Why I won’t buy HP Ever Again – Period!

Today I had such an exasperating and annoying experience with Hewlett Packard’s UK customer support, that I’ve come to the conclusion that I’ll never buy another HP product again.

The Backstory.

14 months ago I bought an Acer Aspire laptop from what I thought was an authorised online Acer outlet. We’d had some issues with the laptop & the customer service was poor.  I resolved  in future only to buy direct from the manufacturer if possible.

A week ago the hard drive failed & replacing it was uneconomic. So, the search was on for a replacement.

Enter Hewlett Packard

We choose a HP Pavilion DV6 laptop from the official UK HP online store. At £550 it was £150 dearer than the original Acer but I thought that buying it direct from HP would at least mean it was kosher & customer support would be good.

On receiving the laptop everything looked good. Indeed, it worked well. Then I spotted that one of the screen screws was missing. Usually these are covered by a rubber plug, but  both the plugs had been removed and a residue of glue was left in each screw recess.

The only reason to remove these plugs is to access the screws to remove the screen in order to effect a repair. Why would a brand new laptop, sold as new, have these screws missing unless it was a refurbed laptop?

HP Customer (Dis)Service

So, I called HP customer support today. I was routed through to technical support, & there spoke to a chap called Dave. On checking the serial number, he asked how long I’d had the laptop. 2 days I reported. Well, that’s strange he said, since the warranty on this machine was already 60 days old. Nor could he remove the rubber plugs on his Pavilion laptop without a screw driver – so somebody had deliberately removed these on my laptop & then forgotten to replace the screw or the original rubber plugs.

That sounds like this machine has been sold once and returned for repair I said. Could be replied Dave, since he could think of no other reason why the screw plugs had been removed and the warranty was more than 2 days old.

So, HP appears to have sold me a return/refurb as a brand new computer, without all the parts (1 screw and 2 rubber plugs, and a shortened warranty). Doesn’t that constitute a breach of contract & various consumer protection laws?

‘Errr’, said Dave as I was then sent back to the complaints department. Here Cheryl (who refused to give her surname due to ‘Data Protection’ – even tho’ they have my name, address, phone number & email address!) raised my complaint & routed me thro’ to another department to hear my rant.

Now Monica listened as I ranted but said they would only send me a replacement laptop after they had collected the original. So you can’t guarantee I’ll be without a laptop for a time. No sir, that’s our procedure. Not in this instance it isn’t said I. You’ve tried to screw me over & now you expect me to be without my laptop while you get your arse into gear.

Well, you could have a refund, retorted Monica. Anyway, back to customer complaints go I, in an attempt to escalate my complaint. At no point would any member of the HP customer service teams agree to escalate this complaint, nor would they pass me onto a line manager or supervisor. Eventually, after more than an hour on the phone, they agreed to get a manager to call me within 2 hours to discuss my complaint.

Needless to say, the call never came. So we called Cheryl again and eventually were passed onto her team manager Dean. He flatly refused to countenance that HP had done anything incorrect. The warranty was apparently from the date of manufacture – Dave in technical support had got it wrong – and the missing screw and rubber plugs was merely a quality control issue. On neither grounds had HP done anything wrong and were certainly not going to talk about compensation, etc, etc.

Goodbye HP

So, I’m now sending my HP Pavilion DV6 laptop back & I’m never buying HP again. Perhaps I’ll bite the bullet & buy another Mac – at least they know how to do customer service (& at least they’re open about selling refurbed kit)


After asking for a refund, HP managed to send me a replacement laptop! Monica sent an email apologising & told me to just refuse delivery. Once it had returned to base, they would initiate a refund, she wrote. So, I refused delivery of the laptop only for City Link to redeliver it the following day – it was accepted as I was expecting delivery of a Dell laptop that day.

Guess what? On opening the plastic wrapping, I noticed that the seal on the laptop case had been opened, & the box itself had been ripped. It had been ripped in the way that happens when someone is over eager in opening the flaps. Surely HP wouldn’t send me a return or refurbished laptop as a replacement? My suspicion is that they did, but I can’t prove this.

When my new Dell laptop was delivered, it was obvious that this packaging had not been opened before – the seal was intact & the box undamaged, just as you would expect when buying brand new goods. This alone confirms my decision never to buy from Hewlett Packard again.


23 thoughts on “Why I won’t buy HP Ever Again – Period!

  1. Totally unsurprised to hear about this. HP’s laptop support for home users is just terrible. However, Dell’s isn’t too great either; it’s usually worth paying the extra for the next business day service as you tend to get the better call centers too. If it’s from the business website, go for ProSupport – UK or Ireland call centre, not scripted at all and very good techie people who know the products.

  2. Bought HP XL300 printer ink as HP advise 600 pages instead of 200 with 300 ink.
    Ceased printing in less than 200 sheets!

    Found, but cannot now see, an email comment box (like this one) which allows you to complain? but does not show the HP email address.

    Needless to say, no one has replied (month now).

    How do I get HP to live up to CUSTOMER SERVICE.

  3. just wanted to back this up , as the way i was spoken to by a hp advisor was frankly disgusting ……i called them as i had just had a follow up call, regarding an on going technical issue i’m having

    i got threw to a chap who told me his name where he was and was i calling about a laptop a desktop a printer or what ever else he seemed to have to ask from his predefined script

    as i did not want the next question to be what the model number the serial, the cpu’s max fresh hold! :/ :/.

    i stopped him and said actually im calling as i just had a call from hp (my time hear was polite and up beat )

    the guys reply !!…. sir dont get short with me ok!

    what the !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! i hung up as will not deal with people who speak to me like that (i am better attitude) im the customer if i interrupt you listen! and it was his benefit anyway …..was soooooooo annoyed i rang back and got through to a lady, who advised me i could only register a complaint against the technical issue not a customer service complaint (CONVIENIANT) although i could register my thoughts on there website

    finally in the end after trying to discuss on my warranty issue (wont go in to that)i did get through to someone who new wjhat customer service was, he listened, sugested good options and wass shocked how someone could be so rude

    this place really needs to shape up its majorly put me off hp ans will NOT be buying ANYTHING hp again ! this is mainly down to the issues i have had with the desktop, although the chap i had the displeasure of speaking with was the straw that broke the camels back !!!

    not good at all!!!

  4. I too am really pissed at HP. The last four printers I have bought have been HP. I just bought the 5510d. After refilling a cartridge I received the HP Warranty “threat” but continued with my printing. It was banded so I did the “Clean print head” which gave a perfect result. Tried printing again – banded. There is no explanation for this apart from the drivers deliberately limiting the ink when printing an image because the machine has detected non-HP ink. They must have introduced a chemical signature. I can understand the company’s frustration at customers resorting to cheaper ink alternatives but I don’t remember signing a contract with HP to use their inks before purchasing the prinrter and can find nothing on the box to that effect. Personally I feel this is vandalism and will search to see if my statutory rights have been breached.

  5. Exactly the same as Joe Doyle – my 300XL cartridge has produced about 100 pages of work tops. When I tried HP Customer Support, and extremely rude woman called Kayleigh (refused to give her last name too), refused to help me unless I gave her a number which she said was on my printer, but there was no such number. Anyway, they haven’t heard the end of this. I tweeted the head of BT when I had a complaint with them, and Meg Whitman (Head of HP) is going to get continual tweets from me until they respond. I wish you all luck in your dealings with them.

  6. Just an update on my above comment:
    I have now located the comments page to the MD of HP-UK
    [dead link]
    and have left him a message on there. I have also sent an email with same message to Meg Whitman, Todd Bradley, Nick Wilson and the Board of Directors. Let’s see if anyone replies…..
    (We wouldn’t have to go to such lengths if only that had decent customer service here in the UK.)

  7. I have had similar problems with customer service over the last 6 years. It’s not so much the fact that the thing is faulty, it happens, but the rigmoral and delays you have to go through, only to get the product returned with only some of the faults completed. I have had the same thing happened 4 times and 3 times the product has come back with not all faults fixed and in one case a turn around of over 4 weeks. Trying to get someone in customer services to reply is hard enough, but when you list down the complaints nothing is done. I too went through this messaging the CEO last time and got a swift call back and some resolution, though not an extension of warranty for time away or apology for problems. The problems seem not to have gone away and they ignored all previous complaints and suggestions. I would like to report to many others at HP in high positions, but don’t have emails otherwise I would. Never HP again.

  8. Hi Wayne, I’ve had so many people echo mine (& your) unsatisfying experiences with HP that it must be deliberate policy on their part to frustrate their customer’s ability to get issues resolved. It seems a strange strategy to adopt. If I contrast it with my experience of Apple’s customer service, which has been exemplary, then I wonder what the future of HP is!

  9. After being satisfied with HP printers since late 1980’s, 2 years ago bought a photosmart with 3 years warranty. It was faulty, it took HP 6 months to recognise it and wasted 100 hours of my time. Told me to return it to Stapples. Bought an OfficeJet Pro 8500A Plus in replacement (+£50) with 3 years warranty. Happy for 3 weeks so bought another one for the office with 3 years warranty. Registered both and their warranty. Two months later, first machine started cleaning printheads and realigning the same all the time wasting much ink and our time waiting for printouts. Office machine did the same a few weeks later. It took HP 8 months and 3 faulty replacement units to exchange it for a new OfficeJet 8600 Plus which works. Starting again with the office printer in February 2013, HP sent me 3 faulty replacement machines again. Then asked me for copy of invoices for both printers, then copy of the warranty for both printers. Early sept 2013, Louise offered me an HP Officejet 8600. I did not know that this was a different machine form the 8600 Plus. Having spent hours on the phone, 100+ hours waiting for the printer to work and around £1000 in cartridges and printheads for printing only less than 5000 pages with that second printer, I asked for a couple of sets of carts. I was told no way. Nothing happened for about 10 days so rang up again and accepted the offer. Received the 8600 which does not do Letter size scanning or auto double sided scanning which my original machine was bought for. Rang HP again and Louise said that it’s too late as I have accepted it despite it not doing all that the machine I bought was doing and only 3 months warranty! If buying 2 machines, HP seems to think that you are not trustworthy. Apparently they had no record of the purchases (despite having registered and sent invoices) nor warranty and no record of sending replacement units (fortunately I kept the serial nos). Cannot talk to manager as they are not customer facing! Wasted 100s of hours, paid £12s on phone calls (5p per minute and each call lasts around 1 hour), and about £1000 in printheads and cartridges. The worse customer experience ever … and I have seen some! Don’t buy HP!

  10. Wow!,
    Your experience of HP ‘customer service’ is outrageous. I feel for you, I truly do. My one suggestion might be to raise it with some consumer champion – the Guardian newspaper has a column on Saturday where they seek redress. If nothing else, it will shame HP & hopefully prevent others from suffering the same.
    Thanks again for your story & I wish you all the best,

  11. I’m having the same disastrous customer service. A new HP cartridge wouldn’t print, although I bought it early 2012 it had expired in Apr2012 but I didn’t notice. I now realise HP cartridges only have a shelf life of about 2 years. Naively I thought Customer Service would replace it as a good will gesture, I was not prepared for their insulting rude behavior. I spoke to Owen and he flatly refused any help because the cartridge although new is out of date. Owen was quite rude but never abusive comparing the cartridge to that “I wouldn’t eat an out of date sandwich”, a comparison I find hard to see any relevance. As it quickly became clear that he would not be of any assistance to me at all I asked to speak to his supervisor, to which request he refused absolutely. I then asked for the name and contact details of the UK Chief Executive again he refused saying “go look for it on the HP Internet site”.

    At this point he said “I’m going to hang up”. I asked again for his supervisor but he then did indeed disconnect my call! This futile phone conversation cost me nearly £3 in call charges.

    I then sent the details of my complaint to DCVC_EMEA_EN@mail.support.hp.com who i was told is the complaints department but they don’t even bother to reply. Well, I like a challenge and I will make them regret being to rude as not to even want to listen to a customers complaints.

    My family have had two HP laptops, both have suffered from overheating. One burnt out the GPU, the other is still okay but the heat is throws out is scary even if its not really doing anything. I now have an Acer that’s brilliant because it only uses the Nvida GPU when really necessary so it runs so cool.

    With all the power of the Internet, companies cannot behave like this and get away with it.

  12. Hi Roger,
    Again, I feel your pain. I also hope that you’re correct and that we, the consumers, will be able to hold these mega corporations to account.
    Best wishes, Eddie

  13. A little over a week ago I raised my complaint with Nick Wilson
    VP/Managing Director UK to which I received an auto response that they review messages each week and they would get back to me.

    You guessed it, so far no reply I will wait a bit longer but I start to think their customer service attitude is a reflection from the top down. At least in the UK.

    Its not so much that I have suffered much loss but the attitude of this company is wholly unacceptable. I will never buy their products again because I couldn’t count on them if I had more serious problems to resolve.

  14. HP’s complaints department did get back to me (the same department that previously ignored my complaint) and I’m pleased to say they resolved my issue by sending me a replacement ink cartridge. This time they were polite and helpful.

    So all’s well that ends well, its just a shame it took so much effort to get them to take my complaint seriously. I will continue using HP products in the future.

    I don’t even have plenty of words to express my frustration due to BAD CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE with HP customer service support India.

    I purchased HP Pavilion G6 on 28th May 2013. Just after 3 month from the date of purchasing the laptop, I found some problem in the hinges and OS of the laptop. I contacted HP service support regarding the same. An engineer came and inspected the cause. Upon successful inspection, engineer took the laptop to HP service center in order to fix the issue. After receiving my laptop back from HP service center, I found more problems in my laptop than before like:

    1. I found cooling fan inside the laptop is not working anymore. For which HP service support again took my laptop back to the service center and opened the entire laptop once again.

    2. Hinges of the laptop were still a bit loose even after getting it serviced. But as my new laptop had already been opened by the engineer three times, my father suggested me to manage with what I had.

    3. Now today right after nine months from the date of servicing, I am noticing hinges getting loose day by day.

    4. After contacted HP service support regarding the same, I get to know that as my laptop doesn’t come under the warranty period anymore, service if provided by HP Support will be chargeable.

    5. I agreed if product is out of warranty, service provided should be chargeable. But this particular problem with hinges was there in my laptop very from the beginning and even if later on if I am facing the same problem in my laptop, it clearly questions the PRODUCT QUALITY….(Worst and not WORTH 40,000 RS.)

    5. More and more whenever I try to contact HP customer support, most of the times call gets disconnected by showing a connection error or line continuously goes busy for toll free numbers like 1800112267, 1800114772. The only way to contact HP support India is by dialing chargeable number 020-30306363 where the kind of customer service you get makes you more frustrated like:
    When I ask them to call me back on my number- They say no, even after giving my entire case details and ID, they promise to call me back but they don’t.
    Not even this, They even ask me to explain the entire case once again and in-between call gets disconnected. (THESE ALL EXPERIENCES I HAVE FACED FROM HP CUSTOMER SUPPORT KOLKATA with executives name as DEBAIN and KARANVEER.

    These all 5 point are not enough to express my frustration regarding the kind of BAD CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE I have faced with HP Services. Two years back the kind of image I had in my mind regarding Hewlett Packard was totally wrong.

    CASE ID’s: 4732262566

    Ketan Karol
    Mobile No: Removed by moderator

  16. HP are the worst!

    I bought a laptop with a 2 year warranty, that’s what attracted me to them. Waste of time.

    I sent it back as dots had apeared across the screen, the DVD drive was very noisy, and they keyboard trim had come away from the main body.

    1st repair the screen was done, they keboard was stuck down badly, and all the keys rattled. The DVD drive was noisy and on ripping CD’s I could get i-tunes to go up from 5x to 20x just by holing in the DVD drive (this also stopped the noise) and had been changed, it now sounds like robocop every time the machine boots up or an app wants that drive. I had to set it as the default drive, HP didn’t. (well inspected then)

    2nd time the keyboard came back still noisy, DVD drive the same. I noticed the screen housing was lose, so sent it back for all of this.

    3rd time – screen housing replaced – apparently they broke the lugs last repair. Now the pc is slow and the battery doesn’t seem to last, they keys still rattle like they have a tambourine underneath them, and the DVD drive speed depends on how much you push the drive into the casing.

    They offered me a replacement machine that doesn’t have the features of my current one, and is the same price as mine with a software bundle for antivirus, so the actual machine is worth less.

    This whole process has taken two months so far.

    Having worked for very large companies it seems the staff “just do their tasks” as that is what they get paid for, customer satisfation will not affect their pay, they won’t be KPI’d on that.

    I bank with First Direct. I like good service, it shows a company that cares about customers. I appreciate you have to make a profit to be in business, this isn’t about that.

    Here’s my emails:

    HP Customer Care – 3007588581


    Dear Mr Herbert

    As per our telephone conversation, please see below the details of the new unit we are offering you

    Pavilion 17-F002na

    Kind Regards

    HP Customer Relations Team

    If you wish to reply to this e-mail please don’t remove anything from the e-mail as you answer it.

    Our advice is strictly limited to the question(s) asked and is based on the information provided to us. Problems and solutions may depend on the nature of your system environment and various other parameters that are unknown to Hewlett-Packard; therefore, to the extent allowed by local law, Hewlett-Packard cannot assume any responsibility or liability. Please be advised that technical information changes as new data becomes available, therefore, Hewlett-Packard recommends that you check back at our Customer Care web site located at http://www.hp.com/support regularly for possible updates. To the extent allowed by local law, Hewlett-Packard shall not be liable for any direct, indirect, special, incidental or consequential damages in connection with the use of this information. To the extent that this disclaimer is inconsistent with local law, this disclaimer shall be deemed modified to be consistent with such local law. This disclaimer, except to the extent lawfully permitted, does not exclude, restrict, or modify and is in addition to the mandatory statutory rights applicable.

    HP will process your personal data to provide you support services according to the HP Personal Data Rights Notice, please see. Hewlett-Packard does not require you to send any financial data in your reply to this email. Please don’t insert your credit card details or any other financial information in your reply.

    Our advice is strictly limited to the question(s) asked and is based on the information provided to us. Please review the HP Support Disclaimer in your own language / 免責事項:

    Steve Herbert
    30 Sep (3 days ago)

    to HP
    Hi Louise,

    Thanks for the call and the email, I’ve looked at this closely and it just doesn’t do everything my current machine does, specifically it doesn’t have “left click/right click” buttons which I use all the time. I need a laptop that has these on it. The one you have suggested also has a battery 1/3 smaller than mine which is no good as I use it without power most of the time.

    I would not be ineterested in a “bundle” as I use free antivirus, so the Free Antivirus for 15 months is a waste of money for me. I just want a machine.

    I did have a look online the other week just incase it was going to be replaced and there were a couple of laptops the same, but they have now gone … will there be more stock coming online soon?

    All the very best



    HP Customer Care – 3007588581


    Dear Mr Herbert

    I have looked for an alternative unit for yourself but unfortunately we do not have another unit to offer the only other option would be a buyback of your unit which is us to buy your unit back and you receive a full refund of what you purchased for the unit if you have your invoice to send over to me.

    Kind Regards

    HP Customer Relations Team

    Hi Louise,

    The Laptop you offered me is the same price as my current machine with the extra software bundle, so the actual machine is worth less than mine which I can’t accept.

    The only one I can find suitable is this one :

    I won’t use the McAfee so please remove it. I have chosen this machine as without the McAfee it is the nearest value to my machine with the same functions, except it still lacks a right click button and a separate microphone (as we discussed this is something I really use), but it at least has long battery life as per the image attached from your site.

    I would want it with a 2 year warranty as this was the reason I chose HP in the first place, my current machine has this.

    All the very best


    HP Customer Care – 3007588581


    Dear Mr Herbert

    As advised we can only offer the unit we have offered you or the only other option would be a full refund of what you paid for the unit

    Kind Regards

    HP Customer Relations Team

    Hi Louise,

    Not much of a reply. I have explained why I don’t want a unit that costs less that mine, can you explain why I should take a unit that costs less than mine, and also has half the warranty?

    Please can you escalate this complaint to a manager and ask them to call me. After sending my machine back to be repaired 3 times, each time HP making the machine worse than it was, I expect a little more than just the cost of my machine. I have spent 2 months trying to get you to fix a DVD drive and a keyboard rattle, which you have still not done.

    On the phone you said I could chose another machine or wait for one to come into stock, and now you have changed you mind and are saying this machine or a refund?

    Please escalate this complaint and ask a manager to call me in the day on my work number [], please tell them to specify it is a personal call.


    Stephen Herbert

  17. me neither, although the market seems full of bad service. big companies these days I think.

    I got them to confirm in writing a full refund of the original purchase price, but I’m annoyed they offered me a machine at £449 the same price, but with a software bundle. The software bundle is a £50 add on, so they wanted to gibe me a £399 machine to replace my £440 machine.

    Funnily enough I have seen their stuff in John Lewis with a 2 year warranty, and if I got from there I wouldn’t have to deal with HP, but the DVD/CD drive was that floppy I won’t have another HP without testing it.

    I’m stuck because I want a 17.3 screen, and not many do them now. Got an Acer from Acerdirect as was advertised as 1920×1080 but when I got it it maxed out at 1600×900, they said it’s an error on their site so are refunding. They were really good about it aswell.

    that was this machine, seemed nice but no battery access:

    so I’m gonna play with this at John Lewis’s later and see what the DVD drive’s like:

    or am looking at this one, mate said Asus had been great with him:

    I like a big screen as I do lots of photography, and am after 1TB drive, the rest I do’t care about really as long as it’s i3 or later, and 4GB memory. My budget is about £500

    anyone got any other options or comments on these 3?

  18. I am having bad problems with hp as well because my Warrenty has expired I can’t get downloads for Windows 10 but they have invaded my screen so that I can’t use my computer ev ery time i try to use it support assistant comes up then my screen freezes and I can’t click it off so I have to unplug it can’t get a contact
    e mail address to get them to stop it’s disgracefull got your contact for director thank you have sent him an e mail but I don’t suppose it make any difference thanks anyway,margaret

  19. I bought an HP pavillion 15 n290sa 18 months ago and it gave up the ghost completely two months after the warranty ran out. Previous to that, the charger stopped working and it was almost impossible to get a replacement. Currys, the store I bought it from didn’t want to know. Eventually hp sent me a new one as it was still under warranty. A couple of months later, it just went blip, red screen, then black screen, caps lock blinked constantly. Took it to PC clinic and to cut a long story short, it looks as if the motherboard has gone, so it’ll probably be cheaper to buy a new laptop. Soooo angry as I only used it to type and email work documents. My last laptop lasted 7 years, so very disappointed in this one as it wasn’t the cheapest model. Wouldn’t buy hp again !

  20. Hi Linda,
    Sorry to hear of your poor experience. If you only use a laptop for such limited tasks you might consider a tablet or a cheaper laptop.
    Best wishes,

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