My positive/negative Apple Store experience

Discussion in 'iMac' started by gixxersixxer, Mar 18, 2013.

  1. gixxersixxer macrumors member

    Mar 18, 2013
    Long time lurker of this forum, but figured I would register to share my Apple store iMac repair experience here.

    Let me preface by saying my 2011 iMac 27" hard drive died after about 4 months of using it. When I went into the Apple store, they told me there was a recall on certain harddrives, and mine was covered, and that I could bring it back any time, even though I was under warranty. At that time, I could not afford to be without a computer, so I said I would another time as I typically boot off an external anyways. They didn't have the harddrive in stock, so they would have had to order it, and the repair would have taken 3-7 days.

    This iMac is my Bellevue iMac, and I had been in Fort Collins for the last six months with a different computer. When I got home, the iMac was no longer under warranty, but it didn't matter because I was under the replacement program. So I had some free time earlier in Feb, so I figured I'd get it fixed.

    However, after bringing it in to the Apple store, it turns out they had mixed it up, and mine was one of the hard drives that were not covered. But they told me they would fix it anyways. And so begins my experience with the Bellevue Apple store:

    The number of times I'd had to haul the computer home or or back to the apple store has been a huge hassle for me. I ride a motorcycle, so I either have to find a ride from a friend or family, or walk to the Apple store with a 27" iMac. It's not a ton of fun, and I've basically had to make my schedule revolve around it.

    After initially bringing the computer in, they repaired the harddrive in a few days. I picked it up, managed to get it home, only to find out that after booting it up, setting it up, and running Super Duper to restore my backup, the transfer stopped about 10% of the way in. I rebooted the machine, and ended up getting the same issue: A folder with a question mark icon. This was all within 30 minutes of picking up my computer from the store. I called the Apple store back, and they said it should be an easy fix, and to talk to a genius the next day, as there were no appointments left that day. So I brought it back, hoping that I could get it checked out and be on my way. The lady did a full apple hardware test only to find that the harddrive was not being seen at all, and there were sensors left unplugged. So I had to give it back to them, and was told it would be a few days because luckily they had another harddrive in stock, and that sometimes, harddrives can be dead on arrival, or that a cable could have been faulty. So I left it with them again, and never got a phone call back saying my repair was done. So six days later, I was at the mall and figured I'd check if it was done yet. Turns out it was, and I had just not received a call. So I took it back home, and took the protective foam cover off, only to see that the screen was absolutely filthy, and there were scratches all over the housing, and noticeable dirt and smudges all over. I desperately needed a computer for school and work though, so I started to boot it up, and was greeted with a screen that would periodically turn black and turn back on (without the computer turning off). I also noticed when the screen was lit up, there was a ton of dirt and smudges inside the screen now. So I called the Apple store, and they told me to bring it back tomorrow. I told them I actually had access to a car, and if I could bring it back tonight, to which they said no, despite the fact that the store was still open for another hour and a half. So the next day, I had to make all new plans to get access to a car so I could bring it in. They verified the dirt and grime and issues and that they would fix it, but it would take awhile. This time I spoke to a Nick who seemed pretty knowledgable about iMacs, and he insured me he would make sure the screen was clean himself, and they it would be handled with a lot more care, and that this time they would do extensive testing. I figured it would be worth it to just get it all done, and be without a computer, knowing that I would have peace of mind that when I finally came to pick it up, I would have my perfect iMac back. Yesterday eve, I went in to pick it up, and they wheeled it out. First thing I noticed was a large scratch underneath the panel. The store was about to close, and I was told the underside of the glass must have gotten scratched, and I would have to bring it back in another day. So I started to leave and was told to hold on for just a minute, and it turns out, they had another piece of glass that Nick installed for me while I waited. I was waiting in the store from 630 until 730 (which is 30 minutes after they close). It was cool that they were willing to do it, but when it came back with the computer with the new glass installed, the scratch was still there. He reopened it up on the desk, and said told me, kind of rudely that they had scratched the LCD panel, and that I'd have to wait again and it would be awhile. He proceeded to tell me that if I had just bought Applecare, they would have replaced my computer, and that I should have done that instead, so its not their problem that I've been waiting a month to have my computer fixed. He also, somewhat rudely, told me that all of this was due to to a hard drive needing to be replaced, even though my computer was out of warranty. I reminded him, that when I initially spoke with Apple about the hard drive, they gave me incorrect information about the hard drive recall, and that it was under warranty at the time. So he packed it up again for repair. However, after being unable to secure a different computer to use for school and work, I needed the computer back. So I went into the store, picked up my computer, and walked it home again.

    So today, about a month later, I have an iMac that I initially paid $2400 for with an annoying scratch in the LCD panel, and have been without a computer since, which had pretty serious repercussions for school and work. For the most part, many of the employee's were as accommodating as they could be, but the way I was treated by others, and the quality of the repairs done has been a huge hassle for me. We spend tens of thousands of dollars on Apple computers, iPads, iPhones, etc every year. We have never had problems, and typically good experiences dealing with Apple. This whole situation has been a pretty big disappointment, especially being taunted for not having Applecare, and the times when I was treated rudely.
  2. gixxersixxer thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 18, 2013
    Just an update: I got a call from the lead manager at Bellevue Apple, Donna, and she said straight up "If you don't need an optical drive, bring your machine back in and I'll give you a brand new iMac"

    So I did, and she did. Threw in Applecare as well. It was a very generous gesture. I did not ask for anything. I simply got a call today, out of nowhere with the offer.

    I'm typing this on a 2012 iMac. Nifty!
  3. ThirteenXIII macrumors 6502a

    Mar 8, 2008
    wow. ironically i've had similar experience with Apple recently. they replaced Two LCD panels on a 27-inch maxed out iMac. first for LCD contamination which essentially there were blotchy parts on the lcd.
    when i got it back the glass panel was knicked and the lcd had a scratch along the bottom.

    the second one was also scratched. and now it seems theirs now resistance when tilting the imac screen.

    the retail experience is by far the worst repair service I've ever encountered and I've worked in retail computer repair, pcs & macs...and our the pc repair shop i worked at was more thorough and sympathetic to customers than apple.
    truly ridiculous.
  4. beeinformed macrumors 6502

    Jun 30, 2010
    Congratulations, you are the proud father of a new iMac! Enjoy!
  5. bobright macrumors 601

    Jun 29, 2010
    I almost went blow for blow with an Apple "genius" some years back.

    Enjoy the Mac
  6. FreemanW macrumors 6502

    Sep 10, 2012
    The Real Northern California
    gixxersixxer, congratulations on your brand new iMac and your WALLOFTEXT. :D

    I know the Apple keyboard is small, but try to find the return key, know it, love it, use it.
  7. flavr macrumors 6502


    Nov 9, 2011
    Same thing happened to me a month ago, Apple store scratched the glass...I now have a brand new 2013 i5 3.2 27inch...with Apple
  8. thedeske macrumors 6502a

    Feb 17, 2013
    Nice - Apple replaced an LCD for me on an out of warranty iMac that was in for Hard Drive replacement. I didn't ask for it either, but something tells me the guys at the local authorized shop put in a good word for me and got a "Yes"

    Made My Day to say the least. That part costs almost as much as the value of the computer.

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