It all started at the beginning of February. It's April 20th as I write this. My 65" Widescreen HDTV WS65009, that I purchased in September of 2000, suddenly started to bleed colors on the screen, and soon wouldn't even turn on. While going through a complete service repair nightmare since early February I am still without my tv. I want to tell you all my story so you won't go through the same.
I first noticed the color problem in early January, but it would only happen once or twice a week. By the time February rolled around it was almost constant. I decided to put my extended warranty through Mitsubishi into action. My first call to them had a service technician walk me through some rudimentary steps over the telephone to try and resolve the problem, to no avail. Then they put me in touch with the local authorized service center here in New Jersey. They sent a technician out to take a look. The technician decided that a part needed to be ordered, so he went away and two weeks later another technician arrived with the part. This part turned out to be the incorrect part and another was ordered. Two weeks later a third technician returned for the THIRD house call. The night before the service call, the tv stopped operating completely - the tv would power on quickly but would almost immediately shut itself off.
At this point the service technician had no idea what was wrong and decided to remove the guts from the tv and bring it to the shop for a more in-depth repair. While at the shop, more parts were ordered. Each time a part was ordered I was told it would take at least five days to get the part, unless it's on backorder. They ordered two different parts for the tv, taking five days each to arrive, while I waited patiently with no tv to watch. It was now around March Madness time and I was upset i was unable to watch it in HD.
The two parts ordered and received while at the repair shop didn't fix the problems either, and the service shop decided they needed the rest of the tv in order to fix the problem. So, about five days after making this decision they sent a truck crew out to pick up the wood shell and speakers of my tv. I'm still not quite sure why they needed that, and i'm guessing they were stalling for time.
Now it's about three weeks since they took the shell and they have still not resolved the problem. The latest thing to happen is that they ordered ANOTHER part and it arrived yesterday, Friday. At this point Mitsubishi is now involved directly with the repair shop in order to help speed up the process. I am worried now that this latest part will still not resolve the problem and Mitsubishi will insist on shipping the unit to their shop in California for repair. I cannot stand for that and will contact my lawyer if it's suggested.
My feeling is that both the repair shop and Mitsubishi are negligent in repairing my tv in a reasonable amount of time. I can certainly understand that some things are difficult to repair. I cannot, however, understand why a company such as Mitsubishi would allow a tv repair to last more than two months without any intention of replacing the tv or refunding my money. At this point, even if they are able to repair the tv now I don't feel so happy about getting it back since it's now not as "perfect" as I always felt it was. It's been through so many repair attempts and relocations it just seems like damaged goods to me now...like a new car that's been through a few accidents. What ticks me off even more is that through all of this they used UPS GROUND to ship all of the parts, prolonging the process incredibly.
I'm posting this to see if others have had similar experiences and if they were treated any differently. I'd also like to see if others have any advice on what I can do at this point to get either a replacement unit or a refund without having to resort to legal action.
Thanks, and sorry for being so long-winded!
Well, back to watching my 19" analog tv. :-(
Greg in NJ
Greg, I completely feel your pain. I have not had this happen with my Pioneer RPTV, but I can assure you that I would be just as frustrated as you if it had. It's really disappointing when you put your faith in a company with your checkbook and they don't step up. Someone should implement a warranty that makes sure the person doesn't go without an item for more than two weeks.
Having to work first hand in dealing with issues similar to these, I must tell you that the average time i see for big screen repairs lasts up to a few months, but I do feel your pain.
I had a similar experience with a 73" Mits. According to the service center, the needed parts were no longer available from Mitsubishi. The extended warranty company (Philips) wanted to buy it out for half what I paid. After I pushed to get the full purchase price, the parts mysteriously became available. The whole process took almost 4 months and left me with a picture that is noticeably worse than what I had before.
I had a very similar experience with a Panasonic set. Neither Panasonic nor OneCall seemed to care about the situation. I had to dispute the charge through the credit company before I got any serious attention. I learned my lesson and bought a Mitsubishi from a local specialty retailer who supports and honors the warranty in-house. Dealing with factory customer support and service center absolutely sucks when dealing with these sets.
My advice...pay the extra money and buy the TV from someplace who will exchange it if you get a lemon!
I second Marc's advice. I went with Best Buy and even they have provided pretty good service.
Thanks everybody for your responses. I sure hope it doesn't turn out that I get a damaged tv back - I'm hoping it comes back with no defects. I'm not sure what recourse i would have if it came back defective. I do wish I had thought of the replacement option when i bought it, but I can't really go plunk down another 4 grand for a new tv. We'll just see how it is when it's returned to me.
Check your private mail.