The following is one of hundreds of posts about Fanatec customer support there is none. I will make it my sole priority to post in every game forum possible to make as many people aware of this as I can 7 days and no contact the dearest and heaviest paper weight I have ever bought.
Going through my bank to gat money refunded. Jan 2016.
(When i first decided to post in this forum, about my bitter/traumatic experience with Fanatec's products/customer service, i thought i was going to be among the very few. to my surprise, i was amazed to learn that similar experiences from other fellow members in this and other related forums were a rather common ocurrence. a fairly large number of people have had ban experiences with this company on similar aspects, configuring a PATTERN in their operation.
This thread does not pretend to be a bashing party, but rather an informative one for the newcomers, simracing aficionados looking for a good quality product, reliable and with a great customer service. things all you look for when it comes to spend your hard earned money.
I will talk from my personal experience and will make references to situations and issues this company is known for, in the same way, all members are more than welcome to share their experiences with this company (good, bad ugly)
THE CONTACT First thing that i find odd its that an overseas company who preciates itself of being among a few in the top of sim racing world hardware, and who is licensed by microsoft DOES NOT HAVE A PHONE NUMBER to be contacted in regards of claims/customer service/questions? that right there should raise the first flag. also, their message delivery system does not allow you to record the history of messages sent (should the need arise for you to prove you've communicated)
THE PRODUCT In all fairness, and here i want to be very clear, im not saying all of Fanatecs products come with some sort of defect, but considering my previous history of purchases (gt pro, g25, g27, thrustmaster, etc.) all of them have been functional right out of the box. i could not remember how many threads are there on issues happening with the clubsports pedals (just to mention one) 80% throttle when the pedal is depressed all the way due to a loosen screw, exposed wires on risk of a short circuit, etc. this are all known issues, to the point that is of public knowledge what needs to be done to repair/fix this inconveniences. my question is: why should we go through the hassle of dealing with this things when the products should be 100% functional right out of the box??
THE CUSTOMER SERVICE
Of course none of the things above mentioned would matter if this company had an exceptional customer service, unfortunately nothing farter from reality.
Disastrous to non-existing customer service... perhaps i'm used to the american way, where a COMPANY STANDS BEHIND THEIR PRODUCT 100%, and i'm yet to realize it is not like that everywhere else, if that's the case, then it is my fault. (buyers beware). anyway, should your item come defective, this is more or less what your are going to go through:
after few emails (with some luck) they will respond and tell you they are sorry for the inconvenience and that they have been very busy to answer before. they will tell you they'll fix the problem and should you want your money back, they'll issue a refund (at this point please start counting 45 days, i'll explain why later). Here many Fanatec supporters will say: "if you follow the protocol, you should not have any problems" yeah.... about that...
they asked me to send a video (Media fire format Only) check they asked me to send a copy of the invoice (PDF format only) check they asked me to send a history of all of the messages sent. check all of this have to be done in that particular order, i mean, i wouldn't be surprised if they asked me for my SOCIAL SECURITY, SIGNED AFIDAVIT, INDEPENDENT TECHNICIAN INSPECTION saying that the product is in fact defective (such inspection would have to be provided on a PDF format) etc. etc. etc.
I mean, you don't have to be a genius to figure out what this people intentions are with all this, but in case you missed it, i'll tell you: THEY WANT TO DISCOURAGE YOU FROM GOING ON WITH YOUR CLAIM, to get bored, to try and fix it yourself, etc.
In my particular case it was the GT3 rs wheel, the right paddle shifter came completly trashed, gears would not engage, and a lot of wiggle and play. after countless emails and almost a month from my first communication thay have done NOTHING, i opened a paypal claim and requested a refund, they refused right away (even though they told me if i decided to go with it they'll gladly issue it) Let me tell you something, do you remember the movie "DON'T MESS WITH THE ZOHAN" with Adam Sandler? well, when i think of this people, the image that comes to my head is the sales person at the ELECTRONIC STORE! this people (Fanatec) would rather draw blood than give you your money back!
If it was in them to help people, they would have done it long time ago. 45 DAYS (remember what i mentioned above) is your window (when paying with paypal) from the moment that you recive your item, to initiate a dispute against the seller. so, how they go about this is (i'm no fortune teller but this is what is going to happen with me, and probably have happened with other people already) as soon as you escalate your dispute on Paypal, the will agree to fix (not replace-not refund but to fix) they will take their time, and send it back to me, most likely will be still broken and at least 2 to 3 months would have passed since everything started. i will be out of resources and would have spent my money on a defective product with a POOR customer service:tdown:
i'm an open person and every thing that i just said is the true, i can provide my order #, but i'm sure that wont be necesary as i'm sure there's many people out there who's been tru the same with this company. its up to us not to let this B.S. go on. it's your money, it's not fair, least thing you want to deal with is a used car salesman.
that is THE TRUTH ABOUT FANATEC