Sunday, June 17, 2012

Home Depot Hits A Home Run With My BBQ Grill On Fathers' Day

I bought a new BBQ grill on Friday. I got it to replace a 5 year old Charm-Glow grill that was pretty good but that had a burner explode on me. That was maybe due to a spider finding it comfy and building a web inside the burner. I heard that is the number one reason they go pop. Not a big explosion, I did not even hear it as I was probably inside the house when it happened but enough to break the burner apart and flare out the exploded ends where it came apart.

As for the new grill, I tried to get it earlier last week but all they had were display models and I wanted to get one assembled right out of the box because all the display models were outside getting soaked in the rain and building up rust. Home Depot would oblige but I had to wait because the assembler was not going to be until Friday. So, I was patient. The new one was ready on Friday and I picked it up, rented a Home Depot truck to cart it home and had my son and a couple of his friends help me offload it. I even got $35 plus tax off of the price because it had a few minor dents in it. Not bad.

Then yesterday, I found out one of the burner/igniter control knobs, for the sear burner, did not work properly. Damn, what luck, that little black cloud, with my name on it, found me again but I suppose you get what you pay for and this while not the least expensive certainly is not a Weber. In fact, it is a Brinkman Elite, 6 burner grill (they call it a 4 burner grill but it has 4 regular burners, a sear burner and a side burner and no matter how I add it up that comes out to 6 burners). I decided to exchange it and called Homers to see what had to be done. They told me I had to return it before they could do an exchange. I explained that would cause me to have to make 3 round trips back and forth to Home Depot. I would have to drive there in my own car and park in in their lot, then drive home with an empty truck to pick up the grill, drive back to Homer's with the old grill, pick up the new grill and drive it home from HD (not Harley Davidson), then return the empty truck to Home Depot, where I would pick up my car to drive home. I asked if it would be okay for me to drive there and leave my car, pay for the new grill and have it loaded onto a truck (at no charge to me for the rental fee), drive the new one home, offload it with my son, load the old one onto the truck and drive it back to HD (thus only one round trip with the truck), where I would drop off the old grill and get a refund for it, then pick up my car and drive home. The guy told me that required management approval and he was talking about me buying a new one and getting a refund for the old one - not the truck use at no charge to me. Three and a half hours and about 3 of my phone calls later, they told me they would bring the new one to me and exchange it for the old one. GREAT thought I. As I should have expected, what with that black cloud of mine, they never came yesterday, it was a few more hours before they called me to tell me they would have to do it today.

This morning at 0900, I called HD and was told they would leave HD with the new grill at 1000. I called them again at about 1115 but before the call went through on my cell phone, the house phone rang. It was the delivery guys, they were outside my house. They brought in the new one, looked at the old one, affirmed the problem, then set up the new one, hooked up the gas and made sure all the burners worked as they should. They were really very nice about it, professional and very courteous and apologetic about the one that did not work. As they left, I gave them a $20 tip that I hope was more than enough for a good lunch for them. I just figure it came out of the $38 and change I had saved when I got that off the price of the first one because of the dents. While they arrived here later than expected, but before noon as promised, they sure saved the day because we are going to have a BBQ this afternoon and out future in-laws are coming over for a joint Fathers' Day celebration. I have to hand it to Home Depot for going the extra mile on this one and actually doing the exchange for me at my home. That was really very nice of them. I always sort of thought of them as a we do not give a shit company, much the way I see Walmart and other such stores but I was certainly wrong about this particular Home Depot. They went out of their way to satisfy the customer and did it in the nick of time too. After the delivery guys left, and after I made sure the grill was working, I called up customer service at the store where I bought the grill. I thanked the customer service gal (who helped me today) profusely. I also asked her to convey my thanks to the customer service gal who helped me yesterday, the manager (who okay'd the exchange at my house, maybe even thought of it first), the assembler (who made sure one was ready for me and who apparently pushed for the exchange at my house) and I told her what a great job the delivery guys did today and how professional and courteous they acted. They really did a nice thing. I have to say, I think the customer service gal was rather surprised I called to thank her, she sure seemed surprised and quite happy about it too. When you (or I)get service like that it is your (or my) responsibility to let them know about it just as you would complain if it was bad service (anyway - I would complain).

Now, I just hope it is a good cooker. After the delivery guys left, I turned it on to check it to make sure all the burners work (a second but why take chances). I left it on for about 10 to 15 minutes to waste gas to break it in. Seems to work just fine. As far as cooking goes, I bet I will get stuck doing all the grilling today even though it is Fathers' Day. Oh well, it is a man thing or so my wife would say - maybe (I sure would say so). I must admit though she does her share of the BBQ'ing and would do it today if I asked her to do it. I may as well do something around here now and then and grilling is not a bad something to do so long as I have a cold one in hand Funny, I just stocked up the mini-fridge in the man cave with a 12 pack of Spaten Oktoberfest and still have a couple of Franziskaner Hefe Weisse Biers in there.

Happy Fathers' Day

All the best,
Glenn B

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