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HP laptop extended warranty repair- need experts opinion

Hi I was writing to get some professional advice regarding my laptop  warranty.
I have had many problems with it recently, but after all its almost 3 years old (3 years in this coming February). I purchased this at staples for $1,100, and also purchased the extended warranty for an extra $380.

The biggest problem was the hinge was broken. The broken hinge prevented me from closing the screen. there was a small visable gap between the two pieces of plastic, where the hinge joins (seen here in this picture- see in the red circle -    )

There were no cracks or anything any where else.

I got it back today, opened it up, only to see the repair center did more harm then good. I got it back, and now the laptop is in 2 pieces! They actually ripped part of the plastic that fits arround the LCD see pic-

They made lots of other claims such as "number 5 key missing" (it just falls off now and then- it isnt missing though), they claimed also that the back has tape on it covering cracks (it does have tape but there isnt a single crack on the back piece- the tape is to hold the battery in place since it often fell out) They also claimed the mouse was broken (I mentioned now and then you have to move ur finger in circles to get it to respond- but only like once a month or so, 99% of the time it works fine) they said its defective though. They also told me the speaker is defective? (I have never had any problems with the speaker so dont know how they came to that conclusion).

So when I sent it, it worked- I could atleast use it, just the hinge prevented it from closing all the way. I got it back in 2 pieces!

I called the warranty company- there was a message saying they will call me back leave my name and number and case id which I did- then I called staples warranty center- they told me there was damage done to the hinge area and screen area- the crack- and thats why they arent covering it.

I explained though the hinge was broken, there was never any cracked parts. They said I have to contact the warrany company if I am dusputing that issue. I called the warranty center again (staples uses a 3rd party for warranty services) and this time when I called they said they are closed.

So I took the laptop to my local staples where I purchased it- they spent over 20 min with customer service, and got me a new case id number. They said the warranty place will be contacting me Tuesday or Wedensday, and in the mean time they said to file a claim with fedex as well, because the warranty company took pictures of the laptop and sent them to staples warranty center. They claimed they received the laptop in 2 pieces!

I asked staples (at the store) how can 3 wires come out though, seperating the laptop in half, and they said they just unplug- so its possable. So I got home and called fedex to file the claim.

However I just realized its not possable for the laptop to have been damaged in the shipping tranzit because after looking more carefully, in order to seperate the cables, you have to take the laptop apart. See in the pics, the cables dont just pass through a hole to the motherboard- you have to disasemble the hardware before you can remove the cables.

the cables look like they pass internally inside the hinge, onto the motherboard. So obviously they did disasemble it.

My question is this- tomorrow fedex is going to call me and have me bring the box to them, and they are going to inspect the damage. Wont they notice the same thing I did- that in order to disconnect the cables, you have to take the thing apart?

So I dont know what to do now- do I take it apart and put it back together so the cables are dangeling? do I go back to staples to point that out? do I tell fedex I am unavailable untill monday (till I can contact the warranty company)?

It is possable the crack occured in tranzit (unlikley though) but theres no way it got disasembled in tranzit. Any info is appreciated!

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1 Solution
Yes try to make it Monday they can make a troubles for you
This is a bit of a sticky situation. I used to work electronics retail for Futureshop / Best Buy as well as Staples. The majority of warranties that you can buy in store cover issues short of what they perceive as physical damage (IE: dropping it or obviously physical negligence or liquid damage). The problem with that being is that the repair depots have a certain amount of discretion for what they consider physical abuse. I was looking at those pictures and it looks to me like they took it apart and did a very poor job of putting it back together. However if you do not have any pictures the day before you shipped it off it can be hard to prove to them you did not send it in that condition, which makes it hard to prove that the shipping damaged the laptop also. This can turn into a very frustrating experience. What i would personally suggest doing is talking to the repair depot directly at first and trying to explain to them whats going on. Failing that i would speak with Staples and maybe they will do something for you at store level if you have a good manager working there and is willing to take you at your word that you did not cause that damage yourself, or with any luck the person that shipped the laptop from the store (if they did) might be able to vouch that it was in good condition when you sent it out. However this can also be a long shot being as the repair depots are generally outsourced to third party companies such as Nexicore,

Best of luck!
cellprocustomersAuthor Commented:
thanks, just took the unit back to staples to ask them what I should tell Fedex, and they asked me if it was dropped (the guy I talked to yesterday wasnt there- he seamed to be somewhat of a help- he understood my problem) but today, before I can even say "no it wasnt dropped" the guy was like yep, looks like it was dropped. I dont know what gets me more angry- the fact that I had a functioning laptop before I shipped it out (just wouldnt close due to the hinge) or the fact that I spent 380 bucks for the extended warranty. When the guy at staples today asumed I dropped it, just infuriated me. Then he was talking to me as if I am trying to cover the fact that I dropped it.

I am in the electronics business myself, (obviously I woudlnt tell them that) but I specifically deal with cell phones. Typically, if a customer drops a phone and it actually cracks the plastic housing, usually the impact is so bad that it not only shadders the housing- but also cracks the LCD. Keep in mind the size of the LCD is usually 1 or 2" x 1" in a phone. With an LCD so large  as the one in my laptop (wide screen- I think its 16 or 18 inches cant remember) if I dropped it and the housing was in the rough shape mine is now- I would guess the LCD would DEFINITLY be cracked- which mine is not- inticating that they took it apart. But I am just a consumer to them- my word against theres I bet they will tell me.

Getting a bad vibe just in knowing that the last hour they were open on Friday, when I called there local and toll free numbers, it went strait to voicemail. I called several times- went right to voicemail. I called alittle later and they changed the greeting- from "leave us a message" to "we are now closed". (oh yeah- of corse noone returned me call whie they were still open- as I did leave them a message)  but I am determined to do all I can. Will post again on Monday for a follow up on what the repair depot says... thanks for the replies!
How did things turn out with the repair depot?
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