HP, Stop Selling Defective Printers

  • Comments: 0
  • Written on: June 19th, 2006

My uncle bought a new HP multifunction printer for my father and called me to come over and hook it up. I stopped by after work thinking it would only take a few minutes to get everything up and running. Boy was I wrong!

The printer is a photo quality printer that uses an HP 6-cartridge system to obtain high quality prints. I unpacked the system, started the software installing and followed the directions to get everything hooked up. When I powered the unit on for the first time, it informed me that one or more of the initialization cartridges were not installed correctly.

Defective Cartridges Described in Instructions?

After double check in the cartridges and making sure they were all positioned properly, the message persisted. My uncle had also purchased some replacement cartridges so I figured I would try those in place of the ones that were not working. After inserting the new cartridges, the machine told me I had to insert the original cartridges. Talk about frustrating!

So in a last ditch effort to find a solution on my own, I read the troubleshooting section of the instructions page. It said that if you receive the message that your cartridges are bad, you may have defective cartridges and that I should call HP to request replacements at the toll-free number below.

Disconnected Support Number

Frustrated, I called the number only to find it was disconnected! I then called toll-free directory assistance and asked for the H support number. They gave it to me and I called it only to get a recorded message saying, “Welcome to Technical Support. we are not affiliated with HP and do not provide warranty services for HP products. We will need a credit card number to continue.”

So I turned to the web. There was no mention of this problem in HP’s online support website, so I initiated a chat conversation with an HP tech. He had me power cycle the unit three times until he finally agreed to ship me new initialization cartridges.

Here is my question:

If you knew that the cartridges were bad, why not replace them before you ship? They knew enough to put a paragraph on the instructions about it with the wrong number listed. I guess sometimes even the big boys screw up…

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