , | Right | February 3, 2022

I own a small electronics repair center. A customer brings in a computer that will not turn on.

Me: “This unit is too old to get new parts for and it’s going to require a complete rebuild.”

They don’t want to pay for it, so they take the computer back. Three months later, they come in again.

Customer: “We ordered some legacy parts online and had our friend rebuild it, but now it doesn’t have any video.”

I open the computer to find that said friend forgot the CPU and jammed the socket full of thermal paste.

Me: “This is still going to require the same rebuild.”

Once again, the customer rejects this and leaves. They come back four months later.

Customer: *Demanding* “You will replace the CPU of the computer! It was damaged during the last repair attempt!”

We are seven months into this ordeal from the original drop-off and I have had enough.

Me: “I am not paying for anything as the computer has never worked since it was brought in. I told you twice what needed to be done and you went elsewhere and had corner-cutting repairs completed.”

Customer: “Fine! Then I will give you bad reviews online!”

Me: “Be my guest. The entire lobby is under video and audio surveillance. I also keep pictures of any major damage during the repair. Any effort to defame my business will result in legal action.”

The customer stormed out. Two days later, I haven’t seen any reviews or heard from them.

Repair Your Attitude Before You Repair The Part

, , | Right | January 31, 2022

We’re a husband-wife duo running our own small business, sometimes selling, but mostly repairing very specific medical equipment for a specific group of medical professionals in Australia. We receive equipment from all over the country via courier or post, and because of the cost of this, we like to do some basic troubleshooting where possible as often customers can send the handpiece without having to send the entire unit as it will save the customer a little bit of money.

I take a call from a new customer and establish we only need the handpiece. I give him instructions on how to ship it to us and end the call. It is all pretty standard, and I think nothing more of it.

Fast forward to yesterday, when my husband asks me what I know about a handpiece that has arrived. It has come with no note or contact info, save for a mobile number. Thankfully, I know this to be the new customer who called a few days ago. He calls the new customer and I overhear his side of the conversation. He fills in the blanks afterward.

Husband: “Hello, this is [Husband] from [Company]. We’ve received your handpiece and found it will require [repairs] at [cost].”

New Customer: “But it’s only new. I’ve only had it less than a year.”

Based on our experience, it looks approximately four or five years old or like it has been otherwise treated incredibly roughly.

Husband: “That’s strange; it doesn’t look particularly new at all and I can tell there has been an unreliable attempt to repair it in the past.”

New Customer: “It hasn’t been repaired before. Our clinic has only recently opened and it’s barely been used.”

Husband: “Again, that’s peculiar, but I am afraid I don’t know what else to say. This is the repair it requires in order to function again.”

New Customer: “But shouldn’t it be covered under warranty?”

Husband: “I can’t speak for the people who sold it to you, but unless there’s a manufacturer’s defect, then it’s not generally a warranty item. It’s a wearing part, like tyres on your car.”

New Customer: “Well, how long would the warranty last? Because it’s obviously a defect. It’s only less than a year old and it’s barely been used; it has to be warranty.”

Husband: “I would assume a year, but you would have to talk to the company who—”

New Customer: “I bought it from you. You should be offering the repair for free, under your warranty. I only just bought it from you, and the clinic has only just opened and I have barely used it.”

Husband: “Huh? Can you give me the serial from the bottom of the unit? I’ll look it up. I am not familiar with your company name at all, and I haven’t sold any units to anyone in your area.”

New Customer: “It’s [serial number].”

Overhearing this interesting conversation, I am already searching for the serial number for him. It isn’t in our system.

Husband: “No, I am sorry, but I have not sold nor seen this unit before. You haven’t bought it from us, so I can’t provide any warranty, and I can assure you, it isn’t covered under—”

New Customer: “Yes, I bought it from you.”

Husband: “I am sorry, but until today, I had never heard of your clinic, and I have no record of this handpiece nor the main unit in our system. I have never seen it before.

New Customer: “But, I—”

Husband: “And, as I mentioned, it’s a wearing part, showing incredibly high wear on it. It looks several years old, which aligns with the usual lifespan of the part, so whoever did sell it to you would not provide warranty on it, either. You cannot claim warranty on a wearing part that is several years old from a company that didn’t sell it to you in the first place, and which, for the record, has some incredibly dodgy attempted repairs done to it which would have totally voided the warranty in the first place.

New Customer: “Well… I… I’ll find the invoice for it and prove you just sold it to me, and I’ll get back to you.”

I laughed. I told him that the guy was, until a couple of days ago, a new customer who had been referred to us by a medical company we assist from time to time, so I don’t know why he suddenly thought we’d sold it to him. I also Googled his ABN (business number) and the clinic was six years old.

Today, he called back and said meekly, but with no apologies, “We’d like to go ahead with the repair.”

The Biggest Vacuum Is In Their Heads

, , , | Right | December 27, 2021

I work at a vacuum repair shop. People don’t pay attention to their vacuum cleaners as much as you’d think.

I can’t tell you how many times someone comes to pick up their vacuum and says, “Oh, this one isn’t mine,” or, “Mine didn’t have scratches down the side.” I can tell you it is, and it came in with all those scratches on the side.

After the first few times it happened to me, we started taking pictures of the unit with serial numbers and customer info. We send them home with the serial number and require them to bring it back for pick up. Despite the evidence, I’ve had a lady close to tears because we didn’t have her vacuum — even with the pictures we had of it at drop off, her information, the matching serial numbers.

Sure, it’s a big conspiracy; we just love taking in vacuums and switching all the information around because it’s fun. People need to pay more attention.