Joy for widow with TV replacement after repairer let her down – The Crusader

Valerie Dickson’s disabilities mean she spends a lot of time at home, with TV especially important and even more so during the dark days of winter. 

So it was a blow when in September the Toshiba set, that she bought for some £360 online 15 months before from the retailer, went on the blink.

While Valerie did have options even though the set was just out of guarantee, her frail situation and lack of any extended warranty meant she was not in the best for place for pursuing them.

++ If you’ve been affected by this issue or feel you’ve been a victim of injustice, please contact consumer champion Maisha Frost on [email protected] ++;

Instead she went for what she hoped was the quickest solution and contacted repairer Tonytech Electronics in south London. 

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“I booked online for an engineer’s visit and obeyed their stipulation that I must pay £40 upfront which I did with my debit card through PayPal,” Valerie told Crusader.

“When I had no confirmation, I called and was told someone would come out the next day. But no one came. There was no further explanation so a couple of days later I asked for a refund.”

She claims the company confirmed the money was in its PayPal account and it would be returned to her. Only, by the time she first came to Crusader a few days ago asking for help, it was still a no-show, leaving Valerie worse off and back to square one.

And as she explained: “It is a very small amount to many, but a lot to me. My TV will come on now but the screen is full of white lines so I cannot watch it.”

We thought as well as tackling the business we would inform Argos, as the retailer and one to deal with it according to consumer rights law, and also Vestel, the manufacturer now making the Toshiba brand TVs because knowing where the fault lay could prove useful feedback.

The response from Argos, which is part of the Sainsbury’s group, was immediate and compassionate with its customer services team genuinely sympathetic.

“Usually we would need an independent report from an engineer to confirm a manufacturing fault with the product in order to replace it out of warranty,” a spokeswoman explained outlining the correct position regarding a consumer’s rights. 

“However,” she added, “on this occasion, we have got in touch with [Valerie] to arrange for a new TV to be sent to her and the faulty one to be collected.”

True to their word Valerie now has a new TV and Crusader understands they also appreciated her offer to bake them a cake. “Bless you all,” was her heartfelt response.

It is Valerie’s understanding that Tonytech has now done the refund. Crusader has contacted the repairer for comment.  

 [Valerie’s name has been changed]  

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