Help, my Lenovo laptop is cursed

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By Christopher Elliott

Santosh Thakur’s laptop is plagued by problems. He wants Lenovo to take it back. Why won’t it?

Question

I bought a Lenovo z500 laptop last year. Since then, I’ve had several issues with the computer, including problems with the battery, the keyboard, USB, headphone jack and Bluetooth driver.

I’ve contacted the technical support repeatedly. I have an email trail of 35 messages, and I’ve had at least 25 support calls. But the problems persist.

Lenovo has changed the keyboard, for example, but it still doesn’t work right. I’ve reached the end of my patience. I’ve asked Lenovo to replace the laptop instead of just fixing defective parts. I believe their actions of repairing each individual component are just creating more problems instead of solving them.

Lenovo refuses to exchange the laptop. I don’t know what to do. I’m contemplating legal action. Can you help me? — Santosh Thakur, Delhi, India

Answer

Your laptop is cursed. It’s the only explanation. By your account, so many things have gone wrong with the PC, that there must be something wrong with the machine that even Lenovo can’t fix. I think your request to replace the machine is reasonable.

Durable goods like appliances and computers get possessed every now and then. Not so long ago, I mediated the case of a refrigerator that had gremlins in it. Seriously, gremlins.

You did the right thing by creating a paper trail between you and Lenovo. That’s the only way to document all the problems and get them fixed. (Related: Help! My Acer computer screen cracked — again.)

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If I’m reading your warranty correctly, then your PC is still covered under Lenovo’s limited warranty. Since replacing the defective parts is not working, the manufacturer should acknowledge this and replace what seems to be a gremlin-infected laptop. (Here’s how to resolve your own consumer problems.)

It is not immediately clear why it didn’t. As I review the correspondence, both your emails to Lenovo and its responses were in fragmented English. (I have edited your initial letter and Lenovo’s responses to smooth things over — more on that in a minute.)

A brief, polite appeal to a Lenovo executive might have prompted the company to act. I list those names on my site. Then again, maybe not. Lenovo has country-specific teams, so you may have had to do some research. Emails are formatted [email protected]. For example, if I were a Lenovo employee, my mail address would be [email protected].

This case wasn’t easy to resolve. I managed to find someone inside Lenovo in the U.S., thanks to the help of a colleague who re-routed your case to Lenovo India. A representative contacted you and said it would “make sure” you had a working laptop. The company extended your warranty another three months and agreed to fix the computer — this time, for real.

Did Lenovo do enough for Santosh Thakur?

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Christopher Elliott

Christopher Elliott is the founder of Elliott Advocacy, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that empowers consumers to solve their problems and helps those who can't. He's the author of numerous books on consumer advocacy and writes three nationally syndicated columns. He also publishes the Elliott Report, a news site for consumers, and Elliott Confidential, a critically acclaimed newsletter about customer service. If you have a consumer problem you can't solve, contact him directly through his advocacy website. You can also follow him on X, Facebook, and LinkedIn, or sign up for his daily newsletter. He is based in Panamá City.

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