On Your Side: Struggles With a Faulty Printer

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When my HP L7780 All-in-One printer refused to let me set it up properly, HP sent me a replacement. Though I successfully set up that unit, it jammed when I tried to print. After I cleared the jam, the print carriage stuck on the right side. I contacted tech support and they sent a second replacement unit, but it had the same problem. Chats and e-mail correspondence failed to yield a solution, and finally I just purchased a new L7780, which has worked flawlessly. For months I've been asking HP for an RMA [return merchandise authorization] so that I can return the inoperable printer for a refund. Ironically, the HP 460c that I had been using as a backup printer is now experiencing a similar stuck-carriage issue.

Bruce LeBlanc, Oakland, California

OYS responds: After we notified HP of LeBlanc's difficulties, a representative got in touch with him directly. LeBlanc explained his situation via an e-mail message and two attachments (one containing the lengthy e-mail exchange he'd had with tech support; the other, his letter to us), but the rep sent him a replacement for the 460c rather than giving him a refund for the L7780. After several more weeks of phone tag and e-mail exchanges, Le­Blanc got his RMA and his refund. (One problem: HP repeatedly tried to call Le­Blanc at work, where he couldn't take personal phone calls.) HP also agreed to apply the remaining warranty period for the old L7780 to the new printer.

We recommend stating exactly what you want a company to do to resolve your issue. Repetition can't hurt. We also recommend telling customer service representatives whether you prefer being contacted by e-mail or by phone, and if the latter, specifying the best time to call.

Missing Mail

Thom Mason of Pahrump, Nevada, paid to update his NGWave audio editor but didn't receive a license key. He e-mailed Next Generation Software several times, and its reps said that they had sent the key.

Next Generation's CEO told us that Mason, who uses Yahoo Mail, may have run into an issue with Yahoo's spam filters. The CEO said that the filters trap his company's license e-mail because the messages are automatically generated; the company has tried to communicate with Yahoo directly, but to no avail, he said. After giving Next Generation an alternate e-mail address, Mason received his license key.

When arranging for a company to send you something by e-mail, include a second e-mail address as a backup. If the message you're expecting doesn't arrive, be sure to check your spam folder to see whether it got routed there by mistake.

Wii Recharge Station Recall

Griffin International, in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, is recalling about 220,000 Psyclone Essentials and React Wii 4-Dock Recharge Stations. The battery pack can overheat, posing a burn or fire hazard. Griffin has received six reports of overheating, two involving minor hand burns. Consumers should stop using these re­­charge stations at once and contact Griffin International at 888/344-4702 or productsafety@psyclonegamer.com to learn how to return the product and re­­ceive a free replacement. For more information, visit the company's Web page.

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