Thursday, December 3, 2009

Is Mr Binman savings worth the hassle?

We changed from Waterford council bin collection to Mr Binman earlier this year when a salesman knocked on the door at the right time - when the annual €160 charge was up for renewal.

Our bins were not collected for 2 successive Thursdays in September, I had to ring up the next day to get them collected. They said they had problems with new drivers who each though the other was responsible for our road, they said they had it sorted now. I wrote an email of complaint to them 1October but have not received any response.

Today out bins were not collected again and I have to now ring them tomorrow again.

Update 7 Dec: I emailed and they got in touch straight away the next morning. The customer service manager says she was on hoonymoon when I last emailed but that it should have been dealt with by a colleague. They collected my bins the next day, hopefully I will not have to get in touch again.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Wahl very professional

I have a Wahl clipper blade which broke recently. I emailed Wahl who quickly identified that the blade was not staying on because of a broken plastic lug. I mailed them just the head which the fixed repaired and mailed back to Ireland for £7.13.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Altitude/North Face Europe

My experiences with North Face in the USA & New Zealand have been brilliant, they foxing damaged tents on a number of occasions for free. Our Trailhead 8 failed at ome of the poles this summer with the fabric ripping. I emailed North Face Europe about it and when I got no response I contacted North Face USA who said I should deal with Europe and forwarded the email to North Face in Italy. I never heard form them.

I brought the tent into Altitide in Waterford who could not have been more helpful. Eamon explained to me that the European North Face was a completely different company than in the states. Eamon ended up pressuring them every day for a week to open a repair for my tent and duly got it sent away and I have it back no perfectly repaired.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Stay clear of GoalsOnTrack

I am a sucker for GTD tools and still have not found my perfect one. Back in August I came across GoalsOnTrack. There was no trial, $9.95 a month and 60 days of trial, I emailed about it and got a response from Harry Che "We treat our 60-day money back guarantee very seriously. If a refund is requested, it's usually processed within 2-3 days.".

I signed up and started playing with GoalsOnTrack. Immediately I had problems importing and provided detailed feedback. Harry worked with me and reformatted my csv file for importing. I gave some more feedback but was unimpressed and disappointed software I had to pay up from to trail was so immature, I decided to see if they would release updates and respond to my suggestions.

I got an email saying payment had been taken and responded:

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: Payment Receipt: 836 Confirmation from
Date: Mon, 28 Sep 2009 13:53:17 +0100
From: Tom Corcoran

I have not tried it since. I was waiting to see what progress has been made and if the product is more mature. Do you post release notes?

How long do left I have in my 60 days?

Thanks, Tom.
-------- Original Message --------

I never heard back and forgot about it. I got another email saying payment had been taken again and responded:

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: Payment Receipt: 928 Confirmation from
Date: Wed, 07 Oct 2009 11:33:40 +0100
From: Tom Corcoran

Payment approved again, what?

I have not gone near this since, please can I cancel immediately.

Thanks, Tom.
-------- Original Message --------

I got a response saying "Your account has been canceled, and you will never be billed again.". After querying about the 60 day refund I got a message "Can you send me the proof of date of your cancelation request?". More followed:
"According to our records, you signed up on Aug 7, 2009, and requested to cancel on Oct 7, 2009, which has already passed the 60-day period. We've already refunded the extra charge immediately after you sent the cancel request. You're not eligible for further refunds. However, we may consider credits to your account if you choose to sign up again in future.".

I played with the software a little and did one import but never added additional tasks or used it in any way. I provided detailed feedback which would have helped to improve their software. I got specific assurance at the start that they were very timely about refunds and subsequently had my request for how long I had left in my evaluation conveniently ignored, thereby when my official cancellation came in, they were covered by Aug 7 - Oct 7 being 62 days. I have not been refunded the $19.80 I paid for the first 60 days.

Complaint lodged with the Complaints Board.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Be warned with eFax

Some companies still insist on a fax, so occasionally it's still useful these days. I found eFax handy, I got a local Waterford 051 number and had 30 days free trial.

It warned that I needed to cancel after that but I forgot. I ended up not using the service at all in the end. A month later I got charged €13.27 for a months subscription.

I emailed and was given an English 0870 number to ring as the only way to cancel. At least on saynoto0870 I actually got a Dublin number to ring. I called and they cancelled but under no circumstance would they refund the €13.37 I was charged for a service I never used.

I'll never buy Acer again

I was looking for a recommendation for a replacement to my noisy (linux) server, my requirements:

  • super quiet, hardly know it's on

  • small, don't need monitor, keyboard, mouse, have all that if needed

  • reasonably priced

  • run squeezebox server

  • use it as a print server so all machines in the house could print

some forum advice recommended an Acer Aspire easystore H340. Jumping on to the Acer website and looking for online dealers I found what I thought was the recommended machine. I bought it impulsively without enough research.

There was no information about connecting to it by remote desktop / installing software and the firmware was over 2 years old so I started looking at the Acer site and posted some support tickets. I was blown away to get some strange responses including:

I had left it a few days after getting the package to open it and after the first day of playing with it I got in touch with the supplier, cclonline who told me since it was 8 days since it was shipped and I had only 7 days to return, that I was out of luck.

A week later I finally realised ,after talking with cclonline support, that I had not bought what I thought and it was a NAS box which did not have Windows Home Server running but en embedded Linux system. cclonline agreed to take it back for a restocking charge of 10%. The killer was the brutal Irish postal system as it cost me €47 to return (€42 with no insurance).

Monday, October 19, 2009

Outdoor Designs Logistics

I purchased a Lightwave Trek 2 tent in 2005. I used the tent in the 10-20 night range since then, closer to the former, prior to one of the fly zips failing in 2008 but forgotten about until used again in September 2009.

Outdoor Designs Logistics own the Lightwave brand and after a couple of mails with their distributor, Scottish Mountain gear, it was established that on the first generation T2 tents there was a fault with the zip sliders. Outdoor Designs Logistic are based in France and replaced both zip sliders under Lightwave warranty and mailed back, the tent free of charge, via Scottish Mountain Gear, by recorded delivery with Royal mail.