May 3, 2013

BEWARE! HP Total Care

HP Total Care is Total Crap!

Long time fans readers may remember that I bought a custom built Pavillion DV6 last year.

Last month (one month before the one year warranty expired), I couldn't get the laptop to turn on so I called HP Customer Care. The CSR got it up and running by having me remove the battery, unplug the power cord, and holding the power button down for 10 seconds. I was able to power up the laptop. Toward the end of the phone conversation, the CSR asked if I wanted to purchase a 2-year extended warranty for $199. Since my warranty was due to expire on the 6th of April, I decided to purchase it. Little did I know what was to come.

On April 20th, I couldn't get the laptop to boot up so again I called Customer Care again. This was 16 days after the one year warranty would’ve expired. Had I not purchased the extended warranty, HP would’ve said “too bad, so sad” and I’d be left with a one year old laptop that I’d have to repair.

Back to the call: The CSR diagnosed the problem as hard drive failure. I had expectations that a product such as HP would not have such a problem with a fairly new machine. In doing some research on the internet, however, I’ve found that this particular problem on HP’s products goes back YEARS!

A “ticket” was submitted by the CSR to have the hard drive and recovery discs sent to me. I was told HP doesn’t deliver to PO Boxes so I told him that it could be shipped to my work address, and emphasized that it was my work address and not where the laptop was. An appointment was set up to have a technician come install the hard drive on the morning of April 27th. According to HP, a FOUR HOUR window is required which means I had to sit around and wait for four hours. I had to reschedule and cancel appointments, including a medical appointment so I could sit and wait for four hours!

Two days prior to the scheduled date, I received emails and calls from HP asking if the hardware and software arrived. I also received what I perceived as an email reminder that a technician was scheduled to come on the 27th and that the service address was at my work address! I called HP Customer Care to tell them and the CSR told me, “Oh, just tell the technician when he calls”.

On April 26th at 8PM (the night before the scheduled technician arrival), I received a call from HP telling me ALL the service technicians were "busy" and wouldn't be coming. I was LIVID! Not only had I cleared my appointments for the morning and it was too late to schedule them back in, I had received emails just two days prior that a technician was coming! The CSR kept telling me she understood my frustration and guaranteed they were doing the best job possible. Seriously? If HP Customer Care thinks their service is the best, they are in serious denial. The CSR must've repeated the phrase at least three times before I finally said "Look, your guarantee doesn't mean squat to me so quit repeating it over and over!" I couldn’t foresee my frustration level was going to increase...

The next morning, I called HP's Customer Care again and demanded to talk to a supervisor, however the CSR wouldn't transfer me until *after* I repeated the entire tale again. Once the supervisor got on the line, I had to repeat the story again! He supposedly escalated my ticket and told me a technician would be calling me within an hour. Guess what? Over an hour later, no technican had called.

I called HP Customer Care once again. By this time, I was out running errands and didn't have my ticket number and told the CSR that. What is the first thing he asked me after my name? "Ma'am, do you have your ticket number?" HP Customer Care truly does NOT listen. The CSR looked up my name and told me I had two laptops... one under warranty and one not. No, I have one laptop. The he tried to inform me that it's not their "policy" to have a technician call in an hour. That it takes 24-48 hours to set up appointments. I responded back that I didn't care what the policy was, that the supervisor I talked to earlier told me a technician would be calling within an hour. I asked to speak to another supervisor.

Supervisor #2 told me Supervisor #1 didn't escalate it my issue properly… that he just sent it to dispatch. After an hour on the phone explaining the entire thing AGAIN, he put me on hold so that he could get a conference call with a case manager. He asked me for a 2-3 hour time frame on Sunday, April 28th for a technician to come and for a case manager to call. He told me a technician would be coming to install the HD and recovery discs (on the 28th), making sure that the computer was in running order before he left. Guess what? No one called. No one showed up either.

By this time, my frustration level was wayyyy higher than I am tall. I was so irritated and tired of the service HP Total Care had not provided. I made yet another call to HP. The CSR put me on hold while he read the notes on my account (because I told him to... I refused to repeat the story again). After about 5 minutes on hold, I was disconnected!I called back again. CSR #2 said he saw in the system that I called a few minutes prior and that a request was put in to talk to a case manager. This CSR told me that case managers don't work on the weekend (remember earlier, Supervisor #2 told me one would be calling on Sunday?), that he didn't care what was said previously, they only go by what's in the system and somewhere along the line they had put in a request for my hard drive to be replaced on May 4th! Since the case was already "escalated", this CSR refused to give me to another supervisor because the issue was being "addressed" and that was the end of it.

On April 29th at 8:22PM, I received a voicemail message from case manager “Jonathon”. What’s with the late night phone calls? I work for a living and have to get up early. A second voicemail was received 12:32PM the next day. I returned the call at 6:21PM after I got home from work.

I did not reach Jonathon, but another case manager in queue who had an accent that I had difficulty understanding. When I asked to either transfer me to Jonathon or another case manager who spoke clear English, I was told that I could communicate via email. I asked him how he thought I would do that since I have ONE computer that was broken. Then he asked, “What’s the problem with your computer?” I responded, “Seriously? Have you not read the notes on my account?” He said, “I’m doing that right now.” I hung up on him, frustrated once again.

On May 1st, I received a call from a repair technician located in Peoria. Peoria is 3 hours south of where I live! Through the phone conversation, I learned that he thought he was going to the town I work in, which is 2 hours north of Peoria.

Keep in mind that I had the hard drive shipped to where I work because HP would not ship it to a PO Box. When I received the email stating where HP “thought” the service address was, I immediately called HP and told them. The woman I talked to said, “Oh, just let the technician know when he calls.” I ALSO told one of the “supervisors” during many round-and-round phone calls to them where the service address was... had to spell out my street address and city. Yet, they STILL had my work address as the place to repair my laptop!

The technician laughed at my complaints about HP and gave excuses as to HP’s poor customer service. He said he didn’t understand why they would want someone from so far away to repair the laptop. He said he’d contact HP and get back to me. On May 2nd, the technician from Peoria left a voicemail message around 12:30 to confirm the repair on Saturday morning, May 4th.

Since I have added a second hard drive to a desktop PC years ago (not an easy task to connect two HD's, btw), I decided that a laptop couldn't be that hard. I opened the box HP sent me to find step-by-step instructions on how to do it! It took me all of 8 minutes to remove the faulty one and install the new one. Yet, HP wanted a technician to drive 3 hours to do this??? Installing the OS took longer... several hours to reinstall using the restore disks sent by HP.

On May 3rd, I used the box and packaging material that the replacement hard drive came in to return the failed hard drive. I put the return slip in with it and placed the Fed Ex return label (both provided by HP) on the outside of the box. I dropped it in the Fed Ex pick up box located on the lower level of the local banking center building. It was due for pick up at 5:45pm on the same day. I called HP and politely told them to cancel the technician and to note I returned the hard drive.

When I purchased the HP Total Care warranty, I received an email stating I could and I quote exactly, "take full advantage of HP's award winning Total Care service and support programs, giving you the peace of mind and confidence that comes with knowing that HP will take care of you if you need help with your HP or Compaq products."

Based on my experience, I did not receive award winning service nor did I feel HP "took care" of me. Not only did I get poor service, I was given false and misinformation. I spent hours on the phone with HP's Total "Care" and received nothing but VERY HIGH levels of frustration and irritability.

The only good thing I have to say is that HP shipped the replacement hard drive and restoration CD's relatively quickly. HP's "Total Care" needs some serious help!

I sincerely hope that I do not have any other problems with this HP laptop now that I have experienced HP's Total "Care".


Carolyn NC said...

Your frustration is ridiculous they were!

Anne Sans Tete -- Nome de plume! said...

That's just absurd!! Ridiculous! Insane!

I'm glad your comp is up & running again. :)

- Lisa

*-* said...

I'm so sorry you have had this experience from HP. My daughter can't wait to get rid of her HP because of similar situation.
I'm looking forward to seeing you stitching progress soon, might miss the next three weeks as I'll be away.

valerie said...

Gah! I have an HP Pavilion dv5 and regret buying it. I guess I am lucky that it still runs since it is 2 years old but I'll be SOL if it breaks since I didn't buy a warrenty. It's so slow. Next time it's Toshiba or Mac for me! Sorry for all your frustration. I had the same experience with Comcast and finally insisted on speaking to a supervisor and was on hold for 20 minutes while they read all the notes for the tens of calls I had already put in. Makes me riled up just thinking about it! I'm glad you were able to fix your computer.

cucki said...

Oh no :(

Heather Cartwright said...

That's such a shame. I had the same hard drive failure on my HP G62 two years ago (the computer was 9 months old), but they dealt with it spectacularly - the hard drive died Monday evening, HP were contacted on Tuesday, my laptop was sent off the same day, and was back to me by Friday. Maybe it's a local thing? :/ All the same, that's ridiculous.

Vickie said...

Oh yes! I recently experienced this same kind of junk and "escalation" with AT&T. Gave me very high blood pressure!

Berly said...

Oh, Meari, I feel your pain! I will never buy another HP product again! I hope you don't have any more problems with your laptop.

Sandie said...

Big companies just don't see how frustrating all this is for an individual. I've had similar issues with them, and can feel our pain! Especially when YOU managed to solve it yourself!
Hopefully your laptop is still behaving itself and your frustration has decreased so you can stitch again in peace! X

Sue said...

OMG! What a horrid experience! I have an HP; I have only had mine for a short time. I sure hope I don't experience the problems you have had sweetie!

I am glad you are back up and running.

Sue SM

Anonymous said...

I cannot believe all you've had to go through. I have no words!

Tobie in So. Cal.

Faith... said...

I hope that your computer will not have anymore problems. What bad customer service you received. You would think they would be a little more caring but at least you were able to put it back together and not have to wait on some technician to fit you in his schedule.

Anonymous said...

Glad you're back Meari. I sure hope your laptop will be fine now. You're a better woman than me. I could not have fixed it myself. You go girl! :-)


Anonymous said...

I'm sorry you had to go through this.

It's really sad when customer care isn't there for anyone...It used to be so different.

I think HP's products have not been the same for a long time. HP is no longer a great brand to buy..

I know this from personal experience. I believe it has to do with parts coming from different countries. They are not all the same.

Glad you getting things worked out and I have my fingers crossed that your laptop works fully and right once again.


Aurelia Eglantine said...

Meari, this sounds like it was a totally maddening experience all around! From my own tussles with customer service, unfortunately I don't think it's limited to HP or just tech companies, although they are definitely some of the worst. The attitude these days is "if it's broke, buy a new one - it's cheaper!". And the whole "the customer is always right" bit has completely gone out the window.

And nobody listens, it's enough to drive you bonkers! It seems that companies expect YOU to feel PRIVILEGED for "being ALLOWED" to buy their products. What kind of sense is that?! So sorry you had to go through this, but am happy to hear that you wear able to fix the problem yourself :)

Mouse said...

sheesh I feel your pain .... my main computor has just "died" on me and I am trying to sort out for some one to look at it in case it can be revived .... had backed up most things not so long back ... so not that worried if it can't .... PHEW ... love mouse xxxxx

Sunshine said...

My HP mother board went kaput on my laptop just after warranty went out. I just purchased another one, with reassurance that HP has fixed the problem with their MB issues. So sorry you've had such trouble. So glad you still had warranty :)

Jennifer said...

My goodness, I would have completely lost my mind. I'd call, email and send them a certified letter that you want your extended warranty cost refunded since you did the work yourself. Include a copy of what you put on your blog (format it so it's by date, and keep it as an updatable document, preferably on another computer! LOL) I'd also contact the Better Business Bureau, and if you purchased from a company other than HP directly, contact them too.

AND I'd call your credit card company and see if there's anything they can do to dispute the charge for the extended warranty since you paid for a service you didn't get.

Claire said...

All your stitching looks great.x

Anonymous said...

I too have been having problems with HP. I bought a new computer in Nov with windows 8 and was told I could exchange it if done without there policy time. I called several times and couldn't get anywhere because you are talking to people in India who could "care Less" I went to the attorney general and they gave them the same response I need to call them today I will never buy a HP again!!!!!!!!!!!

Akila said...

This is absolutely ridiculous. We have faced problems with HP support as well earlier. It's not just HP, you call customer service for any product it's the same fate. And if you have to call them for follow up, you have to repeat the entire story a number of times. The call center is absolutely frustrating. Wonder why they do not save a history of the calls in their ticket

SoCal Debbie said...

Wow! This is why I hate calling Customer Service for any company about anything! I'd rather have a Pap smear or a mammogram. LOL