COSTCO return policy...is this for real? - AVS Forum
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Old 05-23-2006, 10:49 AM - Thread Starter
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Friends have been telling me to purchase my television from COSTCO, but the problem is they don't sell my television at COSTCO. I want the Samsung HL-S5686W. Is it true that you can return you television no questions asked, even if it's broken after the manufacturer's warranty expires and also let's say during a power spike that fries your television? He's making me feel bad not buying it from COSTCO...LOL
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Old 05-23-2006, 11:23 AM
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Costco's return policy is great. Thats were I bought my set, luckly I havent had to test their return policy. What I have heard from this board and others, is that you can return it at any time, and get what you paid or at least what the last selling price was.

If you didnt buy from costco, I hope you got an extended warranty.
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Old 05-23-2006, 11:27 AM
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But I wonder how long they will keep that warranty policy....my guess is that if a bunch of people abuse it, they'll end up changing it.
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Old 05-23-2006, 11:44 AM
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I don't know about TVs but I bought a 23" LCD monitor that got dead pixels after 8 months or so and returned it for full refund w/o problem (I don't know if the pixels went bad or were bad all along and I hadn't noticed.) Bought it on line and returned at a local store. I think it was still under warranty and I could've RMAed it to HP but I didn't want to bother.
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Old 05-23-2006, 12:56 PM
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Just to let you guys know, a little off topic but a little relevant.

Whenever you return something at Costco they keep the record in your file which comes up when they scan your card. You are allowed a certain amount of these kinds of returns per year and if you exceed that I thnk there is a fee or a hold on your membership card....something weird like that. Just to let all of you know.

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Old 05-23-2006, 02:12 PM
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They won't put a fee on your card. Maybe if you did a lot they would take away your membership and start being harsher with the returns. They are pretty good though.

You're right though. Costco has a complete history of your buying and returning. They can see *everything* from the time you first made a purchase. Do note computers can only be returned for six months, but that policy is not on TVs yet.

I had to return my Samsung DLP a few weeks ago, but it was only 9 days old (stuck mirrors). They were fine about it, but were really pushy about wanting the remote control out, which I had packaged away beautifully inside the box. Since they don't sell warranties, I think it is nice they have a good return policy.
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Old 05-23-2006, 02:53 PM
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CostCo can do this because one of their contractual stipulations is to have your merchandise (TVs) sold in store is that, you the Vendor, will take all returns and unused merchandise at your cost.
In the end CostCo does not assume any inventory risk. Vendors agree to this because of all the foot traffic that CostCo generates which in the end creates revenue for the vendor.
I could go on and on about there business model, but I'll step down from my business soap box.
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Old 05-23-2006, 03:07 PM
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A local morning radio show tested out Costco's return policy a little while ago. They bought a juicer, drove over it with a logging truck, put all the pieces back in the box, and returned it for a full refund!
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Old 05-23-2006, 09:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rodal View Post

CostCo can do this because one of their contractual stipulations is to have your merchandise (TVs) sold in store is that, you the Vendor, will take all returns and unused merchandise at your cost.
In the end CostCo does not assume any inventory risk. Vendors agree to this because of all the foot traffic that CostCo generates which in the end creates revenue for the vendor.
I could go on and on about there business model, but I'll step down from my business soap box.

I read a manager's blog post once, and he claimed they only get maximum 60 percent back on televisions, but maybe he was only saying this, in order to put off returners.
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Old 05-24-2006, 12:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by klac View Post

A local morning radio show tested out Costco's return policy a little while ago. They bought a juicer, drove over it with a logging truck, put all the pieces back in the box, and returned it for a full refund!


I found the link for this segment, you'll need iTunes to view it.

http://www.loomialive.com/media/vide...ct?cp=/2675445
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Old 05-24-2006, 12:54 AM
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i was wondering if costco sells returned of refurbished units as brand new. reason being is, i was going to buy a sony bravia 32" lcd from them a couple days ago, and noticed that the tape that seals the box had already been opened,....and you could tell that a new layer of tape was placed on top of it. i asked the store clerk if he had any more in stock, and he pointed me out to another stock pile. much to my surprise, all of them had the same condition! about 10-15 were obviously retaped. it's hard to tell if you're not examining the box, but if you were to look closely, you could see the cut tape underneath the nicely sealed one. the price they sell this unit for is about the same as all the other electronics stores, and there was no "refurbished model" sign on them.

and the end of it all, still got it, and it works fine. if they hadn't had the return policy i probably would have gone somewhere else.
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Old 05-24-2006, 08:50 AM
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roro5pm - Never heard of them selling a used TV as new. If they all looked that way, you're probably safe. I doubt they had that many returned.
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Old 05-24-2006, 09:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by panafreak View Post

Friends have been telling me to purchase my television from COSTCO, but the problem is they don't sell my television at COSTCO. I want the Samsung HL-S5686W. Is it true that you can return you television no questions asked, even if it's broken after the manufacturer's warranty expires and also let's say during a power spike that fries your television? He's making me feel bad not buying it from COSTCO...LOL

I've posted this before but here goes.

I also questioned Costco's return policy so I had a long discussion with then about it and specifically spoke about large screen projection TV's.

Was told:
* no time limit
* Need to be a current member when returning.
* Needs to be returned in original shipping box.
* Need to have sale receipt.
* Merchandise can't show any signs of being abused or messed with.

Great policy but don't think I'd make my purchase decission based soley on this.
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Old 05-24-2006, 10:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ayrton911 View Post

roro5pm - Never heard of them selling a used TV as new. If they all looked that way, you're probably safe. I doubt they had that many returned.

I doubt Costco is going to smear their rep by doing something illegal. They do a lot of coporate business, someone would pick that up in no time.
I do notice, they are not as fast with providing the latest models.
But if you spend some time doing your research, that in itself should not bother you.
As long as you get the full factory warranty at the start.
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Old 05-24-2006, 10:43 AM
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Costco's return policy is indeed "great," and is part of the reason I have been a member since 1992. However, taking something back because it got fried by lightning or some similar reason is dishonest, and it is fraud! Anyone who doesn't protect their electronics from lightning surges or some other damage is negligent, and Costco should NOT take it back for those reasons .. period.

Please don't abuse the fair policy. Those of us who ARE honest will end up losing out on one of the best customer service policies in retail. The policy exists because Costco only carries the better products and they want their customers to be certain that they are happy with their purchases. It's not to bail out customers who don't practice due diligence.
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Old 05-24-2006, 12:08 PM
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Originally Posted by NFLnut View Post

Costco's return policy is indeed "great," and is part of the reason I have been a member since 1992. However, taking something back because it got fried by lightning or some similar reason is dishonest, and it is fraud! Anyone who doesn't protect their electronics from lightning surges or some other damage is negligent, and Costco should NOT take it back for those reasons .. period.

One should be careful when using the word fraud. Fraud means knowingly doing something unlawful. I have bought 2 TVs from Costco and was never told about surge protection. The salesman told me that I could return the TVs "if not satisfied for any reason at all ...". They could always add a clause for unprotected electronic products. If they did, and then someone returned a fried TV without telling Costco about it, that would be fraud. Not to mention that one could always turn the negligence argument on its head and hold the retailer responsible for not telling customers about surge protection.
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Old 05-24-2006, 01:14 PM
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Originally Posted by constp View Post

OThey could always add a clause for unprotected electronic products. If they did, and then someone returned a fried TV without telling Costco about it, that would be fraud. Not to mention that one could always turn the negligence argument on its head and hold the retailer responsible for not telling customers about surge protection.

Exactly, no one is promoting 'fraud' here. And such occurrences mentioned, would be rare anyway.
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Old 05-24-2006, 01:37 PM
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Originally Posted by Stephanie@tva View Post

Just to let you guys know, a little off topic but a little relevant.

Whenever you return something at Costco they keep the record in your file which comes up when they scan your card. You are allowed a certain amount of these kinds of returns per year and if you exceed that I thnk there is a fee or a hold on your membership card....something weird like that. Just to let all of you know.

I wonder if there are any Costco employees on this Forum that would even think to comment on TVA policies or practices?
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Old 05-26-2006, 01:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MickeyM View Post

Was told:
* no time limit
* Need to be a current member when returning.
* Needs to be returned in original shipping box.
* Need to have sale receipt.
* Merchandise can't show any signs of being abused or messed with.

Regarding sale receipt, I have read that Costco can make a printed copy of their electronic record of past receipts, although I don't know how long they keep receipt-specific records.

Also, I was told that if you don't have the receipt, you can always return something for a credit (Costco cash card) as opposed to a refund. If you shop at Costco regularly, a cash card instead of a refund is almost as good (unless your HDTV cost many thousands of dollars, in which case it might take some time to work your way through the cash card).
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Old 05-26-2006, 03:27 PM
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awesome policy except for the shipping box? i mean you would to comply with return policy to costco but those boxes can be huge and most wouldn't want to keep around after a month or so.
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Old 05-26-2006, 05:44 PM
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They don't need the original receipt. They have what you have bought on file and can reference it. My wife returned a camera, they printed the receipt at the store one year later for her.

I certainly hope they don't need the box...who the heck keeps that around? I wouldn't even be able to get the box from my Panny 60 inch in my attic to store.

I plan to return my Panny if Panasonic does not come through with replacing my TV with something else....tired of the lamps blowing out every 6 mos.
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Old 05-26-2006, 08:15 PM
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Yeah I think they prefer the box, but they don't have to have it. Just stroll by the customer service desk at a costco. You'll see all kinds of old returned junk, without boxes.
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Old 05-26-2006, 08:47 PM
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Originally Posted by videoaddikt View Post

no one is promoting 'fraud' here. .

Ummmm yeah, sure

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Old 05-26-2006, 11:58 PM
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Let me see if I'm getting this correct about COSTCO returns.
I own a RPTV-- DLP for 4 years and the color wheel goes out which would be a covered repair if they sold an extended warranty. I box it up (assume I have keep the box in the basement) and return it for a new TV!

This would be a lot of work to save a few hundred dollars but I get a new TV.

A better question may be, sense COSTCO doesn't sell ext. warr. can you buy one elsewhere and if so from who and how much. I always thought you had to buy from the seller.
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Old 05-27-2006, 12:06 AM
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Originally Posted by Sampson1943 View Post

Let me see if I'm getting this correct about COSTCO returns.
I own a RPTV-- DLP for 4 years and the color wheel goes out which would be a covered repair if they sold an extended warrantee. I box it up (assume I have keep the box in the basement) and return it for a new TV!

This would be a lot of work to save a few hundred dollars but I get a new TV.

Yeah they might take it back, but I don't think you should. I guess it depends on where you think it crosses the line. Furthermore, I have read an in-depth article about this subject and the managers typically claim they only like to take returns during the original warranty period.
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Old 05-27-2006, 08:04 AM
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Originally Posted by JonDotCom View Post

Ummmm yeah, sure

Some folks do like to get something for nothing, but most are more honest than that.
Costco offers a possible alternative to purchasing aftermarket warranties and service plans. That is the crux of the conversation. Of course, you can have your own spin on it.
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Old 05-29-2006, 02:23 PM
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You definitely do not need the box. I was shopping in my local Costco 1 year after buying my Panny 60" LCDRPTV and they had the newer version of the same model for $700 cheaper. I asked a manager about this and he instructed me to bring back the old set for a full refund and then I could purchase the new set!

It's been almost a year since I returned the set. I recently noticed a pink colored area on the bottom left hand side of my screen of my 'newer' Panny. Took the set back and got a new Mitsubishi 62" for $500 less.

I just made you up to hurt myself....
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Old 05-29-2006, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Stryf3 View Post

You definitely do not need the box. I was shopping in my local Costco 1 year after buying my Panny 60" LCDRPTV and they had the newer version of the same model for $700 cheaper. I asked a manager about this and he instructed me to bring back the old set for a full refund and then I could purchase the new set!

It's been almost a year since I returned the set. I recently noticed a pink colored area on the bottom left hand side of my screen of my 'newer' Panny. Took the set back and got a new Mitsubishi 62" for $500 less.

Now that is great service.
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Old 06-04-2006, 10:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by constp View Post

One should be careful when using the word fraud. Fraud means knowingly doing something unlawful. I have bought 2 TVs from Costco and was never told about surge protection. The salesman told me that I could return the TVs "if not satisfied for any reason at all ...". They could always add a clause for unprotected electronic products. If they did, and then someone returned a fried TV without telling Costco about it, that would be fraud. Not to mention that one could always turn the negligence argument on its head and hold the retailer responsible for not telling customers about surge protection.


Okay. 'Don't like the word "fraud?" How about exceedingly "dishonest?!"

You know the old saying .. "If it quacks like a duck..?"

The policy exists for the reasons I posted. Abuse of that policy because of NEGLIGENCE on the part of the buyer is dishonest. Besides, anyone who peruses these forums who "aren't aware of the dangers of not using surge protection" deserves to be stuck with a $3500 fried boat anchor!
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Old 06-04-2006, 01:08 PM
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Originally Posted by NFLnut View Post

Besides, anyone who peruses these forums who "aren't aware of the dangers of not using surge protection" deserves to be stuck with a $3500 fried boat anchor!

I would tend to agree with you, private. But with my luck the SOB would probably float!
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