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Author Topic:   My jihad against Lowrance/Navico
glen e posted 09-03-2010 10:00 PM ET (US)   Profile for glen e   Send Email to glen e  
Last year Jim accused me of having some vendetta against Lowrance and Navico as I said their service sucked. Not a jihad,just the truth. Service was terrible.

When it got better, I thought I'd report that too.

It has.

The whole Navico experience is much better these days. They realized last year that they needd some improvement and added a lot of support. Their CEO even made in- person dealer calls to listen. And not Obama whirlwind visits, he was in our store all afternoon and talked in depth to every department. Very thorough. I get help for our customers pretty quick these days...The hotlines are fast. Congrats for listening, Navico.

SJUAE posted 09-04-2010 02:58 AM ET (US)     Profile for SJUAE  Send Email to SJUAE     

Thanks for the feedback

Jim will be pleased as he just got a HDS-8


glen e posted 09-04-2010 02:13 PM ET (US)     Profile for glen e  Send Email to glen e     
I live for that (LOL)
jimh posted 09-06-2010 03:41 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
I do not recall "accusing" anyone, particularly Glen, however it was quite obvious from reading a few popular boating website forums that there were some people who were making a career out of posting especially negative articles about LOWRANCE based primarily on how long they had to wait on the telephone to receive free technical support at no cost to them other than their time.

Now if President Obama has to wait on the telephone to get first-level technical support I suppose that would be an issue, but in the grand scheme of things I never felt much concern for someone who had to sit on hold on a free telephone call to get free technical support, although a few people certainly seemed to have an agenda and tried to turn it into a big deal.

From my perspective the complaints took two form:

--the complainer was either quite technically unsophisticated and was calling to get advice that probably was already available in the instruction manual, in the built-in help function, or on the Lowrance website; or,

--the complainer was a very high-end user who was trying to accomplish a very complex interconnection of devices, and was not getting the immediate results they anticipated would occur.

We often use the rule that it takes ten "atta-boy's" to cancel one "oh-shit", so when LOWRANCE became the target of a fusillade of negatives, it would have taken a tidal wave of positive articles to just get back to even.

It is regrettable that some newbie to modern marine electronics had to wait 30-minutes to learn how to change a setting on his new LOWRANCE, but it was not a deal breaker for me. I chose my HDS-8 after careful analysis of the available devices, their functions, and their prices, and the rants and raves of a few guys on a few websites had little influence.

wldrns1 posted 09-06-2010 07:10 PM ET (US)     Profile for wldrns1  Send Email to wldrns1     
My experience wasn't a good one. Late last summer, ith about 30 hours & within the warranty period, my top of dash mounted 522iGPS simply quit working. FYI...never had trouble contacting Lowrance. Boat is rarely used in the rain & is kept in my garage. The only answer I got for what went wrong is the unit was 'Bad'.

They issued an RMA. After receiving my unit, it took almost one month before it was even looked at it. I had a contact at the company who I could always reach. She said there were just a lot of returns to go through. It was unknown where mine was in the number of units thay had. She thanked me for being patient. It seemed the company was overwhelmed from many angles. Even though a Warranty was still in effect, mine was simply added to the pile and not given any special 'Warranty' designation. I knew an evaluation had to be done to say yes or no to Warranty, but I feel some priotity should have been given.

Once it was deemed not repairable, I was told they would send another no charge. I said great! After waiting a few weeks, I called to ask if one had been sent. She said it would be about another 4-6 weeks due to there were no replacements and more are being made. I had been looking forward to late season perch fishing with my new Lowrance but well...too bad. She apologized and admitted things had become challanging at Lowrance in recent years in a number of areas and they're working to make overall improvements.

Once I received my replacement, I learned it had a warranty of 6 months, expiring in April. I called and explained lakes are still frozen in late March here in Central NY. The warranty was extended another 3 months. It's over now with about 10 hours on the unit. I mentally cross my fingers every time I push the Power Button.

While there's no comparison with my old Tom Mann's portable clamshell metal case Humminbird 'Bird Trap' Super 60, I have to say the Bird was pounded, dropped, rained on and frozen. It never skipped a beat for over 15 years. Just because a product is more 'electronic' doesn't mean it should be acceptable to fail in a short period of time. Of course, as long as it works, the Lowrance to me is simply amazing & the greatest. One gets spoiled with such a slick piece of gear. I was an unquestioning, loyal customer right from the start. It's easy to see how my loyalty has become tainted.

I agree with jimh regarding crybaby's who don't know & refuse to read manuals etc that complain about poor 'customer service'. I did not plaster Lowrance complaints across the Internet. I did comment via reply to a thread if I remember right about some of my experience.

My Lowrance contact advised me to look at the new Mark & Elite that were coming out Spring '10. I havent seen any comments on these to date anywhere. For my needs, I don't need HD. I don't plan on replacing the 522iGPS unless I'm forced to due to failure. I have no idea what I'd replace it with either. I'm sure everyone would agree it would be wonderful to have confidence that brand ABC was overall 'the best'(lets not get into a discussion of what is meant by 'the best') Today, you just don't see this much anymore. What you do see is a gradual deterioration and corner cutting across the board. I think most WILL agree to that! We spend a lot of money on these items yet become less confident in our purchases.

So there you have my Lowrance story PLUS my 2 cents.

glen e posted 09-06-2010 07:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for glen e  Send Email to glen e     
God Jim, you are amazing..just accept that everything has gotten better. It was not about just waiting on the hotlines, it was a lot more than that. Better now. Let it go.
jimh posted 09-06-2010 07:38 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
The HDS-8 will be my fifth LOWRANCE depth sounder. All four prior units worked perfectly and are still working for their current owners, as far as I know . The one time I had to call Lowrance for free support it was to ask for a free replacement part for something I dropped and could not find--totally my mistake. They send me a whole new unit for free. Based on my first-hand experience LOWRANCE could not be more reliable, and their customer service could not be better.

Just two days ago a fellow I was boating with told me a similar story. He accidentally broke something on his LOWRANCE unit. The device was out of warranty. The problem was resolved by LOWRANCE sending him a new unit for free. Again, how can it get better than that?

I guess the JIHAD has not ended quite yet.

jimh posted 09-07-2010 12:53 PM ET (US)     Profile for jimh  Send Email to jimh     
Glen writes: "God Jim, you are amazing."

Glen, I think the part about me that amazes you is that I do not accept your opinion or your word as the final say on all maters, and instead I make my own independent judgments. I know this is a bit unusual and may come as a surprise to you.

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