Costco’s New Return Policy – Not As Incredible

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You knew it was going to happen, especially if you read about some of the abuses committed by commenters in my post about how incredible the former Costco return policy was. Well, Costco this week announced (Consumerist broke it, at least to me) that they were going to be adjusting the policy to a 90-day electronics returns policy on D24 categories (their categories) televisions, computers, cameras, camcorders, iPod/MP3 players, and cellular phones. This only applies to purchases made after the roll out date (explained below).

Concierge & Warranty Extension
One cool thing out of this is that I didn’t know was that Costco extends a manufacturer’s warranty on televisions and computers to 2 years from date of purchase and that they offer free technical support on their Costco Concierge Technical Support line available at 1-866-861-0450.

Roll Out Date
The policy is being rolled out starting 2/26 and ending 4/2 so if you make a purchase before the official roll out date you are grandfathered into the existing return policy. The dates are:

  • California – 2/26/07
  • Remaining West Coast incl. NW, LA, SD – 3/12/07
  • MW and TX – 3/19/07
  • NE – 3/26/07
  • SE and PR – 4/2/07

I assume that NW means Northwest, MW is Midwest, NE is New England, SE is Southeast, and PR is Puerto Rico.

{ 111 comments, please add your thoughts now! }

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111 Responses to “Costco’s New Return Policy – Not As Incredible”

  1. Chadbag says:

    My brother bought a large screen TV at Costco before the policy went into place. About 2 years later he bought an HD-DVD player. The TV did not work with the player for some reason. He was able to return it to Costco, who gave him his money back. He then purchased, from Costco, a replacement TV that would work better with the HD-DVD player. (The original TV should have worked with the player but did not for some reason). It was a good policy but subject to too much abuse.

    The only time I ever returned anything after a lot of use was a dehumidifier. Costco sent me a recall notice on it so when I brought it in they said I could have a replacement or my money back. I took the money back as I was moving to a dry climate and did not need it any longer. However, I would not have brought it back without their invitation from the recall. I would have sold it at our yard sale…

    And NO, Costco does not sell “cheaper” as in “quality” items. They may get special product number items that are identical to standard items but may have one or two features missing (like fewer inputs or outputs). But they are not made of less quality. Sony or Toshiba is not going to have a “crappy product” manufacturing line just for Costco or stick their name on a product that is intentionally made to an inferior quality level. But they do make special versions for the big stores with custom part numbers and slightly different features. This is true for Costco, Wal-Mart, Target, Sears, and all the big retailers. This is not a Costco only phenomenon.

  2. just me says:

    Stop whining people! Typical American behavior – whine, complain, and whine some more… Costco is awesome overall. Be happy for what you have and if you don’t like something? Go live in a different country and see how they react when you try to return ANYTHING…

  3. lynn says:

    anyone can tell what was costco policy in 2006 for tv retund????????????

  4. Atlanta member says:

    We have long suspected that some items appear identical but are manufactured to lower standards to acheive the price point at Costco. We stopped buying anything electric there because the percentage that failed in short period of time or didn’t work right out of the box was just too high to be coincidental. We still shop there for many things but nothing electronic.

  5. setupdotexe says:

    As an insider in import/exports between US and China, I can tell you for a fact that Costco’s goods are not a cheaper line of product that you would get at any other store. Almost everything we buy is made in China to some extent. Regardless of where it’s assembled, there’s a good chance the majority of the components are made in China. Quality problems are related to a lack of quality control by the manufacturer (the entity that owns the product’s name and design), not the country in which it’s made.

  6. Jason says:


    Costco now extends the manufacturer’s warrantee for an additional year for Computers and Televisions ONLY…they DO NOT extend it for anything else. Returns must be made within 90 days of purchase for other purchases which is still better than most other stores. Unfortunately, the system was abused by some irresponsible customers in years past whom took advantage of the relax system and now existing customers no longer benefit from their generous return policy.

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