I'm an 8500UB owner (purchased in August 2010), and am incredibly frustrated with Epson's customer service lately. Anyone else having issues?
Long story short, I'm on my fifth projector. Each one I get has HUGE dust problems or some other major issue (like not turning on...).
I've been jerked around by tech support and customer service. Quite honestly, I'm not sure what to do. I've exhausted every avenue and I can't seem to get any answers or reasonable solutions to my issues. I finally found an email address on their Facebook page, and tried that. Here's the letter I sent, explaining my situation.
To whom it may concern,
I was hoping you could assist me with an issue I’ve been having, and the very poor customer service I’ve received while trying to get things resolved.
First, I’d like to say that, in the past, Epson customer support has been exemplary. I’ve always been treated very well- fast turnaround time, courteous support representatives, frequent communication. In fact, I used to put Epson on the same level as Apple, which in my opinion is the gold standard of customer support. Lately, however, I am seriously questioning that position.
In late October, I noticed that my third 8500UB projector had another problem with dust. In short, dust gets inside the unit and obscures portions of the projected image. A quick Google search will yield numerous other examples of this issue and other frustrated customers. This is the exact same problem that plagued my three previous projectors, and each of them were replaced quickly by Epson. The projector is being used in a largely dust-free environment as well.
I called technical support, explained the problem, and like in the past, I was sent an email with return instructions. A few days later, I called back and asked if I could keep the projector until late December because I host weekend football parties at my house. The rep I spoke to explained that it was not an issue, and to use the same return instructions.
On December 30th, I sent the projector back, according to the instructions I received. Inside the box, I included the requisite information (reference number, name, address, and phone number).
According to the Fed-Ex tracking number, the unit was delivered to Indiana and signed for on January 5th. The next week, I still hadn’t received the replacement projector, so I called tech support.
In total, I was on hold almost 40 minutes while the rep tried to figure out why my replacement projector had not been sent out. He then explained to me that I should not have waited until December to send back the unit, and that the case had expired. I explained that the previous rep had explained it was not an issue. The rep I spoke to made it seem like it was entirely my fault.
He told me that they had to verify that the projector was, in fact, in the warehouse in Indiana, and that a customer relations rep would call me first thing the next morning.
The following night, I had still not received a phone call. I called back and again, sat on hold for 30 minutes. The rep explained that they must have forgotten to call me and that, again, they’d call the next morning. I explained that this was not good enough and I had no faith that anyone would call. He assured me that someone would call the next morning.
Another day passed and still no phone call. I called again, sat on hold for far too long, and got no answers. They explained that someone would call on Monday morning (it was Friday the 13th). I told him again that this was unacceptable, and asked to be transferred to customer relations. He said they didn’t have the direct number (“we only push a button,” he said) and that they couldn’t transfer me. I requested that he “push the button,” get someone on the line, and ask for their direct number. Instead, he initiated a three-way-call with a customer relations rep.
I walked the rep through the issue, expressed my displeasure about the situation, and was promised that they’d ship out the replacement first thing Monday morning when the warehouse opened. On Monday morning, I received an email from Margaret C. in customer relations.
Dear Mr. Mundt,
Please accept our apologies for the delay in getting your replacement projector sent to you. Our warehouse was able to locate the defective one you sent in and will be shipping that replacement today for delivery tomorrow. The shipment has been marked "Signature Required". If you contact us later this afternoon, we should be able to provide a tracking number for you.
I was satisfied with the email and planned on receiving my projector this week. Unfortunately, I did not receive the projector on Tuesday or Wednesday. Today (Thursday) I called tech support (as I could get no one to give me a direct number to customer relations) and asked for the tracking number. Again, I was put on hold.
When the rep returned, I was told that the projector had not been sent out and that they don’t have any in stock. I asked when stock was to be replenished and he said “there’s no way I can answer that.” I asked if they could send my original projector back in the meantime, or if they could send out an interim replacement, or if they could send me the next available model number above the 8500UB. I was told “no” for all three suggestions.
So, basically, I’m stuck in limbo. I don’t have my projector and have no idea when I will get it. No one can give me any answers and I’m stuck in an endless loop of clueless and rude tech support representatives. Meanwhile, my $2,500 investment is nowhere to be seen.
Now, if I had not called, how long would the projector have sat in the warehouse? Even though I included all of my contact information, I received no communication. I also received no communication stating my projector had not been sent out on Monday, as stated in the email.
Each person I talk to pawns me off on someone else instead of trying to resolve the issue. I’m tired of being bounced around and promised resolutions to my issue. If I cannot get a reasonable resolution to my issues, I will promptly file a claim with the Better Business Bureau.
For the last year, I have recommended Epson projectors to many of my friends and relatives. In fact, I'm considering purchasing a Powerlite Pro Cinema 6010 as a replacement for the 8500UB, but will be reconsidering both.
As an update to this letter I sent... I did finally receive my projector (they sent it last Friday and I received it on Saturday. In a final kick to the balls, the unit I got had a dust problem much, much, much worse than my previous unit. And, on top of that, the lamp exploded after 2 hours of use.
So, I'm at the end of my rope. Anybody have any recommendations?