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Dell 42& Plasma Tvdefective tv, poor service

Dell inc.
www.dell.com
Dell 42"plasma tv

Dell (who knows where they are located, the customer reps are not allowed to tell you what country they are in).

In november of 2005, we purchased a dell 42" plasma tv through the dell website. Almost two months ago, and 7 months out of warranty, we started getting a horizontal line through the tv. It would come and go, so my husband tried running the conditioning on the tv. The horizontal line is now there all of the time, and has recently brought a friend with it. Now we have two horizontal lines that are there every time we turn on the tv. We contacted the dell forum moderator who had us do a lot of unplugging, and resets, ect.. On the tv. Nothing helped. He then advised us that we were out of warranty and that we should contact the "out of warranty" department. I did so. They said that for a meer $2199.00 we could send them our tv and they would send us a refurbished replacement with a 90 day warranty. The other option was for them to give me the number of the only company that would repair it, but I have learned that the cost to repair it is more than buying a new one. Ooooohhhhhh, how kind of them. I could buy a brand new plasma with a full one year warranty for that much money. So I asked for the address to the home office so that I could complain in writing, but the rep offered to transfer me to the real "out of warranty" department where they could allow me to speak to a manager. The manager was going into a meeting so I was told I would receive a call back in about an hour. 5 days later, I got a call from praveen (at least he uses his real name. Most of their customer reps use fake american names because they think americans are too stupid to know how to pronounce their real names). Praveen told me that since we had purchased 3 laptops, 3 desktops, an lcd tv, and 2 desktops for our shop that we are very loyal customers and he would allow us to only pay $1299.00, return our tv, and they would send us a refurbished one with a 6 month warranty. Ooooohhhh, how kind. I do not blame praveen for this as he is just doing his job. I am very angry at dell. Dell knows that this is a constant problem with this particular plasma. Shame on you dell. You should stand behind your products better than this. We have been very loyal customers for several years. We put up with your customer service reps that are extremely hard to understand. We put up with your sales people who tell you your getting one finance deal and then when the paperwork comes through it isn't what they said when trying to make the sale. This issue, I will not put up with. You need to fix or replace my tv. A tv that cost almost $3000.00 should not break after 17 months. I would like to hear from the other people that have had this issue.

Responses

  • De
    Dell Plazma Sep 25, 2007
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I had the same issue.

    -1 Votes
  • De
    Dell Plazma Sep 25, 2007
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I had the same issue, although you're probably luckier than me, mine went out sooner right after the standard one year warranty has expired, and was never offered a replacement TV. Issue starts with almost spray paint at random locations, with one horizontal line across the screen. The spray eventually covers the entire screen in less than 20 minutes from a cold start.

    0 Votes
  • Ma
    Maureen Wortham Nov 05, 2007
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Had the same issue after 13 months, wrote to Michael Dell in Texas and all the board of directors and got a refurbished on in replacement. This one died after 6 months. They would sell me another one for $2100.00 too. Forget it went out and bought another one. Made by some one else.

    0 Votes
  • Bu
    Bulrush Apr 26, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Same old story, same problem as above. Colored bands all across my screen. Had a technician check it out. Too costly to fix and still end up with a lousy TV. My 42" Dell Plasma is 26 months old, it cost me $2, 700.00 am about to junk it and buy a new set. No more plasma for me. Forget tech help. Like someone said "I can't even understand them" Have bought many Dell products but am off of them from now on.

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Mike Jun 12, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Me too... 42" Plasma purchased through Dell online and after 24 months, dead. Started with horizontal lines across the picture, then no picture and multi colored sections followed by power cut-off. Now power stays on but black screen. After several hours researching this concern, it is apparent that this unit is a disposible electronic device. No part numbers available for local service and out of warranty procedure is a joke. After several previous Dell purchases, this was my last. And you bet that I have spread the word.

    0 Votes
  • Ab
    Abraham Delgado Jun 17, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I have to agree with all here: Dell is not holding up their end when it comes to customer service! It is indeed true that service reps are difficult to understand - what kind of English IS that they are speaking? My set started losing picture like some have desribed here: after DELL logo appears, picture comes on, but a few minutes later, fades to black yet set remains on. After being transferred to several departments and given numbers to call so that they can transfer me around again, I've decided to just take the $2500.00 loss and go support a better brand that treats customers with more respect than Dell! And I've bought many PC's and laptops from Dell - how dare they?!

    0 Votes
  • Sk
    S. Kaczorowski Jul 23, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Yes, similar problem. Our 42" Dell TV died few weeks ago. Dell will assess problem for ~$250 (not including shipping costs) at which point, if it can be fixed, they will charge more to repair. We literally are making our last payment on the 0% plan this month. We were watching TV, heard a fizzling and lost picture. It is also now out of warrantee.

    0 Votes
  • Jc
    jcl Jul 23, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    yes, me too. my 42" dell died 3 days ago. that would make it just over a year old. oh and im still making payments.

    0 Votes
  • Ji
    Jim Aug 03, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I too have the w4201 42" plasma with a vertical line. I've since replaced it and have tried to repair myself. I'm in computers for a living and am not affraid to give it a shot. Have been researching the heck out of this issue and have found some hits on google with options. One guy says that there are dry soder joints on the connector that the ribbon cable connects to and if you resoder it fixes and the price is zero and just your time, tried it, didn't fix. I found a site www.shopjimmy.com, these guys are great, they basically take broken tv's and salvage all the good parts, test them and sell them to us hoping it'll fix our issues. They are very reasonable and I've had first hand with them and they are a pleasure to work with, basically if the board you get from them doesn't fix it they'll refund your money so I thought what the heck, a "F" buffer board is what everybody says is the most common problem, shopjimmy, $50 bucks awesome, got the board, installed no fix, shopjimmy to the rescue, they said could be logic board $120, still OK, received it, installed it, no fix. My issue now is finding someone to help troubleshoot further. I think it's either the cable the plugs into the "F" board then is glued to the actual plasma display or it's the plasma display itself. Never the less still line on tv. I'd like to find someone that has successfully has replaced that cable between the "F" board and display, other than that I'm looking for a used display, will probably have to wait until they get cheaper. By the way my tv is a Dell on the outside but really made by Samsung on the inside, tried them no help. Hopefully in the future I will find the same tv that is cheap and broken but the broken part will be electronic boards and the display would be ok. Anybody has questions or suggestions on what to try next I'm listening.

    0 Votes
  • Tr
    Tracy Aug 04, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Same issue as noted above. One would think that with so many people having the same issue Dell would need to do somthing. Maybe it is time for a class action suit?

    When a car maker finds out that their is something worng with their product they send out notices to everyone to go get it fixed where they bought the care. Why can't dell do the same thing. Something is wrong with this producct and should be fixed. They sold us the TVs with this weakness.

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    JOSEPH Aug 09, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    SAME PROBLEM. I CONTACTED DELL ABOUT HORIZONTAL LINES ON THE TV AND THEY REFERED ME TO AN OUT OF WARRENTY COMPANY WHO INFORMED ME THAT I WOULD HAVE TO SHIP THE TV TO THERE COMPANY IN OHIO. I ASK HOW MUCH FOR THE REPAIR AND THEY SAID IT WOULD COST $261.00 FOR DIAGNOSTIC AND LABOR PLUS WHATEVER PART IT MAY NEED. I SAID GREAT HOW MUCH FOR SHIPPING AND THEY STATED $950.00. FOR A TOTAL OF $1211.00 PLUS PARTS. I WAS VERY DISAPPOINTED WITH DELL. I'VE PURCHASED NUMEROUS ITEMS FROM THEM AND THEY TREAT ME AS A TURD. SO I'VE LEARNED MY LESSON THEY WILL NEVER GET ANOTHER DIME FROM ME OR MY FAMILY AND FREINDS. I AM ALSO STARTING A DON'T BUY FROM DELL CAMPAIGN.

    0 Votes
  • Du
    DUANE Aug 15, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Two years and two days ...My w4201 went black ... same story local repair people said no parts and a few didnt even want to look at it ...class action ?????????

    0 Votes
  • Ri
    rickey duffin Aug 16, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    HAD THE SAME PROBLEM FOLKS WITH DELL 42 INCH PLASMA4201C AND WAS TOLD THE SAME THING BY DELL REPS, AND THAT I COULD SEND IT BACK TO DELL. WHEN ASKING WHAT THE PROBLEM WAS I WAS TOLD IT WAS SOME TYPE OF BUFFER MODULE. I HAVE ALSO DONE RESEARCH BECAUSE THE TV WENT BAD IN 14 MONTHS AND I THINK NOW AFTER REVIEWING OTHER VICTIMS RESULTS ITS TIME FOR CLASS ACTION ON DELL AND SAMS CLUB WHO I PAYED FOR THE TV.

    0 Votes
  • Ti
    Tim Aug 19, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Exact same scenario as above, today the TV started having lines throughout the top 2/3 of the picture. Waited almost 2 hours for tech support and referred to Decision One who wants to charge $261 to assess the hardware issue and charge $1141 for shipping to Grove City, OH.

    TV is 2 years and 3 weeks old.

    0 Votes
  • Ch
    Chetna Sanghavi Aug 20, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Have the same problem with 42 inch Dell Plasma TV. It doe nt turn on. DELL is asking to ship it for repair. We have to pay for shipping which would cost $1000.00 and then repair cost. Not worth it. Seems like many people have experience the problem. Case fo class action law suit? Let me know what did you all do to resolve this issue?

    0 Votes
  • Ea
    Earl Bailey Aug 29, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    This is truly criminal!!! My DELL 4201C will be 2 years old in Sept (08) and it too will not display. The picture was just fine when I turned on the unit this afternoon, after about 15 minutes I had vertical lines and then nothing, just audio.

    I called their "Technical Assistance", what a joke!!! Even more so when the rep suggested that I purchase the extended warranty when I purchase my next TV from Dell. Oh yeah, I want to purchase another inferior product from DELL.

    Ditto here, I received the same run around about shipping the plasma, the costs of this is more that what another would cost. GIVE ME A BREAK!!!

    I too own several Dell laptops and desktops. Looks like I will be looking at other brands in the future and discouraging everyone I know about DELL products.

    I agree with the pursuance of a class action law suit. Where do I need to sign?

    0 Votes
  • Mi
    Michael Sep 06, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Well... this should come to no surprise but I too along with (3) other family members are having the same issues and this has to stop.

    Between the (3) of us we all have Dell Computer equipment and 3 LCD and 1 Plasma TV. The 3 LCDs, where should I begin, we have to use the on/off swith mutiple time, for up to 15 minuets to get them to turn on. Color is starting to go in and out. As for the Plasma, we are having the same issues as listed above.

    After multiple calls and now reading the online issues I think it may be time to start a CALS(class action lawsuit) againt this PC giant to make good on technology they may have been aware would be problematic.

    0 Votes
  • Ja
    Jack Sep 06, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Dell is a disgrace! We are a corporate client of Dell and every computer is Dell. Bought my Dell W4201C on Feb 06 and the TV went bust 26 months later. Started with a vertical line down the middle then the picture went out. Got run around from Dell, same story as others from Decision1. Will try shopjimmy.com with a local repair shop, but do not hold high hopes.

    What a bad corporate citizen Dell is being by not offering a more comprehensive service. In my opinion they know these things are duds and are taking the path of least resistance. To Hell with Dell I say!!

    I hope that someone starts a class action.

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    Joanie Sep 11, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Everyone who posted above covers our problem with our TV from DELL!
    50" Plasma
    No picture
    Blue light when on
    Sound
    Contact me for a class action suit!!!
    We have all been had by DELL for thousands and thousands of dollars! What a disgrace.

    0 Votes
  • Ro
    rostik Sep 12, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    i have a 42" plasma. when i press the power button, the blue light under the button goes on but the green one doesnt and tv doesnt turn on, and no sound. i had no problems of any sort before that. tv is just over 2 years old. out of warranty as well...

    0 Votes
  • Ra
    Rahn Sep 12, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Same problem here!! Our Dell W4201C plasma has been randomly shutting off for the past 6+ months. About 2 months ago, while running through the menu, I turned on the "closed captioning" option and when we muted the plasma, the top half of the screen would go black. About a month ago the colors started to "bleed". Let's say a car is crossing the screen from left to right, night-time, and you see the headlights. The little round white headlights will have a single star burst affect (a line )running from top to bottom and moving with the car across the screen. Now the reds bleed from top to bottom and blues run left to right. With a solid color screen, the screen is sectioned into 6 equal lines (like a flag). If the screen is white it will be a white line, tan line, white line, etc.
    We still watch it, but it is very anoying, and hard to figure out who is who sometimes. Dell would look at it, $260 and shipping was $980, total was $1200+. What joke, debating now wheither to pick up a logic board and try that ortry a tuner board or just pull it off the wall and list it on ebay or craigs list.
    Bought it in Dec 05, in good faith. I'm disappointed in Dell.

    0 Votes
  • Ro
    Robert Beck Sep 18, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    We have a W4201c, just after two years the screen randomly went black (we still had audio). Sometimes it was just the bottom of the screen. The problem got worse and we contacted Dell.

    I've spooken with customer service, technical service and the parts department, and none of the were from the United States.

    They at first unwilling to help me because the TV was out of warranty. They then told me to contact Decision One in OH. Which quoted me $250 to diagnose the problems (plus approximately $1, 000 to ship it to them to look at it). I live in Seattle, it's not real resonable to ship my TV to OH to get fixed (unless they pay for it). Even the people at Decision One wouldn't use their services if they were in my shoes. They also said they get parts directly from Dell, but they aren't allowed to sell the parts to other service agents or customers.

    I've spent days on the internet researching this problem, I've come across what I'm having to be a power source problem. But I can't get the part. I know most likely the part was made by Samsung (which provided most of the parts of the Dell TV). But Dell had different part numbers placed on them and Dell won't give those part numbers out.

    People have spent approximately $2, 500 for a TV that seems to have a 2 year lifespan. And I know my TV is out of warranty. But I am willing to pay (a reasonable) amount to get it fixed. But Dell needs to be sympathetic to the needs of their customers and either provide services centers all around the country or make parts available to every repair shop.

    It's bad enough that they've shipped all their customer support jobs overseas. They sure seem to be neglecting to service their American market. I'm for one never buying another Dell product.

    I'm all for a class action lawsuit against Dell. We all deserve better then the way we've been treated. All we want is fair resolution.

    1 Votes
  • Vi
    Vince Carney Sep 18, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Same here. 2 years 2 months. Black screen! No help from Dell. I own 3 hotels and all our computers have been purchased through Dell. Not anymore! I cannot believe that they won't help. Put me down if someone starts a class action lawsuit.

    1 Votes
  • Ro
    rostik Sep 19, 2008
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    Verified customer

    how would we go about starting a class action suit ?

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    John Sep 23, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I am so frustrated with Dell, I need to vent! I have the plasma 4201C. It is 26 months old and I paid $2200 for this tv that has now become trash. I loved the tv when it was working and I thought Dell was a reputable company. About a month ago half of the screen started going black intermittently. Then it progressed to the entire screen going black. I contacted Dell who had me contact the "Out-of Warranty" department in Ohio. For a mere $1200 they would ship the TV and look at it. Then for the cost of any parts and necessary labor they would fix it. I was looking at spending $2200 for a repair with no guarantee that it would last. Needless to say I did not accept their generous offer. The TV is now gathering dust in a spare room until I get the courage to throw away the tv I spent $2200 for only 26 months ago. I will never buy a Dell product again and will encourage everyone I know to do the same! It seems our only way to get this company to do the right thing in the future is to post our experiences on the net and let everyone know to take their hard earned money elsewehere.

    0 Votes
  • Te
    Ted Sep 30, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Our Dell never worked correctly out of the box but we were told it was our fault. Seems the same intermittent power supply causing picture to go off after varying intervals is quite common. After researching how much it would cost to fix our broken new TV it was deemed a total loss. I've bought multiple computers from Dell for my business but if they think I will ever buy another electrical device from them again they are kidding themselves.

    0 Votes
  • Ex
    Ex-Dell Customer Sep 30, 2008
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    Same thing happened to me. $1, 500 to fix a 50" plasma tv that was 5 days past the warranty expiration period.

    I will never buy another Dell product again - they have lost me as a customer for life.

    0 Votes
  • Ti
    Tim Oct 01, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Dell Plasma 4201C lasts about 2 years. Is it true that local repairman can't get the parts? I hope for the Class Action suit as well!

    0 Votes
  • Ro
    ROBERT SCOTT Oct 06, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    W4201c PURCHASER HERE ... 6/2/06 -- TV STOPPED WORKING 6/2/08 (During the Euro's!!!) Dell Customer support terrible.. lots of phone #'s .. no help... too angry to call back for a couple of weeks... called agai was given the Decision 1 # in OHIO .. and they quoted me same rates .. same shipping cost .. 1500.oo+ ... yeah.. right Dell... same loyal Dell consumer here.. home & laptop computers purchased in past...

    Never again Dell... See you in Court. Won't be surprised when i turn on National News and find that you guys are belly-up.

    Class Action Lawsuit Lawyer --- sign me up ... email me [protected]@hotmail.com please take the money i gave them -- i'd rather you have it than Dell, cause i know that we are not going to see any money/ reasonable resolution.
    if any one starts website not to buy dell anything... let us know. I am telling all my friends, love ones and even people i dont even like that much.

    0 Votes
  • Fr
    Fred Heldberg Oct 07, 2008
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    I have the same problem but I was having the issue way before my set went black and they need to fix the problems. Does any one know how to get a class action suit going 2, 700/3, 000 is a good chunk for a tv that lasts 2 to 2 1/2 years thats 1, 000.00 a tear for a tv

    0 Votes
  • Ed
    Edwin Oct 13, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    42" plasma, horizontal line just showed up. Same issue as the rest of you guys. I live not too far from the repair facility, has anyone had any luck with this service? I am close enough to drop off and not pay that huge shipping fee.

    0 Votes
  • Ed
    Edwin Oct 13, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Has anyone had any success with using the Ohio repair facility? Can they actually fix the line in the screen?

    Thanks

    0 Votes
  • Se
    Sen Oct 23, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Hello everybody!
    PROBLEM SOLVED!!!
    I have solution for common problem with Dell W4201C. There are two Y Buffer boards that are failing and could show problem as bunch of horizontal lines or even dead set.
    I do have boards in stock. If you need them, please contact me at [protected]@gmail.com

    0 Votes
  • Ri
    Richard Oct 28, 2008
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    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    ...and there's the other thing that no one has mentioned yet... Each one of these defective TVs represents an enormous amount of E-waste. We have a Dell W4201C which has developed vertical lines (2, on the right hand side of the screen), and have replaced the "E" buffer without effect. We are continuing to try to repair this unit, but if we cannot find a fix, it will be going to the landfill, and in this day and age of environmental consciousness that is an absolutely appalling thing to have to consider. I can just imagine the number of toxic items each one of these TVs has in them, and Dell by it's complete and utter failure to help it's costumers is essentially pushing people to throw these toxic waste piles away... It make me wonder if they can be held accountable under environmental regulations for generating E-waste?...

    Regards,
    Richard.

    0 Votes
  • Re
    REmry Oct 30, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Here's a post that I put on my newsletter this morning:

    Beware of the bossman. I woke up grumpy this morning.

    See? Two nights ago the bunkhouse had a perfectly fine, three-year-old, 42 inch, Dell flat-panel plasma HDTV. The high-def resolution and the bright and accurate colors were something to behold! The beautiful screen was perfect for viewing fall colors – I especially like the burnt orange of the UT Longhorn football jerseys, for example.

    Two nights ago it was as perfect as ever. I changed channels and now the high-tech masterpiece is an inert modern art sculpture with the same high-tech features as a brick. Our beloved HDTV died at the tender age of three.

    The word “three” is fiscally important as “three” means that it is one year out of warranty.

    I unplugged the TV and I plugged it in – several times. I changed outlets and did “maybe I’ll try this” and “next I’ll try that.” My numerous “maybes” and “nexts” got me nowhere – except to the computer where I searched for local TV repair folks. It was about 10:00 p.m., so I wrote an e-mail to the most promising one I found. It was a repair service that advertised house calls; it’s a big TV so that seemed important. I described the symptoms and sent the e-mail.

    When we returned home from the gym yesterday morning, I had received a response. In general it was a gloomy, “Parts are hard to get for a Dell. Because of its size you will have to bring it in. We will trouble shoot for $$$ and if it’s the power supply and we can get the part it will be $$$$$$ and it might take YYYYYY for us to fix it.” That YYYYYY is code for “eons”.

    It was mid-morning so I began to phone other TV repair numbers that I found in the yellow pages. The first confirmed that Dell parts were hard to get. “He would check and if I didn’t hear from him by Monday …”

    It was only Wednesday morning. I couldn’t wait until Monday. The mighty Longhorns would be playing on Saturday evening!

    I dialed another and didn’t like what I heard – “We don’t service Dell…”

    A few more calls went like that. One lady had heard that the only thing I could do was to call Dell for advice. Well that seemed logical. I’d bought several Dell products direct from Dell’s webpage including the TV. Dell, with headquarters in Austin, Texas, would surely be able to advise a local customer. I went to the computer and tried to initiate a chat-session with an on-line Dell rep. The first thing I needed was the express service code for my product. The sign-in page kept reminding me that Dell’s repair service was for only those products that were under warranty and that I needed the express service code to proceed. I gave up.

    While Googling “Dell TV Repair” I noticed a complaint page. (This one) I browsed that page and was not encouraged. It was a series of posts of angry owners of Dell 42 inch TVs shouting at no one in particular about the poor response by Dell when their TVs acted just like ours. Some of their TVs had died at an even earlier age! I wasn’t encouraged. I decided to phone Dell instead of messing around on line and so I dialed Dell’s 1-800 number.

    The automated answering guru had me stepping through the numbers to narrow down the reason for my call. I finally arrived at another automated gate-keeper that advised me that if I didn’t have my product service code I could proceed no further.

    I hung up and redialed. This time, instead of dancing through the numbers I started pushing O on my handset until an operator came on the line. She transferred me to another number. The person who answered didn’t seem to know why I would call him and transferred me to another number. Before long I was talking to my old friend in India or Bangladesh or some far off place who had “helped” me set up my Dell computer a couple of years back.

    It was probably not the same guy but his accent was the same. He pleaded with me for my product service code, kind sir, so that he could properly advise me. I pleaded with him to look it up.

    I’m not sure why it is when I’m talking to someone with a foreign accent I begin to use the same accent in response. I suppose it’s a subconscious way to better communicate. Before long we sounded like two of the unwashed on the streets of Calcutta chatting about hard times. He was doing his best to be helpful and actually looked up my product service code for the TV. It didn’t really do him any good but it confirmed that I wasn’t just a typical ugly American who enjoyed calling Dell customer service just to hassle the foreigners. He gave me a phone number for out of warranty Dell TVs and, before we ended our conversation, he said his supervisor wanted to talk to me, kind sir.

    I waited until a very pleasant, polite lady with the same accent came on the phone. “To be sure, Mr. Emry, that we have dood all we can possibly did for to please, dood my good fellow here be polite and responsive, kind sir?”

    I assured her that he was very pleasant indeed. She went on. “Dood he ask for your product service code for which only we can use for identity your merchandise?”

    I assured her that the product service code was indeed important to him. She then added, “And dood he help you in every possible way to satisfy your urgent request of us for that we respond to your every need and be most helpful, kind sir?”

    “Yes … yes … most helpful!” anything to get her off the phone.

    “Then have a most wonderful day, Mr. Emry. Please do call back when we can be as helpful in the future as we been helpful in the past. Good day, good day … good day, kind sir”

    Finally off the phone, I dialed the out-of-warranty, Dell authorized, TV repair number. A contractor in Ohio answered the phone. He confirmed that yes they had the contract to fix Dell TVs but he assured me that by the time I had sent the TV to them and paid the price of the repairs, it would be far cheaper to buy a new TV.

    My temper by that time was approaching rolling boil. My previous attempts to phone Dell were through their 1-800 number. Realizing that Dell corporate headquarters is just across town, I decided to go to the top. Surely, the local manufacturer, Dell, would advise me on how to get my Dell fixed locally. I looked up Dell Corporation in the phone book, found that it was indeed a local number for the office across town on Parmer Lane, and dialed.

    An automated response finally directed me to a live human being. The guy who answered didn’t sound Texan but Texas is full of folks from other parts of the world so that was no surprise. I inquired, “Am I talking to the Dell Corporation in Austin, Texas?”

    The fellow seemed confused. After I repeated, he said, “No, I’m in the Philippines but I’ll be happy to help you. What is your product service code?”

    I hung up.

    I yearn for the good old days. Back then, when your television or radio went on the fritz, you could pull all the tubes, take them down to the local hardware store and test them for free on their tube tester. When you had identified the culprit you bought a replacement and solved your problem. Maybe it was only a black and white TV with a grainy picture but in an hour or so it was as good as new.

    We now have an expensive item that is 99% as good as new, looks perfect, but is apparently as worthless as a brick as it’s economically unfixable.

    The only good thing to come out of this is that we have learned that a similar TV today is about a third of the price that we paid for the Dell over three years ago.

    At least one of you good neighbors had warned me about Dell when I was mentioning my purchases some time ago. I had bought at least three Dell computers. I thought, with my first purchase that it was good to buy from a local company. At that time Dell was “local” and responsive. I had nothing but praise for past service that I had received with my first Dell, so I didn’t listen. Wish I had…

    Terry and I stopped by Circuit City last evening just to browse. The young lady who assisted us mentioned their customer service plans. That they warrant, for a price, what they sell and if something goes wrong with the product, they fix it. The customer doesn’t have to work with the manufacturer.

    In the past I’ve always nixed the extended warranties and service plans that are offered by appliance and car dealers. I thought I was just adding extra cost to the sales price as the product would likely outlast the warranty.

    Now I’m not sure. When a major appliance dies in three years and the best the manufacturer can offer is to send it, at customer expense, to a place in Ohio then maybe the service plans offered by Best Buy or Circuit City make sense. I’m beginning to think so.

    When Dell’s local telephone number reaches a guy in the Philippines, something is indeed wrong.

    0 Votes
  • Se
    Sean Oct 30, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    I too have the baffled thin horizontal line acrooss my W4200 Dell. I bought the unit in Dec. 2005. The wife is not a happy camper about this. My problem started about 2 months ago, and now today, a 2nd line is coming and going, and it won't be long before it is a permanent attachment to my viewing enjoyment.

    Oh my, this sure does seem almost unrepairable. I don't think she would let me buy another plasma...I wish there was some fix...

    Wife is telling me I need to get on the phone with Dell, but I told her we wer "S.O.L." as the unit has been out of warranty for almost 2 years. Your comments have verified that.

    UGH!

    0 Votes
  • Ca
    Carlos Nov 07, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    In Dec of '06 I purchased a 4201 and four months later I noticed that the front A/V inputs were defective. I contacted Dell's customer support and they told me that they would send a refurbished television. I argued two weeks with their representative, and I finally convinced them to send me a new replacement. The 4201C that they sent me worked perfectly fine up yesterday Nov. 7 2008. A little over a year of getting the old television replaced, the new one won't display a picture instead, it shows sprayed pixels on the screen accompanied with a hissing from the rear of the television. Of course, the television is no longer in warranty, and Dell won't offer any assistance. I am very interested in joining a class action lawsuit, and plan to keep my television as evidence. I sincerely believe that a recall is in order, so I contacted News Channel 8 in Austin and informed them of this issue. Hopefully, a reporter is hungry enough for a story that they research this scam.

    0 Votes
  • Jo
    John Nov 07, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    After 1 yr and 1 month my Dell W4201C went picture dead, sound worked last year on thanksgiving day... for 3 days I got passed from Dept to Dept, Out of warrenty wanted to charge me what I paid new for a used one, Indian fella was very rude. I called back complained more and got a call from the escalation dept. The Indian woman on the line, agreed to send me a refurb, no cost... got that one, a few months later, it went bad...greenish tint throughout the screen, luckily I called the warrenty dept (they gave me 90 day on the refurb) and extended it to another year... got my 3rd TV, it worked well until the warranty ran out. now it magically loses picture and sound, you have to turn it on and off at least once a day. I tried to renew the warrenty one more time before it ran out and they said they were no longer offering warrenties on the Plasm TVs (yeah...go figure)...

    There is a Dell factory near my house (in Winston Salem, NC) Im about ready to burn it on their front lawn...

    If anyone knows of a class action suit please let me know, I'd be very happy to join it...

    0 Votes
  • Ca
    Carlos Nov 07, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    Here is my letter to Dell:
    I had the same problem. Here is my letter to Dell.

    To whom it may concern:
    My name is Carlos, and I have been a loyal Dell customer for over ten years now. My organization purchases millions of dollars of server/workstation equipment on a yearly basis to support operations in both Iraq and Afghanistan. With such a surplus of goods from a single manufacturer, it is expected that every now and again we receive a defective Dell product. For this reason, I normally request extended warranties on all company furnished hardware (you can look at my profile and see for yourself). Although 90% of our hardware is covered by some form of SLA, some equipment is just expected to work for at least the minimum of three years; however, this does not seem to be the case with Dell's line of Plasma televisions.

    To make a long story short, I had a defective 42" Plasma (e.g., W4201) television replaced by Dell customer support April of 2006. November 6, 2008, after almost two years of perfect operation, the television stopped working. To be more descriptive, it looked like someone sprayed the bottom-left corner of the screen with red and yellow pixels while the rest of the screen remained black. Shocked by this predicament, I began troubleshooting the problem and even went as far as to contact Customer Service (i.e., my case number is [protected]). The customer service representative (EXT, 7269677), attempted to troubleshoot the issue, and concluded that there was a failed "video chip" and that it needed to be replaced. Forgive my bluntness, but this sounded like a "canned" excuse to explain the problem and to re-route me to a different department. She assured me that there was a resolution to my dilemma and even put her floor manager on the phone to speak with me. Trusting that she was looking out for my best interest, I called the telephone number (e.g., [protected]) she gave me and provided the representative with the case number previously mentioned. To my dismay, she had forwarded me to the "Out-of-Warranty" service department. I soon learned that this department was in fact a contractor for Dell who specialized in repairing plasma televisions. I proceeded with supplying the case number to the representative, and he was unable to pull up my record. He then explained to me the procedure for repairing the television and gave me a quote. According to him, there would be $247 flat labor charge in addition to shipping and parts. In the end, I would be paying close to $500 to repair a $3000 television that shouldn't have ever failed in the first place. To make matters worse, they will only warranty their service 90 days, so if replace the defective components with OEM parts, there is a high likelihood that the television will fail a year from now. As a result, I terminated my conversation with the representative and began doing some research.

    I discovered that several owners of the W4201C have encountered the same exact problems with their units. In fact, one can find broken W4201C televisions on Craigslist, E-bay and at online parts stores. In addition, there is a plethora of blogs (i.e., complaintsboard.com, consumeraffairs.com, etc.) dedicated to disgruntled owners of the W4201C. Some customers have threatened to file a class action lawsuit, and others have sworn to never purchase Dell products again. I find this extremely disturbing because this outcry has fallen on deaf ears. It is understandable that a company will only guarantee a product for a set period of time, but even auto manufacturers recall cars out of warranty when a known-issue is discovered. Only a blind fool would fail to see that there is something terribly wrong with the internal components of this unit. I don't know if this was a bad batch of televisions or what, but I can clearly see that several people are complaining about the same problem and that Dell is not doing anything to rectify it.
    As a result of this, I too will forgo recommending any more Dell products to my customers and will do everything in my power to warn future and current owners of this model of the high possibility that the unit will cease functioning within two years.

    I really do not expect anything to come from this letter, but I would be a bigger fool not to make an attempt. In the meanwhile, I plan to let the television sit on my entertainment center and gather dust; at least until I can come up with $700 to replace it with a Panasonic 42". My organization purchased two of them three years ago and they have never given us any issues. In fact, those televisions run 24 hours a day, seven days a week; whereas, the W4201C was only used to watch TV throughout the day.

    FOLLOW UP: I just received a call from their corporate office and the rep, Linda told me to call out of warranty service, because she couldn't do anything for me. In addition, she stated that she has no record of people with the same issue!

    0 Votes
  • Ca
    Carlos Nov 08, 2008
    This comment was posted by
    a verified customer
    Verified customer

    To help my argument, could everyone who has had the same problem with their Dell TV please e-mail me at my hotmail account with their CASE ID, contact info, and a brief description of their problem. I am going to make their rep regret denying that no such cases exist. I can append your name, case id, date you submitted your complaint and brief description of the problem to Dell. I live in Austin minutes from their main campus. If I have to hand deliver these complaints I will. I even contacted Austin News Channel 8.

    0 Votes

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