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  • Factory Service and/or Warranty?

    Just thought I would start a thread where anyone could share their experiences with factory service, customer service, and/or warranty work in regards to their tools.

    Here's some for me off the top of my head:

    Ridgid: My experience with them has been primarily by phone for technical questions, or sometimes dumb questions by me. They have a phone tree (press 1, press 2, etc.) that's not too long. I always have gotten someone from what appears to be the U.S. And they have been courteous, knowledgeable, and if they didn't know something would get me to someone that did.

    Craftsman: Lifetime warranty on hand tools has been a "No Questions Asked" exchange in the past. Haven't had one in a long time though. I have a couple of levels with the vials wiggling out of place. Try to exchange them soon.

    Bosch: Fantastic customer service. I had an 18V set that one of the batteries died prematurely. They sent it to my doorstep in less than 3 days. Didn't ask me to take it anywhere or nothing before sending it. I even called them after I got the battery to see if they needed it. They said "No. Just recycle it properly". So I did.

    Then, I lost a couple of pieces off of the circular saw. My fault. Called them and the guy says "This is just a few bucks. Give me your address." In my mailbox in less than 5 days. No charge.

    Those are just a few examples. You have any good or bad experiences with tool makers? Power? Battery? Hand tools? Customer service?

  • #2
    Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

    Recent experience with Pfister. (Formerly Price Pfister)

    I don't know if I can say that their customer service is good or not. Because after 21 minutes on hold and never speaking to anyone, I hung up. So I technically never got "customer service".

    Based on that though, I'd have to say it sucks.

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    • #3
      Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

      Kohler:

      Recent experience getting a warranty part for a shower valve was ok. Answered in a reasonable amount of time after a few phone tree entries by me.

      Whenever I've called Kohler for something like this the person always seems a little suspicious for some reason.

      "What happened?"
      "How long has it been installed?"
      Etc. And I am aware of their warranty terms.

      Helps dramatically if you have the part numbers 'cause they have a deserved reputation for having a bunch of different parts through the years.

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      • #4
        Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

        Customer service folks at Ridgid corrected some mistakes with my tool registrations. The lady I spoke to was very pleasant and helpful. I also had two nicads replace a couple years ago, no problems. I know things should be cut and dry when it comes to having warranty or other issues resolved, unfortunately the variables of attitude, mindset, disposition on any given day can either make things work in your favor or against you. I always do my best to be respectful, and understanding of the person I'm speaking to and I feel it helps.

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        • #5
          Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

          I use dewalt tools so I've never had anything break down. Serious.

          Craftsman still honors their over the counter exchange with no hassle.
          Buy cheap, buy twice.

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          • #6
            Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

            Originally posted by gear junkie View Post
            I use dewalt tools so I've never had anything break down. Serious.

            Craftsman still honors their over the counter exchange with no hassle.
            Dewalts been pretty good for me as well. I have an 18V reciprocating saw with a weird problem right now.

            If you hold the nose down much at all, hit the trigger, it will not run.

            Raise the nose up, and it will run normally.

            Turn it upside down, it will not run.

            Now, if you raise the nose up, hit the trigger, get it running and hold the trigger, it can be ran in any position. WTH?

            I was gonna' break it down one night but the shoe adjustment is absolutely frozen in place. So I can't get that out & the boot off to hunt down any short. Thinking about cutting holes in the boot where the screws are located.

            It's one of those things where if I have it repaired I'd be better off to throw it away. And I hate throwing things away.

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            • #7
              Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

              A couple of my experiences.

              I fix tools myself including ones that are within warranty to avoid the downtime on the tools. On non-warranty items I have purchased parts online for the tools. On at least a couple of occasions I have called the company's service dept to try and understand a trick of disassembling something and to my surprise they have been obliging and put me in contact with a service technician who walked me through the process of taking something apart. In some cases you can break something if you are not sure how it comes off.

              With craftsman I had a poor experience with a table saw related question. I think I posted this in the woodworking section but my table saw has a dado kit to allow dado blades to be run. No one at Craftsman could tell me where to get this kit and it was not available in their stores. I finally found the answer at ereplalcementparts.com - a place where I have bought parts in the past - which clarified the whole matter - the TS was in fact a Ryobi TS re-sold by Craftsman under their name and so the dado kit was actually available from Ryob as a Ryobi part. I ordered it from ereplacementparets.com and it fit perfectly and I was able to cut dados. Horrible customer support from Craftsman on this one - why don't they know these things? They did not seem to understand what a "dado" was to begin with.

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              • #8
                Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

                Maxitrol:

                Had a technical question for them last week. Transferred to engineering department. No-one answers. It goes immediately to a person's voice mail. I leave a message and information.

                They called today at 11:15 a.m. Told them that was a week ago and I've long moved on from that matter.

                "Ok, thanks..."

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Factory Service and/or Warranty?

                  I don't use "service" very much, unless it is under warranty and I have a dire need.

                  With Ridgid, I've found that Customer Service has been very helpful. While it might take waiting a few minutes, I've always found them to be courteous and knowledgeable and a few years ago when the so-called "Dashboard" suddenly came to missing many of my tools, their help was very thorough and they even sent me a complete list of everything, including my Ryobi tools.

                  I've only had one occasion to go to an authorized service center and at that time, i was happy to find it just five miles down the road from my Painted Post home. The two tools in question were returned in about two weeks, and the fellow was very nice, with tools properly fixed. Unfortunately, I don't think he lasted six months as a "Ridgid" authorized service center, but I don't know the reason.

                  With Ryobi, the phone service has been something less... you call, you wait, have to listen to some ridiculous country song, and the answers to your problem are less than desired and on two occasions they told me that they had no history of problems with the particular tool, even though the Ryobi and Ridgid forums both had multiple complaints about it. I did get the tool fixed during warranty, but that very nice company later told me that it no longer desires to be a Ridgid/Ryobi service center... too hard to get parts, and too little pay. (That was when I found the local fellow mentioned previously.) The particular fix for that tool was only temporary and the problem came up again with no resolve... even the parts were way out of tolerance.

                  I've had several Craftsman tools, including a leaking compressor. Taken care of under warranty the service was good and sufficient. I do wish things were better in the stores though. Both the Binghamton and Elmira area stores have more sales people than necessary and though they are all standing around, no one offers assitance, and they are NOT knowledgeable. Sears service has always been a bad deal and with several Sears appliances, it is very disappointing. The condition of tools within the hardware department is almost shameful. Certainly not the reputation that I grew up with, I think it goes a long way in explaining why they are loosing $Millions.

                  I don't own any DeWalt or other popular tool brands outside of Ridgid, Craftsman, and Ryobi. But the origin of the purchase has much to do with where I shop. My last Ridgid tool was purchased over three years ago, at Home Depot of course... and though I know the complaint is getting really old, Home Depot is a good reason to look elsewhere. Service there is pathetically poor.

                  I'm not in the trades, just a happily retired homeowner, and avid DIY'r and hobbyist. So, my tool needs are rather minor these days and some of my tools are more than forty years old. I think we have entered an age when good service is something rare. Sadly outside of the trades, too many people don't care and just buy another tool when something fails. They don't do much, don't expect much. Fortunately there are still quite a number of people who have the skills and the interest.

                  CWS

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