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Sears Appliance Service Sucks

Called A&E Appliance Repair for appliance repair of both a Viking under-counter fridge and a Dacor double oven. Identified both by specific model number and asked if they repaired those models and brands. Walked the A&E dispatcher through the error codes on both devices and the exact model numbers, and asked them to pre-buy the parts and dispatch worker(s) with the parts as arranging for time off was the hardest thing. At no point did the dispatcher tell me he was actually Sears. At no point did the dispatcher warn me that the company he represented did not actually support Viking fridges. He merely agreed to my diagnosis and parts request and scheduled both repairs for the same day so I could take one day off and knock out two repairs. Awesome.

Repair day shows up and a Sears technician shows up with absolutely no idea what brand and models he is working on, no parts in hand, and he begins the diagnosis. Furthermore he keeps calling me “boss” even when I told him my name was Scott and he does it a way that makes it creepy. He checks with his dispatcher (a 40 minute phone call) and finds that Sears can not even beging to cover the Viking fridge. He confirms my diagnosis of the Dacor oven as needing a new controller board and orders the part, and I pay him for the repair in full so my wife (who will have to take time off for the repeat visit, scheduled two weeks out) does not have to pay anything.

Ten days later the part has not arrived, and I call A&E to let them know there may be trouble. A&E re-connects me to Sears. I spend 90 minutes in voice menu hell trying to give my name, address, and phone number to a computer that cannot understand English and will not allow me to simply type the keypad on my phone. I discover my parts order has been cancelled…. but that Sears never bothered to tell me. I ask for a call back from a human who can actually understand why the parts order was cancelled and schedule my oven repair.

Two days later an automated recording calls my number and says to call Sears at a new number pertaining to my parts order. I call the new number and spend another 60 minutes trying to identify to the stupid robot that cannot understand English which case I am by repeating my phone number, name, and address again and again. When I finally get a human, they have no idea why parts division cancelled the order either and will need to check with parts and get back to me.

Later the same day I spend another 90 minutes trying to get the parts division on the phone through the same horrible robot based 800 number so I can just get a refund. I finally get a direct to customer service number out of this call, but customer service cannot find out why the original parts order was cancelled from my own house on the day if the original “repair” where nothing new happened as I had already diagnosed the problems. Customer service guy admits my experience is horrible beyond belief and is very sympathetic and guarantees that I will get either my part and repair or a refund.

The next day I call customer service direct and spend 45 minutes navigating the voice menu prompter from hell, this time I get customer service with a clue… My parts order was cancelled because parts knew immediately upon initial order that they could no longer get this part from Dacor because Dacor will not do business with Sears. Dacor is sounding really smart about now. Apparently Parts department figured they could find an alternate source. Customer service person talks me into giving them two more days.

Two days later I call Sears customer service direct and ask for my refund, as they still don’t have a way to get the part they need to do the repair. They agree, but say it will take some time for the paperwork to catch up.

Good news, I discover that Foremost Appliance has not gone out of business, but merely moved to a new location! I arrange for Foremost to come out and look at the fridge and oven. Foremost guy diagnoses both devices and his diagnosis matches exactly my original diagnosis, though we discover that my under-counter fridge is stuck and I will have to figure out how to get the thing out so it can be worked on when the parts come in. Friends help me break the seal of spilled cola and get the fridge out.

Two weeks go by and Sears has not refunded me any money, I call customer service direct again and waste another 72 minutes trying to get the robot to understand my case. When I finally get a human they claim they never were told I wanted a refund and I read the poor person the riot act for how crappy the entire Sears experience has been but I know it is not them personally but their company that sucks beyond belief. They estimate refund in about a week. Another week goes by and I get a partial refund, they deducted the service call from the moron who came out originally.

Should I hire a lawyer and sue Sears for full refund and financial compensation at my contracting rate for the number of hours wasted?

Irony: every voice menu systems at the Sears 800 numbers says “Thank you for choosing Sears” even though I never chose Sears, and the menu for A&E does not identify them as merely taking up business for Sears. Bait and switch.

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