Honest opinions about how to buy Appliances and Lighting.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

How To Buy An Appliance Part Three

Its a cool 66 degrees in Boston and raining. There will be no fireworks this year on The Charles. As it is unseasonably cool, my global warming rants are not nearly as effective as the 96 degree days of last week.

My fourth favorite blog topic is buying appliances and the many pitfalls thereof. Some of this is familiar. For the newer readers looking to buy products for their new kitchen, this post will be beneficial. It can also assist in other purchases such as bath plumbing and furniture shopping.

One assumption: You have already decided on the items(my second favorite blog topic)

Now the fun begins(again)

Delivery: We know to ask how much...But where is an even better question. Most internet based companies will drop products on the sidewalk. That's not terrible if you are buying a microwave, but how about a refrigerator. Next question is who...As in who are you letting in your house. If it is an independent operator, ask and run a quick check with The Better Business Bureau...Its easy.

Removal of Old Products: This must be negotiated BEFORE the sale is consummated. Letting the delivery guys handle the transaction is tantamount to adding $200 to your purchase.

Service: Or what happens when the product breaks down....About 16% of new products need service within the first year. You are entitled to a 1 year warranty, but who fixes the product is always a good question to ask. If it is the manufacturer(heaven forbid), ask for the phone number and call to see what experience can be expected for your future product problems

Extended Warranties: The how much is the easy part. Who underwrites and is responsible for the maintenance is an important question...For example, a leading warranty company teamed with an internet sales group has had 200 complaints lodged against them in a 36 month period...(Its hard to fix anything without service techs it seems.)

The small print....How much is a cord? What happens if a product does not fit or cannot be delivered(like in a brownstone in Boston)...Does delivery include hookup as well....

Am I paranoid, hardly...cynical maybe, but ask these questions before your purchase and have the commitments in writing. A drop of protection may save you a ton of hassle and expense in the future.

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