Another bad experience with PC Option Ltd

  Jon-P 11:30 12 Mar 2008

Looking for some advice...

On 15-Nov-07, despite reading the threads about the company made here, I decided to order the system from Pc Option.

On 16-Nov-07, I amended the order (payment had not yet been taken). Had a reply on the 19th to say this had been done for me.

On 21-Nov-07, £569.78 was debited from my bank (cost for the amended version of my order).

On 03-Dec-07, I received the original order. Emailed Tom on the same day and received an email stating: "It seems this was missed and the guys built to your original spec. I should be able to swap the case or refund the extra you paid. I don’t think we will be able to swap the case in time for Christmas. It’s manic here." The next day, I arranged with Tom that I would drive all the way to Nottingham on Monday 10th (there and back = 270 miles) as I wanted my system to use over the Christmas period.

On 17-Dec-07, finally got to play with my new system but started experiencing lots of BSOD's (bluescreens). Main one being "IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL". Informed Tom and got this reply "I think you will most probably have to reformat your hard drive. It sounds like your installation of Windows is corrupted.". I replied asking for his assistance in how to do this.. 2 days later, although very relucatant to do so but wanted my system for the Christmas period, I reformatted the hard drive and reinstalled windows vista.

On 01-Jan-08, after waiting for them to re-open, I contacted them again to say this refomat and reinstall did not help... 2 days later, I was requested to send the error codes over (had already done this). I was asked to remove one of the RAM sticks to see if that was the cause. I replied asking for him to ring me to explain.

On 07-Jan-08, I emailed again to let them know that it was now effecting the system's perfomance (when windows loaded up after a BSOD, it was very slow) and that I was frustrated because I drove all that way hoping that would be the end of the problems. Reply was: "I know you drove all the way to Nottingham but if you ordered the case in the first place you wouldn’t have had to. You will need to work out what’s causing it. I can’t as I’m not all the way there in your Town."

On 12-Jan-08, I vented my frustration "Am starting to get a little annoyed now.. I feel I am not getting the after sales support / customer service I should be getting. If you cannot help via email / phone, then the system will obviously need to be sent back to get sorted?".

  Jon-P 11:30 12 Mar 2008

On 14-Jan-08, reply was "If the Blue screens are still happening and a restore corrects them then something’s wrong with your windows installation. The frustrating thing is that it will be trial and error until you find what application is causing this. If you don’t want to do this we can offer this service. If the system is returned and it’s not actually faulty – hardware wise. Then there will be a small charge for us to correct the issue.".

Between the above date and 07-Feb-08, I tried to sort the problem myself as did not want to have to pay out more money... but couldn't, so Tom sent the couriers to collect the PC on the Friday. I took this day off work as no time was given. They did not turn up until Monday morning.

After numerous emails and phonecalls, 3 weeks later, I found out via Tim (tech person - who seems like a nice guy) that the problems have been resolved. After running various tests, they found there to be a few OS errors/corruptions.. even when he tried installing Win Xp. Nothing wrong with the hardware or so I was told. I would be getting my system back today at the latest.

Last night, I received an email from Tom with an invoice for just under £50 and message stating "No fault was found with the PC. Tim tested it vigorously for nearly 2 weeks. He used Counter Strike Source & Battlefield. We also ran stress test and couldn’t find anything wrong with your “hardware”. Tim found you had an issue with your USB – the registry (software) drivers were uninstalled and reinstalled and your problem was fixed. I know this invoice was not expected but if you had come off the street with this issue we would have charged you £35 per hour - 2 weeks worth."

I replied stating most of the above and have a reply: "This isn’t a debate here. We sent what you ordered. You said the PC is faulty. We paid for the couriers to collect the PC. Tim’s spent nearly 2 weeks on the system – btw I paid his wages for 2 weeks to spend nearly 4 hours a day gaming on your PC that you said was faulty but isn’t. You have the invoice, please pay this. I’m not going to email you back and argue anymore.

I did try to call, but was engaged (as usual) so emailed back with: "As always, your argumentative attitude continues... The system was faulty on arrival (was obviously your install of the software), so why should I have to pay for your mistakes? I remember mentioning about the many reviews about your company on Pc advisor prior to buying the system, but you assured me I could indeed trust you, etc. Your company seem to be good up until there is a problem, then the customer service is really quite awful and suggest you work on it. At the end of the day, you supplied me with a system that was faulty prior to you asking me to reformat the hard drive, etc. I also sent you a copy of the reports I had received (which I still have). I ask again, why should I pay for your mistakes?"

To sum up, I had a system that was faulty prior to my attempts to resolve the problems at the Company's request. So, why should I have to pay a further £50 to get the repaired system returned?

Am I in the wrong here?

P.s. Apologies for the long post.

  merciarich 11:41 12 Mar 2008

"On 15-Nov-07, despite reading the threads about the company made here, I decided to order the system from Pc Option."

WHY WHY WHY order when so many people were advising against it???????

I know that everyone has their own opinions about companies, but when so many people are saying negative things about PC Option, why would you then go and throw your money away like that?

I would recommend reading this thread: click here
and follow the advice given in there.

  Jon-P 11:44 12 Mar 2008

Thanks for your post.

I know... I just decided to give them the benefit of the doubt.

I have read that whole thread.. Although is quite similar, it's not exactly what I am looking for.

I just want my system back now they have apparently corrected it.

  Jon-P 12:31 12 Mar 2008

Tom just phoned me to let me know he will be contacting his solicitor to take me court for qouting his emails.

I explained there is nothing in the bottom of the email mentioning any terms, so he then emailed me a blank email with it on.

I have rechecked all my emails.. this blank email is definitely the first one with their email terms on. But, he has also been using his bt_connect and ntl email address too.. so can't see how this applies?

I am apparently to be taken to court for the above or he said he might send my pc back and take me to court for the work done £35 an hour, for 2 weeks.

I came to this website for consumer advice not for Tom to red then threaten me.

Again, am I in the wrong here?

  tillybaby 16:55 12 Mar 2008

Jon-P,The more I hear about this shambolic company the more I'm determined to avoid like the plague. If Tom spent more time sorting out his customers complaints instead of threatening them with court action then maybe there wouldn't be so many complaints for him to deal with.

I cannot see anywhere at all where you are in the wrong and so long as you have all the e-mails then you have the proof there were no terms and conditions on them,

It also appears to be the policy of PC Option to ask customers to have a look inside their computer and then when they do say it's their fault the computer is broken. It's also so easy to say there wasn't anything wrong with it and then charge you £50 for other services carried out, of course there was something wrong with it, nobody in their right mind is going to travel all that way with a perfect computer are they?

  iscanut 16:59 12 Mar 2008

Nobody in their right mind would have anything to do with this outfit after reading the past few threads re member's problems.

  Forum Editor 17:35 12 Mar 2008

is that you should completely ignore the telephoned threat of court action over disclosure of email content. You have done nothing wrong in quoting from the correspondence you've received - you did it in order to provide us with the information we need.

So relax about that, and ignore any further threats like this - threatening customers in this way is not going to achieve anything at all, other than a greater sense of disappointment and frustration.

Let's sum up the situation:

1. You placed an order, and amended it a day later. Three days after that you received confirmation of your amended order. This then became your order - the previous one ceased to exist at that point.

2. Prior to despatch your card account was charged with the full amount in respect of the amended order - by now a contract for the supply of that order existed, and the company acknowledged the fact by taking the money.

3. The wrong order was delivered - at this point the goods did not conform to contract, and you notified the supplier. You would have been within your rights to reject the computer there and then.

4. The supplier told you that the machine was built to your original specification, despite the fact that he had acknowledged the amendments, and despite the fact that the company took the money for the amended order. You were told that the supplier "should be able to swap the case or refund the extra you paid" There was no question of 'should', the supplier was in the wrong, and was under an obligation to supply what had been ordered and paid for - it was the supplier's error, not yours. The fact that you volunteered to drive 270 miles to the supplier's premises was obviously something you must accept as your personal choice - you were under no obligation to do it.

5. The computer malfunctioned from the start, and you were told that you would 'most probably have to reformat your hard drive'. I find it surprising, to say the least, that any responsible retailer would expect a customer to do this with a brand new computer; nevertheless you did it.

I'm not going to enumerate the many remaining stages in the saga, but it seems from what you say that you finally passed the problem (and the machine)back to the supplier, and received an invoice for 'testing'. Minor faults were apparently found. You still do not have your computer.

You are under no obligation to pay anything to rectify faults that existed when the machine was first used, regardless of whether the faults were with the hardware or preinstalled software. A computer should conform to contract (yours didn't), and should be fit for the purpose for which it was sold, and from what you've told us yours wasn't.

The supplier is perfectly entitled to repair any faults which reveal themselves within the first six months from the date of delivery, provided such repair is carried out within a reasonable time frame. What the supplier is not entitled to do is refuse to allow you to have your property, once the repair has been carried out.

This seems to me to be a classic case of a relatively simple customer service issue being unnecessarily prolonged. It's for you to decide what you do next, but whatever you do, don't be frightened by threats of court action - you have nothing to fear on that front. If someone wants to attach confidentiality clauses to emails it must be done on each message that is sent - not retrospectively, but at the time.

Suppliers will get nowhere by threatening customers in this way, and we will always support the right of the consumer to voice legitimate complaints here, in the forum. Any attempt, by any supplier, at bullying people into submission over customer service issues is doomed to failure as far as I'm concerned.

  Archroy99 18:03 12 Mar 2008

You are in almost exactly the same situation as I was, even down to the same error on the PC you ordered. We went through all the same performance as you did, except we refused to do the whole reformat/reinstall process. We did try a system restore, but that didn't solve the issue either. Fortunately for us, we decided not to return the Pc as my husband and I were not convinced that the issue would be dealt with correctly, as Tilly has mentioned above. I was also threatened with libel and warned about quoting emails during the course of posting on this forum about my issue with the company. If you paid by credit card, contact your company. If not, then I don't know what to suggest except the "fit for purpose" portion of consumer law but given the amount of time that has gone by you may struggle with that. Good luck anyway and no, you aren't in the wrong as far as I can see.

  -Jon- 18:09 13 Mar 2008

Thank you both for your comments.. is certainly encouraging to hear.

It would seem I have to go down the legal route to resolve this matter and have already started the process.

I'll let you know how it goes..

  res!stance D()g 19:28 13 Mar 2008

Does this company have any customer service?
Cos with all the posts on this site i have read this bloke Tom seems to think he is above the law & sales of goods act does not apply to him.

I would`nt bother with solicitors Jon start small claims court action.

Hope you have Good Luck with it.

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