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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Post # 108 - My One Wish From Genie - 12/30/2009

My exchange below with Genie made me less-than-excited about buying future products from them.  The problem is, they have most of the business.
Dear Genie,

In the movies, some low-life dusts off a funny looking gravy boat and a genie pops out and grants three wishes.

Right now, I have one wish. That your outdoor remote touchpad garage opener wouldn’t make my house the laughing stock of the neighborhood.

You see, when I bought my house in 2000, I thought a Genie Garage Intellicode Door Opener would be a great addition. Around 2003, I thought the keypad feature would make it easier to come and go with my rapidly blooming taxicab business.

After about year, the battery cover fell off. The retaining feature on the cover must have worn down. Nothing holds it up. Due to the fact that the other end slides “up”, it’s a little hard to duct tape it. The cover blew away one blustery day. Now, the battery just dangles. Is that even safe in the rain, for the kids to be touching a key pad with a wet 9 volt battery dangling down? I say no. And so it sits there, dormant.

Did you people do any testing on that battery cover? Did you think it all the way through? Why wouldn’t you 1) have a hinged design or 2) have it enclosed under the sliding plastic cover?

As it stands, I hear my neighbor referring to us as the “Danglers”. That’s fine—I threw some grubs on his lawn and ran over one of his sprinkler heads with the lawn mower. But my point is, I shouldn’t have to resort to that type of sophomoric behavior.

Can you give me a written explanation?  I have a photo, if it helps.


1/4/2010 response from Genie:

Re: Dangler‏

Dear Valued Customer:

Thank you for contacting Genie regarding your issue/question. We appreciate your business and hope to assist you further. Please see the below response to your inquiry and if immediate assistance is needed, please contact our Customer Care Helpline at the number below.

There is a one year warranty on remotes and keypads. To order a replacement battery cover you can call the number below.

If I have not answered your question or you need additional assistance feel free to reply to this email or call us at 800-354-3643. We are available Mon-Fri 9am-8pm and Sat 10am-6pm EST.



Customer Care - Level 3 Support

The Genie Company

My 1/4/2010 Response to Genie:

Dear Brenda,

If I worked for Genie, and someone sent me the photo that I sent you, I would be embarrassed. Let me see if I have this straight: A battery last somewhere between 6 and 12 months. I probably replaced the battery twice before the lid became a driveway ornament. You’re basically telling me that a Genie battery cover is only good for one or two uses. I’m betting there’s a little mark-up—that it doesn’t actually cost the $9 that you charge, to manufacture the lid. Probably more like $0.09. So over 6 years, at one replacement per year, that’s $54.

I just figured out how Genie makes their profit, didn’t I? Under-design the battery cover, so people need to buy frequent replacements. I choose NOT to participate in your wicked game.

Instead, I will keep my dangling battery version of the genie remote keypad visible for all to see--sort of a nice word-of-mouth advertisement for Genie. Neighbors will come by on warm summer nights and stare at the shiny, unsafe 9 volt battery and quickly look away. I’ll address the pink elephant head on: “That’s Genie’s under-designed remote keypad. The battery cover works twice. Don’t buy one.”

Furthermore, I’m thinking on my next big garage door opener purchase, I’ll take all factors into account, including this kind of nonsense.

Thanks for the up-sell

My response, sent 1/5/2010

Dear Brenda,

Sometimes when I pull up to the Krispy Kreme Drive Thru for a dozen donuts, they throw in an additional half dozen, just to say “thank you”. Once I lost a bag of groceries in the Meijer parking lot, and they replaced everything that I reported missing, on my word. I’ve read where Smuckers puts a “little extra” jam in their jars as a sign of customer appreciation.

When I pass a Dunkin Donuts, I keep driving until I reach my Krispy Kreme. When Walmart and its lower prices moved into town, I maintained Meijer loyalty,. When I get a hankering for a PB and J, there’s only one choice,--Smucker’s. These companies bend over backward for their customers, and I appreciate it.

I send two notes, expressing my dissatisfaction with your keypad. I describe a problem that I am having with your product under normal use. The tone of your notes is very strong—this is a problem for only one of us.

“We do not have an issue with the battery cover. It is something that we have very rarely had to replace.”

This translates to “that’s your problem, Bub.” To me, this is unacceptable.

Whatever. I’m out of spit. You keep thinking you don’t have a problem. I’ll keep being dissatisfied, and we’ll probably both be right.



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