Local News

Five On Your Side Gets Involved In Repair Runaround Over Stereo

Posted December 20, 2005 7:19 a.m. EST

— When you take a piece of electronics in for repair, you expect it to come back fixed. When a Franklin County teen was having trouble with the repair company fixing it, he called Five On Your Side for help.

When Jake Turner put a CD in his RCA stereo system and hit play, there was no sound. When the problem first started in May, the 14-year-old called RCA. The company sent him to Consolidated Electronics International for repair before the warranty expired.

A few weeks later, it was ready.

"They gave it back to me, so I took it home. I mean they said it worked, so I took it home and plugged it in," he said. "I mean nothing changed at all. It never worked.

Turner said he immediately called CEI, but by then, the warranty had expired. Turner said he was told that he would have to pay for further repairs.

"I wasn't going to pay for something that should have been done once already," he said.

Turner just let it go until he saw Five On Your Side's previous story involving CEI. That case involved a big screen television repair that the owners thought was taking too long. Plus, it was damaged during delivery.

Turner called the company's director of operations, Rob Steinruck. He said Steinruck told him his original repair came with a 30-day warranty, but now it was too late for that, too. He said he was never told that before.

"If they had said it was free, I would have brought it back in," he said.

Turner e-mailed Five On Your Side, who called Steinruck. He told Five On Your Side he feels Turner is trying to "extort" a free repair. Steinruck said he will look at the broken stereo for free, but he will not guarantee a free repair.

Turner feels what he wants is simple.

"They should just do it right. You know I mean I brought it in. I wanted them to fix it," Turner said. "That's what I want them to do now. Take it. Fix it. I'm done with them."

Steinruck said the repair involved "a different part and a different problem," but since RCA was paying for the estimated $45 repair, it is free for Turner. He picked up his stereo Saturday and said it works.

CEI has 20 complaints with the Better Business Bureau over the last three years and eight with Five on Your Side this year alone.