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Avoided Dell's ridiculous charge

March 13th, 2011 at 06:39 am

I bought a Dell computer last August. It came with a 3-year warranty which I recently learned was just for the hardware; the pre-loaded Windows 7 software came with just a 3-month warranty.

At the time, the Dell salesman didn't bother to tell me that the new computer would not be compatible with the Dell printer I'd been using and that I'd have eto buy a new Dell printer as well; I found that out when I tried to get them working together. When I complained, they let me have a new Dell printer for free. It normally retailed for about $50.

Pretty much from the start, that printer frequently experienced paper jams. And sometimes it would not print. Numerous phone calls to Tech Support. A few weeks ago, based solely on the paper jam issue, he said he's send me a new replacement. He actually said that the best way to deal with paper jams is to drop the computer on the ground. Yes, drop it, not from standing height, mind you, but a few inches.

Anyway, I couldn't get the new printer to print at all. More time with Tech Support, who after 2 hours concluded that it wasn't a hardware problem, it was a software (Windows) problem.

When I had time in my schedule to call back Dell software people, he urged me to spend $200 and something on a 2-year software warranty. I've been barely getting by for a while now, and spending that was certainly not in the cards.

But I was feeling anxious to get the printer working again becus now i have a job interview this week and need to print out a few writing samples to bring with me.

He said just getting this problem fixed would cost me $130. (He had mentioned beforehand that it appeared 2 drivers had not installed properly and the problem might be fixed by reinstalling the printer drivers.) Maybe he thought i was a dumb idiot or maybe he didn't care, but as I'm trying to get him to budge on the $130 charge, I decided I should first try to reload those drivers. So I told him I'd think about it.

I uninstalled, then reinstalled the drivers and BINGO, printer works. But now the ink is not making full contact with the page and it looks very, very faint. Back on the phone with Dell hardware support. he helped me thru the process of cleaning my ink cartridges, which apparently clog up after not being used in as little as a week. The more you use the printer, the better it will work, he told me. (Yeah, and the quicker I'll run thru those $30 cartridges, too.)

So I'm pleased as punch to have avoided the $130 rip-off. I'm sure these charges are quite a money-maker for Dell. Without having heard the Dell guy conjecture as to the problem, I probably wouldn't have bothered trying to reload the printer drivers. Phew.

2 Responses to “Avoided Dell's ridiculous charge”

  1. frugaltexan75 Says:

    Good job on avoiding the charges!

    Printers are such a great thing to have, but they can also be such a pain!

  2. North Georgia Gal Says:

    Good for you!!

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