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Lisa Forrest was right; you’re seeing this story. A couple weeks ago we were both at our mutual client’s business, Elmore Electric, now owned by Joe Williams as Joe was hosting a reception to celebrate his recent acquisition. The three of us were talking and I mentioned I was going to stop at Seattle Pump (another former client) to get a new pressure washer.

The story is that two years ago I bought a Homelite pressure washer at Home Depot. It worked great the first year but last year it wouldn’t stay running. It went in the shop twice last summer and this year it again wouldn’t stay running. Here’s what then happened:

  • Home Depot punted. They passed the buck to Homelite.
  • Homelite did the same thing, telling me to go back to their authorized repair shop.
  • Since I was just past the two year warranty, they said sorry, but we don’t care.
  • I made some very pointed comments to Homelite about the very low quality of their products and customer care attitude (or lack of it). I also mentioned the repair shop near my house wouldn’t touch their machine, even if I paid for the repairs, stating it was of such poor quality they knew it would be back, on their warranty. (My comments did nothing but it felt good to vent.)
  • Got a new, better pressure washer at Seattle Pump.
  • Starting to pursue my credit card company’s extended warranty coverage (up to one more year of warranty, which I’ve used to replace a printer, phone, camera and maybe other things).

Somebody at each company made a decision that the “letter of the law” is more important than a customer with a bad product. I’m sure whomever made these decisions isn’t a bad person, they just got caught up in the “keep the margins high” mentality and not the “do the right thing” mentality.

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