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install warranty

Old 12-08-2004, 11:46 AM
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How do you guys handle a warranty on install. I had a customer come in with a beat up old stationwagon. We installed the cd player and front speakers no problems. The rear speakers were a shallow mount 4x10" and nothing would fit so I made a mounting adaptor for a pair of 4x6" speakers. All was well, the customer paid (by cheque.....). 3 days later she complained that the stereo did not work. I asked her to come in and we will look at the problem. If it is a major issue we will make an appointment for her asap.

Customer shows up, I remove the cd player and test all wires, sure enough it shows I have a speaker wire going to ground on the left rear. I inform the customer that I will have to book an appointment for her to fix this problem. For now I will reinstall the cd player and it will operate with 3 speakers. Install the cd player and it does not work due to the fact that she did not bring her Eclipse key cd with her. I give her a new cd player so she can go on her way until her appointment.

Cheque bounces.... back and forth phone calls.... Canada Post money order sent.... 2 weeks later no money order.... more phone calls.... 2 weeks later I call and tell her I am not extending her credit and that the matter is now turned over to the RCMP. She tells the RCMP that she will come down but she does not. She calls me and hangs up. RCMP call me and tells me her side of the story, I fill in the member with some misinformation and missing information (like the money order). Customer tells the RCMP that she put a hold on the cheque as she did not get what she paid for. Really. If it was a hold then the cheque would not be NSF, it would be stop payment. Customer was busted 20 years back for fraud I have found out, the desk officer in the local detachment recognized the name and put two and two together. This lady knows how the system works.

Now then as far as warranty goes, I had a full day booked in with only me here and I could not put off the work I was working on, thus I booked her an appointment at her convenience and ensured that she had a working stereo. For you chain guys with more than one installer. how would you have handled the situation if you only had one installer and knew that to rectify the situation it would involve an hour or more of time that you just could ot make. Remember she was fine with making an appointment for getting this fixed. The onus is on her to show up and get the problem fixed, not for me to go and find her and fix it there.

Small claims court is the next step and she will lose with no doubt. If you have your car fixed after a collision and there is not something quite right, do you go back and get it fixed or not and if so do you make an appointment? If you need to go to the doctor, do you make an appointment. If you area a woman and need your hair dyed, do you make an appointment? She needed to make an appointment and a NSF cheque has nothing to do with her not making an appointment. Grrrr....

Yes, yes, why did I take a cheque.....she had no other form of payment and it was 9:00 at night. She made me feel comfortable enough that there would not be an issue, just shows that cheques are a definite no-no. 2nd bad cheque in 9 years.

[ December 08, 2004, 12:48 PM: Message edited by: MR2NR ]
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Old 12-08-2004, 05:41 PM
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Ok, the issue here is not the cheque, it is the install warranty. I try to be as accommodating as possible, but like Dave says, if it is over 15 minutes, it needs to get booked. When I was 5 minutes in and found the wire, I knew that it would take a ton of time.
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Old 12-08-2004, 06:38 PM
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The way you handled it Rob was reasonable and responsible.

I always let my clients know that if an issue arrises we will make a priority appointment for them to have it remedied. It's easier to underpromise and overdeliver than vice versa. The customer always leaves happy that way.

Unless the customers are 60+ years old then (and that is still not an excuse) they should have a debit card, credit card or cash when dealing with a retail establishment. I know there are people out there that don't believe in plastic but cash is king.

I know that if I write a cheque it is good, as is my word but too many other people have taken advantage of the system and good natured people for cheques (promisary notes) to be worth the paper they are printed on. At the very, very least the client should be prepared to wait until the cheque has cleared to pick up their merchandise or have installation begun. They react so shocked that their cheque and word is questioned.

Anyways sorry for the long winded post. Once again Rob IMO you acted properly and even exceeded your responsibility.
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Old 12-08-2004, 10:47 PM
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In regards to the bad cheque, I really take it personal. Last time I person bounced a cheque, I made a 4 x 8 foot sign with their name on it and placed it on the side of the road on the main highway then the following week I placed a simular sign in front of her home. Is paid me within 2 days of the sign in front of her house. It a public street, the cops can't touch you.
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Old 12-09-2004, 11:08 AM
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James, that is a great idea, especially as she lives in a affluent neighbourhood.
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