How to get on Guitar Center's good side?
July 29, 2011 10:47 PM   Subscribe

I broke some very expensive headphones that i bought at guitar center... How can I get a refund?

I bought some $250 headphones from guitar center almost exactly 90 days ago... (90 days on August 1st) And i broke the part that goes into the headphone jack on an ipod or whatever... They can still work, but im done with them, and i just want to return them for a refund... Will they do that? How can i convice them to let me do that... Thank you!
posted by sizzil34 to Shopping (18 answers total)
Take them in, demonstrate the defect, and talk to them about it.
posted by sanka at 10:51 PM on July 29, 2011

Most expensive headphones can be recabled quite easily. If this is a reputable brand, it might even be covered under warranty.

You probably won't get your money back without some serious lying, though. Most likely case is that you ship your cans somewhere, get them fixed, and they're shipped back to you. Involve the manufacturer, not the retail store; their obligation ends after you take it out of the box and notice that nothing was damaged in shipping.
posted by jrockway at 10:53 PM on July 29, 2011

You: "I would like to return these head phones. Here is the receipt." If you are prodded, "These headphones are broken."

The worst that can happen is they refuse to give you a refund.

Do the headphones have a warranty? They might help you with that.
posted by muddgirl at 10:53 PM on July 29, 2011

Is there a defect, or did you just break them? I don't think you should, in all honesty, return them unless there is an actual defect of manufacture. If you just broke them by sticking them into something the wrong way, or too hard, or whatever, then they're yours to keep.
posted by minx at 11:04 PM on July 29, 2011 [25 favorites]

This can be quite easily fixed by someone who knows their way around a soldering gun. The wires in there are thin so it can't be a hack job, but replacing that jack is pretty easy for anyone who's cabled stuff. Ask a musician friend.
posted by Aquaman at 11:09 PM on July 29, 2011

if you broke them, the store (and manufacturer) is under no obligation to replace or fix them, or give you your money back. you can ask, I guess, and try to avoid admitting that you broke them, and try to call it a warranty claim.

what do you expect the store to do? give you your money back and and be left with a broken product that they can't re-sell?
posted by russm at 11:11 PM on July 29, 2011 [1 favorite]

Allen & Heath products have a 1 year warranty. Contact them.
posted by Brocktoon at 11:24 PM on July 29, 2011

FWIW I used to be a manager at a GC. What is your buying history with them? We would take back almost anything within reason, and while 90 days is a bit on the long side, it isn't out of the question. The only people we grew to treat badly were the guys who would come in Friday afternoon, put a sweet amp on their CC, then show up Monday morning to return it, after having used it for their weekend shows, essentially using us as a free rental. My first response would be just to give you a new set, which is pretty amenable to most. However if you just want you money back, that gets iffy.

"Hi I bought these 3 months ago, I broke them, now I want my money back" sounds unreasonable. If you were planning to buy another set there it would be better. GC salesman work mostly on commission, so what it looks like to them, is that they sold you what you wanted, likely at a good discount, and you are showing up much later having used and broke it, and taking that commission out of their pocket. That's a little dickish.

If you want them functional, best bet would be to have them repaired, which as others have said, is no big deal, but you need a trained hand.

If you have a good buying history (ie not constantly returning things), they might cut you a break. I probably would OK it just to keep you happy and hope you come back for something bigger and better, but the next time you tried to bring something back, it would be a much harder sell.

I know GC gets a bad rep from a lot of folks ala Wal Mart or something - fine whatever, but ask yourself this; would you take back a pair of pants 3 months later because you burned a hole in them, and ask for a refund?
posted by timsteil at 11:25 PM on July 29, 2011 [17 favorites]

They can still work, but im done with them

I think you're unlikely to be able to return your headphones after 3 months of use without lying to Guitar Center. They might be willing to replace them for you, but their return policies ( only offer a 30-day "satisfaction" return. Presumably, you were satisfied enough by them (in their eyes) to use and enjoy the headphones for 3 months; at this point, you may be better off trying to sell them on eBay/Craigslist as-is if you just want to recoup some of the cost.
posted by ellF at 5:32 AM on July 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

Did you pay for them by credit card? Most credit cards will let you return things that break under a one year warranty to them. A description of Amex's, for example.
posted by joyceanmachine at 5:52 AM on July 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

Why on earth would a store give you a refund on something that you were irresponsible with and broke? Unless it was somehow a defect with the headphones and they can be fixed under warranty, you absolutely should not try to return them. It's people like you that make shopping and returning things legitimately more difficult for honest people like me.
posted by echo0720 at 7:28 AM on July 30, 2011 [2 favorites]

There are ways to return them, but all of them are dishonest.
posted by gatsby died at 8:19 AM on July 30, 2011

If you broke them, you do not deserve a refund. As others have indicated, if you are a good long-term customer, or have some form of insurance (if you bought them with a credit card it might provide some insurance automatically) you might be able to get them replaced. But please, don't go around thinking you are entitled to a refund.
posted by benito.strauss at 12:03 PM on July 30, 2011 [3 favorites]

Employee of Guitar Center says: "Probably 14 days, or 30 days, longshot 60 days (if you bought the extra protection), but no way can you return it after 90 days. Terms are on the back of the receipt, but they can't accept anything that you've been wearing for all that time. Check for warranty or repair yourself. There are few tricks you can pull as employees' hands are tied in this case. But they do keep manufacturer's info in the computer so you can contact them for warranty issues or repair."

Sorry. LL Bean they ain't.
posted by CarlRossi at 1:32 PM on July 30, 2011 [1 favorite]

You used some headphones for 90 days, broke them, and now you want a refund?

You can't in good conscience do that.
posted by Justinian at 1:52 PM on July 30, 2011 [2 favorites]

Please don't be "that guy" and try to get a refund for something that's your own fault. Call the company of the headphones and ask if it is covered under warranty. If not, then be more careful with $250 headphones next time. I'm a little surprised that you're asking people on Metafilter to help you decieve (a what could be) an honest store.
posted by CreativeUsername at 8:44 PM on July 30, 2011 [4 favorites]

Did you really just break the jack plug at the end of the cable? That's fixable for literally dollar or two. You buy a new plug, cut off the old one, strip the wires and solder the new one on.
posted by AmbroseChapel at 2:45 AM on July 31, 2011 [1 favorite]

Not clear what happened to cause the damage; if it was the sort of thing that headphones, the cable should be able to handle and perhaps involves a manufacturing defect, sounds like you have a reasonable argument with the store or manufacturer.

(I've accidentally put a little pressure on cable jacks, when they were connected to devices or otherwise, and they were fine.)
posted by ambient2 at 12:50 PM on July 31, 2011

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