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Dish Network / rip off

1 United States Review updated:
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I can't believe that Dish network is allowed to rip off people on a daily basis and nothing is done about it. I have tried to email Dish Network CEO, but unable to locate his exact email address. I have been a customer of Dish Network for 5 years, I recently wanted to upgrade and was hit with all these upgrade charges. The first time I asked to talk to a supervisor and he was aware of what he could do. I was put off by the fact that as a 5 year customer I had to pay for upgrades.

When Dish is advertising for new customers free, I felt I was being jerked around. I discussed with my wife and realized I was asking for too much. I had to call on my cell phone to get into the Dish Network system. I ended up talking to another supervisor. I realize that the supervisors are allowed so much power to do things, but the 2nd Supervisor reminded me of the old time car salesman. The first supervisor I talked to was understanding, I did not get his name, but had to work by his guidelines and I understand that now. By the way the 2nd supervisor acted, I wonder how long Dish Network will remain number 1 most satisfaction. Most companies today realize that to retain customers you have to have customer satisfaction. Well that is not what I felt. After today, I felt like it was take it or leave it. I guess I will be leaving Dish Network. I feel you should know this and not let new customer numbers deceive you. To stay number 1, Dish network should try and work with the customers that made them number 1.

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  • Va
      25th of Jul, 2008
    0 Votes

    For 12 years we were with DirecTV. Our DirecTV install was originally performed by myself with equipment we purchased. Under the current pricing scheme, we were offered what appeared to be a much better price through bundling our AT&T service with DISH Network. So we went ahead and bundled our services, and then our problem begins.

    On the day of the install, the DISH Network installers arrived about 3:15-3:30pm. They performed a site survey, and asked what rooms in our house was to get what service. We originally ordered DVR service for the living room and 1 bedroom along with standard service for 2 other bedrooms.

    The technicians seemed so confused about the way things should be setup and wired that I finally asked them if it would be easier to just add DVR service to all 4 rooms. They said yes, so I called customer service to have our order changed. The lady at customer service was asked if there would be any additional charges for the change, and she stated that there would be a $5.99 charge each month added to the bill for the DVR service in the 2 rooms that would have been just standard programming under the original order.

    I felt that the cost was reasonable, and she proceeded to remind me that the equipment would all be under the same original 24 month lease agreement. She asked me to ask the technician if he had a spare DVR box with him, and he said yes. So, up to this point I am feeling pretty great with their service.

    Let me also add that I informed them during both calls that we currently had all standard TV sets in the house, but we were buying 2 new LCD TV sets in the near future. So the installers proceed to the install of 4 rooms of DISH DVR service, and I am feeling great. Now comes the first blow... the inform me that the cabling in our house is sub-par for their boxes and the proceed to rip out the old staff and put in new wiring.

    Funny, DirecTV ran on the same wiring for 12 years and lost signal maybe 1 time per year due to flood conditions or heavy snow. But fine... go ahead and waste your company's money if you want to, because it doesn't cost me extra. About 45 minutes into the actual work of the install, two more guys show up to help. The installer that seemed to be the lead on the job tells the other guys what wires to run where, and what connections to hookup to each splitter. He proceeds to go then to start setting up the wiring and boxes inside. Meanwhile his partner is mounting the dish on the pole and aligning it, and the other 2 are doing the cables outside.

    After the cables are installed, the two are told they can go ahead and go back to their hotel because the job should be about done. At this point the one on the ladder has the dish installed and says he has a good signal of about 70. I tried to tell him that 70 would not be sufficient strength, but he disagreed and said that 70 on his meter was well above 100 on the boxes (a totally ignorant lie or mistake... but he did seem to be new to the job). He proceeds into livingroom to hookup the second box.

    Now we finally have both boxes installed, but from the first power-on neither one could find a satellite. So there is about 2 hours spent booting and rebooting, setting and resetting..but no satellite. So the dish man goes out to check his work while the box installer checks over all the inside wiring again.

    The dish man says he has tweaked the dish pointing and got the strength to over 100 on his meter. Once again, the boxes can't find the satellite. So the lead guy goes out and checks the dish and the wiring. During the check he finds that the wiring outside, that was supposedly double-checked, was actually reverse of what it should have been at the splitters.

    Ok, problem solved, satellite found (but the signal was only 66-70). Next they spent a little time setting the boxes up and then it was time for the paperwork. 'Oops, someone left the paperwork outside in the rain, we will have to come back tomorrow!' At this point, it is more than 8 hrs since these guys showed up, my house is in total disarray, and I am really tired. Ok, so we will see ya tomorrow.

    The next morning I get a call from the lead tech and he brings some paperwork by (it looks like the same paperwork from the night before that had been dried out). I sign it, and he loads up the ladder that they forgot the night before. He also asks me if I would like him to take the old dish, the boxes and the old wiring back for recycling. Seems like a nice gesture, and I wasn't going to need the stuff anymore... so sure take it. So far, other than the extremely long and frustrating install and the mess they made of my floors with their boots, I a happy.

    A couple weeks go by, and at each rain shower we lose signal. I log into my AT&T account to get the number to call for assistance, and I notice that the bill has arrived. Wow! why is my bill so high? I start going over the bill and see the charge for the programming (prorated, plus the next month in advance), and I also see a $99 service fee that doesn't look right.

    I call AT&T and find out that it is an equipment upgrade fee for the 2nd DVR box (the one I was told only would cost $5.99/mo extra). 'I wasn't told about any additional fee, that's fraudulent billing, take it all out' was what AT&T heard next. Well the customer service lady at AT&T talked me into keeping it, if they paid half the cost (even though I was still skeptical and not quite sure about the move I made).

    So she gets me over to tech support to get the signal problem and a frequency issue resolved with my remotes. DISH support doesn't even tell me how to set the remote frequency, they just schedule an appointment for a tech to come out and say he will fix it all when he comes in about a week. That brings us up to yesterday.

    I get a call about 10am and it is the tech. He tells me that he is running a little early, and he asks if it is ok to come early. I was happy with that, and I told him to go ahead and come fix the issues. Evidentially this 'kid' is a contractor, because he shows up in a Jeep Cherokee with a 20ft ladder strapped to the rood using bunjie cords.

    I show him the dish (which is mounted to a mast that extends above the roof), and he proceeds to try and stand in one of our lawn chairs to adjust the dish. I tried to tell him he was too short to reach it, but he had to find out himself (kids). So when he couldn't reach it he goes to remove the 18 bunjie cords from the ladder on his jeep.

    I told him we had a ladder that he could use instead under the deck he was standing on, so he proceeded to get our ladder out (I am disabled and have bone and joint issues that limit my arm movement and causes lots of problems in my feet so he had to do the lifting). He climbs up on the ladder stating he thinks it is a bad LNB.

    He removes the dual LNB from our dish and just sticks a single one in its place, doesn't put a screw in it, and just lets it sit there. He hooks up his test meter and says 'Oh yeah, I have great signal there, it's your LNB'. (mind you, he put no screws in it, so the single moved everytime he touched the cable or moved his meter).

    He then puts a new double LNB in place and we proceed inside to the televisions. Inside the signal is now a little lower than it was before and on a partly cloudy day the signal drops to 50 as a single cloud drifts by. Last night we had a really small shower and just like before 'ACQUIRING SIGNAL'.

    After the tech left, we went shopping and I bought the 2 LCD televisions that we had planned on earlier. We get the first one assembled and setup. We turn it on, and the picture is at 4:3 aspect ratio instead of 16:1. For literally hours I look through manuals, settings, try their so called troubleshooter (the most worthless piece of junk ever made... if you are gonna troubleshoot an issue, make sure you put some information and answers in the troubleshooter... 4 questions and 3 answers is not a troubleshooter program) application.

    I even tried resetting the box like the instructions say, hoping that maybe it would auto-detect my new tv. After hours of getting nowhere, I decide to go to bed at 4:45am this morning to get a little sleep. That brings us to today! This morning at 10:00am I call into DISH Network's tech support line. I explain to the girl what is going on, and I ask her to first schedule another technician (this time preferably one with some experience) to come and align my dish. She does so and we are on to the aspect ratio problem.

    I ask her how to change the aspect ratio on my now 1 month old DVR to 16:1 from 4:3, and she puts me on hold for a couple minutes. She comes back and informs me that the DVR equipment I have will not perform that operation and I will have to get 2 more DVR boxes. So here we are with yet another undisclosed item that will result in another large charge for more equipment.

    I am informed that the boxes will cost me another $149 each and I will have to pay at least $10 more each month for HD programming. I really didn't want HD programming, I just want the 16:1 aspect ratio for my widescreen tv. I disagree with the charge, but she tells me she will transfer me to someone that may be able to waive the fees since I am still practically a new customer.

    She puts me on hold and transfers me into a 'cold call' with another woman that informs me that I have actually been transferred to the cancellation dept (only after I have to explain the entire situation to her again). She then transfers me to another woman that says she can waive the first box, but the software won't let her waive the second. She puts me on hold for a supervisor to see if they can waive it.

    The supposed supervisor comes on the line and I have to explain the entire situation to her again. She tells me that she will waive the first box, but the second will cost me not $149 but $549 instead (now the price is almost tripling what it was before I spoke to her). I got upset and told her 'Oh h*ll NO'. she then got really rude and we ended the call.

    At this point I just had to get outside. While exiting the house, I fell down the steps and broke my ankle. So today is really not going well so far. Well after a trip to the doctor for a cast, I thought I would try one more time. This time I called AT&T billing to see if they could do anything. The lady there informs me that they can't do anything about it, but she will transfer me to DISH Network's billing dept (here we go again).

    I go through the entire story once again, and I am confronted by one of the rudest, most ignorant, self righteous personality I have ever seen in customer service. She done nothing but argue that my point was wrong, that she was absolutely right that widescreen was HD (which widescreen could care less about HD... widescreen has been out since the 1920's).

    If she actually had any education about formats at all, she would know that HD uses widescreen natively and the scan rate is more important to HD than aspect ratio. And she would also have enough sense not to claim higher knowledge in tech than a 25yr Sr. Engineer from the IT world. She even had the nerve to raise her voice to a customer. I tell you customer service is definitely not serving the customer anymore. At this point I hangup and called DirecTV.

    After going over the setup with DirecTV and their packages, I decide to think about it for a bit because I will have to pay $240 cancellation fee to DISH, plus since I am not a new customer to DirecTV... I would have to buy part of the equipment and I really don't like their programming package prices.

    After thinking about the situation, I come up with the brilliant idea of having DISH adjust their wiring tp have the HD DVR controlling the 2 LCD televisions and the other standard DVR they put in (that I already paid for mind you) control the 2 standard televisions. So once again I call in to tech support again. This time I actually get someone on the line that understands widescreen, hd, aspect ratios, and scanrates (we are doing good so far). I explain the situation to him, told him about the royal b**** I had before (he agrees that she was way off base and way out of line), and I tell him about the plan I come up with to resolve it.

    He said it sounds good and that they could waive the one box and I wouldn't be charged extra for another box. (Oh, looking so good). He also told me that I would be just as well to take the lowest priced HD package because 1. it's required for the upgrade to be free, and 2. even without HD I would still have to pay $7/mo just for the box (so I may as well spend the 3 extra dollars).

    Then comes the bad news... I asked him to make absolutely sure that I could set both tv sets on that box to 16:1 aspect ratio. After some research, he finds the answer is no...only 1 tv on the box can be set to 16:3 aspect ratio, the other is only 4:3 aspect. And to top it all off, he didn't find it in any of their literature or books, he had to go try it on one of their boxes.

    So now we are right back to square one, I get transferred to yet another supervisor to see if he can do anything (maybe take the $99 charge I paid on the other box off of the $149 fee for the new one). And this one refuses not only to discount the second box in any manner, he tells me I will have to pay $149 for the first box plus $549 for the second box (and that doesn't even include the $99 fee AT&T and I was charged for the first WRONG piece of equipment that was install). So now it would cost me another $700 ($800 counting the first box) just to get 16:1 ratio on my 2 new $2500 worth of LCD televisions.

  • Mi
      30th of Oct, 2008
    0 Votes

    Set the aspect ratio with your actual TV or press the format/# button on the bottom left of your DISH Remote.

    A single cloud moving in front of your dish is not going to affect your sat signal ( Unless a tornado is dropping out of it)

    The RG-59 lines they had to replace with RG-6 lines was because of the fact that Dish sends more information down the lines that DirecTV does.

    That "Splitter" that you said was put in incorrectly was more than likely a Diplexer ( they look alike but do different jobs)

    If you press Meun Option6-Option1-Option1 that should take you to the POINT DISH Screen look up SATs 110 & 119 and transponders 14, 15, 16, & 21 on both sats. When the signal level comes up they should all be over 60 (Yes it is high enough because of the modified signal... It shows the signal as 30 points below actual) If any of the signals are below 60 call ASAP and tell them that your signals do not meet threshold. You want an FSM to come out and fix the problem.

    the 16:9 aspect ratio will work on those TVs no matter what kind of signal is coming in you just need the correct settings on the TV. The 722/622 box (HD DVR Dual Tuner) will only give HD on TV1 to get HD on TV2 you would need an additional box. The reason is that the HD Signal can not be backfed through the box to TV2.

    As far as the phone folks... we all hate them, they are just looking for the sale.

    And the fact you had 4 techs at your job is just crazy... I would have been done in 4 hours by my self.. and I'm no where near the fastest installer in my shop.

    OH! and if they ever come out again tell them to wear boot covers... every Van has them.

  • Su
      23rd of Aug, 2009
    0 Votes

    I was with dish for the same yrs and they are a rip off.they have more infamercials then programming and whenyou talk to them about it they say they can not do anything about it.I am back with cable now.

  • Os
      4th of Feb, 2010
    0 Votes

    I cancelled my DISH network . They told me they were sending boxes to return the receivers, remotes, and part of the actual sattellite. I couldn't get the satellite apart. The rest of the equipment didn't get sent back by the time they thought it should, so they debited my account by 599.80 with no notification. This has cost me $200. in check charges. I would suggest not using this company since they really rip you off royally.

  • Di
      3rd of Mar, 2010
    0 Votes

    I believe the CEO's name is Charlie Ergen. E-mail address I do not know yet, but am working on it. Address for serving a summons is what I am interested in.

    I will update when I get more info.

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