A tale about A&E Factory Service - more accurately know as A&E Factory NON-Service - for a Whirlpool Dryer in Raleigh, NC.
On Sept 6, an A&E technician is dispatched to our home by Whirlpool Warranty Service to diagnose a problem with our $900 Whirlpool dryer that is less than 1 year old. The technician says the electronic control needs to be replaced, but does not have the part, and will have it ordered immediately. A&E calls back later that day to inform us that the part is not available, has been ordered and should arrive in 10 days! I'm under a lot of pressure here, because a major reason for my investing in this dryer is it's high-capacity, which is crucially important to my family of ten. 10 days!! But, aren't they "Factory" service??? How hard is it to get this part?
On day 6 (Sep 12), A&E calls back and says it will be at least 5 more days for the part to arrive! Thus commences the lies and misinformation. I had serious doubts A&E had actually ordered this part as they could not provide me any tracking information. You see, this is chump warranty work, and I was a LOW, LOW priority.
So, on Wed, Sep 13, I called A&E trying to find out why it is so hard to get this part, only to be hurried off the phone with the obligatory response of, "It is out of our control. When the part comes in we will set up an appointment to replace it." So, I go on the internet - knowing nothing about obtaining Whirlpool dryer parts - and in less than 10 minutes have found the part readily available through several vendors. I call A&E and let them know, BUT of course, they have a "process" they must follow - mind you, not a desire to provide fast service. So, I call Whirlpool, whom A&E are contracted by. Alas, Whirlpool parts center has 39 in stock and they will express ship the part. So, I teleconference A&E and Whirlpool (partners, eh?) and attempt to assist A&E in getting the part to me right away. You see, if I acquired it myself, I would have to pay for it. Only A&E could order it from Whirlpool.
I call back the next day (Thu, Sep 14), but am unable to confirm through A&E operator if the part was ordered, and am given an appointment for Sept 27th, just in case the part comes in by then. The operator tells me she has no way to confirm if the part is ordered. Wow, they care - NOT! So, Friday the 15th I pursue A&E again and remind them that the part is at Whirlpool and can be expressed shipped if only they would call to order it. The first thing the A&E operator mentions is that they will not pay for express shipping. Five extra dollars to a company the size of A&E is too much, when my business means so little. After much pursuit, the A&E operator obliges me by setting up the repair appointment for Tues, Sep 19th. Well, that is what she told me, anyway. That same day (Fri, 9/15), I also call Whirlpool customer service to see if they will help ensure that A&E orders the part from them and would they please express ship it. The Whirlpool representative seems glad to help and leads me to believe I can receive the part by Monday.
I call A&E on Monday to see if the part is on its way, and to see if I have the appointment on Tuesday. Well, it really should be no surprise that without calling me, A&E cancelled the Tuesday appointment because they knew they had not ordered the part yet!! Wow! Another call to Whirlpool on Tues, Sep 19, to get them to act on my behalf with A&E and get them to order the part leads me to believe that the part is finally ordered because the Whirlpool agent says it will definitely be at my home on Thu, Sep 21. I call A&E again to get an earlier appointment than Sep 27th. I am grudgingly given an appointment for Friday afternoon, Sep 22nd.
A&E calls my wife on Thursday, 9/21, around 3pm to see if the part has arrived. Sadly, my wife tells the truth and says, "no". The A&E operator instructs my wife to call by the end of the day to confirm whether or not the part arrives, but gives no deadline. My wife calls A&E at about 4:30pm when the part arrived only to find out that A&E canceled the appointment without notice and will not reschedule. A&E was dead-determined to keep the Sep 27th appointment, no matter what.
No matter how much pleading and explaining I did when I called back on Friday morning, I could not get any other appointment other than Sep 27th - 3 weeks after the problem was diagnosed as being a problem with a part that takes 2 days to get and 5 minutes to install!!! Furthermore, the A&E operator tries to pretend that I never had an appointment for Fri, 9/22, that it was always - and only - for Wed, 9/27. Later, in the same conversation she slips by mentioning that my wife caused the problem by failing to return their call on time the previous day. I retort, that if I never had an appointment for this day (Fri, 9/22), then why did we get a call from A&E the day before inquiring about the arrival of the part? She was tongue tied and said, of course, there was nothing she could do. She then thanked me for my business and ended the call.
I cannot stand the thought of giving A&E any business, so a light bulb finally goes off in my head. On Monday, Sep 25th, I call Whirlpool and ask if there is anyone else I can go through to get this part installed. The Whirlpool agent calls me back in 10 minutes to inform me that I have an appointment with another service provider in Raleigh who will be there the next morning to install the part. And, like magic, a technician from Mr. Appliance arrives to install the part.