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Old July 6th, 2014, 07:43 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question Q: Will Samsung require receipt to do warranty repair?

Hi folks,

I'm curious to hear experience from USA owners of Samsung phones, regarding whether Samsung actually in practice won't do warranty repair work without seeing the receipt.

My story is a pretty typical one: I bought a used phone off of a used phones site, and have the receipt for the transaction. However, the receipt doesn't show the IMEI number, so it's not really a definitive record of the phone's purchase.

The phone is having a hardware issue (not water damage or mishandling), almost certainly a manufacturing defect. Basically, when playing sounds it makes weird static noises, and resetting (FDR) doesn't change it.

I checked Samsung's warranty status page based on the IMEI number, and it actually shows the phone has lots of warranty left. However, whether they will honor it remains to be seen.

I was able to register the phone via my Samsung online account, and tried to request service for it online, but encountered "web snafus" with their site, and wound up doing a chat with someone at Samsung. She initially denied the phone was still under warranty, but I referred her to their own warranty check link and told her it was still covered, she told me to call the service phone number. Also recommended I fax a copy of the receipt to a certain fax number.

Called the service phone number yesterday (Saturday July 5th) and actually spoke to a real live person, quite lucid and coherent, briefly described the problem and what the online chat person said to do as troubleshooting, and he agreed it was a hardware issue. He took my IMEI number and put me on hold for a while, and when he came back he issued me a return label, which I printed out, and have shipped the phone to Texas for repairs. He didn't ask me for the receipt, or mention the need for it. He did of course caution me about water damage, cracked screens not being warranty work. He didn't say anything about the warranty status, actually.

He gave me a warranty service transaction number, which I can put into their online system, and it brings up a page that says the phone hasn't been received yet (of course), and there is a button to upload a receipt if I wanted to.

At this point, I'm curious to hear how many people get their phones repaired without submitting receipt, and how many needed receipts to be sent.

My plan of action is not to upload anything unless asked directly to do so for this warranty service transaction. But if they do ask for it, I have a couple options:
1. I could upload the purchase receipt (it's a paypal receipt with description saying an ATT Galaxy S4 phone). Or,

2. I could add the actual IMEI number to the receipt, which in some ways makes me feel dodgy, but it would be the actual number from the phone, nothing fraudulent.

Interacting with the original seller is a last resort I don't plan to do... it was an odd transaction that I came close to cancelling. In the end I think he was just having an off week and probably wasn't trying to defraud me, but I wonder if he knew of the problem (which was minor upon phone receipt and has gotten worse). He described the phone as mint, and while it was in very good condition, I should have called him on it at the time. But it was too long ago.

If I don't get warranty coverage, most likely I'll have them send me the phone back and I'll sell it as-is (with a thorough description of the problem) and get what I can for it, and take it as one of the lessons learned when buying used electronics on the internet.

Curious to hear thoughts and experiences.

Marc

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Old July 6th, 2014, 08:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Nope, in my experience all they need is the IMEI, because that will tell them when it was first sold, which is what they'll use for warranty purposes

The warranty period starts when it was originally purchased, so your receipt does not help in this situation as it was purchased used.
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Old July 7th, 2014, 03:33 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rxpert83 View Post
Nope, in my experience all they need is the IMEI, because that will tell them when it was first sold, which is what they'll use for warranty purposes

The warranty period starts when it was originally purchased, so your receipt does not help in this situation as it was purchased used.
This is 100% correct for the UK and EU as well.

Just make sure you remove your memory card, SIM and back up all your data off of it before taking it in. The first thing Samsung will do is factory reset it. When you get your phone back it'll be as "never switched on" and need setting up again.
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Old July 7th, 2014, 05:44 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanks guys. This sounds hopeful.

On their instructions I sent them just the phone, no SIM, battery, or back cover. The guy said to remove "everything that can come off."

I FDRed it as a last step in troubleshooting, so it was shipped nice and clean.

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Old July 7th, 2014, 06:55 AM   #5 (permalink)
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imho it sounds like you're way over thinking this. Samsung did accept it as a warranty else they wouldn't have you send it back. I'd wait and see what they say before making any detailed plans.
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Old July 7th, 2014, 12:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Fair enough. I do tend to over think things. Package is apparently out for delivery to repair center today so I should get details by end of week if lucky.
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Old July 7th, 2014, 10:38 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Well, let us know what has happened...
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Old July 8th, 2014, 05:32 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Will do. It arrived at the repair facility yesterday, quite early since it just shipped on Saturday. As of this morning Samsung hasn't noted receipt of it in their system yet... I imagine it's in a bin of many similar packages awaiting check-in and processing.

I'll check nightly over the next week to see what progress occurs. Will report back here when there's something interesting to tell.
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Old July 8th, 2014, 05:16 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Things are looking good.

It was checked in as received this morning. From the online repair tracker:

7/8/2014 9:05 AM-Leticia Zuniga: The unit has been received. Pack Condition: Fair Packaging (Box & Cushion)

I was a bit put off by them describing the pack condition as only fair... I put the phone in a bubblewrap-padded paper sleeve, sandwiched it between two air pillows to avoid movement, and put that into a sturdy cardboard box of appropriate size... To be packed "good" presumably would require a Kevlar case and molded foam interior.

Then later the status was updated as follows:

7/8/2014 11:50 AM-Thaddeaus Kuykendall: The unit has left the technician. SOLUTION: Replaced Component - Replaced LCD - Replaced PBA

So, it looks like they replaced the screen and a "PBA" (acronym for Printed circuit Board Assembled?). Anyway, not sure why the screen needed to be replaced, but maybe it was part of the problem causing the static. So, pretty much looks like it will be a new phone upon receipt.

Repair Expected date is still listed as next week... presumably it goes to some sort of testing (I hope) in the meantime.

There's been no request for me to supply any documentation so I'm presuming I can relax about that.

I'll continue to monitor progress, and report anything interesting.

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Old July 8th, 2014, 11:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Sounds pretty much like my experiences with them. I don't think you'll have to worry about payment, and it usually ships out a couple of days after the repair.

The expected done date is very conservative - probably in case they need to order a part or something
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Old July 10th, 2014, 07:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I checked the status again today. No change since what I posted above. I'm not in a hurry, as I'm enjoying using a Moto X in the meantime. Hopefully the phone is having its new parts go through burn-in testing and so forth before return to me. I'll post again when it gets back...

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Old July 11th, 2014, 05:48 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Got another email from Samsung. Phone passed QC and has been shipped back to me, as of about 10 pm last night. The UPS number is recycled so tracking it comes up with info from two years ago, but presumably that will reset as soon as UPS actually scans the thing in. It is probably sitting with label on it in a pickup bin pending collection.

Hooray. I should have it early next week!
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Old July 15th, 2014, 08:41 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Hi all,

I'm happy to report that the phone is back in my hands. It no longer makes the static sounds, at least not that I can tell so far!

I was never asked for my receipt, so that worry went away. It got a bunch of new parts, apparently including new board for wifi since the MAC changed. When I couldn't get it to connect to my (MAC address filtered) router, I checked the MAC and saw it didn't match up to my records. The IMEI is the same as before. The bezel around the screen used to be dinged up a bit; now it's pristine. Must be part of the screen assembly.

The screen was replaced, which apparently includes the white/black/or red facing, because I sent them a black faced phone and got back a white one! I don't care about the color, so no worries.

I did quick tests of speaker, haptic feedback, vibrate, GPS, camera/flash, wifi. So far so good. Haven't put my SIM in it yet.

Samsung did a great job as far as I can tell. Thanks to all for your support.

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Old July 16th, 2014, 08:27 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Thanks for keeping us up to date on your situation.
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