Electronics repairers irate
TWO more local electronics repairers have added their voices to claims customers are being forced to wait up to two months for their expensive televisions to be fixed under extended warranty under changes introduced by insurance company Lumley Insurance.
However, the company has denied claims – levelled by three local repairers – it has centralised its extended warranty repair work and is now shipping faulty flat screen TVs to Melbourne.
Extended warranty is essentially an insurance policy that covers repairs on appliances in the same manner as the original manufacturer’s warranty.
Hans Electronics in Lismore and Northern Rivers Electronics at Ballina have joined Byron Electronics in lashing out at the changes, which they say erodes customer service and threatens their businesses.
Under the changes, the companies say Lumley has centralised its extended warranty repairs to Melbourne, while another was sending items from Ballina and Byron Bay to the Gold Coast instead of the local repairers. The changes applied to all electronics brands, with theexception of Sony, which has insisted on its products being repaired locally.
Northern Rivers Electronics owners Anthony Weeks said customers had warned him their faulty televisions were being shipped to Melbourne for repair – a process that could take up to eight weeks.
Mr Weeks said he had tested the claims himself by twice calling Lumley to report faults in two of his own televisions that were under extended warranty. In both cases the person who answered the phone was ‘adamant’ the damaged items would be sent to Melbourne.
A Lumley spokeswoman said its contracts with local repairers remained in place. However, some appliances with particular faults were sent to particular repairers who had developed expertise in finding and fixing that fault.
“Our priority is to ensure that when a customer experiences a problem, that it is resolved as fast and effectively as possible,” she said.