Terrible Applecare experience with iMac

Discussion in 'iMac' started by VPrime, Aug 21, 2012.

  1. VPrime, Aug 21, 2012
    Last edited: Aug 21, 2012

    VPrime macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    I'm surprised on how downhill apples customer service has gone, especially the apple store.

    Last month we took an imac (27" 2011 imac) into the local apple store (Maisonville Mall London ontario) for repair because it was corrupting data, extremely slow, and poor graphics performance compared to another identically set up imac

    After month of waiting we get a call back to pick up the computer. They replaced the logic board, video card, cpu, hard drive.... pretty much everything inside.
    So when we get to the apple store they bring the imac out and it is incredibly dusty. We ask them to wipe it down to make sure there is no dust under the screen.
    After a wipe down we notice there is a lot of dust under the glass and it is completely unacceptable. So the guy says no problem, takes it to the back for the genius to take the glass off and do a quick wipe down.

    As soon as he comes out again, he says they got most of the dust off but it's impossible to get it all... but shouldn't be bothersome. Then says "Other than this small scratch no issues".
    At this point we (3 of us there) all pause and say "Wait what? scratch? theres no scratch!"
    This "Genius" tried to quietly act like this scratch they caused in this 5 minutes wipe down was already there!
    After that we inspected the computer more thoroughly. The whole aluminum body was scuffed and pitted.

    So the manager comes, and tries to act like its normal no big deal. We're extremely frustrated because the imac came in mint, and coming out damaged. Plus we have been without it for weeks and losing valuable development time (got from a 27" imac to a 13" macbook air is not awesome)

    So the lead genius comes out. Super nice guy, checks the notes and instantly says there was no mention of scratches in the notes when checking it in. So it must have been done on their part.
    Apologizes and says they will repair it free of charge (They better!). Says to take the imac home while they order parts and we can at least use it for now..

    We agree.
    So we set up the imac, and notice there is no WIFI signal at all, and the fans are going on full blast.

    So we call up the apple store and tell them the computer we just took home is also having these new issues.

    We take it back in 2 days later when the parts arrive. The lead genisus assures the repair will be perfect and he will put his top guys on it (why are they all not "top guys"!?).

    This time we leave and with the lead geniuses promise were content that our computer is in good hands.

    Fast forward a week later (today) and we go in to pick up the computer again.
    They manager comes out tells us they had been been working on it full time and there should be no issues.
    The computer comes out. No scratches.
    BUT Still dust under the glass. We make a point of it, and they say it is impossible to get it perfect. The manager said take it home, use it. If it is impossible to live with bring it in and they will try again.

    We agree to take it because at this point we have been with out the computer for over a month and can't afford any more down time.

    While setting up the computer I go to pop in the extra ram we had (an additional 8gb) that was in it before we took it in for repair. Quickly noticing it no longer fits. Shining a light through it you can now see 2 wires exposed stopping the memory from going in.

    Over a month and many visits still a subpar repair job! So I call up the store, tell them that there are still issues with the computer and their geniuses were still not able to fix the computer.
    Unfortunately we couldn't speak with the helpful lead genius because hes out of town for 2 weeks.
    The managers solution this time is to take the computer in and they will install the ram for us. I tell him I don't trust their employee to do a comptent job, so I'll just call apple and see what they say.

    After 3 hr on the phone with apple, they pretty much tell me there is nothing that can be done. They could replace the computer, but it would have to go in for one more major repair.
    I also made sure to ask if it was impossible to have a perfectly clean glass. He said no, the geniuses should be able to do it. It is not an unreasonable thing to ask.

    So now I have to take my imac in again, cross my fingers and hope they don't screw up something else... At this point I don't even trust this machine because who knows what is wrong form the inside where I'm not allowed to see.

    Surprising how much apples quality and customer service has gone down in the past couple of years.
    I know I will never be buying applecare again, and going back to hackintoshes for most office computers from here on out.

    EDit: Turns out they never even fixed the fan issue either. CPU fan blasts it self every couple seconds.
  2. ixodes macrumors 601


    Jan 11, 2012
    Pacific Coast, USA
    For a very long time, I've been a staunch supporter of AppleCare & the Genius Bar. Yet lately I'm rethinking my position. Not only because of stories like yours, but the experience my friends have had over the last year.

    I have no idea of why, nor do I care. It's Apples problem to solve.

    Yet, I wonder if they will. It's a new era at Apple. One that's far different than the Apple of the past.

    I've let some of these stories slide, not taking them very seriously. But it's time to re-frame how I perceive what seems to be their decline in service operations.

    How very discouraging. Apple is capable of far better. They charge premium pricing, yet are not always providing premium services.
  3. Zoiks macrumors newbie

    Mar 4, 2010
  4. Johnf1285 macrumors 6502a


    Dec 25, 2010
    New Jersey
    Wow that is very unacceptable service.

    I feel the money spent on AppleCare could be used to purchase replacement parts, etc. sure some parts like a logic board cost an arm and a leg, but they should rarely fail. I always "risk" it.

    The geniuses just plug parts together all day long and apparently do a horrible job at it too.
  5. iSayuSay macrumors 68040


    Feb 6, 2011
    It's heading south I guess, right into iPad and iPhone continent :p

    That's what you get from having an AIO, a relatively small and easy-to-fix issues like fans can become annoying as hell.

    Yet some people nag and dumb me around because I criticize the sleek looking AIO form factor can be a nightmare for some. Meh .. Can't make all people swallow the blue pill now, can I?

    Uh huh, they say a forum is like hospital where people go around about their problems and grudges. And people out there don't experience any problems.

    Well, a pretty crowded hospital is not always a good sign, and not all sick people visit hospital too. Many people get their own treatment before even spend the night in, you know ;)
  6. Swordylove macrumors 6502a


    Apr 23, 2012
    OMG why couldn't they just replace the damn thing (like in other happy-ending stories)? I got frustrated just by reading your story.
  7. ATC macrumors 65816

    Apr 25, 2008
    The OP's experience, to put it mildly, royally sucks. But I have to say that it might be all due to this particular AppleStore's geniuse(s)' incompetence.

    I've only had experience from AppleStores in Alberta and BC (3 stores in total) and my experience has been the opposite. I just got back my 09' 24" iMac from an AppleCare LCD replacement job, and it was flawless. The screen is perfect with zero dust under the glass. I'd be pissed too if it had dust, once you see them you tend to focus in on them all the time. I really think the genius the OP had that did the repair(s) is not fully qualified. I also agree about the "use our top man" bit, sounds like something you hear at a shady auto shop.

    I'd say bite the bullet and take it in for another repair and then get the whole thing replaced, and hope you don't have to take it in to them after that. :cool:
  8. edry.hilario macrumors 6502a

    Aug 1, 2010
    To be honest with you. I wouldn't go ahead and say all AppleCare/geniuses are bad because it depends which apple store you go to and which people you talk to. I myself had bad experiences but I ask to speak to someone else or go to another apple store and I've gotten much better services. It shouldn't be that way but then again genniuses are people and everyone is different hence a different experience. It's sucks that happened to you. But I would never ever would skip AppleCare specially if youre buying one of the retina MacBooks
  9. DVD9 macrumors 6502a

    Feb 18, 2010
    They're still selling 2011 iMacs as new so why can't they just give you a "new " iMac and send that dusty scratch magnet over to the refurb store where one of those flea market types will be happy with the bargain they got?
  10. VPrime thread starter macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    I agree that it may have been an isolated incident with the local apple store.. Especially considering the store only opened a couple months and the workers may not be as experienced.
    BUT the apple rep on the phone was also saying how this sort f thing happens all the time and it is normal.
    I was really blown away at how easily the apple support person on the phone took the situation and just sort of acted like its a complete normal situation for a computer to be out of commission for a month, damaged by employees, then not fixed properly after multiple tries.

    The situation put a bad taste in my mouth and I will never be buying applecare again. I asked if I could get a refund for my apple care and the person on the phone said yes it should be possible to be refunded for the remainder of the apple care. I think that is what I'll be doing if this repair doesn't go well.... Or maybe even if it does.

    I personally am able to repair my own macs so no issues there other than time, and the head aches. But after this it seems it takes more time for apple to repair a computer and more of a headache. :eek:.

    Overall just not impressed on how it was handled.. I even asked if I could just mail out the computer at my own expense and have a proper tech fix it. They refused :confused:.
  11. Hakone macrumors 6502a

    Oct 5, 2011
    Southern California
  12. JForestZ34 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 18, 2007
    If apple customer service is going down hill I bet it's the main reason why it happens to all companies, they get too big and full of themselves. Apple knows they are making money hand over fist, and even thou you have a bad experience they know you will buy again.

    I'll admit you but apple products cause of the designs and whatnot but the main reason is software. That is the only thing different from my iMac to my pc desktop.

    It's sad to see the customer service going downhill like that, but not all apple stores are like that either. It's a crap shoot on which genius you get or manager. I've seen it many times, the smaller the company the better the service, the larger the company gets with more profit customer service starts lacking. This happens with almost all companies. Greed takes over and that's the downfall.

  13. forty2j macrumors 68030


    Jul 11, 2008
  14. jkmags macrumors member

    May 6, 2011
    I recently had some warranty work done on my iMac (HD Recall), I originally was going to go to one of the local Apple stores but most Apple stores in my area are located in Shopping Malls and I didn't want to carry my 27" iMac around a Mall.

    I found 2 local Apple authorized dealers near me and had one of them do the repair and install a SSD for me. I found they did a great job and you get the small business service that comes with it.
  15. ECUpirate44 macrumors 603


    Mar 22, 2010
  16. aziatiklover macrumors 68030


    Jul 12, 2011
    Location: and
  17. iSayuSay macrumors 68040


    Feb 6, 2011
    Why? Because it's not U.S of A so Apple got more right to screw with customers? :rolleyes:
  18. aziatiklover macrumors 68030


    Jul 12, 2011
    Location: and
    No body is perfect! So for the biggest company on earth I'm sure they have employees that don't go by the Apple way!

    I usually get really bad Apple service outside of the US especially here in asia! And I'm sure there is 2 sides of the story!
  19. Roy G Biv macrumors 6502

    Roy G Biv

    Dec 26, 2010
    NOTE: The top story occurred in Canada. Some geniuses are more genius than others.
  20. JForestZ34 macrumors 6502a

    Nov 18, 2007

    Apple is by far not the biggest company on earth. Maybe value wise yes but size no. Also remember the bigger they are the harder they fall.

  21. BeeJee macrumors 6502

    Nov 27, 2011
    Long Island/North Jersey
    You're just plain ignorant.
  22. Imaginethe macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2012
    Not good at all.

    I imagine there are some stores better than others. With the managaers attitude sounding like it is, I would exoect that trickles through to everyone else. Rather than someone making sure the job is done correctly. The people on the phone should have taken over the problem.
  23. Roy G Biv macrumors 6502

    Roy G Biv

    Dec 26, 2010
  24. VPrime thread starter macrumors 68000


    Dec 19, 2008
    London Ontario
    Thats unacceptable to me. If they can sell the computer to me and sell me additional applecare, then they better be there to support it as well!
    Otherwise don't freaking sell apple care in my country! Its all fine when they want to take my money.
    And you're right there are 2 sides of the story. but I can't speak for apple. All I know is I have been with out my computer for over a month. Every time I try and pick it up there is another problem with the imac.

    And here is an update to the story.
    So as per my 3hr phone conversation with apple yesterday I went into the store again today to drop the computer off just like the guy on the phone told me was my only option.

    As soon as I enter the store, one of the guys at the genius bar (Evan was his name.. same guy who has been there this whole time) out right said, we're not touching your imac. He said "you signed the papers when you picked it up, we don't have to look at this mac again"... which BTW is not true, as there is 90 days warranty on any repair dones.. Oh and the fact that we never signed a paper the last time we went in (we did the time before that though).

    So then a manger comes (Ian I think).. New guy. Completely unpleasant and instantly on an offensive attack position instead of the typical "nice" retail helper they are normally supposed to be.
    He aslo comes right out and says "we're not fixing this imac for you. There is no way we can repair this to your satisfaction".
    At this point I am completely flabbergasted. How can an apple store refuse to fix a computer THEY BROKE!!?
    We tell him apple told us to come in, he said theres nothing he can do about it and asked us to leave the store.

    At this point I said we're not leaving, and I'm going to call apple up directly and see what they say.

    So I get on the phone with apple. After being on hold, transferred around to different departments....
    Telling my situation to 3 different people.. I'm transferred finally to a customer relations department. (I asked the guy yesterday during my 3hr conversation if there is anyone else I can talk to and tell them how poorly i have been treated and he told me no.. so clearly that was a lie.)

    While on hold being transferred to customer relations, the manager (Ian) comes up to me and says they will look at my computer now. Apparently he misunderstood the whole situation and after talking to the other manager said it was us who was refusing repair....... Which was true yesterday when that manager asked me to come in and bring the imac in so they can install the ram for me (As if that was the only problem. They keep ignoring the fan issue, and the dust.)
    I tell him, no thanks I'm going to let apple know of the whole situation because I have already been on the phone for an hour at this point.
    I personally think the manager was doing this just to get us out of the store... They were having a training session for new mac owners and I guess they didn't want them to see how terrible their customer service really is.

    So after finally spending a 2hr phone conversion with the customer relations person. They apologize, tell me that they're going to talk to the store manager.. And pretty much set things right and have them look at this computer and fix it properly and have them apologize to me.

    Evan comes back after about 10 minutes and starts taking in our info again to get this imac repaired.. No apology from him or the manager.
    Now we tell him make this this imac is perfect before you call us. No dust, no other problems that are caused by them. Nothing. We say test everything so we don't have to come in again because they're fed up with us, and we're fed up with them.

    Now he goes on and says they can't make the screen 100% perfect. Even after apple told me they could. He is still sticking by this saying there is no way.
    We just tell him we're going by what apple told us, and they said it is not an unreasonable request.

    He says "what are you going to do if its not perfect and there is still dust".. To me this seems like they won't even try to make this perfect and have already given up.
    I told him I'll just call up apple and talk to them again because they assured me it was possible. If it is not something they can do I suggest they talk to apple and get the necessary resources because apple thinks the retail stores should be able to make a 100% dust free display repair.
    At this point we also say we're not here JUST for the dust. We're here because very time we're told our imac is fixed there is another hardware problem. The dust is just another thing ONTOP of that.
    It is a secondary issue (still major.. but we can live with it IF we have to..)

    Finally he agrees to take the imac. Gets the genius who has been working on it... Which we now learn is the same guy from the beginning. The "top guy" we were promised is the same person who has been damaging our imac, assembling it incorrectly and just overall not taking the care one would hope.
    He talked to us a bit, seemed like a nice guy. But I was just surprised that they didn't get another person to do the repair after he bothed it 3 times.

    To end the story, and the night. The computer is in the apple stores hands again. Where we wait, and see what kind of battle we get into when we pick it up. It seem very simple thing slike dropping of a computer turns into a battle with these guys.

    I really hope thats not the case... I just wan't my imac back. Just want to work on my app and move my business forward.

    Coming out of this situation I will never be buying applecare again, and switching my business to hackintoshes.. Only use a real mac in situations where I have to.

    took the computer in, apple store refused to repair it. After a call to apple and making a bit of a scene in the store they agreed... Fingers crossed for a proper repair this time.

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