I have an annoying little situation here

which it occurred to me folks on the list might have some suggestions. It’s not DR, per se, but it is mildly financial and I’m not sure what to do next. So here goes.

We bought a bread machine in May of last year. In February of this year, the bread machine’s paddle broke. It was still well under warranty (1 year from date of purchase), and I had the receipt. I found the manufacturer’s customer service department online, and submitted a form from their website stating that the paddle had broken, it was under warranty and I wanted a replacement paddle. Not the whole machine, mind you, just the paddle. I was pleasantly surprised to get an answer back within 48hrs, asking for some codes from the machine serial number plate, and from the receipt. I emailed them within 24 hours with that information. I got back a reply within 48hrs of that, saying yes it’s still under warranty, thanks for the information, they’ll be happy to send a new paddle, I could expect to see it within 14 days. That was in mid-February.

Two weeks came and went, and no paddle. I emailed them back, saying I hadn’t received it yet. I got a reply within 48hrs again, saying there had been a problem at the distribution center, it would go out within just a few more days, and here’s the address they have on file for me. It was the wrong address. I emailed them back saying thanks for the reply, but the address is incorrect, minor typo, here’s the correct address. They emailed back that same day, saying thanks for the correction, they’ll get it sent to the corrected/verified address, thanks for my patience. That was three weeks ago.

So a week ago I emailed them back AGAIN, saying I still hadn’t received the paddle, it’s now been over a month since I first reported the problem AND since they had verified that the machine was under warranty and that a new paddle was forthcoming. But now I’m not getting an answer.

The machine in question was less than $100. My customer service inquiries have all come from and gone to some third-party company that apparently does customer service for multiple brands. So I’m not sure now where the problem is – the original manufacturer, the customer service company, or the distribution center (if that even exists as opposed to being some fictitious and convenient scapegoat). I don’t have contact information other than the email that I’ve had going back and forth and now they’re not replying to that any more. I’m debating with myself whether this is worth pursuing (principle of the thing) vs the real-world hassle factor involved, and perhaps I should just go out and buy a new machine. I was thinking to file a complaint but I don’t really know who to file a complaint with, or even who to file the complaint against.

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