Building With Bay West Homes

The journey of building a new house...

Thursday, October 24, 2002

For once, a post on this site has nothing to do with Bay West. :-) Here's a lesson we learned the hard way, so pay attention.

When you accept delivery of your major home appliances (fridge, stove, dishwasher, etc.) be sure to examine them closely and use them within the first few days. Why you might ask? Here's why.

We purchased all of our home appliances from Coast Wholesale Appliances and a seemingly nice fellow named Brandon. We spent over $6000 on appliances there, so I felt like that would perhaps entitle me to a little service. Much to my dismay, that was not the case. Coast delivered the appliances in late January, a few days before we moved in. When we took possession of the house, everything was set up - at least, we thought it was. The day after we moved in, we put on a load of dishes...and nothing happened. We wondered why the bottom panel on the dishwasher was removed when we moved in, but we put it back on without thinking. Guess what? It was removed because the installer never finished his job of getting it working! A few minutes of work got our dishwasher working, but why wouldn't Coast finish the job of installing the equipment?

The most frustrating thing was out fridge. We upgraded to a fairly expensive (but gorgeous) stainless-steel fridge. We loved the way it looked, and it was definitely the dominant piece in our kitchen. The day after we moved in, we noticed two things: the door wouldn't close properly, and there was a small dent in the upper left corner. The dent wasn't very big, but when the light hit the fridge, it was quite obvious. I called Brandon at Coast, and left a voice message for him to call me back. Things were very hectic with unpacking, etc., so it wasn't until a week later that I realized that he hadn't called me back yet. I called him once again, left another message, and waited. Ten days after my first phone call, Brandon returned my phone call. In the ensuing conversation, the following was revealed: because I had not explicitly mentioned that damage to the fridge in my first phone call, it was "too late" to do anything about it. I asked him why he didn't call me back after my first message, and he had no response. I was furious, but Brandon was unrelenting - "It's company policy" he said. Apparently they have a problem with customers who call in months after delivery and complain about damage to the fridge - damage that the customer caused. So Brandon was accusing me of being one of these customers who lied? Yes, he was.

Nine months later, we have a dented fridge that freezes our food half the time, Coast has our money, and Frigidaire has horrible customer service. It's taken them three months to get a new hinge in for us, and when they called to finally book the appointment to replace the hinge and I told them about the freezing problem, what did they say? "Oh, uh, we have to order that part in, so we'll have to do the service call later". In the meantime, I have a new ice age happening in my fridge. Anybody need any icy lettuce?

Lesson learned: examine your appliances for damage the DAY they arrive, and if possible, ask the delivery people to wait while you do so. If you find damage, ask them to make a note of it, get a copy, and contact your salesperson immediately. I find it sad that a company could take such a large sum of money and have such poor customer service, but I guess that's the way Coast Wholesale Appliances does business.