Western Digital 1TB Drive Warranty RMA Issues

A while back I lost a 1TB external drive that I had over 700 GB of movie files on. These were DVDs that we own that I had ripped so that I could play them on my computer, iPod, and Apple TV. I know, you should always back things up. Technically, these were the back ups for the DVDs.

The drive in question is the WDH1CS10000N. Nothing spectacular, but it’s an external 1TB drive with Firewire 400. It came with a 3 year warranty. I was in the first year of use, so that qualified me for a full replacement.

WD received the drive on July 13th. It was being processed for a few days, but now the RMA status shows “Delayed”. According to their definitions, that means they are out of stock on the drive in question. It’s funny, I can go to just about any electronics store, online or in person, and find the same drive. But they don’t have any to send me. After a couple of days of that status, I called the support line. I spoke with a very nice guy who tried his best to help me, but just ended up having to say… It could take 2 weeks for this to be resolved.

I told him I knew it was not his fault, but asked him to pass on an observation to those higher up for me. In addition to the loss of 700GBs of data which will take me the better part of a year to re create, I am now looking at being without my drive for over a month before it’s all said and done. Assuming that I would still buy a WD product after losing my data, this extra bit of annoyance makes me that much more unlikely to buy another WD drive. I told him to let his supervisors know that a better Public Relations plan would be to have plenty of these drives on hand, or devise a way for me to get one from a local vendor.

His excuse made some sense, but didn’t help my problem. He said that they probably didn’t have many on hand because not many fail. That’s great, but perhaps they could hold onto just a couple of each model?

If this had gone smoothly I would likely have reported that it did to my friends and here on this blog. but now that it hasn’t, I will likely mention that to my friends, and here it is on my blog. It would have been better for future WD purchases for them to have had my drive in stock, and for it to already be on its way to me. But they didn’t, and now there is just one more thing to make me not like WD. Since I make some decisions about equipment purchases at work as well as at home, how many hundreds of dollars, maybe even thousands of dollars, do you think this will cost WD?

I don’t think WD is doing this maliciously, it’s just a mistake, that is negatively affecting me.

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