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Frustrated by CSR run-around..any ideas?

Discussion in 'DIRECTV General Discussion' started by garywitt, Jan 23, 2009.

  1. garywitt

    garywitt AllStar

    Nov 1, 2006
    So here's my situation...

    I've had Directv since 2004, I have 1 HD DVR (paid 299.99 for it in 9/06), one SD DVR and one basic SD receiver.

    Earlier this month my SD DVR, an old RCA TIVO unit, died. I called DirecTV, they were very nice and helpful, told me that since the unit had malfunctioned, they would send out a replacement, there would be no charge and no extension of committment. I confirmed this with the CSR twice, and he confirmed twice.

    My new SD DVR arrived, and was a R22. I was very pleased, and it works great. Unfortunately, on my next bill I had a $19.95 charge for shipping and handling. I had specifically asked the CSR if this charge would be applied and he stated no, since the receiver was defective. I called once again to ask if the charge could be waived since I was told there would not be a charge, and I was told the matter would be forwarded to the "credit department," and I would be hear back with the results. I have not heard back.

    Lo and behold I get a new Sharp HDTV for the bedroom last week. I called directv for an upgrade to a second HDDVR from my basic receiver. I confirm that my account is currently not under contract, and the CSR says no, actually, when your R22 was shipped you were placed under a 2 year committment. I was frustrated by this, stayed very calm and polite and asked to speak to a supervisor. The supervisor stated that this commitment was listed in the account agreement (which I'm sure is true) and could not be waived, despite the fact that I specifically asked and was told it would not be applied. He did offer a $100 credit off of a new HD DVR, however. I wavered and said I would call back.

    I called back the next day to order the HDDVR with the $100 credit (since I'm already under contract, apparently). The order went smooth, they stated the credit was listed in the notes, I asked to have the receiver shipped but the CSR said installation was mandatory, however there definitely would be no charge for installation. She set up installation for about 5 days down the road and all was good.

    Until the next day, I check my account online and see a $199 HDDVR charge, a $100 credit, and then also a $99 installation charge and a $19.95 shipping and handling fee! My "credit" was turning into a HDDVR for 218.98. I call back and was met by a very rude CSR who stated there was no note on my account of any discount at all, that the $100 credit would apply towards the installation fee which was aways applied to new HD receivers. I asked to speak to a supervisor, who eventually agreed to credit the $99 installation fee, although did not credit the $19.95 installation fee.

    I must admit, in the end, I'm getting a second HDDVR for 99.99 + 19.95. This whole adventure, however, has probably sucked about 20 hours of my life on the telephone and has been fraught with at least 3 outright lies. (#1 - no commitment for replacing a defective receiver. #2 - no installation or shipping charge for a HDDVR upgrade. #3 - rude CSR stating no discounts were listed on my account (which the supervisor later refuted).

    I like my directv service and have no intention of cancelling. In directv's defense, the policies and charges applied to my account seem to be in concordance with the agreement. The CSR's, however, are horrible! They have no knowledge of their own company's policies and routinely promise things that are just not true. Whether that's out of their own ignorance or just to get the customer off the phone, I'm not sure.

    DirecTV customer service managers - I hope you read these threads. I have no problem with the underlying policies but your front line staff cannot promise things like no charges, no commitment, only to have them applied anyway!
  2. tomkarl

    tomkarl Legend

    Jan 6, 2009
    Were you covered on the Protection Plan when they replaced the RCA unit with the R22?
  3. JLucPicard

    JLucPicard Hall Of Fame

    Apr 27, 2004
    In terms of what charges you would be subject to on the replacement of your old DTivo and what it would mean to your commitment status, that hinges a great deal on whether you covered under the Protection Plan or not. You did not mention it in your post, but from what was stated, I would infer that you do NOT have the PP. Is that correct?
  4. garywitt

    garywitt AllStar

    Nov 1, 2006

    1) No, I do not have the protection plan.

    2) I called DirecTV yet again with another plan - this time I offered to just go to Costco and buy the HD DVR myself, to take the shipping and installation fees out of the equation. The supervisor I talked to stated he could not give me the $100 credit on a box I purchase a retail store, but in place he offered free HD access for 6 months. At my costco the HR22 is $169, so I accepted his offer. He cancelled the original order, I just got home with my new HR22. I look online, and alas - now it says DVR service cancelled - credit 4.22, but the 199.00, 99.99, 19.95, (100.00 credit), (99.00 credit), are all still on my account. Here comes yet another call and hour+ on the phone...
  5. curt8403

    curt8403 Hall Of Fame

    Dec 27, 2007
    with costco you have 169 for the box, 99 for the install = 269
    not equal to the 199 for going with directv loyal offer
  6. uod

    uod Cool Member

    Oct 21, 2008
    Side question : Do you have to still pay $99 for the install of a HD DVR that you bought at Costco if you don't actually need anything installed? I already have two lines (which I paid to have ran to the jack when D* did the original install since I knew I would eventually go from a HD box to a HD DVR box in that room) ?

    So -- I theoretically should just be able to walk into Cosco, pay $169 ... walk out ... call D* .. get the box activated ... and pay my lease fee monthly, right?
  7. The Fuzz 53

    The Fuzz 53 AllStar

    Jun 27, 2007
    That protection plan is BS. It should be this simple. The equipment YOU gave me doesn't work = I CAN'T use your service i.e. no reason to pay you.

    Defective equipment should be replaced free of charge if it is mandatory to use the service.

    And besides, since the equipment is leased, why should we have to pay for broken equipment that we don't own? I can see if you used the thing a jack stand while changing the oil in your car, or decided to water it like it was a Chia Pet.
  8. davring

    davring Hall Of Fame

    Jan 13, 2007
    Yes, it's that simple.
  9. rudeney

    rudeney Hall Of Fame

    May 28, 2007
    The receiver that the OP had replaced was NOT leased. It was an old "RCA TiVo Unit". D* does replace failed leased equipment for a small S&H fee (and this should be with no commitment extension). Owned equipment that fails can be replaced with new leased equipment for a small S&H fee, but it requires a new commitment, too. The latter is what happened to the OP, and while that is correct policy, it is really poor customer service that he was told something different (i.e. no charges at all and no commitment).
  10. garywitt

    garywitt AllStar

    Nov 1, 2006
    First of all, I can confirm no installation fee when you purchase the box at a retail store.

    Second of all, my thoughts exactly. My beef is not with having to extend a commitment, or pay for installation. My beef is being told, explicitly and clearly, that there would be no extended commitment and no installation charge, and then it just gets added to the account without disclosure or customer's knowledge.

    Watch your bills, everyone!

    P.S. On an related note, I did not know if my Tivo SD was owned or leased when it broke and I called to get it replaced. The CSR I talked to did not know either!! I asked him if I would have to return it and he said something to the effect of, I'm not sure, if I were you I'd keep it in a closet in case we ask for it back...
  11. BKC

    BKC Icon

    Dec 12, 2007
    I wonder if they can send you an email stating exactly what they said while you wait on the phone..... I had a lot of trouble with them once over something they said I would get and didn't. I handled it all with email so there was none of this "I don't see it on your account" stuff. they finally coughed it up.
  12. JLucPicard

    JLucPicard Hall Of Fame

    Apr 27, 2004
    I believe an RCA TiVo unit would most assuredly be an owned unit. I think the lease model started with the R15 SD DVR (though I think some of them were owned before March 1, 2006) and the leased HD DVRs were originally the HR20s and some of the HR10-250s.
  13. BattleZone

    BattleZone Hall Of Fame

    Nov 13, 2007
    Correct! There were a couple of months after March 1, 2006 when the HR20 hadn't been released, and DirecTV was leasing HR10-250s. But the H20 and R15 were already out before that date, with the last of the R10s being installed around November 2005 IIRC. The "branded" Tivos (Hughes/RCA/Samsung) were discontinued months earlier, and would definitely have been owned.
  14. rudeney

    rudeney Hall Of Fame

    May 28, 2007
    Guys, it's not really an issue of whether or not the receiver was owned - it seems that it was and that the "swap" was handled properly - $19.95 S&H and a new 2-year commitment. However, the OP's problem is that the CSR told him that this was not how it would be handled. Why the CSR did this is a mystery - maybe the CSR was ignorant of the policy or maybe the CSR figured it was best to tell the customer what he wanted to hear to get him off the phone quickly. Regardless, if D* is going to handle their contracts verbally, then they need to stand behind what the CSR's tell customers.
  15. SatRick

    SatRick AllStar

    Jan 6, 2009
    I have been looking to upgrade to HD and I agree with a above poster
    My communications have been thru email, have had 3, with 3 differents answers/pkg options:eek2:

    None have been exactly as I asked and when I get the one I like, I will buy
    If if doesn't come thru that way, I have the email and Ref # to fall back on:grin:
  16. JLucPicard

    JLucPicard Hall Of Fame

    Apr 27, 2004
    What you say is true and I would feel appropriately chastised IF - IF - I was addressing the overall issue. My post was simply helping him to identify that his DVR was likely owned - as indicated by the portion of his post that I quoted. ;)
  17. Git

    Git AllStar

    Jul 11, 2008
    Total Recorder + Recorder Control = Peace of mind

    I used to take notes of my important phone calls, but as you found out - what good do they really do. Now I record them on my computer with a click of the mouse. And, when it comes to something important I usually say something like "just so I am understand this right, I want to record this..."
  18. ladannen

    ladannen Legend

    Oct 26, 2007
    There are so many stories here about CSRs giving incorrect info over the phone.
    I only contact Directv via email or using the "contact us" on the website.
  19. pjsauter

    pjsauter Mentor

    Jan 6, 2008
    That's what I do, too. Not just to have a record, but because it's easier for me to keep my composure via e-mail. Just recently, I looked into replacing an old RCA SD receiver with an HD receiver or HD-DVR (don't have a second HDTV, but figured I could upgrade the reciever, and then slip a new TV into my office while my wife wasn't looking).

    On the website, the receiver would be free, and the HD- would be $99. So I tried adding it, but they wanted to charge me an additional $99 installation fee for a Slimline Dish, which I already have, since I already have an HR21 with HD access - paid $299 for it, about a month before they dropped the price to $199, and I have a 6x8 multiswitch with 4 available outputs. I tried changing it to "pack for self-installation" or whatever they call it, but it wouldn't let me.

    So, I sent a inquiry in via the contact form, and they replied that they could confirm that I could get an HD receiver or HD-DVR for $0 charge, with an extension to my commitment (which I specifically inquired about).

    I replied asking if that was an HD or SD DVR (figured they meant SD, but also figured it wouldn't hurt to ask). The reply I got was that an HD DVR was for HD programming, and an SD DVR was for SD programming. Oy.

    So, I replied, thanking them for their response, but that wasn't my question (which they could have have read in the e-mail, since it was all quoted), and I then restated my original question.

    The response was that I didn't need a Slimline Dish, the HD-DVR would be $99, and the $99 installation fee was correct.

    So, I gave up on the replacement for now, and in fact have decided to deactivate my two SD receivers, since I never watch those SD TVs anymore anyway.

    I figure I saved myself $200, a 2-yr extension to my commitment, $10 a month in receiver fees, and a lot of time and aggravation talking to a CSR. Plus the price of a new TV. :D
  20. peaches

    peaches AllStar

    Jan 8, 2009
    Yepper, my suggestion is for the "problem child" to immediately CUT HIS PHONE LINES he apparently continues to dig a bad hole even deeper.

    Only use email so you will have a RECORD of all activity and promises. GEEEEZE.....I thought they taught that in grammer school.

    Good luck.....!Devil_lol

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