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Back in July 2003 I reported a fault on PC to Mastercare (part of the Dixons Group) for a fault on my PC which I had purchased 2 years earlier from PC World in West Thurrock. The fault was in fact the whole PC itself had no power supply. We had tried the obvious to get power to it from switching cable to changing fuses but still nothing!
It was at this point I remembered taking out a 5 year Coverplan with Mastercare, which in effect should cover my PC for 5 years for any faults which I had not caused. I found the paperwork for the Coverplan and promptly called PCServiceCall. I was able to do this at the time despite it being late on a Sunday evening as the lines are open 24/7. The disadvantage is the calls can be quite expensive by the time you go through the automated menu options and they try all the possible solutions to the fault over the phone at 75p per minute. Eventually they resorted to sending out an engineer to look at the PC as the fault could not be traced.
This is where the problems began. 3 days later an engineer from PCServiceCall arrived and performed many tests on the PC but could not get it to work at all. It was at this point he took the power supply board out of the tower and said he would take it away for repair but could not tell me how many days this would take.
After a week I rang them again to try and find out how long this would take. All I could be told was that it was in the process of being repaired and they would call me to let me know when it was ready. After a further week I rang again and got the same response. The following week after another phone call they decided they needed to take away the rest of my tower as they could not still trace the fault.
This time they sent a courier to me to collect the tower from me at my workplace as they were not able to give me any sort of time during the day that he would arrive. The courier picked up the tower on time but he of course could not tell me how long this would take.
I have now been without my PC for a total of 4 weeks when again I called PCServiceCall to find out exactly what was going on and kept getting excuses as to why things were taking so long. But no-one could give me a definite answer. Surprise Surprise!!
By this point I was getting extremely frustrated as my entire banking etc is done on-line and having no PC was becoming a real problem. After a few days I finally received a call from the Customer Support Team at PCServiceCall who told me by tower was actually completely beyond repair and that an equivalent tower would be sent. However the problem was all the information that was on the hard drive. They agreed to access the hard drive for me and transfer all of the information to the new tower which sounded ok to me.
10 days later I was still without my PC, stuck for what to do and who to call next I came across the ‘6 Week Rule.’ This rule clearly states that if they have not managed to repair it within 6 weeks they will send a replacement or vouchers to buy a replacement. Since we were well passed the 6 week deadline I phoned to speak to a Duty Manager and suggested that even after the 6 week rule they could still not manage to send me an equivalent PC so should be sent vouchers to which he agreed. Finally we were getting somewhere, three days later I received a letter containing two vouchers. The first being £400 towards a replacement PC, and the second being £100 towards replacement Coverplan insurance.
The only condition to them is that they have to be spent in a store that is part of the Dixons group, be it PC World or Dixons. At this point things got a lot better on taking the vouchers to PC World in Charlton I spent about and hour and half with an assistant who managed to find me a brand new Compaq Presario with all the extras for a decent price, and although I had to shell out an extra couple of hundred pounds I finally had the replacement I wanted.
But due to having a voucher towards Coverplan once again I took out Coverplan with Mastercare, to my advantage or disadvantage I am yet to find out. The total cost of the Coverplan was £325 which I was able to pay the balance monthly and as yet they have been quite helpful with the small problems have had in the past 12 months.
Overall I would recommend Coverplan and Mastercare to people but if you are going to take out this cover make sure you read the small print and the conditions under which they have to repair your product as without me discovering the so called 6 week rule it could have been 4 or 5 months without a PC. The Coverplan also covers you against theft of the product so that too can be a huge advantage should the worst happen. Let’s just hope I had a one off unfortunate incident with the service I received.
Good review. I wish I'd been to Ciao! before I took out my extended warrany. I'd have known to leave well alone! Glad you got it sorted. Just one question...if all the hastle, why did it still get 4 stars lol! Ali x
L0BSTER_QUADRILLE 16.10.2004 18:29
Really coverplans are rubbish as aslong as you have appropriate household insurance your sorted! + You could have bought a PC fo the price you paid for the coverplan! hehe