Lester Burnham's Blog

LG Electronics … Life’s not so good!

This following story is about a friend of mines recent warranty experiences on an LG Plasma TV (50PS30FD).  Hopefully it will make people think twice when purchasing an LG product or an extended warranty.

The TV in question is a June 2009 manufactured 50PS30FD.  I know what you’re thinking, it’s nearly 5 years old!!  If it had have broken down once in 5 years, we would have lived with that, but this thing failed 4 times! On average every 12-14 months.

The problem here is, because of the extended warranty we purchased, the set was fixed twice on that, thus making the set older and harder to claim on when it ran out.  The original purchase price was $2200 + $300 for warranty.

The breakdown time-line is as follows: (purchase date 17/9/2009)

12/10/2010 - Faulty Z-sus PCB - (13 months)
21/12/2011 - Faulty Z-sus PCB - (14 months)
19/2/2013 - Replace faulty Y-sus & Z-sus PCB - (14 months)
15/2/2014 - Panel needs replacing - (12 months)

I would come to the conclusion that the thing is a lemon looking at the above durations.  So, off I go to contact LG Australia. LG is no different to other companies when it comes to communication.  You can only contact them via their web page email or phone. I chose email, so that we had the whole issue in writing just incase it was needed at a later date.  When they reply to you, you cannot reply to the email, you must go through the web page again.

I originally contacted LG at the 3rd breakdown ($400 to fix), but my friend had already sent it to be repaired.  In hindsight, we should’ve told them to stop and send it to an LG authorised repairer for an appraisal.  Anyway, after the first contact with LG and attaching a PDF with all repair history, purchase invoice and personal details etc.

We receive an email from LG requesting all his details that we have already supplied. They couldn’t read past the first page of a PDF!  I rang them then, to see if they actually received the PDF. I actually got through fairly quickly and the guy on the other end confirmed they had all they needed, now we needed to have the set appraised at our cost! More money thrown at this POS!

After the evaluation which cost only $30 (not as bad as I was expecting), I sent the PDF off again with the service report included. LG confirmed they received it and said it would now be handled by a case manager. We let it all go for 2 weeks, but I thought I better check in to see what was happening and show our interest. It was later in the evening, so the person who received the call said he would send an email to the person in question and have him ring us.

After no response for a week, I contacted them again, but earlier in the afternoon this time. I was asked to hold for a couple of minutes while she discussed it with her supervisor. (I thought it was a case manager?) She returned with the comment that LG could not assist us at this time, because of the age of the set!!  Was this a case of reading the first page in haste again and making a snap decision??

Seeing that was all verbal, I emailed LG via the web page again, asking them to provide us with a documented response as to the reasons why they have rejected our claim on a clearly poor quality TV set. The details of LG’s reasoning is below.

The unit is covered by a 12 month Manufacturers warranty – this is designed to protect the customer from any manufacturing fault that may occur during this period. This timeframe is not an indication of how long we expect the unit to last but more so a period we have determined to be sufficient for any manufacturing defect to make itself known.Faults that occur outside of this period can also be attributed to other factors such as usage or general wear and tear.As your unit is well outside this period, we regret to advise that we will be unable to assist you with the cost of repairs in this instance.We apologise for any disappointment.
I know the terms “usage” and “wear and tear” are typical things you will see in a warranty document, but come on, this is a TV.  You plug the power/inputs in and that’s about it.  The rest of the physical usage is via the remote.  This thing had more “wear and tear” unplugging it to be repaired!!  Next stop Consumer Affairs as a last hope of sanity.
After this experience, it will be a very long time, if ever, that another LG device will find its way into this house or the houses of anyone else that values my opinion on electrical goods.  Word of mouth can be a very damaging thing LG….
/Rant over

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