Charger broken - terrible service from Apple

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Daze & Confuse, Mar 27, 2012.

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  1. Daze & Confuse, Mar 27, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2012

    Daze & Confuse macrumors member

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    Jul 22, 2011
    #1
    Hi,

    I have a Macbook Pro 17". It's 15 months old, and cost over £2500 new. The charger has just stopped working. I leave it plugged in 90% of the time, and don't abuse it in any way. There's no marks or anything on it, it just doesn't work - I've tried it on my MacBook, and it still doesn't work. The MacBook charger works fine on the Pro. It's definitely broken.

    I just took it into a UK Apple store, and they say they won't replace it, as my Apple Care ran out 3 months ago. This is ridiculous. Under the Sale of Goods Act 1979, there is a 'reasonable expectation' that the charger would last more than 15 months! It actually says electronic goods should last 6 years. The fact Apple offer a 3 year warranty shows that even they expect it to last at least 3. As the laptop is useless without a charger, it actually means that the whole laptop is now useless after 15 months. This is totally unreasonable. The shop manager actually accepted this, but said there was nothing he could do.

    How do I go about getting this sorted? Who do I speak to who can do something about this? It is my legal right to get this charger replaced, as it is not fit for purpose, but I'm jut getting brick walled by drones.

    My family currently own 9 Apple products - partly because we were under the impression that this was a premium company that looks after its customers. To be honest, I can't believe that they're making a big deal over a charger that probably costs them less than $5 to manufacture. Apple's a great company, but I am now worried they are forgetting what has made them great - their customers.

    Please help!
     
  2. Flunkyturtle macrumors 6502

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    Dec 20, 2011
    #2
    Its a charger? just buy a new one. No company would replace it after the warranty has run out.
     
  3. Tritons macrumors 6502

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    Jul 12, 2011
    #3
    Honestly I can't believe that you're making such a big deal over a charger.
     
  4. Flunkyturtle macrumors 6502

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    Dec 20, 2011
    #4
    This,

    Dont be tight just buy another one, or throw away your macbook at its no longer "usable"
     
  5. Trvlngnrs macrumors 6502

    Trvlngnrs

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2010
    #5
    Your warranty expired 3 months ago. Apple isn't obligated to repair a broken part for free after the warranty expires.

    My MBP is 2 years old and I recently had trouble with my charger. Because I purchased Apple's extended warranty, they gave me a new one for free. That's why I purchased the extended warranty, in case a part broke after the one year warranty ran out.
     
  6. MikhailT macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2007
    #6
    Nobody here is going to feel any sympathy for you. Your computer isn't broken, you just need to buy a new charger. All companies do this, not just Apple.

    Batteries and chargers are not often offered to be replaced for free after warranty expires or after a year. They're parts that degrades the quickest in any computers, so they are often not covered in warranty, they're considered as wear and tear parts. They're also not reasonably expected to last more than a year or so.

    Also, no courts are going to find it reasonable to believe that if the charger is broken, the laptop is broken as well.

    Also, in UK, the 6 years part is not a warranty, it's the limitation of how long you have before the courts automatically reject any claims for filing a violation of Act of Goods Sales. They have an exception there that companies can't be responsible for reasonable/fair wear and tear. Chargers are wear and tear parts and the courts are not likely to let you win this one either.
     
  7. jkeekij macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2011
    #7
    I believe that the UK has some different consumer protection laws warranty or not that we in the US do not. Sure, you could fight that battle and maybe win but at what cost?

    Saying that the machine is now worthless is a stretch. If you see no value in it I will send you my address and even pay postage and I'll take it! :D

    Seriously though, buy a charger and move on. The lengths that people think that Apple should go to for their personal happiness are astounding.
     
  8. tomhut macrumors member

    tomhut

    Joined:
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    Location:
    London
    #8
    Sadly for you I dont think Apple are legally obliged to replace it for you.

    The goods must be of satisfactory quality (for a reasonable length of time), fit for purpose and the item must be as described when sold.

    Apple could probably argue successfully that a year of use for an electrical item is a reasonable length of time.

    The 6 years you quote isn't how long the item should last, it is how long you have to take them to court if you feel they broke this contract.
     
  9. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #9
    I got a new charger from HP more than three years after purchasing the computer with which it was included.
     
  10. azentropy macrumors 68000

    azentropy

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    #10
    Sounds like you got a bad store manager. They certainly have the power to swap out a charger for you. Saying there is nothing he could do was BS.

    That being said they each have to draw the line somewhere. On the surface if you have shown to be a good customer and we had a good interaction I would have just swapped it out. Maybe your approach was wrong and you took the entitled view which turned him off. Or maybe he was just in a bad mood that day.

    Like it or not it is out of warranty. They can't fix everyone's issues when things are out of warranty or they wouldn't sell AppleCare.
     
  11. Daze & Confuse thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2011
    #11
    Thanks all

    Thanks forall the replies. My point is, I shouldn't have to buy an extended warranty if there's a reasonable expectation that the product should work. The extended warranty is for cover over and above that. For normal use I'm covered by UK law. (By the way, if you're comparing your experiences in the USA, it's slightly different. We have a different legal framework here in the UK.)

    It may be 'only' a charger, but the reason that I can afford nice products in the first place is that I'm careful with my money, and don't keep spending money when shouldn't have to. My Nikon battery stopped holding charge, and Nikon replaced it with no problem, even though it was 'only' a battery.

    If every Apple product sold just stopped working after 13 months, would you really think that's acceptable? Or is it because it's 'just' a charger? When does it become unacceptable? (It's 'just' an iPod Nano? It's 'just' an Apple TV?) This company is actually refusing to follow the law, although it is more than happy to us it to the full for its own gain?

    I find it very sad that the initial reaction on this board is to defend the company rather than the consumer.

    ----------

    I don't think they can. The shop manager even admitted it was unacceptable, but then refused to do anything. Plus, as Apple offer a 3 year warranty, I would ague they expect their products to last at least 3 years.

    You're right about that. I did think 6 years was a bit high. I still am convinced that 15 months is not acceptable, though.

    Thanks for the more reasoned reply than the initial ones, by the way.
     
  12. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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  13. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #13
    First of all, there is no act stating chargers are supposed to last for six years - only that some are. But don't let that bring you down, because there is a good chance you're not alone in thinking 15 months isn't an acceptable life expectancy.

    As I see it, you have two options. Call Apple HQ in UK and tell them that in no way should a charger be expected to not last more than 15 months and that you want a new one. If they refuse, you can go to small claims court and get your case tried.

    They can refuse all they want, but cases like these have been won over and over by customers.
     
  14. aristobrat macrumors G5

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    Oct 14, 2005
    #14
    As an American unfamiliar with the Sale of Goods act (outside of what I've read here on MacRumors), how effective is it actually?

    The reason I ask is that it seems like the topic comes up here occasionally, but very rarely does it ever seem to get resolved. The OP usually just disappears, which makes me wonder if they ever got the result that they were looking for.
     
  15. Daze & Confuse thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 22, 2011
    #15
    I was really careful to be reasonable. I didn't even think to take the 'entitled view', a I thought they'd simply swap it. I said it had stopped working, so they said to pop over to the Genius Bar to have look at it. They then said, 'Wait, how old is it?' I said 15 months, and they said there and then I had to buy a new one, and didn't even bother examining it at the Genius Bar. They were very blunt from the outset. However, when I said it was unreasonable they actually agreed. They gave me their names, but said repeatedly there was nothing they could do. I pointed out how any Apple products I own, to show I'm a 'good cstomer', and that didn't sway them. I had a friend with me, and he said I had been 'surprisingly reasonable' given how they had brick walled from the outset. He was more shocked than me by the poor service, and is actually reconsidering his Air purchase now.
     
  16. blueroom macrumors 603

    blueroom

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    Location:
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    #16
    What would keep Apple from just adding the price of AppleCare to all computers sold in the UK? Aside from driving grey market sales up.

    PS Apple has about the best service in the business.

    Can you name any company happy to repair at their cost out of warranty equipment?
     
  17. hafr macrumors 68030

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    Sep 21, 2011
    #17
    Get that in writing or in a taped conversation (he does not need to be told he's being recorded if you're a part of the conversation) and you've got a new charger for free. If a representative for a company tells a costumer a thing like that, it's golden.

    There are people out there who are using this to their advantage by talking to even first line support for hours and hours until they get a response like that. Then they just say "thank you", hang up and it's game over for the company. Basically wearing them down.
     
  18. Daze & Confuse thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 22, 2011
    #18
    Pretty good. You normally don't have to quote it, as even cheap high street stores know about it. I know people who have swapped out clothes at Asda (budget supermarket, owned by Walmart) after wearing becaus they fell apart in their first wash. (Because it's reasonable to expect them to be able to survive that.)
     
  19. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #19
    It's nothing magical... It just states you've got six years to open a case against the company. As I've understood it, if a computer breaks in the states the day after the one year warranty is out - you're **** out of luck.

    Some companies will have a policy that for instance a computer have a life expectancy of three years because they feel that if someone would open a case within that time period, they would just lose in court. But others (Apple?) don't bend until there's a court order ordering them to replace something. They probably gain more by being stubborn than fair, which is why they do it... They don't really need the goodwill either.
     
  20. Daze & Confuse thread starter macrumors member

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    #20
    Nikon, Panasonic, Hotpoint come immediately to mind. Personal experience (Nikon battery), my brother (washer/dryer), and my colleague (plasma TV). All because the failures were unreasonable, and we were all covered by the UK Sale of Goods Act 1979.
     
  21. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #21
    It's quite the significant price hike on Apple's products in the UK vs. the US already. One of the reasons could be the stronger costumer protection that makes Apple Care less of an attractive buy "over here".

    As I said, I got a new charger from HP over three years after the purchase. I only had to ask.
     
  22. Daze & Confuse thread starter macrumors member

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    Jul 22, 2011
    #22
    They sort of already do. That's one of the reasons why UK prices are higher - to cover companies for their greater legal responsibilites. That's why it's so appalling when they don't adhere to them -they're charging the customer for a service they have no intention of providing. That's this issue, condensed down.
     
  23. aristobrat macrumors G5

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    Oct 14, 2005
    #23
    So what's your next action under the Sale of Goods act? Do you have to file a claim with them in court?
     
  24. MikhailT macrumors 601

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    #24
    You're covered under normal use, your laptop is still working fine. Batteries and chargers are wear and tear parts, they're generally not covered in the UK law because of that.

    That may be so, that's still does not entitle you to get free wear & tear parts from any company you want.

    Not when it comes to wear and tear parts. I consider it a bonus to last longer than a year or I actually take good care of them. If they stopped working, I buy a new one.

    Please read the law again in its entirety, companies are not entitled to be responsible wear and tear parts. AppleTV nor iPad Nano are not wear and tear parts, totally completely different things.

    If you change this topic to iPod Nano, then everybody here will root for you and you'd have the perfect case to call the UK authorities and Apple can be fined for this.

    No, it is not sad. The company didn't break any laws, you keep claiming that they do when in reality is that they aren't.

    The default is that it is one year warranty, you want your product to last 3 years, you have to pay for it. The UK law doesn't entitle you to get the 3 years warranty for free, it entitles you to claim that your product had the defect at the time of the sale and you're entitled to get a full refund.

    Your laptop does not have a defect, your charger simply died over period of time due to wear and tear.
     
  25. hafr macrumors 68030

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    #25
    Yes, if Apple doesn't want to help him, small claims court is the next logical step.
     
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