How does Best Buy define ‘new’ in replacement offer?

The HD Guru blog spent some time reading fine print in Best Buy‘s extended warranty contracts and advises consumers to be aware what the retailer means when it promises to replace problem-prone products.

A pamphlet for Best Buy’s “Geek Squad Black Tie Protection” says if a product needs repairing four times before the plan expires, “we’ll make sure that you get a new one.” The contract’s definition of “new,” however, includes rebuilt or like-new products, HD Guru says.

In an e-mail response to the blog, Best Buy says it’s had “virtually no complaints” about replacements. The decisions are complicated because the decisions are made by Best Buy and the program’s underwriter AIG.

HD Guru doesn’t advise against paying for the protection plans, but it recommends considering the cost, particularly as a percentage of the purchase price. “After reading all of the contract’s terms and conditions, is that a worthwhile investment? Thats your decision!”

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Comments (1)

  1. Submitted by Rick Prescott on 07/30/2009 - 02:59 pm.

    HD Guru may not advise against paying for protection plans, but almost every other consumer adviser does.

    Put plainly, the manufacturer’s warranty and/or store return policy will cover any out-of-the-box problem you may have.

    Once the original manufacturer’s warranty has expired, there are precious few problems you may actually experience which are covered by the extended warranty. Couple that with the hassle of getting service or replacement under the coverage, and it’s clear that extended warranties are virtually worthless.

    They sound good. They feel good. But they are a total waste of money. HD Guru should seriously consider changing his tune on this one.

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