I would like someone from management to contact me from Sears. someone high enough to help me with this problem. Thanks
To Whom It May Concern,
I am Scott S. and I am a customer of Sears and Sears outlet stores. I have a wife and 3 beautiful kids. My kids are 7, 4 and 8 months old.
On February 8th, 2013 I went in to the Sears outlet store located at Val Vista and Guadalupe in Gilbert, Arizona to purchase a Washer and Dryer set for our home. The staff at the store was very helpful and after a short search we located the perfect units. I purchased a Kenmore Elite washer and dryer unit for $1583.67 with a sears card ending in xxxxx7642. The washer was then delivered to my home on February 11th, 2013. This letter/email is to address an issue that recently occurred with the washer unit. I believe it is a Kenmore Elite Model# 796.31523210 which retails for $1409.99.
On February 14th, 2014 I was studying in my living room, for a Sergeants exam that I am about to take, with my kids when I heard a loud squealing noise. Once I pinpointed where the noise was coming from I saw smoke coming from under the laundry room door. I quickly opened the door and shut off the washer which appeared to be the culprit at this point. I was able to fan out most of the smoke while inhaling a good portion. I observed that the washer was flashing the code “LE” which, after a short time looking through the manual, Motor error. After the smoke had, quite literally cleared, I unplugged the washer and pulled it out from its position to take a look at it. When I pulled out the washer I observed a ½ – ¾ inch deep hole (approximate) in the ground directly in the center of where the washer was sitting. The hole was approximately 1 inch in diameter and, at the time, was red hot and smoldering. (pictures available)
I was then able to lean the washer back against the wall to examine underneath for damage or anything on fire. I then saw the cause of the hole in the ground. It appeared that all four of the “feet” that the washer sit on had broken causing the entire unit to drop approximately 1 inch. This in turn caused the motor unit to drop which caused the motor nut (while in the spin cycle of the wash) to essentially drill its way into my laundry room floor. This then caused my floor to just about catch on fire if I was not able to run in there in time to turn off the washer.
After this I called Sears and was put through to the warranty department where I was informed that my manufacturer warranty (1 year) had just expired by 6 days. So my brand spanking new Kenmore Elite washer had just “died” after 371 days. The lady informed me that I had purchased it on 2/8/13 and it was 2/14/14 and that was just outside of the warranty window. She then informed me that I could purchase an extended warranty for $239.99 which would cover the cost of a repair technician to come out and take a look at the washer and then cover the repair. She then explained to me that it would cost $75 for the technician to come out unless I had the warranty which would cover that. I paid the $239.99 and was emailed a copy of the certificate and scheduled a repair team to take a look at the washer on February 17th, 2014. Keep in mind that I have a family with 3 kids, one of which is an 8 month old baby who goes through clothes like nothing I have ever seen before.
On February 17th, 2014 the technicians came to my house 45 minutes to 1 hour late. (Scheduled for 10am-2pm) Once they showed up I spoke to one and told him a brief synopsis of what I just recapped with you while the second was looking underneath the unit. The one had told me that in all of his years doing this job he has NEVER heard of a washer unit doing that; especially one that was 1 year old. As I was explaining the circumstances of the washer’s apparent death, the second tech was verbally agreeing with what I was saying and stating such things as “yup, I can see that the base of the unit broke” and “yeah, it drilled a hole in the ground, you can see where the nut was heated up because of the friction” and “I’m not sure why it even did that, it should not have fell, this is a first!”
I let them examine the unit for about 1 hour until one of the gentleman came up to me and said that it would cost me (approximate as I could not get a copy of this) $537 out of pocket. I told them that there must be some mistake and I showed them a copy of my warranty agreement that I had just purchased. (Contract # 205207996800004) The technician then explained that I had not been properly informed by the warranty department but that the warranty that I purchased only covered up to $500 worth of damage or parts to be repaired. He then informed me that the total cost would be well over $1000 which is why the balance I would need to pay would be approximately $537. He was then nice enough to explain to me that I could cancel the repair, cancel the warranty and get a refund for the warranty itself minus the $75 cost for them to assess the damage. He could not provide me with a copy of the parts or the total (again I estimated from memory) because he had to void it and redo it so that I could cancel the charge. Keep in mind that this unit has never been used for commercial situations, only our clothes. It has never been off balance while cleaning which could cause the feet or baseplate to break and it actually has a self-correcting mode which corrects this issue automatically. He mentioned something about the following parts that were broken:
Baseplate (which includes the feet)
I opted to cancel since he said I would need to purchase an entire new washer. He provided me with a copy of a receipt which states the parts above and that the damage was well over $1000, which it should be noted that this was well over what I paid for this unit brand new. This information was on the receipt that I received from them: Sears #0008038; Technician ID: 0925321; Service Order # 41521399
After a few days I called the warranty department of Sears to cancel my Service Smart Protection agreement (contract # above). I spoke to a very helpful lady whom I explained my situation to in great detail. She again reiterated that she had never heard of this happening and expressed great pity for my situation. She informed me that I had three options: Pay the difference to get the unit fixed, get a refund minus $155 for the fee, or Keep the agreement without a refund and receive a $500 voucher for a new unit.
I then had a conversation with her that went something like this. I asked her why, if I wanted a refund, I had to pay $155 when I was told the first time that it would only be $75. She explained that the first lady only told me that $75 was the charge to send the technician to my door, and that there was an additional fee to just look at my unit. I was not informed of this initially. The lady then gave me a Sales check # of 073491026440 and said that it would help whomever receives this to look up my original purchase order. I then asked her to explain the voucher for me because it was hard for me to understand why I would get a voucher for $500 and Sears keep the $239.99 for the warrant; when I could get my money back and it would be just about the same so there was no benefit. She was kind enough to refund me my entire $239.99 because of this terrible situation. She then said that I could email this address and explain my situation and that we could come to an agreement of some sort.
It has now been approximately 1 week since the incident and we have been without a washer since then with 3 kids. I even went down to the Sears outlet to purchase a new washer made by Kenmore but they did not have the same unit or one close to it available. The salesman there was then able to look up on his system the same unit that I had, which is now selling for approximately $930 which is way more than what I paid. He also said that he could not price match what I paid for it only 1 year ago.
This is the situation that I am in now. I am furious! I am livid and I am being respectful because it is my belief, and in my profession, I catch more bees with honey than with vinegar.
I have been without a brand new washer for 6 days with a family of 5. My washer was out of warranty by 6 days and then when I purchased a warranty from you, I was not informed that it would not even cover the damage in total. I now have a company coming out to complete an estimate on my flooring in my home because now there is a hole in my laundry room caused by a washer that I bought from you. I am pleading that I get some assistance with this. I would love to get a new washer and get assistance with fixing the flooring in my laundry room. I will even get another Kenmore elite as this one that I bought just happened to be a fluke of an incident. Please get into contact with me so that I can resolve this issue.
I am also in contact with the Better Business Bureau about this issue.
I have digital pictures available of everything and will attempt to attach them to this email. If that does not work then I have them available to send wherever is applicable.
I would love to speak to someone who is high up in the management department so that I can get this resolved quickly.