Comcast home security turned out to be one of Gary O’Reilly’s worst nightmares. Moving into a new house with a pregnant wife and a toddler on March 24, 2013, he had thought that it was worth it to spare no expense to keep his family safe.
Apparently, Comcast took advantage of O’Reilly’s decision to “spare no expense,” and the entire ordeal cost him more than he expected in time and money.
After moving into the family’s new home, the Chicago-area customer ordered the entire package; internet, XFINITY Home, cable TV, a home security system, and automation. The company sent two men to install everything, taking nearly ten hours, but by the time they were done, the home had four exterior door alarm sensors and two digital thermostats in action.
The following morning, the problems had already begun.
At around 2 a.m., one of the thermostats had malfunctioned and started relentlessly beeping. Gary O’Reilly awoke to discover his family was freezing.
“It was defective, and because the thermostat was digital, I could not control the temperature in that half of my house. My pregnant wife and [two-year-old] son were freezing in their own home.”
Comcast home security had become more of a nuisance than a comfort as O’Reilly proceeded to call the cable provider and request a service date as soon as possible. Rather than fixing the problem, when the service technician arrived several days later, they installed a replacement thermostat which barely worked more effectively than the first.
Comcast customer service had also decided to bill him for the additional service call and the replacement device, which took him an additional ten or so hours in live calls and online chats to remove the charges.
Less than a month later, the replacement thermostat had also stopped working and O’Reilly had to call again. The third thermostat they had installed was faulty right away, draining its batteries within only a few days every time. Comcast allegedly told him the batteries were his responsibility, and he bought more in bulk, hoping that was the only expense.
By mid-June, O’Reilly had discovered that the batteries were leaking and he ordered a fourth replacement for the device installed as part of his Comcast home security package.
After the fourth thermostat malfunctioned, Gary O’Reilly had had enough and called to cancel his service entirely.
Receiving his bill, O’Reilly quickly discovered that Comcast home security was the worst decision he’d ever made. The early termination fee was $1,000, a price he felt unwilling to pay. Comcast threatened to take him to court for collections after ruining his credit rating and charging interest on top of the fee.
— Ted Hearn (@TedatACA) September 28, 2014
With O’Reilly’s credit rating having dropped by 150 points, he could no longer qualify to refinance his mortgage and was in danger of losing his new home. Given no other option, O’Reilly had to compromise, though Comcast spokesman Joe Trost claimed they had reached an “agreement.”
“Together, [we] talked about the possibility of restarting services with Comcast with the agreement to waive the installation fees and (early termination fees) from the previous account, as well as clearing him from collections and the credit bureaus. We’re providing Mr. O’Reilly with different package options and composing a letter to overnight to Mr. O’Reilly with the information we discussed over the phone.”
Sadly, Gary O’Reilly was given no choice but to upgrade his internet plan so he could cancel Comcast home security. He agreed only so they would waive the early termination fee and restore his credit rating.
After all of the news about Comcast customer service this past year, it seems they have earned the trophy as the worst company in America. The nation eagerly awaits changes to the company’s policies and even Comcast’s data caps.
Do you have any Comcast customer service horror stories?
[image via Saving Advice]