02-01-2019 01:04 PM
Please forgive the length of this post/letter. It could probably use some editing but…
I purchased a Vizio M Series 43" 4K in September of 2015 after a Panasonic 42" Plasma set that I purchased in November 2011was deemed beyond repair and would be better off getting a new set. Having that happen in less than four years and not having purchased the extended warranty through Geek Squad, I learned my lesson. I was unable to spend the same amount of money but after reading solid reviews, I decided on the Vizio M-43-C1. So when I bought the Vizio, I decided to purchase the 5 Year Protection Plan for piece of mind.
A little before or around September/October of 2018, the Vizio powered off/shut down and restarted while it was in use. This happened a few times sporadically. Then I started to notice a flashing white line issue on the screen image that was similar to what used to happen when a VCR had tracking issue on a VHS tape. It was minor, but it was sporadically there. Next the Vizio set started having issues of the screen image freezing or freezing and becoming distorted during playback from Netflix and Amazon Prime via the built in applications. It would also happen while using our Roku player, but into those instances the audio would continue while the screen image froze or froze and became distorted. And the only way to turn the TV set off in these instances was to disconnect the set from the power supply or outlet. I thought the issue was a streaming issue at first but then we would also start to see it happen when playing video files via a USB flash drive plugged directly into the set. Another thing that started happening was after the screen would freeze from streaming use of Netflix or Prime via the Vizio apps and the set was unplugged to shut it down, once it was plugged back in and turned on, Netflix or Prime streaming would appear on screen with a split dual image. All of these things started to happen with more frequency toward the end of the year. I lay all this out because of what would happen when the members of Geek Squad got involved.
So with all these issues happening, and the stress of the holiday season out of the way, I finally placed a call to Geek Squad in early January and it would take a week for them to send someone out to take a look. Stephen, the Geek Squad tech came out for a diagnosis on 1/16. I shared with him all of the issues the Vizio was having. He thought the key thing was a power supply issue, among some other possible ones. He wanted to order parts for repairs and schedule that for a follow up appointment. However, per Geek Squad protocol, he had to call Geek Squad Central to speak to the Dispatch Team Phone Tech Operator to explain all the issues the set was experiencing in order to be authorized to order the parts. However, the tech operator he spoke with told him that all of this could be fixed by doing some simple factory resets. Steven expressed his concerns and openly questioned how doing this would address all of these issues, in particular the power supply/arbitrary shut offs and restarts. He stressed that some of the screen issues happened while using an USB drive directly plugged into the set but the guy on the on the phone rejected his concerns, insisting that no parts needed to be ordered and that the reset would fix things. Now, Steven and I are both skeptical that this is going to fix the problems. So, as a precaution, he wisely enters notes into my file that if I call Geek Squad again with any issue, for them to place and order for the parts he initially wanted to get. That way, the parts will get ordered, sent to the nearby store in Glendale/Atwater Village, Los Angeles and we can bypass another diagnosis, so that an actual repair appointment will take place.
Two days later. All of those problems start up again. So… NOT FIXED.
I was a little busy for the next few days so I waited to make contact with Geek Squad. Then exactly one week after the initial diagnosis and reboot that was supposed to fix everything but didn’t, I turn on the TV, the screen suddenly is filled with video noise and static then everything goes black. After that – NOTHING. All that happens is that power indicator light pops on when pressing either the remote or power button on the back of the set.
I call the Geek Squad number the next afternoon and get a perplexing automated message that says, “No one is available to take your call. Please try again later.” I thought the Geek Squad assistance line was 24-7. Did that change? I’ve read that other people have experienced this in recent weeks so that is something the company might want to look into. That said this was 2PM on a Wednesday. So…
I call Thursday around 5:00pm. Same thing. I call Friday at 3:00pm. Same thing. Called again at 5:00pm. Same thing. Then I call at 7:00pm. Same thing. This time I immediately call the 888 general number, enter 0 to get to a Best Buy operator and they end up directing my call to the Geek Squad department and I get someone on the phone… who is laughing, giggling and talking to a co-worker as she answers. I only point that out because I don’t understand how I got a recorded message when I called the Geek Squad number but by subverting the main phone number and dialing 0, I get somebody on the line in another department to transfer me to a human Geek Squad operator after three attempts over three days. That’s a real problem. Nevertheless, she is cordial as she helps me set up an appointment time. I tell her that there should be notes indicated on my file with regards to ordering replacement parts. She tells me that she sees it and the soonest appointment is Wednesday (1/30). We set up a time and she will assign Steven to be the Geek Squad tech to come back out since he was already familiar with the problems. I have to wait five days but that’s just how it is.
Steven arrives on Wednesday around 12:30pm with along with another repair tech, John. Steven seems hesitant then asks me if I have the parts. I look at him dumfounded. We had agreed to have the parts sent to the store and he’d pick them up. Well… it turns out the operator I spoke to set up the appointment didn’t place the order for the parts, despite telling me that she saw the notation on my file from Steven to order them if I called in. Instead, they just listed it assigned it as a diagnosis visit. I tell Steven that this is unacceptable. I assure him I have no issues or problem with him and how he’s handled things. But because a Dispatch Tech Operator in Geek Squad Central told him a reboot would fix things, my TV situation ends up going from bad to worse. At this point, I’ve lost confidence not only in Geek Squad but my current Vizio set as well and would really prefer to just get an equivalent 43 inch set since Vizio no longer makes a 43 inch in their M-Series. So now Steven calls in again, tells the tech op on the other line to order the parts. He relays my issues and concerns over the set to the tech operator but I don’t fit the criteria for replacement. The funny things is that since the 43 inch is the only appropriate size for placement in the apartment, any brand of replacement would be less than what I paid for the Vizio.
That said, I get set up with the soonest appointment that can be made… Tuesday. So now I will go two weeks without a working TV set because a Dispatch Tech Operator at Geek Squad Central refused to listen to the Geek Squad tech that was actually in the field. I have missed out on work, unable to do other aspects of my work because I am without a TV as well as canceled appointments all in order to have this taken care of only to have Geek Squad not provide proper service. And the kicker… I won’t be able to watch my adopted hometown Los Angeles Rams in the Super Bowl this Sunday in the comfort of my home. This has been completely frustrating and totally unacceptable. I am out time and money and left with a complete and total lack of confidence in the Geek Squad to do things correctly.
02-01-2019 05:41 PM
Welcome and thank you for taking the time to write in about your recent experience with Geek Squad when your Vizio TV stopped working. I know I would be a little disappointed myself if my TV stopped working just a little while before a highly anticipated program such as the big game coming up. While I cannot promise a different outcome, I’ll gladly speak to you further.
At this point, it sounds like repair hasn’t gone as smoothly as we would like from the initial repair attempt not sticking to another appointment being necessary to order the parts techs believe may need to be replaced. I cannot change what has gone before, but I would like to see the details of your situation so I can ensure your feedback gets to the correct people in an effort to improve our services for other customers going forward. Best Buy and Geek Squad are constantly striving to provide the best services possible for our clients, and insights from our valued customers are a great way for us to see where we can improve. To this end, can you please send me a message with your full name, phone number, email address, and your repair order number (if available). To keep those details secure, you should be able to send me a private message by selecting the blue “private message” button in my signature below.
02-01-2019 06:22 PM
02-01-2019 06:47 PM
Hi again, TheCentralOp,
Thanks for the quick update! It’s great to hear that you’ve been able to speak to a manager at one of your local stores and that they may have another option for you. I look forward to hearing more about that when you have time.